Crop, Crop, Cropping on Heaven’s Door

Harness artificial intelligence to eliminate tedious image and video cropping workflows.

Beautiful, colorful sunset.

Image souce: Adobe Stock / timeless-prod.

by Maxwell Mabe

posted on 02-07-2020

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ou’re up and at the computer early for your new role, excited and ready to put your creative talents to work and propel the brand forward. But what’s this? A Post-it note: “Need you to edit these files.” Seems like an OK ask, until you realize “editing” means cropping images all day, every day for thousands of products for up to three months (or more). Life can be cruel.

It can be said with certainty that many organizations (regardless of size) continue to rely on outdated tools and modes of working simply because they aren’t aware of what can be realized with modern technology. However, solutions exist today to dramatically reduce or eliminate tedious tasks, freeing up time to put our energy and creativity to better use.

“If we only had more time.”

Artificial intelligence and machine learning have ushered in a workflow renaissance, giving us the tools to achieve synergies never possible before. At Adobe we intimately understand the complexities of creative workflows and the unique challenges of the go-to-market process. We kept this in mind when we designed Smart Crop. Smart Crop, powered by Adobe Sensei, gives you the ability to automate the creation of point-of-interest cropping for imagery and video at scale.

The Smart Crop workspace was custom built to handle large scale production needs, allowing you preview and adjust (if required) before publishing.

Other solutions require manual review and editing of hundreds of URLs to find the correct crop parameter. Our main goal was giving the creative, marketer, or IT pro the flexibility to meet any crop ratio and auto-crop large numbers of assets, paired with a production-ready workspace to view image crops and adjust before publishing.

Using Deep learning, we trained Smart Crop using the Adobe Stock library, ensuring a very high degree of accuracy when cropping. As assets are processed, Adobe Sensei locates the salient area of an image or video and assures this portion is positioned appropriately in the frame, regardless of aspect ratio or final size.

Fast setup, no PhD required

Configuring desired crop ratios is simple and, once completed, the processing of large numbers of assets only takes moments.

1. Define your ratios

With your desired aspect ratios in hand, set up your crops.

2. Pick a Smart Crop folder

Enable a folder to automatically process your crops.

3. Drop in your files

Once assets are added, it only takes a few moments for the crop magic to happen.

4. Get team together, toast to all the time you’ve just saved.

Flipping out over video

The importance and effectiveness of video cannot be overstated. However, video content can be expensive and, given its fixed size, limited in how it can be used. Pair this with the complex workflows required to bring quality video experiences to market and ROI begins to decline.

Smart Crop helps reap the maximum value and flexibility from video assets by providing unlimited aspect ratios that track to the point of interest, allowing video to be used vertically, horizontally, or even as a square.

Another taxing and complex element of video: mobile. For engaging experiences, we aren’t just looking for ways to ensure smooth playback, but also methods to showcase our products or services in the best way possible.

Video is typically captured in landscape orientation, but, when consumed on mobile devices, most view by holding their phone vertically. This means video is viewed at a much smaller size than intended. When you combine Smart Crop with our intelligent viewer, video uses the full screen, regardless of device orientation, and tracks to the point of interest.

Try out the Flip: Scan the QR with your phone camera, adjust your phone from landscape to portrait to see our intelligent player handle the switch.

Cruelty-free cropping, today

Adobe is using AI and machine learning to re-envision rich media workflows, giving companies the ability to easily meet content demands and focus time and attention on more meaningful work.

Whether you’re in IT, creative, or marketing, Smart Crop offers features to upgrade your workflow and technology needs:

Learn more about the features and abilities of Adobe Experience Manager Assets, and get more details and “kick the tires” with hands-on demos with Dynamic Media.

Topics: Digital Transformation, Content Management

Products: Experience Manager