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Adobe announces major updates to Creative Cloud at MAX 2021

By Catherine Knowles
Mon 1 Nov 2021

Last week Adobe hosted its MAX 2021 creativity conference and announced several updates to its Creative Cloud flagship applications, as well as new collaboration capabilities.

This includeschanges to the video creation process with the addition of Frame.io and advanced 3D and immersive authoring abilities, and new collaboration capabilities with the introduction of Creative Cloud Canvas, Creative Cloud Spaces and betas of Photoshop and Illustrator on the web.

In support of the company's Content Authenticity Initiative, Adobe also shipped Content Credentials in Photoshop. This is an opt-in feature that shows a creator's identity and edit history to ensure they're getting attribution for their work. It will also connect to NFT marketplaces, the company states.

Adobe also introduced a subscription model on Behance to enable creators to monetise their work.

Major releases and updates to Creative Cloud, powered by Adobe Sensei, include the following:

Photoshop: Three AI-powered neural filters in Photoshop desktop and camera raw file support on the iPad.

Lightroom/Lightroom Classic: More precise ML-powered masking capabilities, recommended presets and community remixing.

Premiere Pro: Enhanced speech-to-text capabilities and a Sensei-powered beta remix feature.

After Effects: Faster previews and renders with multi-frame rendering and beta Sensei-powered scene edit detection capabilities.

Illustrator: Improved 3D effects and access to substance 3D materials on desktop and a Sensei-powered vectorise technology preview on iPad.

Character Animator: Creators can now animate their entire body with body tracker, using movements and gestures to animate their puppets.

Substance 3D: Tighter integration of 3D content, effects and capabilities across Illustrator, XD and Stock. A new modeller (private beta) app joins the substance 3D collection.

Fresco: The ability to turn any drawing layer into an animation layer to create motion, draw with new perspective guides and grids, and use non-destructive adjustment layers to explore and enhance colours.

At MAX, the company also previewed web-based updates designed to help creative teams collaborate in real time, across multiple surfaces and stakeholders, regardless of device or location. This includes the following:

Frame.io: The recent acquisition of Frame.io combines Adobe's creative video editing software, Premiere Pro and After Effects, with Frame.io's review and approval functionality to deliver a collaboration platform to accelerate the creative process.

Frame.io's cloud-native platform is a secure way to gather feedback from everyone involved in the video production process and will enable stakeholders to contribute to the creative process, the company states.

Photoshop (beta) and Illustrator (private beta) on the web: Browser-based experiences where individuals, teams and stakeholders can view, share and comment on cloud documents on the web.

Collaborators with a Photoshop subscription can make edits and retouch/adjust images, while Illustrator subscribers can access essential design tools and editing workflows using a set of early features.

Creative Cloud Spaces (private beta): A digital space built to fuel collaboration among teams, Creative Cloud Spaces is designed to simplify decision-making by putting everything they need in one place.

This includes project files, libraries and external links so everyone on the team has access to what they need. Spaces will be accessible across desktop and mobile through Creative Cloud Web and available in Photoshop, Illustrator, Fresco and XD.

Creative Cloud Canvas (private beta): Canvases enable teams to lay out, visualise and review creative work together, in real time, without leaving the browser.

On a Canvas, teams can place shapes, text, images and stickers, as well as linked documents from Creative Cloud apps, so anyone can make edits to the original creative in the corresponding app.

In addition, an all-new Workfront plugin for Photoshop gives creatives the ability to collaborate in context. Through an embedded Workfront update screen in Photoshop, creators can see tasks and issues, and post and view comments related to the project they're working on.

In addition to the Creative Cloud and web announcements, Adobe revealed the company is supporting creators by enabling Creative Cloud subscribers to monetise their work through paid subscriptions on the Behance platform.

Creators have full control over what they share, and the subscriptions are integrated into Behance projects and livestreams, so creators can reserve any content for subscribers only. Creators keep all of their subscription revenue.

Another big announcement was around Adobe's Content Authenticity Initiative (CAI), originally introduced two years ago.

Through a CAI-driven feature called Content Credentials, attribution capabilities are now available in Photoshop, enabling users to turn on the opt-in feature to share content provenance details about their images. This includes the creator's identity, edits they've made and the time and place the photo was taken.

To ensure creators are getting credit for their work, the company is connecting the Content Credentials feature to NFT marketplaces for further attribution.

Lastly, Adobe Stock will automatically attach Content Credentials to images when they are downloaded.

Adobe Creative Cloud chief product officer and executive vice president Scott Belsky says, “Creativity is evolving to meet the new realities of work.

"Adobe is bringing new collaboration capabilities, more AI-powered features and web-first applications to Creative Cloud to unleash our customers' full creative potential.

"We are reimagining Creative Cloud products and services to connect creative teams, enable new ways to create and empower more creative careers.”

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