Can we get a round of applause for Adobe MAX 2023? What a trip! It’s a creative’s dream. Imagine a toy store with gadgets you’ve never seen before, only heard whispers about. Imagine an endless hallway with endless doors you can walk through to learn the ins and outs of the new toy that was JUST RELEASED TODAY! I mean, how cool would you feel knowing you get insider knowledge on the new “thing” while your friends are stuck at home playing with last season’s toy? Pretty cool. Well, it’s that, but for adults who make and do things on their computer screens.
As a graphic designer who desperately wants to feel adequately equipped in the age of AI, I registered for (almost) every course I had time for that would teach me something about the new generative AI features in the Adobe Creative Suite. Get a leg up, you know? I learned from Adobe’s Paul Trani about new Illustrator features like Text-to-Vector (omg…) and better workflows for certain projects. I also dove into Photoshop’s generative fill with Anna McNaught, a Photoshop queen. Additionally, I heard a lot about and got to play around with Adobe Firefly and Adobe Express for more creativity on the fly. So that was great. I’d like to thank Paul especially for making the most of his time with an audience and demonstrating at super speed and with great humor.
As a designer at an agency that often works with branding projects and someone who requires their own personal brand, it was highly informative to hear from Kristy Campbell, a graphic designer and brand identity specialist at Pink Pony Creative. With a dazzling pink pantsuit and expert knowledge, there was no question that what she had to say would have a lasting impact on me and how I approach my work. Kristy wowed the crowd with a jam-packed presentation filled with all you need to know to create wow-worthy branding on your own and for clients. I definitely flashed back to my college days, rapidly scribbling notes and trying not to get lost in a sea of industry jargon.
As much as I want to tell you about everyone I discovered and everything I learned about, I’ll spare you and wrap up by telling you about Nubia Navarro of Nubikini. I sat in on her talk closer to the end of MAX, and what she had to say inspired me a little bit differently than the rest. She hails from a small town in Venezuela, and through broken English, she gave us insight into how to find your unique voice in design. Nubia described to her audience how important it is for creatives to channel themselves into their creative work: childhood, the colors that were seen, the words that were heard, the things that were felt. She opened up the conversation for us to think about how we can listen to what design is asking of us and what art is asking us to express. As a person who dabbles in many creative outlets but spends a lot of time creating for clients at work, what Nubia had to say resonated deeply with me. She made me feel understood, allowing me to feel more at peace with the integration of the intrinsic and extrinsic facets of design. I left the room a more liberated and inspired creator.
Shoutout to my employer, Grova Creative, for this incredible opportunity!