Thursday, June 20th, 2019 Posted by Jim Thacker

Adobe unveils Fresco

Adobe has unveiled Fresco, its new digital drawing and painting tool for iPad and similar devices.

The app, which is currently in closed beta, combines AI-driven natural media paint effects with vector brushes, making it possible to create a range of illustrations and concept art.

Blending AI-driven natural media effects with vector tools
First announced at Adobe MAX last year, alongside a new version of Photoshop CC for iPad, Fresco – then codenamed Project Gemini – combines Photoshop’s brush engine with new natural media functionality.

Its Live Brushes system draws on Sensei, Adobe’s machine learning system, to recreate the behaviour of real oil and watercolour paint.

Adobe describes the software as “replicat[ing the] organic interactions” between pigments and paper, mimicking the surface texture and blending and drying behaviours of physical paints.

In the demo, the functionality looks reminiscent of Corel Painter, with a dash of more specialist watercolor- and ink-mimicking tools like Expresii and Escape Motions’ Rebelle.

However, Fresco also includes vector design tools – or vector brushes, at least – which Adobe describes as creating “clean, crisp, and infinitely scaleable lines and shapes”.

The pre-release material doesn’t go into much more detail, but the video shows a simplified Photoshop-like interface, with support for layers, layer blending and masks.

Adobe has also confirmed that it will be possible to export files from Fresco in PDF, PSD and PNG format, for editing in other software.

That mix of natural media tools and more conventional design and image-editing functionality would put Fresco into a similar sector of the market to Procreate, Savage Interactive’s popular iPad painting app.

Pricing and system requirements
Adobe hasn’t announced pricing, system requirements or a commercial release date fror Fresco yet. The app will be initially released for iPad, then other “stylus and touch devices”.

The software is currently in closed beta: you can apply to test it here.

Read more about Fresco on Adobe’s blog

Visit the Adobe Fresco product website