When I first graduated high school, my first "real" job was as a Draftsman for a company called Mogul. I chose that profession because I liked drawing, but at the time being an artist was a bad idea. The job market was pretty dry when it came to an art career.
Since then I have worked my way into a web development career. Though I love my job, I really do not get the chance to be creative anymore. Yea sure, programming wise I find many creative ways to make things do what I want or need them to do. But that is not the same as putting the color to the canvas and making something beautiful.
In the past year I have set a goal for myself to do more creative things. Either designing a website layout, creating landscapes, or just designing an image composite for an advertisement.
The following Photoshop projects are the steps I have taken to improve my design skills, and have fun in the process.
Most of these projects can be found at tuts+. Another great site to learn more about digital graphic design is Ctrl+Paint.
I hope you find these helpful