Historically, if you wanted to share a design with clients, you would export your design to your favorite format, e-mail the file to your clients, wait for feedback, compile comments, make adjustments, and start the process again. This cycle would continue until everyone was satisfied with the design, or at least until the deadline arrived. But that was then...
Now with file sharing in Adobe Creative Cloud, you can share files with clients (members and non-members of Creative Cloud) by allowing them to view the files in a browser (from a computer, tablet or even a smartphone). Viewers can turn layers on and off, view relevant metadata, comment, and even download files for editing.
That’s right. You no longer need to make sure that the people reviewing your work have Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, or InDesign — or even a Creative Cloud account. You don't have to export a single PSD or AI file to multiple files after showing and hiding layers to present different design ideas. Plus, you can capture all the activity related to your files, upload new versions of your work, maintain past versions, and post and review comments and feedback, all in one place: Creative Cloud.
In this article, I’ll provide an overview of Creative Cloud and demonstrate the workflow of sharing a Photoshop and an Illustrator file from within Creative Cloud.
Before you share files with your clients or other members on your team, you need to save your files to your Creative Cloud account. To share your files:
Video 1. Setting up file sharing and sending the link to the file
Once the recipients of your e-mail click the link, they can start interacting with the layers or artboards of your latest design or scrolling through the pages of your InDesign layout and tell you exactly what they think.
Even if your clients do not have the software you used to create your design or a Creative Cloud account, they can review your designs as long as they have a web browser and an Internet connection.
Video 2. The review workflow between the designer and the reviewer
In addition to commenting on your files, reviewers can also access information about your designs and do much more. Figure 1 shows the File Information panel. Reviewers can use this panel to see details about the file, such as its size, height, width, colors, and native application.
If you have sent an InDesign or Illustrator file for review, your clients can also see which typefaces you used (see Figure 2).
Multiple reviewers can add comments which refer to the whole file (see Figure 3).
To see first-hand how Photoshop file sharing with Creative Cloud works, check out the PSD file in Figure 6 that was created by HD Interactive for a cool new game. Simply click Figure 6 to see how file sharing in Creative Cloud works. You can hide and display different layers on the Layers panel to see different versions of the Photoshop design, add comments, and even download the file.
When you work with an Illustrator file that has multiple artboards, Creative Cloud generates multiple pages for your reviewers, enabling them to comment on each design separately. You can also see the typefaces that were used in the design. Click Figure 7 to experience this Illustrator file sharing via Creative Cloud. (File courtesy of Michaël Chaize.)
Note: Creative Cloud files are displayed by a web server and therefore may not have access to the custom or proprietary fonts you use in your design to display those fonts correctly. The File Information panel in Creative Cloud shows the names of the typefaces and enables you to select the names for more information about those fonts. To create a preview of the layout showing the correct typefaces, you can create a PDF version of the file and share that on Creative Cloud.
Navigate the pages of this InDesign file, the latest interview in Appliness digital magazine with Ryan Stewart, and note the layout of the pages as well as any typefaces that were used.
You can also scroll through the pages of this interview in PDF format to see how the proprietary typefaces appear properly.
Creative Cloud offers easy access to a design's color palette. If you are reviewing a file with a color scheme that is inspiring, or if you would like to use a color palette from a particular design across other projects, you can download a color swatch or tweak a color theme on the Kuler website to use it in other CC tools.
Video 3. Learn how to download or tweak color palettes for use in other CC tools.
Scripting in Creative Cloud products can save you a lot of time and make you much more productive. Michaël Chaize has written two excellent tutorials, Write your first script for Adobe Photoshop and Scripting for Illustrator, that show you how he developed scripts to export a PSD layer to a transparent PNG in Photoshop and create multiple artboards from a single page in Illustrator. In these tutorials, Michaël includes a video demonstration as well as links to download the scripts.
For additional information on scripting in Photoshop and Illustrator, check out these resources on the Adobe Developer Connection: