Adobe CC NAB 2015 Updates

Adobe has announced new Creative Cloud tools and feature additions to the existing products just in time for the NAB 2015.

The focus of Creative Cloud is shifting away from the old school “serial” production workflow. Adobe acknowledges that film and television professionals can not constrain the flow of ideas and compromise storytelling by deploying the legacy rigid production-editorial-finishing chain.

Instead, Adobe envisions an interconnected topology of Creative Cloud tools where it is never too late to make creative changes that ripple throughout the entire process.

Project Candy

This new approach to collaboration is very evident in a new tool code-named Project Candy.

Designed to capture imagination and share the look and inspiration across interconnected tools, Project Candy uses iPhone or iPad to capture the essential chromatic mood of a scene and share it immediately with Creative Cloud collaborators who may be a continent away.

Project Candy records an image or uses a real time color analysis. Using a simple user input it selects about twenty hue angles representative of the dominant coloration of a scene and generates a 3D LUT. The analysis is scene focused and attempts to avoid skin tones in the frame.

The 3D LUT is published to a Creative Cloud library where it becomes instantly available to After Effects, Premiere Pro and Speedgrade. When the template is applied to a clip it color corrects the footage to match the original scene in a very pleasing way.

While the feature is not designed to automate traditional color grading process, it creates a good starting point or a reference look for the colorist.

Photoshop and Lightroom do not support the feature yet. Project Candy is currently supported on iOS only.

Adobe Character Animator

This is an all new After Effects companion tool for deploying quick character animation.

The Character Animator utilizes performance capture acquired via webcam. It tracks facial expressions like the movement of lips, eyes and pupils and provides real time animation as well as keyframe recording.

Users can write expressions in JavaScript and apply expression based behaviors to live animation puppets.

Adobe Premiere Pro

Premiere Pro adds support for Lumetri scopes and 32-bit float Lumetri Color Panel. This is not a full featured color corrector but an easy way for a story focused editor to add visual polish to the cut using a three-way color tool. The Lumetri look information translates to Speedgrade for further enhancement.

The new Morph Cut tool addresses a common situation where removal of a statement from a talking head interview creates a visual jump cut. The Morph Tool uses optical flow and facial tracking to blend the A and B sides of the cut creating a near invisible transition.

Time Tuner allows time compression and expansion of up to 10% in Premiere Pro and Adobe Media Encoder. This new tool is ideal for repurposing existing libraries to match the network clock specifications.

The Modify Channels clip modification now has a visual audio matrix routing.

Adobe Media Encoder

In addition to Time Tuner the Media Encoder now supports ProRes 4444 XQ, JPEG 2000, Interoperable Master Format (IMF), Dolby Digital sound, and improved rewrapping.

The UHD relevant HEVC (H.265) High Efficiency Video Codec may come this spring via a plugin.

Adobe Story

The scriptwriting and breakdown application Adobe Story has been moved to the modern HTML 5 technology. It gained considerable flexibility, extensibility, and performance with this upgrade.

Keyword searches and complex queries across documents are now possible in a project or across projects. The calendar now allows importing of schedules and it is keyword searchable.

Adobe Story now has full double-byte support for non-Roman characters.

Adobe Anywhere

Adobe Anywhere, an enterprise level complement to Creative Cloud for deep remote collaboration, is becoming more valuable to smaller customers.

A new, smaller version of Adobe Anywhere is available for collocated teams using shared storage. The enterprise version of Adobe Anywhere with Mercury Streaming Engine will continue to be available for larger organizations with team members in multiple locations.

The  installation and hardware requirements for the basic version are now much simpler in an effort to reach smaller and medium customers.

Adobe Anywhere can now be installed on client’s hardware. The project data is shared via Anywhwere and the media is accessed directly. New features also include smart conflict resolution and activity feed.

Other Updates

Adobe After Effects has a new face tracker and improvements to the preview capabilities.

Adobe Prelude now allows live VO recording. The editor can play back the rough cut and record a live WAV file.