San Diego and Orange County AUG visits – March 2012

“Getting to know your community is one of the most important things a Community Manager should be doing; and, one can’t do that behind a desk!” 

Besides, the big community summit the Community Team does every year @AdobeMAX, we often get out and visit the User Groups to see if they are healthy, alive/still meeting, and provide them some insight to what’s going on inside at Adobe…. It is one of the favorite things about my job.

Adobe Touch

So, I recently had the opportunity to bring Sally Cox (aka @Kreatable & Adobe Community Pro/ACP ) to demo the new Adobe Photoshop Touch App for the iPad at two Adobe User Groups in Southern California: San Diego Photoshop User Group and Orange County Multimedia Organization). Since AdobeMAX 2010, I have been wanting to get out and find more about the LA & Orange County Adobe User Groups. I am gradually making the rounds and going to places beyond California in the near future.

Here’s a run-down of the activities from my most recent trip to Orange County and San Diego:

18 Mar 12 — Adobe User Group Mgr meetup at Cafe Coyote in Old Town San Diego (SD).

I got into San Diego on Sunday Mar 18th, so I thought it would be a good idea to invite some of the local San Diego Adobe User Group Managers out for some food and chat about how their communities are doing.  Local San Diego AUG mgrs are: Stephen Burns (SD Photoshop), Chris Griffith (SD-Flash), Eric Addison (SD-Premiere Pro), Sally Cox (ACP). and Mark Zepeda (New Horizons Training & MAWD UGM).


19 Mar 12 – “Get in Touch with Adobe Touch Apps” Event @ San Diego Art Institute

San Diego Photoshop User Group hosts Adobe Community Professional Sally Cox

Adobe User Group Mgrs addresses SDPSUG members before meeting

Over 100+ folks came to see Sally Cox (ACP) show off the new Photoshop Touch App on iOS/iPad. Adobe Community Manager Aaron Houston was onhand as well with extra iPad and Android tablets so folks in the audience could follow along with Sally’s demo of Photoshop Touch.  In the example below, Sally used 9 layers to color different parts of a carousel horse she found at an antique shop.  The layers are preserved in a Photoshop .PSDX file which can be uploaded to the Adobe’s Creative Cloud.  Notice, that there is file intelligence with Adobe’s Creative Cloud; the file also retains a Kuler .ASE swatch file.  Sally also demo’d Adobe Proto, a website prototyping app for iPad & Android, and she also had time left to demo  All in All, we had some great questions and feedback from the TouchApp event and we hope to do more!  Adobe Community Manager Aaron Houston brought some cool t-shirts, buttons, and software to give away at the event.  And we had a few San Diego Art Institute students poke their heads into the session to see what all the fuss was about…some even stayed to watch Sally, who used to teach at the Institute many moons ago.

ACP Sally Cox used 9 layers of coloring and stippling in this .PSDX file via her iPad

We didn’t have a video recording of Sally’s Demo in San Diego, but I did manage to record (3) .MP3 files that could listened too. Sally is a fabulous trainer, part comedienne, and great to work with! Thank You, Sally!

MP3’s (Hear ACP Sally Cox Demo the Adobe Touch App Tools):


After the event, San Diego Photoshop volunteers, User Group Mgr Stephen Burns, his assistants, Sally Cox, and I got late night eats.  Not much open late on a Monday night in Fullerton, but we managed.  It is a rare opportunity where I can sit down and talk to the volunteers who help run these user groups; and, I’m sure they appreciated the food & drink.


20 Mar 12 – “Get in Touch with Adobe Touch Apps” Event @ Fullerton College, Fullerton CAOver 50+ folks came out to a special meeting of Orange County Creative Suite User Group which is part of an umbrella of Adobe User Groups organized under the Orange County Multimedia Organization( Indeed many of the Orange County Adobe User Groups Managers were at this meeting. We took our first ever group picture; and, I can definitely see that there is a strong Adobian Community in South LA & Orange Counties.

Orange County & South LA Adobe User Group Mgrs - Fullerton College -- 20Mar12

Orange County Multimedia Organization (OCMMA) is run as a non-profit organization that allows Special Interest Groups (SIGs) like: Web Video Crossroads, OC Flash User Group, OC Creative Suite User Group, OC ColdFusion User Group, & After Effects Abuser. OCMMA has been around for 25 years helping folks learn more about technology, finding people careers, and keeping folks up on the latest updates in technology. I want to point out the strong leadership team of Cynthia Gordon, Bonnie Erdich, Terry Syndergaard, Mike McGready, and many others. I was impressed how the User Group managers stick together and work so well together & with the other Adobe User Group Managers in the area, like Adobe Technology Exchange (Lynette Kent & Rick Redforn)….They all came out to this event.

The Orange County & LA AUG Mgrs have already started planning their NEXT BIG EVENT in JUNE ’12. Stay Tuned to my twitter account for that announcement @thisishouston1

OCMMA Attendees watch Sally Cox Demo Adobe Photoshop Touch

ACP Sally Cox was the speaker for this event as well.  We straightened out a few things with the video output to the project with her iPad and she was off and demoing.  We were not able to record this event, but there were more pictures.


After the event, some of the User Group managers stuck around and we all grabbed some food to talk about future Adobe events in Orange County/LA area. Good times were had by all!

I would like to visit 3-7 Adobe User Group every quarter, depending on attendance and the local organization of a special Adobe meeting by the User Group Managers. So, with Creative Suite 6 coming soon! I suspect I will be out on the road more in the coming months to visit more Adobe User Groups.

Aaron Houston – Adobe Community Mgr

Aaron is a Community Manager for Adobe Systems.  He’s been involved with Adobe User Groups since 2010. Prior to Adobe, Aaron worked as the Java User Group Coordinator at Sun Microsystems (2005-2010). And long ago, long ago…in a galaxy far away, Aaron served as an eBay Community Watch members (1998).  Aaron’s passion is about people and User Group Communities.  For more information about what a Community Manager does, check out the “Art of Community” website run by longtime Community Guy Jono Bacon!


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