A desktop wallpaper might seem like a simple thing, but when we're talking about a brand-new operating system, its importance can't be understated. The wallpaper chosen can directly impact someone's first impressions of an OS -- a nice picture can put you in the right frame of mind, and perhaps instill a little excitement.
Microsoft knows this very well. Its Windows XP wallpaper has become iconic, and since then, the company's made sure that the first wallpaper its customers see brings a positive vibe to the OS. And what OS needs positive vibes more than Windows 10 right now? It's without question one of the most important releases Microsoft's had in quite some time, so it needs to suck people in right from the get-go and prove to them that the OS is a big deal.
To attain that feeling with Windows 10, Microsoft hired artist Bradley G. Munkowitz, aka Gmunk, to craft an image that helps prove to people that Windows 10 is an exciting, modern, and limitless OS. Munkowitz has a huge portfolio of exciting art, including having worked on Tron projects, and given the incredible aesthetic many of them have, it seems like he was a good choice.
Behold, the Windows 10 default wallpaper:
At quick glance, it may look simple. It may even look like an image that someone skilled could have created in Photoshop in the span of a couple of hours. But, there's much more than meets the eye here. This isn't a digital creation, but instead a photograph snapped in a studio. A real pane of glass was used, and frickin' lasers helped create the incredible blue hue.
If you want to see a quick behind-the-scenes look at the creation of this wallpaper, you should check out this video:
Unfortunately, while it looks like this could be a live wallpaper, the static shot of it at the end of this video shows that it isn't. However, that doesn't mean that Microsoft couldn't include a live version of it, and given the sheer number of variation shots seen in the video, I'd wager that Microsoft will include alternative wallpapers. At least, I hope, because some of the shots looked really cool.