Adobe Systems Incorporated

E-publishing Evolved

An update on EPUB and DPS, Single Edition

When Adobe first created DPS, Single Edition, in 2011, it was our best available option for individuals who wanted to create books, portfolios, and one-off publications in iPad application format. But in the intervening years, we’ve made two important discoveries: The ongoing evolution of e-publishing technologies has inspired many more of our individual design customers to export interactive e-books (EPUBs), a format that DPS, Single Edition was not intended to support; and that most customers requiring the end-to-end functionality of dynamic app creation and measurement were typically organizations looking to develop enterprise-class apps, or subscription-based publications like magazines.

To help our customers connect to the publication channels best suited for them, we’ve made some shifts to our product offerings.

The Digital Publishing Suite, Single Edition, service will be available for use until May 1, 2015. Customers can redeem previously purchased serial numbers and create or edit apps in the meantime, but beyond that date the service will no longer be available.

Please also note that on December 4, 2014, Single Edition will be removed as a purchasable product from the Adobe.com store. Instead, the 2014 release of Adobe InDesign CC includes a fixed layout EPUB feature that makes it easier for individuals to publish graphic-heavy documents in e-book format. Customers with DPS Pro or Enterprise editions are unaffected by this change and will still be able to create single-issue and multi-issue applications for publication to app stores.DPS provides a custom branded experience for publishers, businesses and universities to produce, distribute and market rich digital publications to apps on phones and tablets.

The new Fixed-layout EPUB export capability announced in the 2014 release of InDesign CC is our powerful, simplified solution for individual designers who want to create interactive, image-rich content intended for publication to channels like the iBooks Store or for ad hoc distribution. By exporting a fixed-layout file into EPUB3 standard format, individuals now have an expanded opportunity to publish across a wider range of tablets. Read more about it in this previous post, Publishing for Everyone: Adobe InDesign CC’s Fixed Layout EPUB Format.

We’re eager to see how individual designers will use Fixed Layout EPUB to engage readers in new and exciting ways and to continue to be impressed by the apps created by DPS for the enterprise.

11:00 AM Permalink

Ten Ways to Use Color to Capture Attention (Part 2)

The second of a two-part series that shows ten ways to use color in design to capture more attention.

In the first post, I focused on hue, chroma, and contrast; in this post, I’ll take a closer look at psychology—how things like color preference or expectations can grab attention. Check them out and let me know what you think by posting a comment.

6. Keep the palette small

In 2010, researchers studying consumer preferences found that most people preferred product designs with fewer colors—four  to be exact (read more). That’s good to know because psychologists have also proven that people are more likely to listen to and be persuaded by people and products they like.

Another excellent reason to keep your color palette small is more design-related than psychological: Too many background colors will steal attention away from the item you want to be the focal point. So ease up on the gas when choosing colors for your design and limit that palette.

Now, the caveat: Good designers know that the right number of colors in their palette really depends on context. So, while this is a good reminder, don’t hesitate to rely on your “inner design voice” to tell you when to veer away from this principle.

7. Know your audience

What’s true for food, sports teams, movies, relatives, and pretty much everything else is true for colors and color themes, people respond better to what they like than what they don’t. Makes sense, right? Well, as obvious as this concept may be, it’s still something to keep in mind when you start a project. Give yourself enough time to know your audience’s preferences.

If you don’t have a good handle on your audience’s color preference, try Adobe Color CC, an online color-inspiration tool that allows you to use color-harmony principles to create palettes that look great.

What’s more, Color CC collects millions of color themes created by users who vote on which colors they prefer. This means that you can find colors that people generally love and begin experimenting with them right away. From a previous month’s most-loved colors:


8. Boost the brightness

It turns out that you can use brightness to make your design more likable—and if you’re promoting a brand, that likability will transfer to the brand as well. Researchers have found that they could accomplish this by using “high-value colors” (read more). Value is a measure of the brightness or lightness of a particular color. So, on your next project, experiment with brighter colors because your audience will like them more. And that means they’ll pay more attention to your design.

Researchers have shown that people "like" lighter colors.

Researchers have shown that people “like” lighter colors.

9. Try unexpected color pairings

You can grab people’s attention by pairing colors with objects or symbols in unexpected ways, a technique you’ve probably seen in advertising. The jarring juxtaposition gets people to stop and think about your message. As an example:

You can grab people’s attention by pairing colors with objects or symbols in unexpected ways.

You can  capture more attention by using colors in unexpected ways.

10. Employ exotic color names

Give your color an exotic name and people will pay attention. Really. Researchers have found that products with exotically-named colors rated higher than those with generically-named colors (read more). Not only did people favor those colors, but their preferences translated into purchasing preferences.

Some of the more interesting color-theme names from Color CC:

ten-ways-candy-coated ten-ways-passionate-watermelon

So, the next time you give your colors a name, jump outside the norm! And your audience will be more inclined to surrender their attention.

Take these tips and run

Our brains are, among many other things, phenomenal “salience detectors.” In the world of color and design, salience has a two-part definition: 1) the difference between one item and its immediate surrounding items, and 2) the difference between all of the surrounding items.

You want your design to have a high degree of salience. In other words, if you want an item to seize and hold people’s attention, you must design it to stand out from the surrounding elements AND you must design the surrounding elements to blend in with each other.

Our ten color tips will help you do exactly that. Now, go be creative! (Read Part 1.)

9:34 AM Permalink

Moleskine + Creative Cloud: Create without Confinement

The Moleskine Smart Notebook and Creative Cloud connected Moleskine app: The raw beginning of putting pencil to paper. The precision of digital composition. From paper to vector in an instant.

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Sure, Adobe has a bunch of mobile, digital drawing apps for people to capture and create whenever they’re away from their desks. However, we also know there are people who love the tactility of drawing on paper… It’s why we’re so jazzed that paper heavyweight Moleskine has taken advantage of our Creative SDK to make it easier to move creative ideas from paper to screen.

From an analog start in the Moleskine Smart Notebook, to a digital transformation by the magic of the Creative Cloud connected Moleskine app (powered by Adobe’s Creative SDK), comes a condensed creative process that turns hand-drawn sketches into workable digital files—accessible from Adobe Photoshop CC and Adobe Illustrator CC.

Here’s how it works:

Draw: Creative journeys start with a line

Sure, it could happen at a desk, but inspiration and creativity usually spark when creative thinkers are distracted from the task at hand. The Smart Notebook provides the blank space to capture the flickers of inspiration, wherever and whenever they spark. How the pages get filled depends on the person.

So draw. Sketch. Jot. Take notes. Preferably with broad strokes (as opposed to shading) on any page. Using any tool (black ink and markers work best).

Moleskine_2_Desk

Capture: From paper to screen

If Moleskine’s Smart Notebook is the place to collect the flares of inspiration then its Creative Cloud connected app is the bridge to move them into the digital realm.

Download the Moleskine app for iPhone then use the phone’s camera to capture what’s been put on paper. Page markers in the Smart Notebook detect the orientation of the image as well as help correct perspective and alignment distortion before saving JPGs as SVGs. Filter settings help correct poor lighting or too-light drawing lines.

Not satisfied with the result of the JPG file, before converting it to SVG? Simple. Change the settings or reshoot.

Sync & Refine: Expand the ideas

Sync with Creative Cloud to store both files (JPG and SVG) in the Creative Cloud Assets folder. Then open and edit in Photoshop or Illustrator CC (or refine and use the JPG files in other CC desktop and mobile apps). When the work is complete, step back and see how far the idea has traveled. (Give Illustrator and Photoshop CC a try. Free.)

Start drawing outside the box

Ideas are born at all times of day. In the most unexpected places. Capture them before they’re lost:
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  • Order and carry a Moleskine Smart Notebook, to capture ideas when inspiration strikes.
  • Use the Creative Cloud connected Moleskine app to photograph the concepts on paper and transform them to digital files.
  • Then, sync to Creative Cloud, and import them into Illustrator or Photoshop CC to refine them and bring them to life.

Creating without boundaries. It’s that easy.

12:10 PM Permalink

Video Production in An Ultra HD World

Adobe Premiere Pro CC and The GoPro CineForm Codec

UltraHD is here to stay as more and more consumers demand content that makes them feel like they are part of an experience. Some analysts think that by the end of 2018, 10% of American households will have 4K capable TVs and by the end of 2024, that number could reach 50%. That means that it’s up to us, as content creators, to start getting comfortable with editing in 4K and 5K—or even 6K—to create Ultra HD content to meet this increasing demand.

The tools we need to shoot, edit and distribute this content are more important than ever. And, because it is not uncommon for a project that just took a few days of shooting to result in one or two terabytes of hard drive space, these big files need powerful software—not to mention bigger hard drives—that can edit the footage without choking.

Compressing Ultra HD with the GoPro CineForm Codec

Although Adobe has been a leader in the ability to edit Ultra HD footage natively within Premiere Pro CC, we realize, when it comes time to working with Ultra HD, that compressing your file format can help your workflow.

GoPro_1

The CineForm codec has been around for a long time and I’ve used it for years. It’s a great finishing codec that provides faster editing without sacrificing image quality. In 2011, GoPro made a camera that supports small formats yet delivers high resolutions. They later acquired CineForm and its codec, known as the GoPro CineForm Codec; with the most recent release of Premiere Pro CC, Adobe After Effects CC, and Adobe Media Encoder CC we’re making it available to you as part of your Creative Cloud subscription.

Learn how the CineForm codec offers Premiere Pro CC users a cross-platform intermediate codec with full support for alpha and large frame sizes of 4K and beyond. We also have an extensive overview on our Premiere Pro CC help website.

On the technical side, the GoPro CineForm codec is a true 12-bit color codec, though it actually has two pixel formats: YUV 4:2:2 at 10 bits per channel, or RGBA 4:4:4:4 at 12 bits per channel. Media Encoder CC will render frames internally at a color depth that may be higher or lower, as appropriate for the incoming source, but it will encode at the true 10-bit or 12-bit color that GoPro CineForm is known for.

It’s interesting to note that the GoPro CineForm Codec has been standardized by the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) as the SMPTE ST 2073 VC-5 video compression standard—the new open codec standard for video acquisition and post production.

You can access this codec easily for projects in Premiere Pro CC: From the FILE > EXPORT >MEDIA menu,  select “Quicktime” as the format. We wrap the finished product in a “.mov” wrapper for both Mac and Windows environments, but it still has all the quality and attributes of the GoPro CineForm Codec. Under the VIDEO tab select the codec you want and among the many familiar ones associated with Quicktime, you will find GoPro CineForm Codec listed. You can watch my YouTube video and see exactly how this is done.

It’s important to note that in a Mac environment, the resulting clips have to use Quicktime 7 for playback. In the example I used in my video for a 3-day video shoot, our 1.1 terabyte project was reduced to 43.69 gigabytes! Playback is outstanding and the quality is there.

Also, my colleague, Tim Kurkoski, wrote a blog post for the After Effects blog on GoPro CineFrom code settings.

I hope you enjoy using this excellent codec.

Visit the Creative Cloud video page for more information about all of our post-production products such as Premiere Pro CC, After Effects CC, and SpeedGrade CC.

10:18 AM Permalink

An Illustrator Goes Hollywood

The anticipation and excitement of attending his first Adobe MAX inspired the art; a band and a human rights movement inspired its title. Behind Orlando Arocena’s Brave Leon art.

Orlando_1_Splash

It’s a certainty that anyone who’s visited the Adobe Illustrator CC Facebook or who uses Illustrator CC is familiar with Orlando Arocena‘s vector art. But when we asked him to attend Adobe MAX as a MAX Insider (someone who would share personal insights about the conference), he remembered his mother’s advice about being a good guest: “Never show up empty-handed.”

Orlando_2_Sketch
Coupled with a bit of restless energy and a traffic jam, her advice led to a “mental sketch” just one day before he was scheduled to be in Los Angeles. Sketching in his mind is the only type Orlando does; he explained his process during a recent lecture at Pratt Institute: “Although I do a significant amount of research regarding my mental sketches, over time I realized that I wanted to eliminate the stiff rigors of the standard process of sketch, scan, trace; so I rarely do any pre-sketching on paper. I’m a big fan of energy and confidence and running with them from start to finish, harnessing the excitement of starting a project.”

Pop culture meets Hollywood icon

Fueled by music, Orlando sat down at his computer and began to draw. Six hours later his art, part pop culture icon and part Hollywood homage, emerged…

In it was a connection to location (Hollywood), and the band (Kings of Leon) he learned would be playing at the Adobe MAX Bash: “I wanted my vector to be a pop-icon parody, leveraging established elements synonymous with Hollywood that, when composed, would also represent a Kings of Leon-at-Adobe MAX-in LA gig poster.”

Orlando_3_Tattoos

Keeping the subject matter rooted in Hollywood—by incorporating Art Deco embellishments and a color palette reminiscent of Hollywood’s Golden Age—he also kept it relevant to a modern audience (and specifically to Adobe’s creative audience), with tattoos. But not just ANY tattoos, but icons from Adobe’s tools palettes. “I decided to inject elements from the tools menus that, for me, represent customization and are found in practically every Adobe application: the Fill/Stroke, the Eye-Dropper and the Arrow (depicted as a piercing rather than a selection tool).”

Orlando_4_FBSharing

The essence of an illustration

During that initial drawing session, Orlando shared his progress on his Facebook. Despite the online support and encouragement of an audience hoping he was creating a vector Wizard of Oz tribute, he stopped just short of revealing the final illustration. Instead, he put the artwork aside, deciding to finish it up the next day, just hours before his flight.

After printing two artists proofs to “get a closer look at any errors or misalignment, and to make notes of questionable areas to address on the vector file,” he printed an 18 x 24 foil print (on his own giclée printer) and took off for the airport.

It wasn’t until after Lee Hirsch, the documentary filmmaker behind The Bully Project, took the stage and touched his heart that the circumstances surrounding this personal project and the fictional character in it, came together for Orlando. He realized, “What began as Kings of Leon-at-Adobe MAX-in LA gig poster was no longer just that; it had transformed into something more. The true spirit of the image was revealed and my vector had become the Cowardly Lion who had found courage at Adobe MAX—thanks to The Bully Project.”

Orlando_5_BraveLeon

That’s the story of how Brave Leon came together for this gifted artist: An invitation, a band, a movement, and Illustrator CC.


Orlando_6_AiLogoAdobe Illustrator CC. Try it for 30 days. Free. On us. Make something.

10:05 AM Permalink

Ten Ways to Use Color to Capture Attention (Part 1)

The first of a two-part series outlining ways to use color in design to capture attention.

In the end, if you can combine some of these ideas with your own design prowess, your work will attract eyeballs like geeks to a comic con. Check them out and let me know what you think by posting a comment.

1. Rely on red

For designers looking for an excitement-generating hue, the go-to color is red. Common sense, you say? Maybe. But researchers have proven that people exposed to ads with red in the design actually get more excited (read more). And an excited audience is an attentive audience—they’re more likely to gobble up whatever you’re trying to communicate.


2. Consider chroma

Unfortunately, drenching designs in red is not always an option. Fortunately, the same group of researchers from tip #1 also found that designers can use chroma to achieve similar excitement levels. Chroma, as you may recall, is a measure of the purity or intensity of color. Turns out, colors with a high degree of chroma/purity induce excitement. So, no matter what color you choose to work with, if you crank up the color purity, people will get all hot and bothered—and you’ll have their attention.

TenWays-chroma

Researchers proved that colors with high chroma induce more excitement among viewers.

3. Amp up the color contrast

Color contrast may be more important than both hue and chroma when it comes to attracting eyeballs. And by color contrast, I mean the difference between the color you are using to capture attention and the rest of the colors in your design.

Opposing points on the color wheel have high color contrast. In the example above, yellow (A) and blue (B) have high contrast.

Opposing points on the color wheel have high color contrast. In the example above, yellow (A) and blue (B) have high contrast.

To demonstrate the eye-popping abilities of high color contrast, I ran an experiment using an attention-prediction tool from Eyequant  that uses eye-tracking data and artificial intelligence to predict, with high accuracy, how different elements of a design capture attention. For this experiment, I measured the attention around a portion of a sample webpage design where I placed a red call-to-action button.

I chose red in this example for two reasons: First, as discussed in tip #1, red is supposed to be the champ when it comes to attention-grabbing abilities; and second, I wanted to use a color that was already represented in the design (a red sleeping bag) to decrease overall color contrast. To challenge red, I chose blue, which was not represented anywhere on the page.

Despite being a supposedly “calming” hue, blue absolutely trounced red. Blue increased the attention metric by 121 percent over a grayscale version of the button, whereas red managed only a 96 percent increase.
TenWays-red-vs-blue

4. Look for luminance contrast

Luminance contrast—the difference between the luminance of an object and its immediate background—is a color concept most of us don’t think about often enough. But, as you’ll see in my next experiment, luminance is an extremely important attention-stealer.

I compared the same blue button used in tip #3 with another blue button that had a higher luminance contrast with the white background. This time, the attention metric skyrocketed from 121 percent to 156 percent.

That’s a huge jump that tells us to not be afraid to crank that luminance dial.

TenWays-light-vs-dark-blue

5. Go for continual color change

As user-interface designers and psychology researchers can attest, you can divert attention to content by having it continually change color. Most of us experience this attention-shifting technique firsthand on a daily basis: Think of all those little icons on your smartphone or desktop that change color when they have something important for you to know. This is the same principle.

TenWays-color-use-in-ui

Researchers have demonstrated that objects which change color draw users’ attention.

Now that you have the first five insights down, give them a try (I’d love to hear how it goes, so send me a note or post a comment). Read Part 2 with five more tips to grab attention with color.

12:54 PM Permalink

How The Gone Girl Post-production Team Helped Us Deliver Better Features in Adobe Premiere Pro CC

I’ve been the product manager for Adobe Premiere Pro CC for four years and have never been more excited to work with our product teams and customers than I am now.

Most of you know by now that Premiere Pro CC was used as the exlusive non-linear editing system (NLE) for David Fincher’s Gone Girl—the first Hollywood feature film shot in 6K. While you may already know how Premiere Pro CC helped the Gone Girl team work more efficiently, you likely don’t know how working with the Gone Girl post-production team helped us build a better product.

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At Adobe, we’re committed to making a product that reflects customer feedback and needs, and we love working closely with customers throughout product development cycles. We were offered the opportunity to work with editorial royalty—two-time Academy Award winner Kirk Baxter, ACE, who we knew would push Premiere Pro CC to be an even better NLE. Considering he works with David Fincher, a director notoriously known for pushing technical limits while filmmaking, we felt that getting this right would mean a lot for our product and our users.

So what did we do? We parked our engineers in the same building—just doors away from Kirk, assistant editor Tyler Nelson, and post-production supervisor Peter Mavromates. The engineers lived-and-breathed the movie just like the production team (and I can’t even begin to tell you how proud I was when I saw their names in the credits), working very long days, helping with workflow questions, and fixing issues as they arose.

There were a lot of features that the Gone Girl team helped us create but the top three are Render & Replace, Multi-project Workflows, and Advanced Search in timeline (all of these were recently made public in the October 2014 release of Premiere Pro CC).

Because Gone Girl was super Adobe After Effects CC heavy—a good amount of the timeline was After Effects CC comps—Render & Replace was designed to help the team speed up performance by flattening completed After Effects CC compositions into video clips (in fact the feature was finished too late to be used on the movie, so they used preview renders, but we certainly built it alongside them). Thanks to Dynamic Link, intermediate rendering was eliminated between Premiere Pro CC and After Effects CC. The original comps were always accessible if the assistant editor needed to make further changes to a comp, and he could do so while Kirk continued the edit. When the comp was done, it would show up in Kirk’s timeline.

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Multi-project Workflows allowed the Gone Girl team to work concurrently on different parts of the film in different project environments. Kirk Baxter was able to open multiple Media Browser panels for easy access to parts of the project that assistant editors were working on at the same time. The new Source Monitor Timeline—which allows users to open a second timeline for media and sequences from other projects, making it easy to bring existing clips, edits, comps and effects directly into the current project—was suggested by the Gone Girl team and although the feature wasn’t available during the editing of the film, it did make it into the October 2014 release.

We also added the ability to search bins so users can generate dynamic bins based on search criteria. This enabled us to include Advanced Timeline Search capabilities as well. Search bins are updated as new content is added, so users can keep projects organized, even as new footage is still coming in.

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We also added other features such as assignable marker colors and a variety of timeline improvements that helped the team work better and faster. As we built the features for and with the Gone Girl team, we learned more about their incredibly challenging workflow than we ever considered.

All that learning and all those long hours (Thanks guys!) have helped us to build a better product, and we’re so proud of what we achieved with the input from the Gone Girl editorial and post-production team. There were some tough times—we knew there would be—but thanks to the dedicated professionals on their editing team and our engineering team, the project was a huge success, and the first of many more exciting things to come.

Last month, we hosted a panel of the team that worked on Gone Girl. Check out the Behind the Scenes on Gone Girl, which begins with a quick overview of how the tools were used.

10:18 AM Permalink

Purcell: Preserving The Past, Designing The Future

A top heritage and conservation architectural firm gains competitive edge with Adobe Creative Cloud for enterprise.

The Hyde Dillington House, Somerset. © Will Pryce

The Hyde Dillington House, Somerset. © Will Pryce

Proud heritage, cutting edge

For more than six decades, Purcell has been involved in the care and development of some of the best-loved buildings and places in the United Kingdom and abroad. Its team of expert architects, heritage consultants, and surveyors share a passion for the thoughtfully designed evolution of buildings, places, and communities. From start to finish, the company’s expertise includes funding and planning advice, heritage consultancy, conservation, and architectural design, delivered from sixteen offices in the United Kingdom and one in Hong Kong.

Whether marketers are generating eye-catching proposals for winning new business or technical staff are crafting and visualizing intelligent, sustainable, and creative architectural solutions, employees at Purcell turn day in and day out to Adobe creative software. Providing employees with the latest Adobe applications is now easier with Adobe Creative Cloud for enterprise, purchased through an Enterprise Term License Agreement (ETLA).

“Our specialty is heritage architecture and conservation, and we’re at the top of the game,” says Gary Dalton, head of ICT for Purcell. “We have more of an edge because we are now all using Adobe Creative Cloud.”

Adobe from start to finish

Adobe creative software is widely used throughout the firm, from project bidding through to reporting with clients during the course of each project to completion. Marketers use Adobe InDesign CC to generate three to four 50- to 200-page project proposals weekly, replete with graphics generated in Adobe Illustrator CC and imagery finessed in Adobe Photoshop CC. Graphic designers rely on Illustrator CC to create posters, advertisements, and other marketing materials.

Once a project is awarded and underway, architects employ Photoshop CC to color hand-sketched mockups of buildings and environments. Administrators, architects, and other professionals at the firm collaborate using a combination of Adobe software to generate image-rich progress reports. All of these materials must be visually beautiful and feature impeccable quality to reflect positively on Purcell as a design and architecture leader with an eye for aesthetics.

Leighton House Museum, London. © Will Pryce

Leighton House Museum, London. © Will Pryce

Wowing potential clients

For decades, Purcell has been the go-to firm for the heritage and conservation segment of the architecture market in the United Kingdom and abroad. In recent years, the firm has seen increasing competition from larger firms offering lower prices, but lacking the specialized expertise and quality Purcell offers. To win against these larger players, Purcell redoubled its bidding and communication efforts to rise above the crowd. That required upping the ante on bids to put the right information in the right format and make proposals exceptionally striking.

“Although the building market has picked up over the last few years, we still have to outdo ourselves to win business,” says Emily Seldon, bid manager at Purcell. “We must create bids that are beautiful and make potential clients feel special. This points to the need to have the latest features and functionality in Adobe Creative Cloud so we can push our creativity limits.”

Moving to the cloud

Until recently, Purcell was using various versions of Adobe Creative Suite software, and needed to upgrade Adobe software across all offices. The ICT team struggled with figuring out how to move and track software licenses as offices and teams expanded.

In one instance, ICT needed to install more Creative Suite licenses for new users in a particular office to accommodate expansion. Facing budgetary limitations, purchasing new upgraded licenses for the entire department was not an option. But purchasing the most current version of Creative Suite for just a few users meant that ICT had to set up a dedicated machine to back-save files to earlier versions, causing productivity losses because staff found it difficult to collaborate on files.

With the availability of Creative Cloud, the firm had several priorities in mind. ICT wanted better flexibility to equip employees with the right software to deliver their best work in the context of business growth and employee additions. Additionally, putting everyone on the same version to avoid the cumbersome process of back-saving files to earlier versions for sharing was a top priority.

“We need to be leaders, especially in the ability to work collaboratively,” says Dalton. “Overall, any type of efficiency is worth it to us—it’s about working smarter, not harder.”

When he saw Adobe’s ETLA for purchasing Adobe Creative Cloud for enterprise, Dalton realized it would allow Purcell to manage company growth spurts in a very straightforward way. “The flexibility of the Adobe enterprise agreement helps us plan for now and the future,” says Dalton. “It’s straightforward, as we now know who is using what and I can just add licenses as we go—everyone is always on the most current version.”

Streamlined implementation

Purcell deployed licenses of Adobe Creative Cloud for enterprise, starting with the communications group, where Seldon and seven others in marketing tested the new software. The team was tasked with discovering new features and potential stumbling blocks before initiating a company-wide deployment across seventeen offices. After one month, the communications team had found many advancements in functionality.

After the successful pilot, ICT rolled out Creative Cloud for enterprise company-wide. The ICT team used Creative Cloud Packager to deploy applications based on different languages and operating systems. Dalton put together a custom software package for Purcell that includes the firm’s core applications: Illustrator CC, InDesign CC, Photoshop CC, and Adobe Acrobat XI Pro. He created another package tailored for a smaller team that required a specific feature set.

“The Creative Cloud Packager is truly brilliant in terms of easily pushing out software,” says Dalton. “I can take all the applications and features people need and deploy everything as an update to help ensure consistency.”

Stowe House, Buckinghamshire. © Jerry Hardman-Jones

Stowe House, Buckinghamshire. © Jerry Hardman-Jones

Feature-rich, easily learned

The move to Creative Cloud for enterprise has benefited staff seeing projects through from bidding to completion. For creative and technical teams, Creative Cloud for enterprise offers the ability to access the latest features in the context of a familiar interface and tools.

The marketing team especially appreciates new features in Acrobat Pro such as the ability to save PDF files to Microsoft PowerPoint for presentation to clients, or to convert images in PDF files to a format suitable for editing in Photoshop CC. Within InDesign CC, they appreciate the ability to create alternate page sizes without requiring extra plug-ins.

“We’ve found Adobe Creative Cloud easy to learn and use,” says Seldon. “With productivity gains and new features available through Adobe Creative Cloud, we are now able to generate proposals that are more image-rich and engaging, and that’s a big differentiator for us.”

Trouble-free for ICT

In the future, Purcell plans to tap Adobe Expert Services to help end users delve into new features and get their own questions answered and to use the Creative Cloud Enterprise Dashboard to administer and manage user accounts.
“Adobe Creative Cloud for enterprise has a tremendous positive impact on our ability to present ourselves professionally, remain competitive, and continue growing our business,” says Dalton.

Read the Purcell case study.

2:25 PM Permalink

Adobe Ink & Slide Win the Popular Science Best of What’s New Award!

PSC1214P_MK1.pdf

I’m proud to announce that Adobe Ink & Slide just won Popular Science’s 2014 Best of What’s New award in the gadgets category.

Each year, the editors of Popular Science review thousands of products in search of the top 100 tech innovations of the year. And each year they’re looking for breakthrough products and technologies that represent a significant leap in their categories.

“For 27 years, Popular Science has honored the innovations that surprise and amaze us—those that make a positive impact on our world today and challenge our view of what’s possible in the future.” said Cliff Ransom, editor-in-chief of Popular Science. “The Best of What’s New Award is the magazine’s top honor, and the 100 winners, chosen from among thousands of entrants, each a revolution in its field.”

The creative process begins with pen and paper. And in today’s digital world, more and more creatives turn to digital devices to express their ideas. Ink & Slide provide unprecedented functionality, and a style and ease of use that’s unique to what’s available on the market today. Ink & Slide combine hardware, software and the cloud that together revolutionize the art of digital drawing.

Adobe Ink & Slide is featured in the December 2014 issue of Popular Science magazine. It’s on newsstands now. I hope you go and check it out for yourself.

11:39 AM Permalink

When Digital Waters the Seed of Natural Creativity

With another school year now well underway, I find myself thinking about an article in WIRED magazine in which Michael Gough talks about about drawing, children, and creativity—what we teach them, and how this is changing with the explosion of digital creativity tools.

Michael is the head of Experience Design at Adobe and a self-proclaimed “compulsive drawer.” He’s had lots of personal and professional experience backing up his ideas about creativity and technology.

I was especially struck by his comment that we’ve trained people to think of drawing (and, by extension, creativity) as a talent that only a special few are born with. Many of us over forty grew up hearing this old, tired idea.

Does it make sense anymore?

Michael believes that everyone has the inherent ability to draw, and that technology can help this ability bloom. I think the idea can be extended to creativity of all kinds—not just drawing.

I remember when our schools had programs to “teach technology” because we learned through formal instruction; today our children “play” with technology. This process of experimentation and exploration is fundamentally a process of creative thinking.

As the parent of teenagers (who’s spent some time working in a school), I see how differently young people react to media than the older generations. For them, their cell phones and tablets are extensions of their hands. They don’t think of gadgets as sophisticated technology that they have to master—they simply pick them up, download apps, and start playing (read: creating).

And with children getting introduced to devices with incredible power to capture inspiration and create at ever younger ages, they’re expressing themselves differently, whether for school projects or for fun. My daughters started doing homework on tablets in middle school; children just a few years younger have been playing with smartphones and tablets since they were toddlers.

When I saw the images that my daughter created using Photoshop on her tablet, I was amazed

Seeds_2

© Gwen Luhmann

Seeds_1

© Gwen Luhmann

“How did you learn to use that?” I asked.

“Mom, they give it to us at school.” (Duh, Mom, like I need someone to show me.)

Creativity scholar Ken Robinson agrees that it’s time to throw off the old ideas about who’s creative and who isn’t. In his book Out of Our Minds: Learning to Be Creative, he writes:

“Human intelligence is uniquely and profoundly creative. We live in a world that’s shaped by the ideas, beliefs and values of human imagination and culture. The human world is created out of our minds as much as from the natural environment.”

Those of us who grew up in the pre-digital past were given things like crayons and paper to feed our creativity. As we moved through our educational lives we were sorted into students who were “creative” and those who weren’t.

Digital is changing all of that

Our children live in a world where there doesn’t have to be any distinction between people who are creative and those who aren’t. Digital is leveling the playing field so we can experiment more freely and develop everyone’s creative side. And it’s an incentive for parents like me to spend more time experimenting with new apps and tools to try to keep up with the younger generation.

With all the new possibilities for expressing creativity, people everywhere are going to be running around shooting and playing with pictures, drawing, making music, and capturing inspiration in all kinds of ways. I can’t wait to see how much fun we all have doing it.

6:45 PM Permalink