Tuesday, November 5th, 2019 Posted by Jim Thacker

Adobe ships Photoshop 21.0

Adobe has released Photoshop 21.0, the latest update to the desktop version of the image-editing software, adding a new AI-driven object selection tool and improvements to Content-Aware Fill and image warping.

The update also adds a new cloud documents system, intended to streamline the process of exchanging documents with tools like Photoshop for iPad, Adobe’s new mobile edition of Photoshop.

Both releases were announced at Adobe MAX 2019, along with After Effects 17.0, Character Animator 3.0, Dimension 3.0 and Premiere Pro 14.0.

New AI-driven object selection tool and improvements to Content-Aware Fill
New features in Photoshop 21.0 include a new AI-driven Object Selection tool, intended to speed up the process of isolating foreground objects from photographic images.

Users marquee- or lasso-select the object, after which Photoshop refines the selection automatically, based on the source images with which the algorithm has been trained.

The update also extends another AI-driven feature within Photoshop, Content-Aware Fill, used to remove unwanted objects from images semi-automatically.

We covered the changes, which make it easier to control which parts of the background Photoshop samples to create the fill, when Adobe previewed them last month, so check out our original story for details.

More customisable image warping and new object transform workflow
The update also revamps Photoshop’s Warp tool, making it possible to create custom control grids to warp an image, or add your own gridlines and anchor points for more precise control.

You can see the new workflows in the video above.

Adobe has also changed the default behaviour for transform operations from free transformation to proportional scaling, although you can toggle between the two at will.

The last behaviour used is saved when exiting the software and will be resumed after restarting.

Workflow improvements for organising presets and painting
UI and workflow improvements include making new document and layer properties and new quick actions available from the Properties panel. You can find a full list via the links below.

The presets system has also been reorganised, with dedicated panels for gradients, patterns and shapes. Users can drag presets directly from the presets panels to the canvas to see a live preview.

The update also adds functionality similar to that of add-ons like MagicSquire, including the option to group presets, and to reorder them by dragging and dropping.

There are also a number of smaller changes, which you can find via the link below: one that stood out to us is a new keyboard shortcut to toggle between painting and erasing with the same brush.

Other changes: use adjustments on 32-bit HDRs, better Smart Objects and text handling
For artists working with HDR images, Photoshop also now supports Curves and Brightness/Contrast adjustments in 32-bit documents, as direct adjustments, adjustment layers and smart filters.

Other changes include a one-click option to convert Smart Objects back to their component layers, and the option to save variations of a Layer Comp directly within a Smart Object.

Photoshop also now supports stylistic sets for OpenType fonts, making it possible to access alternate glyphs directly from the Properties panel.

A new World-Ready Layout option provides correct word shaping for Indic, Middle Eastern, and South East Asian scripts in documents.

Pricing and system requirements
Photoshop 21.0 – also referred to in the online documentation as the November 2019 update – is available for Windows 7+ and Mac OS X 10.13+ on a rental-only basis.

Photography subscription plans, which include access to Photoshop and Lightroom, start at $119.88/year. Single-app Photoshop subscriptions start at $31.49/month.

Read a full list of new features in Photoshop 21.0 in the online documentation