Photoshop CC 2015: Ten new features for artists, designers and photographers

Find out what you're going to get in Photoshop CC 2015 from today's update


Any update to the world's most popular professional imaging application is always certain to generate interest, so we've put together a hit list of the best new features in Photoshop CC 2015, which Adobe has released today.

You may have already caught seen a sneak peek of the Artboards feature in Photoshop CC, but some tools and tweaks you'll see here will be totally fresh, such as Photoshop Design Space, a sleek new work environment focused on the needs of mobile app and web site designers. 

Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Photoshop benefits throughout from CreativeSync, a new underlying technology working across the tools and applications in the 2015 release of Creative Cloud, highlights of which can be found here..

CreativeSync intelligently syncs creative assets such as files, photos, fonts, vector graphics, brushes, colours, settings, and metadata, making them instantly available, in the right format, across desktop, web and mobile apps.

Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock, a curated collection of over 40 million images, illustrations and designs is Adobe's entry into the $3 billion global stock image market.

Deeply integrated into the latest release of Photoshop CC, it enables you to buy single images, as you need them, or purchase a monthly plan. See more about Adobe Stock pricing in our full story today. 

There are two ways to search Adobe Stock in Photoshop CC 2015: from the File menu, or from the Libraries Panel. Each method brings up a streamlined interface to search the Adobe Stock site for licenced images which can be used in comps and projects.


Within Adobe Stock, matching images are presented in a grid view, from which they can be selected for preview.

Information about the format, resolution, creator and any related keywords are listed in the preview, along with a enlarged image.

Selecting an image allows it to be used for placement only (FPO) in your comps, as a low-resolution proxy image bearing a watermark.

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Once selected, the watermarked images are downloaded and automatically added to Creative Cloud Libraries in the application.

By default all FPO assets will download as a smart object and will be clipped into the working layout automatically.

These downloaded assets will also appear in any of your other applications that support Creative Cloud Libraries panels and so will be available to all compatible applications. Any changes to such linked assets can be rippled throughout the applications.

if you want to then purchase the image, it's just a case of right-clicking the asset. Your licensed image total will be reduced by one and a high-resolution image will replace the watermarked proxy in your comp.

Creative Cloud’s CreativeSync technology means that all edits made on a watermarked image are automatically applied to the newly licensed image


Artboards

Similar to Illustrator, you can now create multiple Artboards in Photoshop to help you create the same design for different destinations and devices.

Available via the Move tool, you can design multiple artboards from a template at once.

It's also easy to copy and share content between artboards, and quickly export each artboard or all of your artboards at once.

There are also newly expanded export options in Photoshop CC 2105.


You can make each artboard a different size and easily lay out your artboards in Photoshop in a single document.

You can also see all of your artboards in a single view, so you get a bird’s-eye view of your designs at once.

Art Boards are stacked as a new layer type in the Layers panel.  

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Edit Linked Assets in CC Libraries

Assets in Creative Cloud Libraries can now be linked so that when a change is made to an asset, you and your team members have the option of updating it across any Photoshop, Illustrator or InDesign projects wherever it is used.


Device Preview

You can now get precise and in-context previews of your mobile app and mobile web designs on an actual iOS device in real time using Adobe Preview CC, a native iOS companion app. Only iPhone and iPad are currently supported.

Clicking on the Device Preview button in Photoshop CC 2015, will launch the new Device Preview app which will find any compatible devices connected to your computer over USB or within WiFi range. 

It will then build previews of your working design comp for any of these connected devices.

Thereafter any changes you make will be automatically rolled out and displayed on the device previews, giving you realtime feedback as you bulld apps and designs in Photoshop. 


Add grain to Blur effects

To make blur effects more natural, a set of noise parameters has been added to all of the effects in the Blur gallery.

This will enable users to match the area affected by the blur with the grain of the original image.

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Move - Transform on Drop 

Photoshop's Content-Aware workflow gets another boost with a new Move tool called Transform on Drop.

Transform handles now appear when you select and move an object in the scene with the Content-Aware Move Tool. These  allow you to rotate, scale, flip or skew the item.

Once you've applied your transformation, Photoshop will place the new object, remove the old object and fill in the result with content-aware blending.


Real time Healing Brush

The Healing Brush, Spot Healing Brush and Patch tools have been turbocharged with Mercury Graphics Engine enhancements.

This allows you to see your Healing Brush results in real time, and get Spot Healing Brush and Patch Tool results that are up to 120 times faster than they were in CS6, according to Adobe.


Dehaze

A new slider for removing haze is now added to Camera Raw, allowing you to remove the haze in images.

It should go without saying that this is one feature in the new release which will be particularly useful to landscape photographers.

The Dehaze slider can also be used to add haze to images, for artistic effect.

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Panoramic Content Aware Fill

Working with panoramas inside Photoshop gets a lot easier with a new content aware fix for image edges that don't quite meet.

This takes the form of an automatic transparent edge fill, which automatically fills in the transparent areas of the merged panorama by recreating the original pixels of the component image.

The feature also keeps the aspect ratio of the original image.


Design Space

Photoshop now includes a preview of a new technology called Photoshop Design Space (Preview).

This offers a designated interface/mode with new interactions and design-focused features that reduce clicks, mouse movements and clutter for designers working on mobile apps and websites.

Artboards, text and vector shapes are part of the default workflow in Design Space, while maths operations are used in any numeric field to quickly describe positions, lengths and sizes.


Design Space is fully compatible with standard Photoshop and PSD files.

An improved Select Tool simplifies targeting and editing in Design Space. You just double-click to drill down into any group or layer, and hit Escape to get back out.

You can easily swap the contents and positions of any layer with a single click.

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Photoshop also includes a new updated and enhanced ability to extract your assets, and a modernised Save for Web export. There are also numerous smaller enhancements, such as the fact that image adjustments can now be applied directly to smart object layers in Photoshop CC 2015,

Creative Cloud subscribers and those on Adobe's various photography plans will be able to update the application from today.