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Adobe Photoshop Gets Huge Line-Up Of New Features & Adobe Lightroom Is Updated With An Improved Colour Grading Tool

Adobe has announced updates for Photoshop and Lightroom bringing better colour grading tools and more. Plus, Photoshop for iPad has had an update, introducing 4 new features.

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Photoshop New Photoshop Plug In Experience 2 |
 

 

It's Adobe Max 2020 and as we expected, new updates have arrived for Adobe Photoshop desktop, Adobe Photoshop for iPad and Adobe Lightroom. The news comes after Adobe introduced a new version of Photoshop Elements 2021 which added new guided edits to the popular photo editing software. 

 

What's New In Photoshop?

Photoshop Intelligent Refine Edge 1 |
 

There are several feature updates in Adobe Photoshop which are as follows: 

  1. Neural Filters
  2. Sky Replacement
  3. Select Sky
  4. Pattern Preview
  5. Easy to find and install plugins
  6. Improved Learn and Help menu
  7. Refine Hair
  8. Object-Aware Refine Edge
  9. Presets for Select & Mask
  10. Cloud Docs: Version History
  11. Cloud Docs: make available offline always
  12. Live Shapes
  13. Preset Search
  14. Colour Grading in ACR
  15. Reset Smart Objects
  16. Actual Size view preset

 

Neural Filters is a new workspace inside Photoshop that introduces non-destructive filters which are, like many of Photoshop's features, AI-powered. Skin Smoothing and Style Transfer are the first finished filters to be introduced to users alongside 6 'beta' filters which might work really well on certain types of images, but not as well on others and Adobe want to know what you think of them. 

 

Photoshop Neural Filters 5 |
Photoshop Neural Filters - Moving the light source

 

Smart Portrait is one of these first beta filters and helps you transform age, expression, pose, colours, and more. You can use the gaze and head sliders to change the direction of the eyes or head, or light direction to change the angle of the light source. Subtle changes are encouraged but Adobe does say you can go to town with the options if you really want to. 

 

Photoshop Neural Filters Head And Gaze Slider |
Photoshop Neural Filters Head And Gaze Slider

 

Other Neural Filters include Super Zoom which you can use to boost the resolution of smaller selections within a portrait or remove JPEG artefacts that result from JPEG compression. Depth-Aware haze simulates volumetric haze in your background to better highlight your subject while Colorize can be used to add colour to black and white images in one click thanks to smart technology that uses content-aware colour.

 

Photoshop Neural Filters Style Transfer 3 |
Photoshop Neural Filters Style Transfer

 

If you want to apply a style to your photo that's taken inspiration from a particular artist, you can with the Style Transfer option. 

 

Photoshop Neural Filters |
Photoshop Neural Filters

 

Filters can be applied non-destructively using the smart filter feature, or applied directly to a layer, or generated as a new layer with the changed pixels. 

Perhaps taking cues from other software creators, the new Sky Replacement feature intelligently separates the sky from the foreground and allows you to create images with dynamic skies in just a few clicks. You can either select the sky yourself with Select > Sky and edit it or use Select > Sky Replacement, choose a new sky from the Adobe database or add your own, and leave the software to do the masking and blending for you. 

 

Photoshop Sky Replacement
Photoshop Sky Replacement

 

Algorithms are also used to make sure your foreground images matches the new sky so if you add a sunset, for example, the whole image will have a 'golden hour' look to it. You can also zoom in and select just a section of sky, or move the sky around to find the right configuration. 25 sky presets are currently available should you not have your own collection of skies to choose from. 

 

Photoshop Intelligent Refine Edge 2 |
Photoshop Intelligent Refine Edge 

 

Two new Sensei features have been added to Adobe Photoshop in the Select and Mask workspace and these are Refine Hair and Object Aware Refine Mode.

Refine Hair: This button can be found in the Options bar across the top of the Select and Mask workspace. It seeks out the people in your selection and refines the selection of their hair. 

Object Aware Refine Mode: It’s always been difficult to precisely select hair and other fine elements of an image, particularly when the foreground and background are similar in colour or hard to differentiate like the image above. Now you can click on the Object Aware button to set the Refine Edge mode to make these selections easier and quicker. The Object Aware algorithm has been trained to understand objects in the scene and thus work better with similarly-coloured or similarly-textured backgrounds.

 

Photoshop Discover Panel 1 |
Photoshop Discover Panel

 

The new Photoshop Discover panel combines in-app learning content, tutorials and a search tool in one place. AI will also recommend tips and tutorials for you, based on the actions you perform in Photoshop and one-click Quick Actions can be accessed so you can quickly remove a background, blur a background, make a black & white back background or enhance an image. 

Other new features include a pattern preview tool for those who create or work with patterns regularly, an improved way to create/adjust shapes, an option to reset smart objects in the Properties panel, a faster/easier to use plug-in, version history when working in cloud documents and preset search. 

 

Photoshop Cloud Documents Version History 2 |
Photoshop Cloud Documents Version History 

 

What's New In Lightroom?

Lightroom MAX Release  Advanced Color Grading |
Lightroom MAX Release Advanced Color Grading

 

With the Lightroom update, you get access to a better Colour Grading tool that will replace the Split Toning tool and give photographers access to more advanced editing controls. The new Advanced Colour Grading tool will give photographers more editing precision by adding colour control for mid-tones in addition to highlights and shadows which can be adjusted via colour wheels. 

 

Lightroom Introducing Color Grading From Split Toning To Color Grading |
 

As well as Colour Grading, you also have access to new graphical watermarking so you can leave a logo stamp on photos and with Auto Versions, Lightroom will now automatically save versions of your edits across all of your devices so you can work and save a version on your PC then move to your iPad and go to the Versions tab to see the version you saved on your PC. 

 

Lightroom MAX Release Auto Versions |
Lightroom MAX Release Auto Versions

 

Under the Learn and Discover sections, your content feed will now intelligently prioritise content based on your activity within Lightroom and you can also stay connected with other photographers within the Lightroom community with the new Follow feature. The final new feature is Best Photos which uses AI to suggest a curated subset of images in an album based on various factors.

 

Lightroom MAX Release Learn And Discover Content |
Lightroom MAX Release Learn And Discover Content

 

In Lightroom Class and Camera RAW, GPU acceleration improves tool usage/speed and if you're a Canon camera owner with Tethered LiveView, you can now see your camera's real-time feed to adjust exposure settings and more from Lightroom Classic. 

 

Lightroom MAX Release Lr Classic And Camera Raw |
Lightroom MAX Release Lr Classic And Camera Raw

 

What's New In Photoshop For iPad?

Photoshop Behance Library |
 

Photoshop Livestreaming In Photoshop On IPad |

 

There are fewer updates for the iPad version of Photoshop with just 4 new features so you can now edit image size, live stream, use the Behance library and there's a new Document properties panel. There's also a new Home Screen layout and updated Learn content. 

 

Our Thoughts?

We'll be putting the new version of Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom to the test very soon so do keep an eye on our review section where these will be published. 

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