Creativity comes to life at the 2022 SXSW Film Festival

Image of film and reel from a movie set.

Image Source: Davizro Photography, Adobe Stock.

As we head into a dynamic showing of films, series, music videos and more at SXSW, we want to spotlight the creativity of filmmakers and creators who are participating in this year’s festival.

We continue to be inspired by the ingenuity of storytellers from around the world who come together each year in Austin, and we are thrilled to see that Creative Cloud continues to empower creators to bring their stories to life. From Everything Everywhere All at Once to Emergency to The Last Movie Stars and so many more, thank you to the filmmakers and editors who used Premiere Pro and, and to the title designers, poster designers, and motion graphic artists who were powered by After Effects, Photoshop and more.

Adobe is, once again, a proud sponsor of the SXSW Film Awards which includes the Adobe Editing Award and the Film Design Awards. We are excited to share our programming for this year’s festival, which will feature incredible filmmakers, designers, brand executives, tech experts and more as they dive into the topics they know best. Check out the details below and make sure to stop by if you’re attending the festival! (You'll need a conference pass in order to attend.)

How to Build an Inclusive Tech Culture

Date: Saturday, March 12

Time: 10-11am CT

Location: Hilton Austin Downtown: Salon K

About: How can you retain top talent, spark innovation, and develop trust in your team? Creating a work culture that celebrates diverse opinions and believes in inclusion — in which all team members can openly share their thoughts and ideas — isn’t always easy, but it should be our goal. Inclusion can also mean empowering your team with flexibility to work in the ways that best align with their lives. In this session you’ll hear from a panel of top tech leaders — all women who oversee large, global, diverse and remote teams — as they discuss their challenges and successes in building inclusive cultures, and how they make sure every team member has a voice.


Making it or Faking It? Protecting Creatives’ Work

Date: Saturday, March 12

Time: 11:30am-12:30pm CT

Location: Austin Mariott Downton: Waller

About: Can you trust what you see? With the velocity of inauthentic content increasing, digital provenance is needed more than ever. Powerful creation, editing and distribution techniques have become ubiquitous — but here is the rub: the same tools used to make and share legitimate content can also be used to create and spread fake images, video and other digital files — as well as subvert copyright and ownership in the emerging creator economy. For example, NFTs represent a huge opportunity for artists, but can also be an important way to protect creatives and collectors by verifying artwork authenticity.

We will discuss the threat of disinformation, ways creators can protect their work, and how consumers can verify content authenticity. Knowing content origins ensures transparency and trust.


Featured Session: Building a More Diverse Pipeline of Design Talent

Date: Sunday, March 13

Time: 10-11am CT

Location: JW Mariott: Salon 6-8

About: Design leadership has a responsibility to support and uplift the next generation of designers. With the enormous challenges that our society is facing right now, this responsibility becomes even more important — especially when it comes to creating opportunities for underrepresented groups to take part in our industry. Design must evolve and for that to happen, it is more crucial than ever for new, diverse voices to enter the industry and to flourish. Education is one of the key components to creating this change. In this session Khoi Vinh/Adobe will discuss what it means to grow, support and mentor aspiring designers to access the education they deserve, regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, age, economic or cultural background, and despite any challenges they are facing. He will be joined by a recent scholarship award winner from the Adobe Design Circle to share what they are working on and how their backgrounds play a part in their design creation.


The Art and Craft of a Captivating Title Sequence

Date: Monday, March 14

Time: 11:30am - 12:30pm CT

Location: Austin Convention Center: Room 17AB

About: The first thing audiences will often see when watching a film or TV series is the title treatment. Suspenseful or comedic, playful or solemn, this creative morsel sets the emotional and visual tone of what’s to come, and title designers have the vital task of ensuring this clip amplifies the mood and aesthetic of the series or film in its entirety. In this panel led by Adobe’s senior product manager of Motion Graphics & Visual Effects, Victoria Nece, and professional title designers including Michael Riley (Birds of Prey), Penelope Nederlander (The Harder They Fall), and Hazel Baird (The Morning Show) will unpack the world of title treatment design and explore the art and science behind this little celebrated, yet vitally important, piece of the filmmaking process.

The Power of Video Captions for Engagement

Date: Tuesday, March 15

Time: 10:00am - 11:00am CT

Location: JW Marriott, Room: Salon D

About: The explosion of video content on the internet has accelerated the need for text captions on videos, both from audiences with hearing impairments and the 83 percent of mobile users who prefer to watch without sound. Video creators are moving to make their content more accessible, building a world where every story can be heard and seen but the process of captioning can seem tedious and resource-intensive. In this panel, Meagan Keane, principal product marketing manager for Adobe Professional Film & Video, and Jen Millet, chief marketing officer with the Golden State Warriors, will unpack how creators can up their game with captions, and the creative and business benefits to making accessible content.

The Ethics of Deepfakes: Are They Always Bad?

Date: Wednesday, March 16

Time: 2:30-3:30pm CT

Location: Hilton Austin Downtown: Salon J

About: Synthetic media (also known as “deepfakes”) are often considered dangerous. Manipulated videos of celebrities or politicians making egregious statements has shown us just how powerful their virality can be, and the impact it can have on society when it pits truth against fiction. But context matters and whether such content is deemed “good” or “bad” ultimately depends on why it was made. Creative uses such as hyper-realistic AI-produced videos, and even visual effects in films, will be increasingly ubiquitous. Adobe’s director of content authenticity, Andy Parsons, and Henry Ajder, head of policy & partnerships at Metaphysic and lead at Synthetic Futures, a community shaping a positive future for synthetic media, will discuss how synthetic media can be simple and ethical for creators.