The Continued Evolution of Adobe Fresco

We know where we’re headed… we just need the time to get there.

A woman playing guitar in the blue light of a campfire at dusk serenades animals from the surrounding woods.

Art by Avalon Hu.

by Sue Garibaldi

posted on 05-19-2020

When Adobe Fresco was released to the world last September, the team had a path, and a plan — to give artists, illustrators, and designers the tools they need to create professional work that could be easily exported as final files. Or quickly polished in Adobe Photoshop.

Version 1.6 is the most feature-filled release we’ve had, and a giant step forward on that path.

A colorful addition to color selection

Need to select a color? Eyedrop it. Need to select multiple colors? Multicolor eyedrop it. Fresco’s eyedropper adaptation enables the simultaneous sampling of multiple colors (you can sort of see how we came up with the name). From the sampling, a swatch drops into the color history (recents), and that swatch can be used with Fresco’s Live brushes and (most) Pixel brushes. A single swipe of a brush. Multiple colors. A stroke of genius. (We’ve even included some swatches to help get you going.)

Art by Kyle T. Webster.

Things are shaping up

Anyone who used Adobe Draw has been missing them; anyone who hasn’t used Draw doesn’t know their possibilities. We’re talking about Capture Shapes. (Not familiar with their magic? Take 52 seconds to watch this.) They’re in Fresco now. Still vector (but now, raster too). Still bounded only by creativity. And still accessible from the Shapes tool. Oh, and basic shapes (circle, square, polygons)? Fresco has those now too.

Art by Kyle T. Webster.

If only cleanup was always so easy

First of what will eventually be a set of trim tools in Fresco, Vector Trim makes it easy to cut or completely remove vector strokes that cross or connect or intersect. Trimming is as simple as a single swipe. Erasing a stroke entirely, just three simple swipes. So draw vector art with abandon because cleanup is, well… a whole lot easier now.

Art by Kyle T. Webster.

A new brush set

We’ve added Mixer brushes to Fresco’s default brush set. Twelve of them. Which, we think, is enough of a reason to celebrate. But supporting them also means that Photoshop’s Mixer brushes will work in Fresco too. Ever try to upload Photoshop’s Mixer brushes only to be disappointed that they never showed in the brushes menu? Take another look. Then paint. And watch the colors pick up, mix, and combine like paint on canvas.

Art by Elissa Welsh.

A new name, an even better tool

First, Fresco had a straight edge. And with it came the ability to paint perfectly straight, parallel, intersecting, perpendicular, or diagonal lines. Now that straight edge is more — it pins to the canvas (zoom in, zoom out, it stays) and drawing against it displays the pixel-length of a stroke as it’s made — and we’ll be calling it a ruler now.

Art by Jessica Wong.

Two states are better than one

A secondary state for the Touch Shortcut may not seem a big deal but our end game sure is — it means we have “space” for features that would never have fit into its single state. Right now, it’s how to access Vector Trim, but there’s so much more on the way. To activate the Touch Shortcut’s secondary state, tap hold and drag the center to its outer edge. To lock it in a secondary state double-tap it and once it’s locked, tap it again. To release the lock, double-tap.

But, wait, there’s more…

Fresco has persistence settings: share a device? No problem, app and brush settings will still be there when you sign back in. There’s also better blending with Live Oil brushes, a new Live Watercolor brush, and a Velocity Taper brush that responds to the speed of a stroke. We’ve also added new keyboard shortcuts (check those in App Settings > Help > Keyboard Shortcuts), support for more Windows devices (check those here), fixed some bugs, and improved performance.

It’s a lot, we get that

But like we said from the start, the Fresco team has an agenda — to make Fresco the best drawing and painting app around. But don’t take our word for it. If you’re already using Fresco, update. If you’re not, install it. We think you’ll agree with us that it’s pretty darn great.

Want to see what people are drawing in Fresco? Take a look at the Fresco Gallery and Fresco Streaming Gallery on Behance

Want to follow along on social? Catch Adobe Drawing on Instagram or Twitter

Have a feature suggestion? Post it on UserVoice

Want to learn something new? Do that at Adobe Fresco Learn and Support

Topics: Illustration, Art

Products: Photoshop, Creative Cloud