Adobe Education

News & Views from the Education team

Adobe Systems Incorporated

Adobe Education Leadership Forum 2014

At the 9th annual Adobe Education Leadership Forum held in Kuala Lumpur earlier this month, over 130 educators from across Asia Pacific gathered to discuss the future of education, the increasing ubiquity of creativity in the classroom and its interplay with technology. Thought leaders hailing from schools such as the University of Technology Sydney, Chungnam National University in Korea, Kingswood College in Australia, Taylor’s Education Group in Malaysia and Hong Kong Baptist University, came together to share their perspectives and experiences in the classroom. Speakers and delegates explored ways of integrating creative faculties into our current education system, the opportunities and challenges along the way.

We also launched the results of our ‘Education, Creativity and Employability’ study, which revealed interesting points on the ubiquity of creativity in the classroom. Educators across Asia Pacific were unanimous in their agreement that creative expression is a must for all students regardless of their stream of study. An overwhelming 97 percent of respondents feel that creative tools help students to better grasp theoretical concepts and enhance their overall understanding in the classroom.

On top of that, 64 percent of educators strongly agreed that creative expression for students is a must, regardless of the course of study they’re in.
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During his keynote speech, Trevor Bailey, Senior Director, Worldwide Education & Government, Adobe Systems, USA highlighted the four major shifts campuses around the world are seeing today:

1. Campuses are experiencing a dramatic increase in the diversity of devices
2. They are constantly fostering creativity in teaching and learning
3. They are staying current and productive with the latest tools
4. They are providing equity and access in a complex technology environment, which in turns levels the playing field between the haves and have-nots

Creative thinking is critical for problem solving and our imperative is to foster creative thinking, collaboration and the development of digital skills. Today, it’s not about what you know, but what you make – it’s all about the ideas.

With the wide array of tools available today, creativity is now going digital. A transformative change is needed to integrate creativity in education – for us to educate our future generations and prepare them for the road that lies ahead.

Creativity is no longer an elective, it is our future.

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Students Building a New Creative Cloud Identity

inprogress This spring, Academy of Art University students Julia Lemke and Michael Taylor have an opportunity few designers get at this stage in their careers: to re-invent the Creative Cloud identity for Adobe’s marketing to students, teachers, and educational institutions.

Julia and Michael are using Adobe’s creative tools to build an identity that reflects what Creative Cloud means to them. Creative Cloud’s diverse set of apps offers them an opportunity to experiment. In that spirit, they’re working in mixed media, and pushing themselves outside their comfort zone.

Adobe’s internal design team partnered with Academy of Art University to kick off the project and choose talented local students to do the work at Adobe’s Townsend Street office in San Francisco. They also reached out to Jamie Calderon, Creative Director for Tolleson Design and collaborator on many Adobe identity projects, to serve as a mentor for Julia and Michael as they developed their first rounds of concepts.

The Adobe Students Social team is documenting the entire process through photography and video; sharing tidbits of the work in progress on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Tumblr.

We’re excited to see what Julia and Michael come up with, and when it’s final we’ll be sharing it with the world!

We’ve created a video to show how the whole process got started, and will be sharing more video as we approach the final unveiling. Please let us know what you think.

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Instilling Digital Literacy

Students at Forest Hills Eastern High School in Ada, Michigan, learn how digital literacy and creativity can benefit their academic and professional futures. Their dedicated teacher, Kelly Kermode, instructs them with industry-standard creative software such as Adobe Photoshop CC, Adobe InDesign CC, Adobe Illustrator CC, Adobe Edge Animate CC, and Adobe Premiere Pro CC.

With Kermode’s guidance, a former student Mariah Prowozink, who was initially wary of signing onto the yearbook staff, quickly began creating and designing pages that awakened her passion. She’s now attending Central Michigan University studying graphic design, art history, and advertising. She also works at the university’s newspaper, Central Michigan Life where she has

 

been an integral part of redesigning the paper’s website. Prowozink looks forward to producing a tablet version of the newspaper using the Alternative layout features in Adobe InDesign.

Student achievement is Kermode’s foremost concern. She prides herself on how many of her former students have achieved career success after graduation, working as designers, photographers, filmmakers, web developers, and other professionals. One big secret to her students’ success: infusing digital literacy into the curriculum using a host of Adobe industry-standard creative software.Kermode not only helped Prowozink develop valuable skills, but also incited a love of design in her.

 

“It’s incredibly gratifying to see how they are applying what they learned in school to foster success later in life. For many of my students, Adobe creative software has been instrumental in shaping their careers. It’s proven to be essential,” says Kermode.

To find out more about how Kelly Kermode inspires students, read the full story here.

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The Person That Works The Hardest Wins

GraceKimStudent Author: Grace Kim

Grace Kim is an AYV Scholarship recipient from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She participated in AYV at Lester B. Pearson Collegiate Institute. Grace is currently attending the Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto and majoring in Graphic Design.

 

This was the theme for the first assignment of my university career.  The project was for my “Colour in Context” class, where we had to create a t-shirt design with this phrase on it.  Everybody in the class interpreted this project in different ways and everybody’s project had a different look and feel – the only common thread was the phrase “the person that works the hardest wins.”

At Ontario College of Arts and Design University (OCADU), we all come from different places with different skills and experiences under our belt.  But the few things we do have in common is our love and passion for art and design, our goals and dreams of being able to pursue what we love and to be successful at it, and the hard work and dedication we put in in order to achieve those goals and dreams.

It was no different for me.  Although I was nervous about going to university and starting a new stage in my life, I was very excited as well.  I couldn’t wait to put myself in an environment where I could focus solely on what I wanted to do – which was to study and pursue design – and to have people around me who would teach, encourage, and inspire me.   In the two months that I have been attending OCADU, I have met so many amazing people and have learned so much from them as well as from my professors.  But most importantly, I have been learning more and more about myself each and every day – not only as a person, but also as a designer.  Even though I am in the graphic design program and I have been planning on pursuing graphic design for the past two years, I have started to want to learn different things, try different mediums and different types of design.  The variety of courses that I take give me a chance to do so, and even if I am not good at it at first, when I see the amazing things that other people can do, it inspires me and makes me want to challenge myself to go outside of my comfort zone and to just do it.  At this point in my life, I am not exactly sure of what I want to do, but I keep pushing myself and exploring all the different options and opportunities there are for me.

And most importantly, I always work hard and give my best effort.  To have a project that revolves around the theme of working hard as the first project of my university career has really helped to push me in the right direction and give me something to fall back on in times of stress and worry.  We are all sailing in this ocean called life, trying to find our destination even though we don’t know where it is.  If we give up, we’ll never find it.  But if we work hard and give our best, we will be able to find it even after all the twists and turns.  We may not “win” or get the outcome or grades we would have liked, but hard work never goes unrewarded — whether it’s recognition, a job, a scholarship, or even your own satisfaction, hard work will always bear fruit.  We just have to be patient, and wait for when it is our time to reach our destination.

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Adobe Education Exchange – 2013 in Review

AEE in Review2013 was an exciting year on the Adobe Education Exchange. The highlight was watching you engage with each other, share mind-blowing content, and exhibit your power as a creative force within Education. We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate than to share top trends, themes, and highlights from the past year. As we reflect on a wonderful 2013, let’s make 2014 even better!

Creativity

Like no other theme, creativity captivated AEE members this year. Sparked by the need for creative ideas to solve global challenges, you showed you’re up to the task of preparing students to meet these challenges. You flocked to our Creativity in Today’s Classroom workshop series and digital creativity courses. You discussed how to promote creativity in classrooms and how to teach creative thinking. Thank you for all the creative teaching ideas and we look forward to more on this topic in 2014.

Professional Development Launch

In February, we launched a new Professional Development portal with twenty self-paced workshops, three MOOCs, and a wide variety of online and in-person events. More than 19,000 of you completed a training activity including the 350 of you who finished the Train the Trainer course to become credentialed Adobe Education Trainers. The momentum is building so expect expanded opportunities in 2014.

Technology Integration

You continued to share ideas for integrating technology into the curriculum in 2013. Just a few of our many favorites include creating Instagram profiles for historical figures, a collaborative spoken word animation project, and combining math and 32 pictures to create an average visual of an interest. We’re excited to see the ideas you have up your sleeves in 2014. 

Gamification

From gamifying the classroom to earning points and badges on the AEE, gamification was a winning theme in 2013. You explored ways to incorporate gamification into the classroom and a group of you is collaborating on a gamified curriculum delivery system. Gamification on the AEE allowed you to showcase an impressive amount of activity. You earned more than 150,000 badges and over 1 million points in 2013!

Tablets and Smartphones

With the exponential growth of mobile devices, it’s no wonder you were interested in how they affect both the way you teach and the need-to-know design skills to respond to this trend. You discussed the best use cases for integrating devices in the classroom and wondered what Adobe software on a tablet would be like. There was also a growing interest in the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite and web tools like Muse, Edge Animate, Edge Reflow, and PhoneGap for creating device friendly content.

As we begin 2014, thanks for joining us in the mission to change the world through creativity. With each resource you find, question you ask, connection you make, or new skill you learn on the Adobe Education Exchange, you can spark ideas and creativity in others. We promise to continue to support you as you ignite creativity at your institution, colleague, or in your students.

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Inspiration in Animation

Student Author: Marné Pool

Marné Pool is an AYV Scholarships recipient from San Jose, California. She participated in AYV at Willow Glen High School in San Jose. Marné is currently studying Digital Art and Animation at Cogswell Polytechnical College in Sunnyvale, California.

This semester I am taking my first animation class! Since I want to be an animator, I was really excited to finally learn about it. The class is focused on 2D animation so we use traditional techniques to create short animations.

When I first started, I had a vague idea of how the process worked. It was quite difficult at first! There were many techniques, like how to roll or flip the paper, which took a bit of time to get the hang of.

We started with a simple ball bounce to learn the most basic concepts and from there we worked up to more complicated assignments. I realized that one of the most important things to understand is timing. The timing makes an animation believable, which helps the audience connect to the story you are trying to tell. If the timing is off, the viewer will become distanced from the piece and lose interest.

Although I would like to do 3-D animation, knowing the techniques of 2D will help me a lot — all the same principles must be applied for a successful animation.

After the ball drop, we did all the standard tests like a leaf falling, flour sack drop, water splash and a brick drop. Each object reacts differently when dropped, some are hard and rigid, while others are smoother and organic.  Each assignment required that we shoot our own reference — it’s a very hands on kind of thing! These assignments take a lot of time and effort to get the right feel. After lots of hours and thick stacks of paper, we have a few seconds of animation finished!

After working on objects, we moved on to characters. Achieving a smooth, believable character walk took a few attempts, but I did find it more natural animating a human, since I’m more familiar with the way people move.

For our final project, we are creating 15–30 second shorts involving one character interacting with a 2 liter soda bottle. We must display a change in emotion as they interact with the bottle. It has to be an obvious difference from the beginning to the end of the sequence. This will require that I create storyboards, an animatic, and finally, the many passes of the actual animations.

Although the work can be tedious, this class is very inspiring. I look at the animated movies from my childhood with a new appreciation. I now understand the extent of the work that went into each scene. All the subtleties of the characters stand out to me. I love all the little details in the animation that give the characters a connection to the audience.  These otherwise cold, flat pictures come alive and tell beautiful heartwarming stories. I aspire to create the same kind of magic in my own work someday.

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Introducing The Adobe Youth Voices Scholars Blog Series

Earlier this year, 25 highly talented Adobe Youth Voices (AYV) students were selected to receive scholarships to help them pursue higher education in a creative field. We are pleased to announce that the first group of scholarship recipients will be contributing blog posts sharing their experiences in post-secondary school and updating us on their creative projects. We hope these blogs will inspire current AYV students who dream about starting a creative career!

2013-2014 AYV Scholars celebrate on-stage at the AYV Summit in Santa Clara, Calif. in August 2013.

AYV Scholars celebrate on-stage at the AYV Summit in Santa Clara, Calif. in August 2013.

AYV students entering their first or second year of post-secondary school during the 2014-15 academic year are encouraged to apply for the scholarship here. Applications are being accepted until March 3, 2014.

The AYV Scholarships program is fully funded by Adobe and administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE), an independent not-for-profit founded in 1919. IIE is among the world’s largest and most experienced international education and training organizations.

Please join us in congratulating the Adobe Youth Voices Scholarships recipients and check back for their blog posts!

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Just in Time for the Holidays, BYU Students Create for a Cause

BYU students, professors, and alums donated their time on the project. BYU students working on the project were Cassy Hiatt, Josh Poulsen, Nick Dixon, Jordan Hunter, John Jackson, and Stephanie Tse. The cinematographer was BYU alum Bengt Jonsson. A number of BYU animation faculty were involved including Mike Warner, Seth Holladay, Cynthia Hogan, Brent Adams, Tom Lefler, and Kyle Stapley.

BYU students, professors, and alums donated their time on the project. BYU students working on the project were Cassy Hiatt, Josh Poulsen, Nick Dixon, Jordan Hunter, John Jackson, and Stephanie Tse. The cinematographer was BYU alum Bengt Jonsson. A number of BYU animation faculty were involved including Mike Warner, Seth Holladay, Cynthia Hogan, Brent Adams, Tom Lefler, and Kyle Stapley.

Since 2006, U.S. rock band The Killers have released a Christmas song for charity. This year, their “Christmas in L.A.” release was done in partnership with global not-for-profit (RED), with song proceeds going to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS.

With just three weeks to produce and release the song, including the accompanying music video, Killers frontman Brandon Flowers reached out to BYU alum and friend Jared Hess for ideas. Hess suggested BYU media arts and animation students for the job.

BYU animation program director Kelly Loosli saw this as a great opportunity. “Learning concepts is great, but there is nothing like a real production with a tight deadline and the possibility for broad viewership to inspire students to apply their knowledge and challenge them to approach video production in new ways,” says Loosli.

With juniors and seniors already committed to films, first-year animation students jumped in. “They are a very talented and passionate group. I knew they would be excited to take this on, give it the required energy, and deliver an outstanding video on time,” says Loosli. “Students were thrilled, especially because it was for the The Killers!”

Loosli helped put together a crew for the Los Angeles-based video shoot by calling on former BYU students and classmates in the industry. The team had one day to shoot the video, and three hours with Owen Wilson, the lead character.

BYU media arts and animation students worked on postproduction, combing over footage and  transforming filmed elements into animations. Students used Adobe creative tools for the video, including Adobe Photoshop for backgrounds, Adobe After Effects for compositing and enhancing animation, Adobe Premiere Pro for editing, and Adobe Flash Professional for roto and animation work.

“Having to jump in and apply industry-standard applications to create the video not only strengthened students’ basic production skills, but also pushed them to learn to use the software in entirely new ways,” says Loosli. “The students also worked together in a collaborative lab space, where they could share concepts and approaches with each other in real time. The learning curve—and opportunity for learning—were tremendous.”

“Christmas in L.A.” can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=938GYJjxBeU.

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Congratulations to the Winner of the Adobe Creativity in Education Pin to Win Sweepstakes!

EDUsweepsI am pleased to announce the winner of our creativity sweepstakes that called on educators and parents to showcase creativity in education through a Pinterest board. Megan Bonner, an educator from Downingtown, PA is the lucky winner. Her amazing board included 127 pins ranging from student’s work to inspirational imagery and quotes. You can check it out for yourself here.

To better understand her inspiration and creative process, we sat down with Megan (virtually) and asked her a few questions. Check out the interview and let us know what inspires you.

Adobe: Why is creativity important in your classroom?

Bonner: In a lot of classes, there are only right and wrong answers, leaving little room for creativity. Kids are so creative if they are given room to explore their ideas. In my computer art and ceramics classrooms, my students can be creative, think outside the box, and test out their ideas while developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills. I want to see what my students are capable of and want them to develop their own viewpoints and styles.

Adobe: Where do you look for creative inspiration?

Bonner: Pinterest! It should really be called “Pinspiration” (at least for me). Pinterest is a great place to find ideas from other art teachers, see finished work, and go from there. Innovation comes from necessity. So if I see something I don’t like, an outdated or ineffective logo for example, I will turn that into a lesson where my students create a new and improved version.

Adobe: How do you inspire your students?

Bonner: I tell my graphic design students that I taught myself all of the Adobe programs that I teach (except for Flash and Dreamweaver) and didn’t have any sort of instruction. When I was in college, computer art was just starting to become popular, and I focused on more traditional art. I learned how to use Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign by using books, magazines and online tutorials. I encourage my students to look for online tutorials and read magazines to find out how to do what they want to do, look for inspiration, and learn new techniques.

I also look for contests for my students. I enter my students in as many as possible to get their artwork out in the community. And even if a contest has passed, they are often a great way to find new ideas for projects.

Adobe: What advice would you give to other educator’s looking to foster creativity in their classrooms?

Talk to your students. Tailor your lessons and projects so they incorporate things that your students enjoy. Always try to find a way to bring a student’s idea to fruition.

Adobe: Any last thoughts—comments from students, tips and tricks, what’s next?

Bonner: I cannot wait to use my new laptop and Adobe Creative Cloud! I am always looking for ways to expand and build upon our graphic design course offerings, so I’m hoping that exposure to some new software can help with that. I’m very excited to use Muse! Also, I will continue to add to my Creativity in Education board on Pinterest by adding new resources and student work, so stay tuned!

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USC Graduate Students Embrace Adobe Creative Cloud to Edit Thesis Film

Filmmaker Christopher Guerrero—soon to graduate—and Maury Shessel—already on his career path—both attended The University of Southern California (USC) School of Cinematic Arts (SCA). Both video pros have tried various software programs and suites to edit and post-produce projects and they agree: Adobe Creative Cloud with an emphasis on Adobe Premiere Pro CC for editing gives them everything they need to create a box-office hit. They decided to edit Chris’s graduate thesis film, Mike Garcia and The Cruz, using Adobe Premiere Pro CC, and shared their thoughts about their exciting work-in-progress. Norman Hollyn, USC Endowed Chair in Editing and President of the University Film and Video Association, also weighs in on the choices available to students today.

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Adobe: As graduate students from the renowned USC SCA, why did you choose Adobe Premiere Pro CC to edit Christopher’s thesis? Guerrero: My first experience editing film was at UC Santa Cruz, where I learned to edit 8-millimeter film. Like a lot of folks in the industry, I graduated to non-linear editing and learned Final Cut Pro and Avid. I became somewhat of an editing guru and digital media specialist at UC Santa Cruz. When I went to USC, I was introduced to Premiere Pro and became addicted to its ability to ingest almost any raw camera format without transcoding and its integration with other Adobe programs like After Effects and Photoshop.

Shessel: In our first conversation, when Chris inquired if I would edit his thesis, we initially decided on Premiere Pro CC due to its flexibility. We did not want to wait forever for things to be ready to edit, and we wanted to shoot on the latest high-end digital cameras, including the Sony F5 and Sony F65. Our next thought was we didn’t have the most powerful computers, so we couldn’t afford a ton of RAM to transcode and start editing. When we started really putting Premiere Pro to the test, we were pleasantly surprised. We loved that we could bring in After Effects compositions or layers from Photoshop instantly. No more checking settings or dealing with alpha channels. As the first thesis project team at USC to use Premiere Pro, we’re really trying to innovate and show what can be done with the solution.

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Adobe: Professor Hollyn, is this a trend you’re starting to see with more of your students? Hollyn: At the School of Cinematic Arts, we’re always watching what’s happening with the NLEs. We want students to learn about all of the editing solutions available to them so they have more flexibility when they graduate. We’re beginning to see more interest in using Premiere Pro for projects. We’re moving toward a situation where in a couple of years the decision of which system to work with won’t be reserved just for thesis films, it will extend down further in curriculum, even to the undergraduate level.

I meet with every group before they start shooting their thesis projects. We talk about the story, their post-production schedule, and what tools they will be using. I recently met with another group whose film involves heavy visual effects and they asked specifically about using Premiere Pro because of its strong integration with After Effects. For Chris and Maury, I know they were really interested in being able to throw multiple formats on the Premiere Pro timeline without transcoding and the Dynamic Link capability between Premiere Pro and After Effects really piqued their interest. They also wanted to be the first to edit a thesis using an Adobe workflow. I like it when our students experiment with new stuff.

Adobe: What is the thesis film about, and how long is it? Guerrero: My Master’s thesis is a comedy. Not many comedies come out of USC. That’s something Maury and I have in common. Both our theses are comedic and we both love that genre. Adding to his immense talent, this was another reason I asked him to help me with my thesis.

The film is about a punk rock IT student. He’s an anarchist who steals the Chancellor’s laptop. Right now, it is 27 minutes, but Maury and I are working on cutting it down to 15 or 16 minutes. SCA’s high profile, annual student film festival, First Look, has strict guidelines about how long films can be. We’re anticipating that it’s going to be done in December 2013 or January 2014 and we hope it will premiere at the festival.

Adobe: What have you found most useful in Adobe Premiere Pro CC? Guerrero:  I’ve been working with Premiere Pro since version CS5, and I love its ability to support a ton of high-end graphics and seamlessly incorporate effects from After Effects. With the graphics card on my computer, I can throw 10 or more effects at the timeline through Dynamic Link, and I don’t have to wait around to render anything. Everything is elegant and ready to go without re-linking files or grabbing a hard drive. The simplicity is stunning. To me, after years of jumping around between software applications and transcoding and exporting files, that’s pretty insane.

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Adobe: What was the learning curve like for you, Maury? Shessel: I was trained on Avid, and worked on it most of my life. But with Premiere Pro, I was fluent almost instantaneously. The keystrokes were slightly different, but in two to three days, my muscle memory was going for the right keys.

Adobe: Can you describe some of the best parts of this experience? Shessel: As editors, we are always looking for the best tools. After using Premiere Pro, I can’t imagine not using it again. I tell people how great of a time I’m having with editing this thesis and how easy Premiere Pro is based on other software I’ve used.

Adobe: If you had advice to give to other students, what would it be? Guerrero: Choose Premiere Pro, and forget transcoding. I know from personal experience how grueling student deadlines are. We have 16 to 18 hours of class each week on top of all our other responsibilities. Take my advice: get from shooting to cutting ASAP.

Adobe: Professor Hollyn, what do you want students to know about the industry when they graduate? Hollyn: One of the best things we can do for our students is to try to future proof them. This doesn’t mean teaching them every editing program. We try to provide them with knowledge about not just what’s happening in 2013 but what may be happening in 2017. Of course, we can’t predict the future, but we can make sure they learn how to continue growing their skills. There will always be new technologies, distribution channels, and formats. We want students to be able to look for these changes, adapt, and even take advantage of the opportunities that these changes present.

Adobe: Maury, Christopher, what do you both foresee in the future? Guerrero: There’s an idea people have been throwing around for years, and that’s the democratization of filmmaking. There’s some truth in that. Now everyone has the tools. However, not everyone has the knowledge and creative alchemy and talent to bring all these elements—video, photos, and visual effects—together in a way that intrigues and excites audiences. Today and in the future, smaller teams will be able to create drastically higher quality productions through ingenuity and technologies. Ultimately, filmmaking is about problem solving. Adobe is providing far more tools to solve more problems, much faster. And that helps us create better, more gripping films with fewer resources.

Shessel: I think Premiere Pro is not just a tool, it’s more of an enabler of style, and I’m a worshipper of style, almost to a fault. Over the decades, distinct styles have emerged based on whether people edit on a Moviola or on film, or using non-linear editing tools.  Now, with the ease of integration among Creative Cloud components, including After Effects, Illustrator, and Photoshop, I think a new style may emerge as creative barriers are knocked down. So I’m watching closely.

Learn more about the video apps and services in Adobe Creative Cloud.

Download a free trial of Adobe Creative Cloud.

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