HARTINGTON — Not many people love their hobby enough to spend around 30 hours per week doing that work without getting paid, but Trey Morten loves making Photoshop edits and he is good at it, too.
Morten graduated from Hartington High School in 2014, and he said a computer class in high school gave him the basic understanding of the possibilities Photoshop offers. It wasn’t until April 2017 though, when he decided to teach himself more about it, that things began to unfold.
“I was taking a computer applications class and I had a buddy on Wayne State’s football team that I made my first edit for,” said Morten. He liked it and I realized I could do this for other people.”
After that first edit, it was like a door opened for Morten. He began to navigate the world of recruiting, and learned more about Photoshop in the process.
“I’d say the first one that I kind of looked at and was like, ‘wow, how did I do that,’ (was) one of my buddy. I kind of made him into the Joker from Batman,” he said.
He has created several since then.
“I’d say my favorite one that I did was for a kid that came to Nebraska named Miles Jones. I liked that one a lot.”
Morten doesn’t charge money for his photo edits, but has been able to brand himself by posting a logo and his Twitter handle on all the photos he creates. Now with over 1,000 followers on Twitter, Morten has built a name for himself among athletes, especially Nebraska Husker commits.
The Hartington native says he has created somewhere in the ballpark of 160 Photoshop edits, and 95 percent of the time the athletes approach him about getting a cool edit to announce their commitment to college or to even share with fans on social media.
He is now constantly having people reach out to him asking if he would create something for them.
“It’s a year-round process,” said Morten. “For example, I got six of them while I was on vacation. I will typically get more if someone with a high social media presence gets one, then I will get a few more requests. I would say I get about five-10 every week.”
Morten recently finished his senior year at Wayne State College, where he has been majoring in Sports Management.
He says he doesn’t necessarily want to make these edits his career, but thinks it helps him bring something extra to the table as a job candidate.
“I just feel like being able to do the Photoshop work adds to the arsenal to go along with my major,” said Morten. “I feel it will help get me hired along with my major, I want to work in an athletic department, whether in college or the pros. So I think anything that I can do extra will make me more hirable.”
Photoshop edits have become a new phenomena in recruiting, especially at the Division I level.
A lot of these highly touted players have large social media followings, have highlight packages made and put on Youtube that help get them recruited, and enjoy seeing fans reactions on Twitter or Instagram when posting an edit of themselves wearing a uniform of a potential future school.
It’s a new era of recruiting that comes with a lot of hype, flashiness, swagger and boldness.
Before the internet it was rare to see a recruit wearing a uniform of a college they were looking at, and that photo often didn’t circulate to fans. Now fans are trying to recruit future players on social media by showing they have a bigger support base than the other schools.
“I feel like it helps them out just for the fact that maybe some of them haven’t gotten to visit the school and try on a jersey to see how it looks,” said Morten.
the Hartington native doesn’t just do sports edits though. Morten says one of the more unique edits that he did was for former Nebraska quarterback Tommy Armstrong, and it wasn’t related to football.
“It was pretty interesting,” said Morten. “I have a buddy that plays video games with Tommy and that is what he wanted it for was a video game page. I found that interesting because he liked my work and approached me for a different purpose than football.”
Morten says he is pretty open to doing edits for people, especially as he has gained experience with his work. He also says that certain projects will always be special to him though.
“I just think it is really cool. At first I got butterflies in my stomach real bad. I got real nervous and wanted to make them perfect. Now I have enough confidence that I think they will like what I come out with, but I always do something a little extra for someone coming to Nebraska.”
To see more of his work, make sure to check out his Twitter page. His handle is @2_TREYZ.
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