What is Adobe Creative Cloud? In this post we will be explaining what it is, what it’s used for, and breaking down what is included in Adobe Creative Cloud. Adobe creative cloud pricing can get a bit confusing, so we’ll walk you through the different packages available. There is a lot to cover within the Creative Cloud, so let’s get started.

Adobe Creative Cloud, what is it?

Let’s explore the Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe has become one of the most trusted names in software for filmmakers and other creative professions such as photographers, artists, and graphic designers. The Adobe Creative Cloud, also referred to in shorthand as Adobe CC, is the most comprehensive software offering from the company to date, but what exactly is it?

ADOBE CLOUD SUITE DEFINITION

What is Adobe Creative Cloud?

The Adobe Creative Cloud, also known as Adobe CC or the Adobe Cloud, is a comprehensive collection of Adobe desktop software and mobile applications under one umbrella. Adobe CC is acquired and maintained through a monthly subscription service. There are more than 20 different fully-realized programs included with an Adobe CC subscription.

The Adobe Cloud Suite also includes a few goodies that aren’t fully-fledged software applications. Also included are the Adobe Font Library, an allotment of cloud storage space, the Adobe Portfolio Program, collaboration tools, and a membership for Behance.net

What is Adobe CC?

Preview the programs

Before we break down all of the applications individually, let’s start with a quick overview. We’ll be breaking down a total of 24 programs. So, what is included in Adobe Creative Cloud?

  • Premiere Pro
  • Premiere Rush
  • After Effects
  • Photoshop
  • Acrobat DC
  • Bridge
  • Lightroom
  • Lightroom Classic
  • Audition
  • Media Encoder
  • Mixamo
  • Camera Raw
  • SpeedGrade
  • Flash Builder Premium
  • Illustrator
  • InDesign
  • InCopy
  • XD
  • Dimension
  • Aero
  • Dreamweaver
  • Animate
  • Character Animator
  • Prelude

Now, let’s dig in deeper.

Adobe Creative Cloud apps

Let’s break down each application

There are a lot of different programs included in the Adobe Cloud and it can be a lot to parse through. You will certainly find yourself using certain programs far more than others as a filmmaking. As we’re breaking down each application, we’ll cover how useful each digital toolbox is likely to be from a filmmaker’s perspective.

For a brief overview of the Adobe CC as a whole, refer to the video below.

What is Adobe CC according to Adobe itself

So, what is the Adobe Creative Cloud used for?

Premiere Pro

Premiere Pro is a nonlinear edited program for everything from YouTube videos to feature films. In fact, Premiere Pro has found increasing use on mainstream Hollywood films in recent years and is trending towards becoming the new industry standard editing program, though Avid Media Composer still has a strong foothold for that title as well.

A beginner’s guide to Premiere Pro

Premiere Rush

Premiere Rush is a scaled down version of Premiere Pro designed specifically for on-the-go editing on a smartphone or tablet. Professional filmmakers won’t find much use for Premiere Rush when Premiere Pro is at their disposal, but if you are focused on simple internet videos only, then Premiere Rush can help you reach fast turn-around times with a low barrier to entry.

If editing on the go interests you, we put together a list of the best video editing mobile apps on the market.

After Effects

After Effects is another extremely useful program for filmmakers. After Effects is the application that you will use to handle all VFX work and any complicated digital effects.

The learning curve for After Effects is steep, but simple VFX are far more approachable with the use of After Effects than they would be otherwise. 

What is Adobe Cloud?  •  A beginner tutorial for After Effects

If you are looking to get started in After Effects, we have a dozen free After Effects templates for you to check out.

Photoshop

Photoshop is an essential program for photographers but also finds a great deal of use from digital artists and moderate use from filmmakers. This program can be a great tool for designing a film’s poster or other promotional materials and press stills. Photoshop can also be used to design art department elements to be fabricated and placed within the scene.

One of the most important Adobe Creative Cloud apps: Photoshop

Acrobat DC

Acrobat DC is used for all of your PDF needs. Acrobat is essentially a document viewer that allows for enhanced interactivity with different photo and document types, especially PDFs. Useful to filmmakers for viewing and making notes or edits on a screenplay in PDF format.

Intro to Adobe Acrobat  •  Adobe Cloud

Bridge

Bridge is an asset management program for centralizing files. The Adobe Bridge works in conjunction with other Adobe programs and allows for the easy transfer of files between different applications.

Adobe CC  •  Intro to Adobe Bridge

The Bridge can also be used to publish stock footage, to edit metadata, or to add keywords or other data to video files, making them easier to locate and organize when it comes time to edit.

Lightroom and Lightroom Classic

Lightroom and Lightroom Classic are both used for photo editing. The main difference between them is that Lightroom saves files to the cloud while Lightroom Classic saves files to your hard drive.

Lightroom beginner tutorial

Lightroom is not built for the extensive photo manipulation that can be done in Photoshop. Instead, it is intended for more natural edits by adjusting the values of the inherent properties captured in an image.

Audition

Audition is an extensive audio editing program. It is another extremely useful program for independent filmmakers but does not find as extensive use in professional film editing as its video counterpoint: Premiere.

Getting started in Adobe Audition

Avid Pro Tools retains a firm grip over the professional audio editing market, but Audition is a viable budget-friendly alternative that will be able to get the job done on most small to mid-scale projects.

For more information and sound editing and how it differs from sound mixing, be sure to read our guide.

Media Encoder

Media Encoder is more of a tool than a full program. It is used to encode video files in a large variety of different formats.

The basics of Media Encoder

Media Encoder is extremely useful for transcoding footage and for both ingesting and outputting to and from specific file types that other software programs may fail to read or process.

Mixamo

Mixamo is used in the creation, rigging, and animation of animated characters. This is a specialized animation software that won’t be of any use to you as a filmmaker unless you are working in 3D animation.

How to use Mixamo

Camera Raw

Camera Raw is a tool that allows the import and editing of raw photographs. This is a must-have for professional photographers, but of considerably less use to filmmakers aside from use of photography as it relates to film production.

SpeedGrade

SpeedGrade is used for color grading digital video projects. Color grading is an extremely important step in a filmmaker’s editing process, and SpeedGrade offers in-depth tools and layer-based grading for crafting and fine-tuning a project’s color grading. 

SpeedGrade tutorial

Color can also be done in Adobe Premiere and in Adobe After Effects, but not with the same tools or level of control as in SpeedGrade. Learn more about color grading and the difference between color correction and color grading.

Flash Builder Premium

Flash Builder Premium is used in the building of games in the Action Script language. It likely will not be of use to a filmmaker.

Illustrator

Illustrator is the industry standard program for vector-graphics based artwork. This program may prove helpful in designing custom logos, packaging, and other design elements to appear on screen as production design elements but will be of far more use to graphic designers than filmmakers.

Adobe Illustrator for beginners

InDesign

InDesign is the industry standard layout and page design software. InDesign finds extensive use in the publishing industry, both for print and online, but will not be of much use to a filmmaker.

InDesign beginner’s tutorial

InCopy

InCopy is Adobe’s proprietary word processor. The program can be used on its own or integrated directly into InDesign for publishing purposes. InCopy will not be of much use to a filmmaker.

The InCopy workflow

It is not a screenwriting program, and there are plenty of other word processors for your other writing needs outside of InDesign.

XD

XD is a development program used for designing user experiences and interfaces for web and mobile. This program could be used to design a a custom user experience for the characters of a film to interact with but will otherwise not be of much use to a filmmaker.

What is Adobe XD?

Dimension

Dimension is primarily used for 3D brand visualizations. It can be used for product markups and packaging design previews. Dimension could be useful for a production designer on a film with a high level of custom props and set pieces but will otherwise not be of much use in filmmaking.

Intro to Dimension

Aero

Aero is used to design augmented reality experiences. The program is fully launched for iOS smartphones, and the desktop versions for Windows and Mac are in public beta. This is one of the latest developments for Adobe and invites a high level of experimentation with an intuitive user experience that does not require any coding knowledge.

An introduction to Adobe Aero

Aero could be incorporated into filmmaking in creative ways but was not built for filmmakers specifically and does meet any traditional filmmaking needs, but it could be worth playing around with on screen.

Dreamweaver

Dreamweaver is used for website design and development. It could be used to design a website for the film, or to create a custom website for characters to visit within the film, but is otherwise not applicable to filmmaking.

Dreamweaver beginner tutorial

Animate

Animate is used, as you might guess, for animation. Adobe Animate is focused specifically on vector-based animation. 2D animation, including Flash animation, is the focus of Animate.

Filmmakers working in animation will find Animate useful, especially if their focus is on short form work with web-distribution.

Character Animator

Character Animator is used for real-time animation using facial and motion tracking. Pre-made characters are available for experimentation and facial tracking is done 100% digitally at high enough speeds to even allow for livestream animation.

The program is geared toward simplicity, speed, and ease of use, meaning it isn’t ideal for complex, professional animations, but it can get the job done if you only need a quick and simple animation.

Prelude

Prelude can be accessed independently but is also integrated into Premiere Pro to assist in ingesting and logging footage. Prelude’s primary function is to speed up and clean up your post-production workflow.

Organize footage with Prelude

what is adobe creative cloud

Adobe Creative Cloud pricing

If the Adobe Creative Cloud sounds like a good option to you, the next thing you will likely want to know is how much it costs. There are actually a couple of different answers to that question depending on your specific circumstances. The Adobe Creative Cloud is a subscription service that is charged on a monthly basis. The price per month depends on who you are.

There are pros and cons to paying for software on a monthly subscription basis. Flux breaks down the benefits and drawbacks and discusses alternatives.

The Pros and Cons of an Adobe Subscription

An individual can expect to pay $52.99 per month for the full Creative Cloud suite. For a business, the price rises to $79.99 per month, giving access to each program for multiple team members. 

If you are a teacher or a student, you can secure yourself a massive discount and pay just $19.99 per month. Schools can also purchase overall CC packages for their faculty and/or staff. School-wide pricing varies based on department, classroom size, whether equipment is shared or assigned to individuals, and the overall size of the school. School pricing can be billed monthly or yearly.

It is requested that school’s interested in purchasing the Adobe CC schedule a consultation with an Adobe representative for more information.

UP NEXT

The Best Filmmaking tools and Software

Not every application in the Adobe Creative Cloud will be applicable to your work as a filmmaker but plenty of them will be. To compare the plan to other software options, be sure to take a look at our guide of the best filmmaking tools and software options at your disposal.

Up Next: Filmmaking software →
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