Adobe MAX 2018 Highlights

The Adobe MAX conference in Los Angeles has wrapped, with a bevy of exciting announcements from the creative industry software developer. Some of the highlights:

Creative Cloud 2019 Released

The biggest announcement was the release of the latest version of the Creative Cloud apps: CC 2019. Adobe’s most commonly used tools all received some significant new features and updates:


Adobe’s flagship application received some powerful quality-of-life improvements including a frame tool for mask creation, content-aware fill which uses the AI-driven Sensei backbone for seamless photo editing, and an undo functionality that matches other Adobe apps. Other under-the-hood updates include a live blend-mode preview, improved symmetry mode, default proportional layer transforms, and more.

After Effects

Improvements to After Effects include improved puppet tools for bending, curving, and scaling animations, new Lumetri Color tools for precise color correction, a native Mocha AE plugin, and performance optimizations.


Illustrator also received a number of new features, including Sensei-driven content-aware cropping, freeform gradients for more natural color blending, improvements to font browsing and accessibility, and features to improve workspace visibility and scaling on a variety of displays.


Adobe’s video editing powerhouse was no exception, with updates to DeNoise and DeReverb sound editing tools, the Lumetri Color tools also added to After Effects, end-to-end VR 180 support, improved display color management, better integration with Adobe Stock and Creative Cloud Library, and data-driven motion graphics templates to transform data spreadsheets into animated infographics.

As usual with major software releases, Nodal does not recommend an immediate upgrade until you are absolutely sure that the new version is compatible with your systems and studio workflow. 3rd-party plug-ins may take some time before they are made compatible with the newest release.

Photoshop CC for iPad

Adobe has been looking at ways to integrate its software across devices, allowing for greater freedom for creatives on the go. One of the first results of that endeavor is Photoshop on the iPad. This is intended to be a full version of Photoshop, allowing for the entire array of tools and features, all customized for touch controls (including the iPad’s Pencil and touch gestures).

Along with this announcement is the introduction of Cloud documents, which will allow users to sync their PSD files across devices. This will allow users to make adjustments on the go via their mobile device without having to import/export files to and from their workstation.

Project Gemini

Adobe also unveiled Gemini, a new drawing and painting app for the iPad. Gemini simulates paint mixing and brush behavior, bringing traditional media concepts to the digital realm. Gemini will also sync with desktop Photoshop, allowing for easy file transfer.

Project Aero

Adobe demonstrated Project Aero, their foray into AR capability. Billing AR as the ‘next breakthrough medium for creative storytelling’, Aero’s demonstration included the ability to virtually walk through the layers in a Photoshop file, opening new avenues for presenting visual art.

Premiere Rush CC

In keeping with Adobe’s focus on mobile devices and cloud-based sync, the developer has released Premiere Rush, a trimmed-down version of their Premiere Pro video editing application. Utilizing tools from both Premiere Pro and AfterEffects, Rush allows for easy, intuitive production of professional-looking videos on the go.

While lacking the full arsenal of Premiere Pro, Rush will allow for new users and novice editors to begin producing quality content. Rush is available for immediate download but only currently supports iOS. An Android version is expected next year.

If you have any questions about how Adobe’s new offerings might affect your studio’s workflow, feel free to contact Nodal! For more information on the offerings and announcements from Adobe MAX 2018, check out Creative Bloq’s coverage on the conference. For full descriptions on new features for the assorted Adobe products, check out the Photoshop, After Effects, Illustrator, and Premiere Pro product pages.