Adobe Creative Cloud 2014 Create Now! Event at Cleveland Botanical Garden
On June 26, Adobe sponsored a great evening for 205 creatives at the Cleveland Botanical Garden. After a cocktail hour in the gardens (catered by Bon Appetit), the crowd was treated to two hours of feature highlights from Senior Adobe Evangelist Paul Trani (@paultrani, and PaulTrani.com), and Adobe Community Expert Jim Maivald (@TheAdobeGuy, and desktopdesign.cc).
Paul started by announcing the new pricing plans for the cloud, including the Photography Program – Photoshop and Lightroom for both desktop and tablet for only $9.99 a month. Then he launched into the new features for desktop applications, focusing largely on the developments in Photoshop and Illustrator. Photoshop now has Typekit pumped into it, making the font service readily available throughout the Design applications. You can preview different fonts in a design by simply hovering over them. Smart Objects have also been sharpened up: you can now convert embedded Smart Objects into linked ones and package them into a single directory. Both of these features are a great aid to collaborative design.
More and more distance collaboration is going on these days (thus the need for the Cloud), and Adobe has added Collaboration to the files you have in the cloud. Not only can people work on the same files in your Cloud account now, they keep a memory of the changes – much like the History panel in Photoshop.
Back to Photoshop, they’ve also upgraded the smart guides to show spacing information (that marvelous tool added to InDesign some years back) – a feature that will help with creating comps for the web in particular. There’s also a new Focus Area selection tool, which selects or masks only the parts of an image that are in sharp focus. In tandem with this feature, the new Blur Gallery is quite impressive, with new path and motion blur effects. The outstanding upgrade, though, has been in 3D extrusion and construction. Photoshop now has an efficient mesh repair feature, and works smoothly with 3D printers. Paul had some beautiful samples of objects he had designed and then made on 3D printers.
Illustrator has both a greatly improved Pencil Tool (smoothing now works!) and Pen Tool. The Pen Tool now has a live Bezier curve preview, so you know what the results of your path will be.
Moving on to web tools, Muse has been completely re-engineered. The in-browser edit feature works much like a content-management system; collaborators can update images and text, while the designer/developer maintains control of the HTML and CSS.
Jim Maivald completely demystified Premier for our audience, primarily made up of designers. The Live Text templates and capabilities that had been only available in After Effects are now in Premier. Keying features have improved green-screen issues such as ghosting and halo effects. The element that resonated most with our crowd was the new Master Clip (aka Master Pages) that can be used to apply the same settings and adjustments to all instances of a clip. New masking capabilities, combined with Master Clips, make basic editing even more accessible.
Paul finished up the evening by focusing on the five new tablet Apps and Adobe’s first foray into hardware – Ink and Slide. The new apps are Sketch, Line, Photoshop Mix, Lightroom and Creative Cloud for iPhone and iPad. The excitement, though, is all around Ink and Slide: Ink is a three-sided digital stylus that is pressure sensitive and connects to user assets on the Cloud. Slide is a ruler enabling precision sketching, such as straight lines and perfect circles, and even french curves. All I know is this is the one thing that will make me get a new iPad (mine’s too old to run IOS 7, which these new tools require).
As a grand finale, Carl Staub won a ONE YEAR FULL SUBSCRIPTION to the Creative Cloud 2014. Five other members won Adobe Swag Bags, with post-its, pens, mints and more!
If you attended the event, please complete the Adobe survey for another chance at winning a subscription to Creative Cloud athttp://bit.ly/cle_survey.