Written by Catherine Morin
Editor for Direction Informatique

At its annual MAX conference this week, Adobe introduced new features for Creative Cloud, with updates available for Fresco, Illustrator, Photoshop, XD and Lightroom.

Mala Sharma, vice-president and general manager of Creative Cloud, cited data from the State of Creativity 2020 report, where 87 per cent of creatives believe this year’s events will have lasting impacts on creative businesses. Around 82 per cent of respondents said the crisis has permanently redefined the way they work, and 83 per cent think it is more critical than ever to expand skillsets. Nearly 89 per cent of creatives acknowledge a spark of creativity amid the pandemic.

“Collaboration is a must-have in a remote environment, and creative pros demand custom content more than ever before,” Sharma said.

To meet the increased need for collaboration features, Creative Cloud now allows users to share public links to Photoshop, Fresco and Illustrator cloud documents for feedback. Users have access to version histories and can embed cloud documents across apps. Creative Cloud’s desktop app is getting a marketplace tab that makes it easier to discover and manage plugins.

The Fresco digital drawing app, launched last year on the iPad, now arrives on the iPhone with the same features. All projects are now saved in the cloud, allowing users to switch more easily between compatible devices.

Adobe is also rolling out an iPad version of Illustrator. Taking over the computer version’s primary functions, it now offers over 18,000 fonts. The app has also been redesigned to support type, bringing more precision when inserting type into projects. Illustrator will also eventually integrate Adobe Sensei, as well as new tools and effects.

As for Photoshop, it now includes a Neural Filters option powered by Sensei. Neural Filters are non-destructive filters that transform images in a few seconds. According to Adobe, this feature combines “many things Photoshop does well” into one click or a couple of sliders.

The filters currently include Skin Smoothing for photo retouching and Smart Portrait for transforming a person’s expression, hair, age or pose. A Super Zoom filter removes JPEG artifacts from small images, and a Depth-Aware filter simulates volumetric haze in the background to highlight a subject better.

A new feature called 3D Transformation is coming to Adobe XD. This tool helps user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) developers bring depth and perspective to their designs and add augmented reality experiences to existing UI or UX designs.

Lastly, Lightroom is getting an Advanced Color Grading functionality with colour control for mid-tones and an option to save different file versions during editing. Photographers can now add logo stamps or graphical watermarking to their photos. A new “Best Photos” feature uses AI to suggest a curated subset of images based on their technical aspects.

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