CS6

Newton. Physics for After Effects

As a designer that works primarily with dynamic, and interactive media, I spend a large portion of my day using applications like Adobe After Effects. Actually I spend most of my day bouncing between After Effects, Premier, PhotoShop, Illustrator, and Audition these days. One thing I am always looking for is a way to improve my work, and if possible simplify the process.

Earlier today while looking for a real physics engine for After Effects, I came across Newton. This plugin has been out for a while, and is currently on version 1.2. I however just discovered it, and it looks really promising. Available from Motion Boutique, the plugin features: Gravity, friction, bounce, resistance, elasticity, collision detection, and a time divider for super slow motion.

At around $250.00 depending on the exchange rates its not cheap, but well worth the money if you need an easy to use solution for any of the features mentioned above.

Newton for Adobe After Effects, first tech demo. from motionboutique on Vimeo.

Adobe Creative Cloud Exclusives for Photoshop CS6 Extended/

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Yesterday Adobe announced a host of new features for Photoshop CS6, and Creative Cloud users. Actually these new features are available only for Creative Cloud members, but you can still get a look at what they are here even if you don’t use the service.

Making feature specific updates for Creative Cloud members is nothing new. Adobe has been doing this for about a year now, and the fact is, this is Adobe’s plan of attack. More and more features will only be made available to people that have signed up for, pay for, and use Creative Cloud.

The Photoshop update features 12 new items that really look pretty tasty, but at a $50.00 a month membership fee you’ll need to ask yourself if they are really worth an additional $600.00 a year beyond the price of Photoshop, and or your upgrade cost.

The new features for Photoshop CS6 Creative Cloud Members include:

  1. Smart Object support for Blur Gallery

  2. Smart Object support for Liquify
  3. Conditional Actions
  4. Pen tool enhancement
  5. CSS export for faster web design
  6. Import color from web files
  7. Improved 3D effect
  8. HiDPI and Retina display support
  9. New and reengineered design tools
  10. New reflections and draggable shadows
  11.  Erodible brushes
  12. Content-Aware Patch

 

Moving Photoshop Design Features to the Cloud.

A little over a year ago at the Adobe Max conference in Los Angeles Adobe announced their new Creative Cloud service to the world. At the time it really seemed like another cloud based storage solution, but as it has rolled out Adobe’s Creative Cloud has begun to show what it is really about. Creative Cloud is Adobe’s vehicle to move all of us to a subscription based model for software.

On December 5th at 12:00 Central Standard Time, Adobe will host a live streaming event where Jeffrey Veen, the Vice President of Products at Adobe, will demo new Photoshop features that will be available to Creative Cloud members only. This is not a new strategy. Adobe has already done this with other core products (Illustrator, Dreamweaver and Acrobat) where there hav been Creative Cloud only upgrades.

The Creative Now Live event will showcase the upcoming team version of Creative Cloud, and a how to “explore ways to take your design skills from print to online and mobile.” This will be followed by presentations by Photoshop master Scott Kelby talking about hidden gems in Photoshop CS6, and Justin Weyers talking about “A Liars Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman”.

So why should you watch the event and what does it mean to you the Adobe software user? You should watch because this event shows Adobe’s plan to move its user base to a subscription model.  A model that provides access to an extended range of creative tools for a flat monthly rate. This effects you the designer, because in the long term you will probably lease your software from Adobe.

If you are still on the fence about Adobe’s Creative Cloud, you can still get a special upgrade price to join. It’s 30 bucks a month which will cost you 360.00 a year.

Vimeo Video School and Your Car.

I check out the Vimeo Video School stuff all the time. There is always something relevant and useful in this educational series. The video above is one of the latest installments and focuses on how to use your car as a low budget dolly and platform to get some really good cinema effects for little to no money. One thing I am going to add to the video is, get a copy of After  Effects CS6 and use the Warp Stabilizer to get rid of any camera shake you might pick up.

Most of the shots in the film above looked like they done on fairly flat level smooth streets. The Warp Stabilizer will save your shaky cam butt. Over half of the hand held shots in this film were stabilized with this tool from Adobe.

The Magic of Photoshop. “Swim City”.

I have worked in Photoshop pretty much every day for the last 20 years. I think I am pretty good, but not nearly as good a lot of people out there.

POP is an example of absolutely killer Photoshop work. Below the  image below is the Vimeo video of this being created. If you get a chance, watch it then click the link above to discover more of POP’s amazing body of work.

The Story Behind Adobe’s CS6 Desktop Brand System

I haven’t upgraded to Adobe Creative Suite CS6 yet. I simply can’t afford it right now, and I’ve only been using CS5.5 for about 9 months. That doesn’t mean I haven’t been following the changes, upgrades, and new features at the Adobe site though. Today, while I was perusing the Adobe blog, I came across a really interesting article talking about the number of branded assets that now go into the entire creative suite. These assets comprise everything from application icons, to packaging, and splash screens. Much to my surprise, I found out there are now 5000 shared branded assets. That’s right 5000, and it takes a year to produce all of them.

With software refresh cycles happening every 12 to 18 months, you can bet money that the marketing design team for Adobe is well underway with the branding redesign for CS7. The entire article is on the Adobe Blog and well worth the read if you are a designer, or simply use any of these tools.

“It takes well over a year to design, execute, deliver, and ensure the proper implementation of the roughly 5,000 or so assets it takes to get a CS release out the door (we’re already thinking about CS7). Along the away, there are innumerable institutional, technological, and political hurdles to overcome. It can be daunting, but we do everything we can to get it made with as few design compromises as possible.”