[This is reprinted from my blog, published on Monday, Oct. 6, 2014.]
“Creativity Matters.” This was the central theme at today’s Adobe Max 2014 keynote; and creativity requires collaboration. As Shantanu Narayen, President and CEO of Adobe Systems said: “In our world, design is becoming more important, not less. We need to make technology more accessible…. Everyone has a story; our job is to make sure that everyone with a story to tell has the tools they need to tell it.”
This morning, Adobe announced and released updates to all their Creative Cloud applications, as well as nine mobile applications. Some of the mobile apps were new, others were rebranded and all were linked to core applications such as Photoshop, Illustrator or Premiere Pro. The video and audio applications were initially “revealed” last month at IBC, but weren’t released until this morning.
NOTE: Upgrades are free and included as part of Adobe’s Creative Cloud subscription service.
The stage presentations this morning were hosted by David Wadhwani, SVP and General Manager for Digital Media, and showcased in-depth demos of new Photoshop and Illustrator features and technology.
Key to collaboration is the idea of a “Creative Profile.” This is a Cloud-based individualized log-in that can store settings, fonts, even media in a central location that is shared between applications and accessible between team members. The Creative Profile and associated libraries allow for easy element and document exchange between mobile and desktop apps.
While the Creative Profile does not yet appear in Premiere, the concept of easily sharing files is illustrated in Premiere with its ability to open multiple projects in read-only mode and share clips and edits between projects.
“Good design means good business,” said Mr. Wadhwani, to an enthusiastic crowd of 5,000 creatives, and Adobe said they wanted to make the process of creating good design even easier. Much was made of Behance, Adobe’s portfolio sharing and community web environment.
I”m writing this from the press room at the Adobe Max conference. Earlier last month, I wrote an article outlining the new features in Adobe’s latest versions. Later this month I’ll publish more detailed reviews. Here are some initial take-aways:
As David said in the executive briefing following the event: “All creatives work differently.” Adobe’s focus was on asset management and enabling assets to move smoothly from one app to another. “The mobile apps have to be powerful enough that professionals want to use them, yet simple enough for anyone to use them.”
A new mobile app, introduced and released this morning, is Premiere Clip. This allows anyone to shoot video with an iPhone (Android support is coming, but no date was announced) then string clips into simple sequences, trim and rearrange clips, add music cues using music Adobe has licensed for the application, add color grades based upon the Lumetri engine in Speedgrade, and output the results directly to social media, or upload to Adobe Premiere Pro CC. The imported clips come in as media, and the edit appears as a standard Premiere sequence.
While this does not begin to touch the editing power of Premiere, it solves the very real need of editing cell phone clips for social media and introduces the power, and simplicity, of video editing to the very large market of cell phone users.
I am very impressed with the speed with which Adobe is updating all their software – more than 1,000 new features across all their applications since the Creative Cloud was introduced last year. I’m also impressed with the integration between the different applications, though the amount of integration varies between apps.
There is a lot here to like – and much to write about for the future. I am very curious to see how Apple responds because Adobe is moving at blinding speed at the moment.
As David Wadhwani summarized: “Technology and creativity are not separate. Creatives have a vision and want to create it. Adobe’s job is to make the intricacies of how technology works invisible. If we create the right stuff, creatives will figure out how it works and start pushing the envelope to create entirely new ways of looking at the world.”