Last week was the annual Adobe MAX conference, and, as always, there were numerous highlights. For those unfamiliar, Adobe is a software company focused on the creation of multimedia and creativity software products. The designers at InspiringApps use many of the products Adobe offers including Photoshop, Illustrator, Adobe XD, and After Effects.
Adobe strives for continual improvement of their product offerings, and we consider it critical to to stay current on the latest enhancements. One of the ways we do this is by attending the Adobe MAX conference. The conference was held in Los Angeles again this year, hosting graphic, web, and UX designers, as well as art and creative directors, illustrators, photographers, and video professionals.
The conference promised to “fill your brain and inspire your heart to get excited to go create” and it did just that. One of our highlights from Adobe MAX was the keynote address, during which they shared an overview of new features in each platform. Enhancements that may seem like little things are actually a big deal for designers and garnered much applause at the conference. For example, speeding up the time it takes for a file to open from 6 seconds to instantly was much appreciated by the crowd.
Adobe also spoke of their artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning technology called Adobe Sensei. The power of AI is being incorporated into all of their software applications to make them work more intuitively. One of our designers stated that it “seemed like magic” because the software can learn to make informed decisions to help with effortless creation.
Another one of our highlights from Adobe MAX was simply the great sessions all throughout the day; they provided detailed instruction about new innovations in applications that we use regularly. We were thrilled to learn more about:
- How to use After Effects to hone our skills in controlling the speed, motion and acceleration for smooth animation creation. We’ll use these skills for client logo animation and design for web delivery to ensure smaller files and quicker animations. We also got the added bonus of finding out how to use After Effects Lightning effects for video which was also great.
- How to incorporate Project Aero into our work to allow our clients to see their ideas come to life using Augmented Reality (AR). Project Aero is Adobe’s powerful AR authoring tool that helps designers create immersive content.
- Character animation and how to make characters walk and talk. Adobe Character Animator is part of the Creative Cloud – a suite of applications Adobe offers for graphic design and development – and will help us design engaging character graphics more easily.
- Animation for user experience using motion and meaning. This session helped us realize the importance of prototyping for both our clients and our development team. In the recent past, the tools were not available to quickly and easily prototype, but the advancements will help us create prototypes in a way that we weren’t able to before.
Adobe also offered opportunities to learn directly about planned future innovations. We enjoyed the “Meet the Teams” session where we got to talk with the developers working on the Adobe software suite and request features that will help us in the future. It was also great to attend the annual “Sneaks” event, hosted this time by the entertaining John Mulaney, where they provide a sneak peek of what engineers are working on currently. Even though some of the products are not yet fully developed, it was encouraging to see what’s ahead.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t note that another highlight from Adobe MAX was the incredible roster of noteworthy celebrities, including M. Night Shyamalan, Billie Eilish, and Dave Grohl. They spoke about their personal inspiration and use of graphics, videography, and photography in their work.
All in all, the Adobe MAX conference was a fantastic opportunity to increase our skills in the Adobe suite of products. We took away many tips, tricks and resources to share, with the greater goal of improving our design skills to create beautiful user experiences.
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