For years now, the Adobe design suite has been the industry standard when it comes to digital design software. When Adobe consolidated all of their design programs, in 2013, into the subscription based Creative Cloud they promised users that they’d always receive updates to their programs that’d keep them at the forefront of their respective design industry. Graphic design, video, photo editing, and more were brought under the Creative Cloud umbrella and subsequently received systemic updates over time.
Some updates, however, should be seen as more than a mere evolution and that is exactly what Adobe want us to think about the latest version of the Creative Cloud. At the recent Adobe conference, Adobe Max, which was held in Las Vegas on October 18th rather than just unveiling the next version, Adobe told us they were unveiling the next generation of Creative Cloud.
“Adobe continues to lead the creative revolution, driving modernization and innovation that will accelerate the creative process across all platforms and devices,”
– Bryan Lamkin, executive vice president and general manager,
Digital Media at Adobe.
So what is it then that makes Adobe believe that the Creative Cloud has made such a huge leap forward? Why all the bells and whistles? In short, what is so special about the latest Adobe Creative Cloud update? Well, quite a few things actually, the new generation of the Creative Cloud covers a wide spectrum of capabilities and provides tools that will enable creative professionals and enthusiasts to express themselves and reach their full creative potential anytime, anywhere, and on any device.
Some updates to established programs, like Lightroom, are so distinctive that they almost create brand new programs. On top of this, Adobe XD CC gets its first full 1.0 version to provide the quickest ever user-experience design software and the new Adobe Dimension allows users to create photo-realistic 3D models that can easily incorporate older 2D designs and logos.
As well as new features, tools, and programs, Adobe is also continuing to embed artificial intelligence capabilities across all of their applications through Adobe Sensei. By bringing the power of advanced technology and deep learning to the creative cloud, Sensei enables creators to go from concept to completion much faster.
There really is a lot going on then, with the Adobe Creative Cloud, so we should probably take a look at some of the biggest updates and additions in greater detail.
Adobe XD CC
After an extensive beta testing period and constant communication with the testing community, Adobe have finally released version 1.0 of Adobe XD CC that works on both macOS and Windows 10 machines. With XD CC, Adobe are bringing to market the quickest user-experience design software available. The speed allows designers to include users themselves into the design process and then quickly integrate the insights they provide into the working design.
A whole raft of XD CC features, including navigation flows, transitions, color management, styles and repeating elements have been redesigned to create a much more modern and intuitive workflow. This is all so that Adobe XD CC can claim both speed and stability to be key features that it offers designers. XD CC launches almost instantaneously and offers lightning fast zooming and panning no matter how many artboards are being worked on per project.
Adobe Dimension CC
Adobe Dimension gives designers the power to design in 3D. Dimension can create photo-realistic models for anything including product shots, branding concepts and even packaging. Dimension offers designers realistic lighting and shadows and also textures that respect contours, angles, and perspectives.
The added design dimension comes without any extra, complicated tools or the need to learn new skills, and it is a simple process to add previously designed 2D logos to new 3D models. What Dimension does come with, however, is a marketplace of models, lights and materials from Adobe Stock that can be used to create 3D scenes.
Lightroom CC is a completely new Adobe product that is a cloud-based ecosystem of apps that are deeply integrated and work together seamlessly across desktop, mobile and web. Even if photographers don’t have their laptop, mobile or tablet with them they can still edit their photographs by logging on to the Adobe cloud website and then later continue with their work when they get back to their devices.
Designers used to the original Adobe Lightroom and worried about the editing capabilities possible on a mobile device need not fear. The original Lightroom is now known as Lightroom Classic CC and is designed for desktop-based digital photography workflows. In line with the wishes of the community of Lightroom users, Adobe have added a number of improvements to Lightroom Classic. These include:
- Optimized import and editing workflows.
- Improved application launch time.
- Standard, 1:1 and Minimal preview generation.
- Responsive Brushing
With so much going on beneath the Creative Cloud Umbrella and with modern new features like artificial intelligence and 3D modelling it is fair to describe the latest update as the next generation of design software. There really has been a leap in the capability that the Creative Cloud offers its users and so much more is now possible for Creative Cloud subscribers.
Before signing off, however, it is definitely worth pointing out that although this latest update is enough to set the newest generation of the Creative Cloud apart from the versions that came before it, it does not mean the Cloud won’t continue to evolve and be the subject of constant updates from Adobe. Particularly with the likes of XD CC, Dimension and Lightroom CC, Adobe are committed to adding new features to these new programs as and when they’re developed.
The latest generation of the Creative Cloud has a lot to offer all digital design professionals and enthusiasts alike. For anybody yet to use the Creative Cloud there is definitely a lot of new stuff here to take note of and for long time subscribers there is a lot to celebrate.