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  1. Yesterday
  2. Facebook's VP of product management was able to discuss more specifics about how the breach itself occurred. View the full article
  3. If you've ever felt there was something missing from your Photoshop workflow, and that something was the ability to use the full software on the go, without switching between different apps, you're in luck. At its annual conference, Adobe MAX 2018, Adobe has announced it's expanding Photoshop CC, across all devices, starting with the iPad. This will enable users to open and edit PSD files on an iPad, using the same tools they are used to on desktop. Sign up to Adobe Creative Cloud Will it be the 'real Photoshop'? You'll be able to work with Layers, just like you can on the desktop version Project Rocket – or Photoshop for iPad came about when two Photoshop engineers decided to try to run Photoshop on iPad using Photoshop code. That got the design team thinking about how this product might look, and a few months later, they were ready for launch. Because Photoshop for iPad uses the same code as the desktop version, there won't be any compromises in terms of performance or results. The core tools will all be there, and you'll be able to add filters, work with layers and make selections and adjustments, and much more. This will be a marked improvement in the current offering for iPad users, as they will no longer have to switch between different apps such as Photoshop Mix and Photoshop Fix to perform different functions. This new Photoshop won't be exactly the same as the desktop version, however, as it will have a "reimagined user experience" that is optimised for touch devices, making the most of the iPad's Pencil, touch gestures and mobility. A seamless experience Photoshop for iPad will see the user interface redesigned for the device Not only will you be able to work on PSD files on the iPad, but your files will also sync across devices, via the new Cloud documents. This will mean you can begin working on your desktop, make some changes on your iPad, and then go back to desktop, without having to faff around with importing or exporting files. Photoshop for iPad will be available on its own, or as a partner to Photoshop on the desktop. Initially, a smaller set of features will be released in version 1.0, with more added over time. At the moment, we don't know when Photoshop for iPad will be shipping, or how much it will cost, but keep checking back here for more news. Read more: How to manage colours in Photoshop 60 top-class Photoshop tutorials to try The 38 best Photoshop plugins View the full article
  4. Picking up a pencil or paintbrush is one of the first ways most people discover the power of creative expression. Drawing and painting are fundamental ways of communicating creatively, and now they've been brought to the iPad with Adobe's next-generation digital art app, Project Gemini. Announced at Adobe's annual conference, Adobe MAX 2018, Project Gemini is a dedicated painting and drawing app that makes full use of Photoshop's powerful painting engine. Revealed by Kyle T. Webster and Eric Snowden, the iPad app pairs pen and touch hardware with professional tools and a streamlined, easy-to-use interface. Sign up to Adobe Creative Cloud Rethinking the mobile art experience Images created in Project Gemini will sync with Photoshop on desktop Project Gemini has been created with Adobe's users and community in mind. Having heard that they've been asking for professional-level features on mobile, Adobe went back to the drawing board and completely rethought how its tools can be used on the go. The result is a set of intuitive features that hope to recapture that simple, natural feeling of working with analogue drawing tools. New painting and illustration capabilities, such as new types of paint and painting interactions, open up previously impossible digital art opportunities. This includes the ability to mix digital watercolour washes just like the real thing, as well as exclusive brushes and a multiscreen mode. To ensure that they're up to scratch, these tools have been rigorously tested by a selection of skilled artists. On top of that, Project Gemini is also able to sync with Photoshop on the desktop. This means that art you make in the field can be developed seamlessly when you're back in the studio, without the headache of transferring files. Photoshop brushes will be available across desktop and tablet devices Project Gemini is currently only available on iOS, although the team behind the app are expected to add new platforms in the future. Read more: How to draw: the best drawing tutorials Sneak peek: Supercharged Photoshop tool The 10 commandments of Photoshop etiquette View the full article
  5. Today marks the start of Adobe Max 2018 – and it's already going off with a bang. As you'd expect, part of the company's annual creative conference includes details of updates it's made to its Creative Cloud service. And, we have to say, Adobe has pulled some seriously exciting – not to mention, impressive – new tools and apps out of the bag. The best laptop for graphic design in 2018 Adobe favourites Photoshop, Illustrator, XD and Lightroom have all had 'under the hood' work, with new features to help streamline creative workflows. But the big news has to be three new apps Adobe will soon be welcoming to the Creative Cloud family; Project Rush, an all-new video editing app, Project Rocket, aka Photoshop on iPad, and Project Gemini, a powerful new digital art app. “Today, we unveiled a portfolio of next-generation creative apps that deliver meaningful value to our community by transforming creative workflows across devices and platforms,” said Scott Belsky, chief product officer and executive vice president, Creative Cloud at Adobe. “By continuing to innovate in our flagship apps, extending into exploding segments like experience design and social video content creation, and pioneering in emerging mediums like touch, voice, 3D and augmented reality, Adobe Creative Cloud has truly become the creativity platform for all.” Excited? So are we. Let's take a closer look at exactly what Adobe has been up to... Project Rush Project Rush was no real secret, as Adobe’s all-new video editing app has been in the pipeline for a while. But now it's well and truly ready to roll. From the demos we've seen so far, this app is highly intuitive, by which we mean you don't need to be a video, colour or audio expert to create a really professional-looking video with it. Rush harnesses the power of its older siblings, Premiere Pro and After Effects, and gives users access to professionally designed motion graphics templates in Adobe Stock to get started quickly. Powered by Sensei, Adobe's new AI technology, Rush has a one-click auto-duck feature to adjust music and normalise sound. It also allows access anywhere, enabling users to create compelling video projects – optimised for social distribution – on one device and publish from another, with a consistent user experience across desktop and mobile. The downside to Rush is that you're out of luck if you're an Android user, with the all-new Premiere Rush CC only available on Windows, macOS and iOS. Adobe states Google Play store availability is coming in 2019, but when exactly that might be is anyone's guess. Project Rocket Is this the one we've all been waiting for? Adobe MAX 2018 sees the unveiling of Project Rocket, also known as Photoshop CC on the iPad. We've yet to see it fully in action, but Adobe claims the tablet version delivers all the power and precision of its desktop counterpart. Photoshop CC on iPad will let users open and edit native PSD files using Photoshop’s industry-standard image-editing tools and will feature the familiar Photoshop layers panel. Exciting stuff, which we can't wait to see. Although, we'll all have to wait a while, with Adobe so far saying nothing more than it will be available in 2019. Project Gemini A new app designed to accelerate drawing and painting workflows across devices, Project Gemini is coming first to iPad in 2019, and combines raster, vector and new dynamic brushes into a single app experience built for drawing. Project Gemini enables artists to use and sync their favourite Photoshop brushes and works seamlessly with Photoshop CC. Adobe Sensei Adobe Sensei is the company's new AI technology built into the Adobe Cloud platform, and it aims to dramatically improve the design and delivery of digital experiences. The 2019 release of Creative Cloud delivers over a dozen new Adobe Sensei-powered features and productivity enhancements – building on the many existing Sensei-powered features already available to Adobe Creative Cloud, Document Cloud and Experience Cloud customers. Sensei-powered features in the 2019 release include: An expanded Content-Aware Fill workspace in Photoshop CC that offers greater precision and control to save editors valuable time when working with their images. A new Content-Aware Fit feature in InDesign CC that intelligently detects an image and crops or fits it to an image frame automatically. New Freeform Gradients in Illustrator CC that enable the creation of natural gradients. A new tool in Character Animator CC, Characterizer, which transforms any style of portrait into a vivid, animated character. Project Aero Adobe also previewed Project Aero, a new cross-device AR authoring tool that enables creators to design augmented reality experiences. Project Aero is the first AR app built for designers and artists and was first sneaked on-stage at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference earlier this year. Project Aero enables optimal delivery of AR experiences, empowering creatives to place digital content in the real world. At Adobe MAX, Adobe showcased an AR-powered retail store of the future revealing the exciting possibilities of immersive design experiences. Adobe XD The all-in-one UX/UI solution for designing websites and mobile apps, Adobe XD, now features new capabilities leveraging recently acquired Sayspring technology to empower designers to prototype experiences and apps for voice-powered devices like Amazon Echo. New voice capabilities, including voice triggers and speech playback, enable designers to create powerful experience with screen and voice prototyping now in one application. In addition, developers can now leverage Adobe XD APIs to build plugins and app integrations that add new features, automate workflows and connect XD to the tools and services designers use every day. Adobe favourites Alongside these new additions, Adobe also introduced major updates to its desktop applications, including: a new Content-Aware Fill workspace in Photoshop CC. performance and workflow improvements across Lightroom CC and Lightroon Classic. the ability to design with photorealistic, freeform gradients in Illustrator. a powerful Content-Aware Fit in InDesign CC. the power to instantly create and animate unique stylised puppets using a webcam and reference artwork with Character Animator's new Characterizer. a new rendering engine for improved render preview in performance in Dimension CC. a new Sensei-powered search features and exclusive content in Adobe Stock, including a new library from GoPro. In addition, Adobe announced it is addressing the needs of the video animation industry with new workflows and integrations across its apps. Pricing and availability Updates to Creative Cloud desktop software are now available to all Creative Cloud subscribers, including membership plans for individuals, students, teams, educational institutions, government agencies and enterprises. Adobe’s mobile apps are available for download from the iOS App Store and Google Play. Photoshop CC on iPad, Project Aero and Project Gemini on iPad will be available in 2019. Spark Post on Android, previously available as a public beta, is now available as a 1.0 app in the Google Play store. The all-new Premiere Rush CC, available now on Windows and macOS and via the iOS App Store (Google Play store availability coming in 2019), is offered across a series of plans tailored for customers’ unique needs. View the full article
  6. Adobe XD has become the first and only UX/UI platform to enable designers to create prototypes for voice-activated devices. Users can now move seamlessly between voice and screen prototyping thanks to the addition of new voice trigger and speech playback capabilities. Find all the CC features updates on our Adobe MAX news hub XD (which stands for experience design) is the part of Adobe's Creative Cloud that provides users with an intuitive way to create product prototypes (sign up to Adobe CC here). Voice experiences are becoming more and more popular (the number of smart speaker users in the US is expected to reach 90 million this year), but until now, they have been excluded from the main prototyping tools. XD offers a way for designers to start creating hi-fidelity prototypes for digital experiences that extend beyond the screen, without having to grapple with the complexities of each platform. That might be adding voice commands to a mobile app design, introducing speech playback to an in-car navigation system, or making the most of the capabilities of Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. Adobe XD users will be able to add voice-triggered responses Voice triggers work in a similar way to taps or clicks in XD prototypes; launching a particular interaction when the user says a specific word or phrase. Speech playback gives designers access to a powerful text-to-speech engine, which will enable them to design for platforms such as voice assistants and smart speakers. Along with these new capabilities, Adobe XD has added a UI kit for Amazon Alexa’s new frontend framework: the Alexa Presentation Language (APL). This comprehensive kit contains all of the styles, fonts, colours and components required to design for Amazon Alexa. Other updates to Adobe XD A number of other exciting XD updates have been announced at Adobe MAX. The first is the addition of third-party plugins, which enable developers to extend the platform in new and exciting ways. As well as giving the community a chance to build their own features to customise XD, Adobe has also been working on integrations with other established apps. Users can already move seamlessly from Photoshop CC or Sketch into XD, but integrations with popular productivity and collaboration apps including Slack and JIRA promise to make the app even more usable. Users can access the first wave of plugins from directly within the XD app, with more on the way. Another interesting announcement is the introduction of Auto-Animate, which will provide a simple way for designers to create immersive animated transitions between artboards. It promises to be simple to use, but have a big impact on the user experience. At the moment, playback of animations is supported in the preview window and mobile apps only – but Adobe says support for prototypes viewed in the browser is on its way. Read more: Adobe launches free XD Starter plan How to prototype a mobile app with Adobe XD How to choose the right prototyping tool View the full article
  7. You're reading How to Import HTML Email Template from Postcards to Salesforce, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! In this video, I will show you how to import a custom email created in Postcards directly to Salesforce. First, open the email template in the Postcards app and insert all the required tags by Salesforce. View the full article
  8. If you think about it, we’ve been making infographics since the dawn of time – those early cave paintings were passing on information graphically that could be processed and understood quickly. 13 incredible tools for creating infographics The best infographics wrap information and/or data into a story in a clear, concise and engaging manner. It's an increasing way of communicating data to the masses, and therefore a skill no designer should be without. In this article, you'll find some pro tips for producing infographics in Illustrator that will help you pull things together quickly and efficiently. For more advice, be sure to check out my talk on creating infographics in Illustrator at Adobe MAX 2018. A whole lot of information Before you get started on making infographics in Illustrator CC (sign up to Adobe Creative Cloud here), you’re going to need information, and probably lots of it. Think about the story you'll be presenting and then do some digging (fortunately there are a lot of free data sources available and you’ll find some listed at the end of this article). You’ll be looking for several things to make the data more meaningful to your viewers; look for trends or patterns that can show movement in the numbers. Are there any outliers that can either make or break the story? Look for context and comparisons, which often may come from other data sets, to help the viewer make sense of it all. Examine any history associated with the information to see if that helps make things any clearer. Once you have the information, it’s time to examine it. 01. Master pivot tables... Dealing with cold, hard numbers is going to involve working with spreadsheets, and you can make sense of data sets, especially large ones, by learning how to use pivot tables (Excel and Google Sheets both support these). Trust me when I say once you've got the hang of these, you'll wonder how you ever managed without them. 02. ...Or make friends with someone who already has Getting spreadsheets to handle your data makes life so much easier, it's filtered into the second tip too! If numbers are really not your thing, I'd go so far as to suggest you make friends with someone who is awesome with spreadsheets, and buy them the best dinner you can afford whenever you work with them (yes, I totally do this). 03. Sketch out your ideas Next, you’ll need to start sketching out your ideas, and working out how to present that information. The first thing you’ll need to do is work out what size and format the completed work is going to take; I’m often asked about what size to make an infographic and my answer is always the same, 'the size that best suits the medium and the audience'. If you think that the infographic is most likely to be viewed on a phone for example, then make it as wide as the device being held in landscape orientation, and as tall as needs be to convey everything, which is why there are lots of skyscraper-style infographics to be found online. For structuring the story, try to adhere to the principle of the information sandwich, start with an introduction, fill with all of the yummy information and close with a conclusion or Call to Action (CtA). 04. Choose your tools wisely Adobe Photoshop Sketch is great tool to help you work out your ideas I use Adobe Photoshop Sketch on my tablet to work out my ideas, as I have more tools available than I can carry with me, and I can push my sketches directly to Illustrator as a basis for my finished work. 05. Use a grid Use a grid as a guide for your layout – and remember that it is only a guide, not a ruleset; you don’t have to make things fit exactly within the guide boundaries. Mostly, my preference is to use a grid that has twelve columns, as twelve is easily divisible by two, three and four, but use whatever you need. For skyscraper statics, vertically you should divide the grid up into rows that are roughly representative of the screens that you’re anticipating it being viewed on – try to give a tantalising glimpse of the next screen’s content (“below the fold” in press terminology) to encourage the viewer to keep scrolling. Your grid type will vary for other kinds of presentation but always use one – they’re invaluable. 06. Use video tutorials Simply follow this video tutorial for an easy way to make an awesome grid for your infographic in Illustrator. 07. Work with linked assets Create your chart elements in separate documents and place them as linked assets. You don’t have to produce all of the charts, graphs and other graphics in the same document. There are a number of advantages to working with linked assets during infographic production, but the main ones are: Illustrator doesn’t have to actually redraw the entire graphic – just a representation of it while you’re working – and you can work faster. More than one person can be working on the project at once – simply update your placed version if someone else makes any changes. It makes it easy to resize graphs and charts, which otherwise normally involves using the Scale Tool. 08. Chart or graph? Knowing how to best present a piece of information is key - and Data Visualisation Catalogue can help Knowing how to best present a piece of information is part of the challenge, and if it isn’t immediately obvious, then I can offer you no better tip here than to use Data Visualisation Catalogue (and ideally buy the eBook version of the site) – that way you’ve always got a copy to hand plus you’re rewarding the author Severino Ribecca, for his hard work that’s helping you out. Illustrator has nine chart/graph tools and while that doesn’t sound like a lot, you’d be amazed at what can be achieved with them, although there’s a bit of learning involved there. That said, there are times when you’re going to need to hack the default tools. At the moment, the number one thing I get asked about in this regard is how to make doughnut charts, and segmented doughnut charts – the answer to both of these can be found on my YouTube channel and you’ll be able to keep the data live, too. 09. Keep a live connection Always try and keep the connection between the graph/chart and data live. If you’re watching a tutorial online that mentions ungrouping the chart, then stop watching and look elsewhere as there is almost always a way to keep the data live, and it’ll save you a lot of effort if you can. 10. Group Selection Tool is your friend The Group Selection Tool is essential for working with charts and graphs in Illustrator; you’ll find it nested with the Direct Selection Tool in the toolbox. There’s so much more to learn than I can present in this article, but I hope that you found this advice useful. I’m always keen to see what you’re making in Illustrator, so let me know via Twitter. Further reading Here’s some of my favourite titles on my bookshelves; some of these deal with data representation, some with process (e.g: Raw Data and Visual Storytelling) and some are whimsical, perhaps (e.g: Infographic Guide to Cycling and Super Graphic), but I’d recommend: Visualize This: The Flowingdata Guide to Design, Visualization, and Statistics by Nathan Yau Knowledge is Beautiful by David McCandless Information is Beautiful by David McCandless Infographics: Designing & Visualizing Data by Wang Shaoqiang Cool Infographics: Effective Communication with Data Visualization and Design by Randy Krum Raw Data: Infographic Designers' Sketchbooks by Steven Heller and Rick Landers Visual Storytelling: Infographic Design in News by Edited by Liu Yikun and Dong Zhao Infographics: The Power of Visual Storytelling by Jason Lankow and Josh Ritchie Infographic Guide to Cycling by Roadcyclinguk Super Graphic: A Visual Guide to the Comic Book Universe by Tim Leong Also note that some of the titles and authors have websites that are well worth visiting. Read more: How to create amazing infographics Infographic: 14 design terms you might be getting wrong 21 ways to design better in Sketch View the full article
  9. Manga art is in rude health, so if you know how to draw manga and paint it you’re in good company. It’s now possible for manga artists to amass hundreds of thousands of social media followers, get crowdfunded via sites like Patreon, sell their art commercially, and even go and live and work in Japan itself. But how do you go about it? Here, four manga artists who have found success share advice on how to follow in their footsteps. 01. Maximise your social media presence The first, and perhaps most obvious, point is that you need to get your art in front of people. “If you create a lot of illustrations but don’t post them anywhere, nothing’s going to happen,” says Ilya Kuvshinov, a Russian artist based in Tokyo with 1.3 million Instagram followers. “It can be scary to expose your work publicly, but there’ll be people who love it – trust me!” One of the illustrations from Ilya’s book, Momentary: The Art of Ilya Kuvshinov Just posting in one place, though, may not be enough, says Larienne Chan. Better known as Lärienne or Princess Lärienne, the Polish illustrator has made a huge impact on the DeviantArt community, which honoured her with its ‘Deviousness’ award in 2016. But she’s also built strong bases on Instagram, Tumblr and the online Japanese art community, Pixiv. “Some people think just being good is enough, but unfortunately that’s no longer true,” Chan says. “In these times of constantly changing algorithms and fierce competition, you never know where clients or fans are coming from, so you need to be in as many places as possible.” “Aiming to give my art a different feel to other manga has helped it stand out,” says Spryszynska It’s also important to post often, says Aleksandra Spryszynska, a Polish art student who’s attracted almost a quarter of a million followers on Instagram as Yenko. “Being consistent is key,” Spryszynska stresses. “You need to keep posting new things, come up with new ideas all the time, so that people don’t forget you and will introduce you to their friends.” Spryszynska's own Instagram feed is a great mixture of photography, sketches and full artwork, which makes it feel much more personal than just a straightforward gallery. “People would rather see a photo of your artwork than a clean scan of it,” she stresses. “They like to see behind the scenes, the workspace. It’s also a great way to show the tools you’ve used.” 02. Let your passions shine Given that other manga artists will be doing all that as well, though, how do you ensure your work stands out? Spryszynska believes it’s essentially about being true to your vision. “Just like in other types of art, we all have our own style, and other things that make our work unique,” she says. “Concentrate on what interests you, and others will follow.” “Setting up my Facebook and Instagram profiles were the main turning point for me,” says Spryszynska That said, some have found that posting fan art can be an effective way of getting extra attention and boosting their audience. “My own ‘big break’ came when I shared fan art of Mathilda from the film Leon on Instagram,” says Kuvshinov. “Suddenly I found myself with a huge number of followers.” It was a similar story for Chan. “My real breakthrough came with applying my personal style to fan art of western cartoons,” she says. “It’s important to post work to all the social media pages people visit, day by day,” says Gonzalo Ordoñez Yet for every fan artwork that goes viral, a thousand more get ignored, and it’s not something you should rely on, believes Gonzalo Ordoñez, aka the popular Genzoman. “When you do nothing but fan art, people might start to see you more in those terms than as a creator,” he says. “So I think a better strategy is to combine your own ideas and concepts with fan art, not just one thing or the other.” Aleksandra adds that if you’re going to experiment with fan art, make sure it’s something you have a true passion for. “It’s so obvious who’s actually into the fandom, and who’s just out looking for likes and shares,” she cautions. 03. Study the industry The same principle, of course, applies to the discipline itself. Manga isn’t just one style, but a deep and rich culture going back decades, and the more you can study and immerse yourself in it, the better your art will become. “Many people think manga is only Shonen [manga aimed at teenage males] or Moe [child-like characters that aim to elicit a strong emotional response], which is what audiences outside Asia tend to see,” says Ordoñez. “But there are many genres, artists and visions within manga, so I’d encourage young people to learn as much as they can about its origins. “With so many talented people around, your artwork needs to be unique to stand out,” says Chan “Explore the work of Osamu Tezuka, Shotaro Ishinomori and Go Nagai,” he says, “as well as other types of Japanese artists, such as Yoshiharu Tsuge or Yoshihiro Tatsumi. This helps you diversify, because if we’re all doing similar styles, we’ll end up competing with one another. A manga artist doesn’t have to be a one-trick pony, but can be as versatile as any other type of creative.” In short, it’s about being original and finding your own, distinct path. “When I was starting out I copied pages from Dragon Ball, and recreated the style of artists like Kazushi Hagiwara,” says Ordoñez. “But there’s a point where you have to try new things, so people don’t see you as ‘the imitator of’, like the art equivalent of a covers band.” “DeviantArt’s viewing public is very different to Tumblr’s, Pixiv’s or Instagram’s, so you need different content for each,” says Gonzalo And after that, it’s down to persistence, hard work and just keeping going until it starts to happen for you. “Believe in yourself,” says Chan. “Get engaged with the art community. Ask questions, experiment and practise a lot.” And Aleksandra adds: “Don’t give up. It’s very hard. People aren’t fair, social media isn’t fair. But you can be fair to yourself. Do what you love and what defines you. Work hard and it will pay off!” Lead image by Larienne Chan This article originally appeared in issue 163 of ImagineFX, the world's leading magazine for digital artists. Subscribe here. Related articles: How to create an authentic manga comic strip How to colour your manga art like a pro Get started with ink drawing View the full article
  10. Graduating from university is a huge achievement that should be celebrated, but for a lot of college leavers, the hard work starts once you're out of the classroom and trying to forge a career. Learning how to network, building a name for yourself and progressing up to bigger jobs are all par for the course, and as we saw in our assessment of design graduates, universities are better than they once were when it comes to prepping students for the real world. There's always more to learn though, so to help fresh-faced graduates on the long road to success, we've rounded up some of the biggest names in the industry to hear what graduates need to know in order to survive. 01. Be patient “Understand the role and studio/clients you want to work for, show interest, do your research and don’t expect things to happen overnight,” says co-founder and director of The HudsonBec Group Will Hudson. “Everyone at the end of the phone or email was once where you are now. Persevere.” 02. Recognise your value “Understand the value that you bring to any situation and don’t waste your time working for free, as it shows that you don’t see that value in yourself,” advises Intern Magazine editor Alec Dudson. 03. Start friendships “Research the projects instead of the agencies. Befriend people, say hi and complement them on their work,” enthuses designer Jenny Theolin. “Collaborate with agencies – maybe there is a project or an idea you can ask their mentorship for? Or maybe they want to do it with you?” 04. Be entrepreneurial “Be a great storyteller. Be curious. But also, have a good understanding of business and brands,” advises Neil Bennett, strategy director at LOVE. 05. Take a genuine interest “You have to naturally pool people around you that you get on with, that you share values, principles and a work ethic with,” advises Craig Oldham. “Otherwise you become that person who goes in hard at a social event, banging business cards under everyone’s nose. And in my experience, no one likes that person.” 06. Solve problems “It’s easy to get caught up in the next ‘it’ technology or buzz area, but it’s important to remember that a designer’s strongest and most important skill is research (both for the client and user), with the creative problem-solving ability to back it up,” reveals Shillington director Sarah McHugh. 07. Learn from mistakes “I’ve made plenty of mistakes, too many to mention. I’ve been broke, worked with terrible clients but all of those experiences have taught me an immeasurable amount,” shares Dudson. “Failure is the best way to grow, there’s no beating it or getting around it.” Lead image by Nate Kitch. This article was originally published in Computer Arts, the world's best-selling design magazine. Buy issue 282 or subscribe. Related articles: Nuggets of advice for fresh design graduates 5 top tips for graduate designers 6 trail-blazing design graduates you should know View the full article
  11. Every so often, there's a clarion call for designers: this bright, shiny new technology –this brave new world – will change everything. It'll revolutionise how we work, how we live, how people engage with our brand campaigns at every level. In the last decade, these game-changing innovations have included huge moves forward in VR/AR, the inexorable rise of AI, increased affordability of 3D printing, and the fast-growing Internet of Things (or IoT) – smart, connected objects that support your every whim at work and home. Now, we don't want to be naysayers, or come across like 1990s luddites moaning that the internet will never catch on. It is undeniable that all these design trends have yielded some incredible opportunities. But have they changed the game as quickly, or as dramatically, as predicted? No. Or at least, not yet. Of course, according to sci-fi visions of 2018 we should all be zipping about on hoverboards, exploring deep space and getting wiped out by super-intelligent robots of our own making by now. That hasn't happened either. Yet. Read on as we explore the three biggest examples of premature hype in recent years, and what this means for the average designer... 01. Virtual Reality The VR hype from 2016 seems to have fizzled out. Can the new Oculus Quest finally bring the tech to the masses? Unless you were living under a stone in 2016, you won't have missed the VR hype. Headset after headset hit the market in quick succession – Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR, and then Microsoft's offering, the 'mixed-reality' HoloLens. That's without the sea of comparatively inexpensive alternatives that used your phone, ranging from Samsung's Gear VR to Google Cardboard. It seemed like VR was here to stay. But where are we now? VR simply hasn't taken off in a truly mainstream way – even in gaming, according to a recent industry survey at the Game Developers Conference. The biggest global phenomenon by some distance has been in the AR space: Pokémon Go. That's not to say there haven't been amazing uses of VR in brand campaigns, and if the context is appropriate, there are plenty of opportunities to create an immersive VR experience yourself. But is it truly mainstream yet? No. Facebook-owned Oculus has just rolled the dice again by announcing the Oculus Quest, the first fully self-contained headset that will support 'six degrees of freedom' – meaning your head position, tilt and rotation is fully tracked throughout the experience. Will VR finally take over our homes in 2019? Time will tell. 02. Artificial Intelligence If you're one of those designers who fears that AI bots will steal your job, there's no need to panic yet. While there have been some phenomenal applications at the cutting edge of the field, on a day-to-day basis the public faces of AI – like Siri and Alexa – still have a way to go before we can genuinely consider them intelligent. For brands, one of the most exciting applications of AI comes in the form of chat bots, interacting with customers in real time. Banks such as DBS, OCBC and Citibank are actively innovating in this space, and in the next few years such narrowly task-focused bots could expand into broader areas. But it's not mainstream yet. Compared to most of its western counterparts, China has embraced the potential of AI and automation much more readily. One example is Alibaba Cloud's latest innovation: ET Brain. Launched earlier in 2018 with a dynamic brand identity by Wolff Olins, it's an "intelligent, adaptive technology platform" – processing huge amounts of data in real-time, and learning as it goes. As the video above explains, ET Brain applies AI at a macro level, engaging with the infrastructure of a city on everything from traffic flow, to environment management, to healthcare. Whether this glimpse of an AI-driven future excites or terrifies you depends on your perspective, and which movies you've been watching. Will designers be replaced by robots at some point in the future? Probably not. But AI could provide more opportunities to automate common design tasks, freeing up more time to engage the creative, problem-solving human brain. 03. 3D Printing Entry-level models like the M3D Micro make 3D printing accessible, but it still hasn't caught on in a big way Okay, so 3D printing has been around in a rudimentary form since the mid-1980s – the concept is not new. The enormous amount of hype in recent years relates more to its ever-increasing accessibility and affordability. What used to be a huge, industrial-scale investment for a manufacturer can now be picked up for less than the price of a high-end smartphone. Rather like VR, designers were raving about 3D printing not so long ago. The possibilities seemed endless. In 2015, at the height of the hype, we ran a series of articles here on Creative Bloq – including a guide to 3D printing for beginners. Three years on, has 3D printing revolutionised design? Erm, not quite. According to our sister site TechRadar's round-up of the best 3D printers for 2018, the entry-level choice is the M3D Micro – which costs a few hundred pounds, and is compact enough to sit on your desk. Even higher-end models such as the MakerBot Replicator+ or Ultimaker 2+ are still only a few thousand. It couldn't be more accessible. But again, like VR, there's been a great deal on focus on the how, and not enough on the why. Aside from gaming and entertainment, VR provides a wealth of opportunities in the training space – particularly in the military and medical sectors. 3D printing remains an exciting area in manufacturing and architecture, and could prove revolutionary in medical applications such as prosthetics and organ transplants. The need is there, and the technology facilitates a solution. Do you need a 3D printer or a VR headset gathering dust in your design studio? Probably not. Should you shoehorn it into a project because you can? No. But if the right creative problem comes along for which those technologies make total sense, they've never been more affordable. Just don't believe the hype. Related articles: 4 design trends we're all tired of hearing about 4 design tools you never knew you needed 8 must-have products for a smarter studio View the full article
  12. Last week
  13. A survey of ICS security posture found outdated firewalls, improper segmentation password mistakes and more. View the full article
  14. Threatpost's editors discuss the top news of this week. View the full article
  15. The official update from Microsoft only limits the vulnerability, according to 0Patch. View the full article
  16. Unity is one of the world's most popular game engines, responsible for powering hundreds of thousands of games all around the world on over 25 platforms. You may already know how easy it is to get started, prototype, iterate and publish to your chosen platform, and over the past few years we have been improving the Unity toolset to be more than a developer or programmer tool. Artists or designers can now use Unity to bring their assets to life, whether they're custom-built or free 3D models, and express their creativity without the bottleneck of needing an experienced coder. With the release of our Webby award-winning demos Adam and Book of the Dead, Unity has shown that it can produce Triple A quality productions in real time. In this tutorial we'll take our exported FBX model from our DCC tool and import it into Unity, add in our procedural camera system (Cinemachine), apply our animations via the Timeline sequencing tool and then make our scene look beautiful with our post-processing stack. We'll demonstrate how easy it is to put something together with no code, and bring your creations to life in real time. Download the assets and follow along whilst watching the video with the link below. Download the files and accompanying video here. 01. Get started in Unity Start Unity up and open the Unity Artist Tutorial file [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] Make sure you have the assets for this project downloaded, and open Unity. Select Open Project then navigate to the Unity Artist Tutorial file. It might be useful to familiarise yourself with the Editor layout by watching this video on our Learn site. 02. Import your model Importing an FBX brings in all its associated data [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] In our Project window we have imported our FBX models into the project by simply dragging them into this window or pulling them into our Assets folder. When we import an FBX into Unity we import all of the mesh, materials, animations, light data, animation curves and many other values. 03. Add your character Your character comes ready-lit [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] Navigate to the Adam Prefab in our Project window and pull that into the Hierarchy. You will see it pop up in the scene and Game window. You'll notice that he is already very well lit; you can view how we have lit this scene in the Environment GameObject by expanding it. Play with the lighting to get a feel for how it all works [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] For this project we are using one Directional Light for the main source of light, a spotlight so Adam is backlit, some softboxes for the environmental soft lighting as well as some reflection and light probes in order to help distribute the lighting around the scene. Feel free to have a play with the lighting available and experiment with how it looks with different objects turned off and on. 04. Animate the character with timeline Now we create a Timeline asset [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] We are going to animate the character using our sequencing tool called Timeline. Go to the toolbar and select Window > Timeline and dock the Timeline window wherever you want in the Editor. Select Adam in the Hierarchy and in the Timeline window click Create. This will prompt us to create a Timeline asset. Save it as AdamTimeline. 05. Set an animation soundtrack Check your animation by scrubbing through the timeline [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] On the Adam track in the Timeline right-click and select Add from Animation Clip, then choose Adam_Walk. We will now have this block in our track that will play the animation. We can now press play and scrub through this timeline in the window instead of pressing play. 06. Add the camera system Cinemachine will give you a procedural third-person camera [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] We want to create a procedural third-person camera system to follow and move around our character. We already have a ready-made package called Cinemachine, which is available for free on Unity's Asset Store. So, search for, download and import Cinemachine into your project. 07. Add a Freelook camera Create a Freelook camera and pass in a Follow transform and a Look At transform [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] On the top toolbar navigate to Cinemachine > Create FreeLook Camera. In the Hierarchy we now have a camera icon on the Main Camera stating Cinemachine is in control, and we have the GameObject CM FreeLook 1 which has a big component on it in the Inspector. We need to pass in a Follow transform and a Look At transform. Drag the Adam GameObject from the Hierarchy into these two slots. We will now see three rings, called rigs, around our character in the scene. 08. Modify the rig You can change the focus of the camera by setting up individual Look Ats for each rig [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] Now we want to modify our rig so that we have complete control over the look and feel. We want to be able to focus on different parts of our character depending on where our camera angle is. There are three rigs in this component – Top, Middle and Bottom – shown by the three circles around our character in the scene. Because our target's root is on its base, all the cameras will focus on its feet. We can change the focus of the camera by setting up individual Look Ats for each rig. On the Top rig our Look At transform wants to be set to Adam, the Middle rig to Bip01 and the Bottom rig to Bip01 Spine. We can see the transition between these different rigs by either entering Play Mode, or by changing the Y axis value in the Axis Control section of the FreeLook camera. 09. Import post-processing You'll need to add the PostProcessing package to Unity [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] Next we are going to add the post-processing into our project. We can download the PostProcessing package from the Asset Store via your browser or via the 'Asset Store' windows in the Editor and search 'Post Processing Stack'. On the top toolbar, navigate to Assets > Import New Package > Custom Package. Then locate the PostProcessing package and click Open. Add a Post Process Layer to your main camera and set up a Volume Blending Layer [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] On our Main Camera we want to add a new component, and that component is a Post Process Layer (Add Component > Rendering > Post Process Layer). This will handle our post-processing for us, so the only thing we will need to do is create a new layer. On the top toolbar, navigate to Edit > Project Settings > Tags and Layers. Next click the arrow to reveal all layers in our project, and add in a new User Layer called Post Processing. Now we can go back to our Main Camera and set up the Volume Blending Layer on the Post Process Layer Component. While we are on our Main Camera, we want to add some anti-aliasing to our view. Let's change the anti-aliasing mode to FXAA (Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing). 10. Set up post-process volume Use the Is Global setting to ensure that all effects are applied to the camera [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] On the top toolbar, navigate to GameObject > Create Empty. Select this GameObject and rename it 'PP Volume'. Let's set the layer of this GameObject to the layer we set up earlier, Post Processing. Next let's add the Post Process Volume, by navigating to Add Component > Rendering > Post Process Volume. On this new component we want to tick the 'Is Global' checkbox. This will ensure that the effects are applied to the camera. Next we want to create a new Post Process Profile by clicking New next to the circle selector for Profile. Now it is finally time to start adding all of our post-processing effects. 11. Apply post-effects Finish off by working through all the post effects [click the icon in the top right of the image to enlarge] Let's work our way through the post-processing effects. The first effect we'll add is Auto Exposure. Within this effect if we want to edit a value, first tick the box to the left of the variable, and then it becomes editable. We're going to do this for the following options: Minimum (EV) – set the value to -0.35, Maximum (EV) – set the value to 1, and Key Value – set to 1.25. The next post-processing effect we are going to add is Bloom. As we did with the previous effect, we are going to tick the variables we want to edit, and then we can tweak them as desired. We are going to do this for: Intensity – set to 1.5, and Soft Knee – set to 0.1. The scene is looking a bit dull, so let's add in the Color Grading effect. The variables we will set are the following: Tonemapping Mode to ACES, Post-exposure (EV) to 0.6, Saturation to 10 and Contrast to 15. The final effect we will add to the profile is Vignette, which will add a darker edge to our camera, serving to focus the user towards the centre of the screen. We only need to set one variable on this effect and that is Intensity at 0.3. And there we have it, our final product. We've managed to import a model into Unity, create a camera system using Cinemachine, apply an animation using Timeline and finally add some image effects using post-processing. You can add in more characters, some landscape in the background or even some more animations and use the Timeline to sequence them all together. This article was originally published in issue 236 of 3D World, the world's best-selling magazine for CG artists. Buy issue 236 here or subscribe to 3D World here. Related articles: 7 tips for the perfect 3D gaming portfolio Design a playable avatar for a video game Create an atmospheric game environment View the full article
  17. Researchers devise post-intrusion attack that use existing system binaries to achieve arbitrary code execution to maintain stealth and persistence. View the full article
  18. With summer winding down, there's no better time to look back and take stock. And that's just what we're doing in the latest issue of Computer Arts magazine, which is on sale now. In issue 285 we reveal the 30 best UK design studios and branding agencies. as selected by a panel of industry insiders. Do you agree with who they crowned number one? Buy Computer Arts issue 285 now So what sets these studios apart from the pack? Well, one of the recurring themes we came across when assessing the studios and agencies was the idea of generosity backed up by inspiring talent. From the prolific Pentagram to the conscientious Koto, it looks like there are plenty of studios trying to steer the commercial industry in a better direction. And that's without mentioning the runaway success of Magpie Studio, the relationship focussed projects put out by Taxi Studio, and the diversity oriented Here Design. With so much good work to enjoy, there's plenty here to learn from. Industry experts had the tough task of narrowing down the best studios and agencies Save up to 60% on a Computer Arts subscription Elsewhere in issue 285 we look at how Brand Brothers ushered a Parisian gym brand into the arts, explore the negative space of Thomas Hedger’s prints, and showcase the hottest new design, illustration and motion talent. Meanwhile, designers share their thoughts on the PATH rebrand, we hear how words can create a successful brand, and we even find time to discover why we should all be striving for the 'work-love' balance. Sign up to the Computer Arts newsletter Take a closer look at what's inside Computer Arts issue 284 by scrolling left to right through the gallery below. Computer Arts is the world's best-selling design magazine, bursting at the seams with insight, inspiration, interviews and all the best new design projects. For all this delivered direct to your door each month, subscribe to Computer Arts. Right now you can save up to 60%, and receive a free Computer Arts tote bag when you subscribe. Related articles: 5 small design studios with the clout of a huge agency 8 of the most successful independent design studios 6 best collaboration tools for design studios View the full article
  19. When it comes to online animation classes, the cliche is true: you really do get what you pay for. Most of the free or cheap courses you'll find online are going to be pretty low-grade and ultimately a waste of your valuable time. High-quality tuition, delivered by animators working at the leading studios, may cost a little more but it’s well worth the investment. In this post, we've brought together 10 excellent animation classes to boost your skills, all taught by top industry mentors. Number one on our list is Aaron Blaise's Complete Animation Course. Not only does the veteran animator bring invaluable insights from his work on classic Disney movies, he delivers them in a way that anyone can follow and learn from, whatever their skill level. It's a very affordable class, too, plus we love Blaise's personal style, which is always charming, never patronising. How to choose the right online animation class for you When it comes to choosing an animation class, there are a number of factors you need to take into account. These include what skill level you're currently at, because not all classes will be relevant to your level. It's also worth checking the style of teaching, as providers differ wildly in this area. Some, largely the cheaper ones, offer pre-recorded video lessons and zero interaction. Others, meanwhile, offer one-to-one tuition and tailored feedback on your work, but these classes generally come at a higher price. Finally, you also need to consider how much commitment and time you can put into the class, as they range from just a few hours in total, which can be taken at your own pace, to a full-on 20 hours a week for six months, at set term times. The classes we've selected for this post are all first-class, but cover a range of levels and teaching styles. So read on to discover 10 of the best online animation classes available today. 01. Complete Animation Course by Aaron Blaise The Complete Animation Course by Aaron Blaise covers all the fundamentals, and both beginners and working animators can learn a lot from it Pros: High-quality tuition, engaging style Cons: No interaction with tutor, doesn’t teach software Aaron Blaise is a Disney animation veteran who’s worked on movies like The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, and Mulan, as well as co-directing Brother Bear. In this online class, made up of 13 HD video lessons, he takes you through the 12 Principles of Animation, as developed by Disney’s Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston. There is also a bonus class that outlines Blaise’s personal approach to animation. Across six HD video lessons, he creates a new original animation in real time and explains his process for tackling an animated scene. On top of all that, there’s also a selection of additional videos, PDF print outs, original drawings, and source files to help you learn about animation and begin your own projects. Best of all, Blaise has an approachable and relatable style that makes his classes feel less like lessons and more like a chat with a friend. You can get a feel for his approach in the video below: This class is aimed at beginners and animations students, but there’s a lot that working animators, both traditional and computer-based, can learn too, in terms of following a leading pro at work and getting an insight into his process. Subtitles are available for Spanish, Portuguese and Mandarin, and you can follow along with any software you like, or even pen and paper. Normally $129, this class is discounted to $75 at time of writing. Alternatively, Blaise offers streaming membership, including access to all his courses, from $19.99 a month, with a special education discount for students and teachers. 02. Introduction to Classic Animation with Ryan Slater Ryan Slater offers a quick but comprehensive run through first principles Pros: Cheap, concise Cons: Limited scope, no feedback from tutor Not sure if animation is for you, and want a super-quick (but comprehensive and practical) introduction to what it’s all about? This online class, lasting just 76 minutes, introduces and explains the classic techniques used in some of the biggest animated movies of all time. Aimed at beginners, the class is taught by Ryan Slater, an animation artist who’s worked at Nickelodeon, Disneytoons and Cartoon Network, so he really knows his stuff. Across seven video lessons, you’ll learn the basics of 2D animation and how to create your first moving character using just pencil, paper and a peg bar (a cheap piece of plastic that holds your sheets of paper together). Slater explains a range of tried-and-tested animation techniques, such as ‘squash and stretch’ and ‘slow in and slow out’, in a way you can start using without any experience whatsoever. This short class won’t make you a fully fledged animator, but it will give you a great start on that journey. To access this course, you’ll need to take out a subscription to Slater's site for $29.95 a month, although there is a $1 trial for your first three days. 03. 12 Principles of Animation with Justin Harrison Justin Harrison covers the basics of 3D animation from a game dev's point of view Pros: Cheap, project files included Cons: Short, gaming focus may not suit Another short and snappy online class that explains the basics of animation, this offering from 3DMotive is aimed at beginners to the world of animation, and/or beginners to Maya or any similar animation software. Using Maya, this online class covers the 12 basic principles of animation, how they apply to everyday objects and characters, and how you can utilise them to bring your character animations to life. It's taught by Justin Harrison, a character and technical animator with more than seven years' experience in game development. Over two and a quarter hours, divided into three volumes, this class covers such fundamental building blocks as squash and stretch, timing and spacing, and slow-in and slow-out. And at just £19.99 – currently discounted to £14.99 – you can’t say fairer than that. 04. Character animation: Fundamentals with Chris Kirshbaum Chris Kirshbaum walks you through basic exercises for feature film animators Pros: Practical focus, teaches the software Cons: Subscription needed, no feedback from tutor A character animator at Dreamworks, Chris Kirshbaum's credits include Shark Tale, Flushed Away and Over the Hedge. In this 170-minute class, split into 10 lessons, he introduces the fundamentals of character animation for feature films. From the bouncing ball to using a character rig, this master animator explains all you need to know about Maya, covering the different elements of the interface and how to develop good workflow habits. He also discusses the basics of acting and emotion and demonstrates how to setup the walk cycle, from blocking in and smoothing out the animation to refining it by adding attitude and feeling. You can view a short extract from the class in the video below: To watch this class, you’ll need to take out a subscription to the site as a whole, which gives you access to all its courses. That starts from $49 a month, although there is a free trial period. 05. Learn 3D animation online with CG Spectrum CG Spectrum's course offers one-to-one teaching via the web Pros: One-to-one teaching available, suitable for beginners Cons: Expensive, limits you to term times If you’re keen on pursuing a career in 3D animation for film and games but have no prior knowledge and don’t know where to start, this online class is aimed squarely at you. In just six months, it promises to teach you all the important fundamentals you need to become an 3D animator including the 12 principles of animation, body mechanics and how to rig your own characters. The first half of the course covers the basics of 3D animation, including how to use animation rigs to pose a character and set keyframes within Maya, and create a simple character walk-cycle that you can use for your portfolio. In part two, you’ll start animating characters that interact with their surrounding environment and learn how they deal with physical forces. Once you have an understanding of how to use an animation rig, you get to build your own from scratch. You’re taught by industry mentors via live recorded sessions where your mentor works directly within your file. You also benefit from extra weekly recorded feedback sessions. Expect to spend around 20 hours a week studying and working on assignments in total. You have the choice of a small class or one-to-one mentoring. The former costs $599 per month for six months or $2,895 upfront; the latter $799 per month for six months or $3,795 upfront. 06. Stop Motion Course with Chuck Duke Chuck Duke's online class in stop-motion animation is the best in the biz Pros: Tutor feedback, study when you like Cons: Niche focus, some extra equipment needed Animation is not all about CG. If you’ve got a hankering to learn traditional stop-motion techniques, as used in such movies as Shaun the Sheep, Coraline, and Kubo and the Two Strings, then here’s a great online class for you. It’s taught by leading stop-motion animator Chuck Duke, who’s worked on films such as James and the Giant Peach and Fantastic Mr Fox. Teaching is one-to-one and according to your own skill level and familiarisation with the stop-motion process. The class explores the techniques applied to execute a believable performance from a stop-motion puppet. Along the way, the history of the industry and techniques of the masters will be discussed, as well as the stop-motion tricks that are still in use today. The major focus, however, is the physical performance of the stop-motion armature (basically a physically animation skeleton), including such topics as timing, sense of motion, observation, acting, character and lip sync. You’re set assignments, and communication takes place through you sending a movie and then receiving a critique in return via email. This means you can study whenever you like and proceed at your own pace. There may be images or movies attached to this feedback to help backup the notes. But it's important to note that, unlike the other courses on this list, you do not follow video lectures; you follow your personal tutor’s instruction. An armature, a puppet head, and a licence to the software Dragonframe are all included in the price of the course, which costs from £3,295 for six months. 07. Animation Basics with Animation Mentor Animation Mentor offers a high-quality interactive learning experience Pros: Weekly critiques, live Q&As Cons: Expensive, software skills required Headquartered in California, Animation Mentor is a distance learning school at which animation professionals teach character animation online to students in over 105 countries. Established in 2005, it has since won multiple awards. If you're new to animation, its 12-week Animation Basics course will help you master the core skills based on the 12 basic principles of animation. These include how to realistically convey weight, motion and follow-through. You’ll begin by learning how to animate a bouncing ball, and then move on to the creation of both vanilla and personality walk cycles. By the end, you should be capable of creating a job-ready demo reel. It's important to that note that a basic knowledge of 3D software is required to take this class. If you don’t have that, the school recommends you first take its Maya Workshop. Animation Basics includes 12 hours of pre-recorded video lectures, which you can stream on-demand each week, as well as a weekly e-critique of your assignment from your mentor. You’ll also benefit from a weekly live Q&A with your mentor and classmates; access to the Animation Mentor resource library with guest lectures; additional Q&As; and weekly video news, and ongoing access to all characters and rigs from this course. This online class is restricted to set term times and costs $2,499, which includes a three-year student licence to Maya, Mudbox, 3D Studio Max, and other Autodesk software. 08. Introduction to 3D Animation with Animschool Animschool offers web conference-style interaction with pro animators Pros: Interactive classes, regular critiques Cons: Expensive, software skills needed Similar to Animation Mentor, but with a little more focus on the technical/software side of animation, Animschool was founded in 2010 by David Gallagher of Blue Sky Studios. Its Introduction to 3D Animation course walks you through the principles of animation and you can apply them to simple objects and scenarios. It's important to note that, as with Animation Mentor’s course (above), you’ll need software skills to take this class, but if you don’t have them, there’s an introductory Maya course you can take first. Classes are held in your web browser, using advanced web-conferencing software allowing instructors and students to interact via chat, mic, and web camera. During lectures, teachers can show their desktop to review the students' work or demonstrate concepts. There are also regular critique sessions for students’ work. Check out the video below to see what a lesson looks like in practice: Over 11 weeks, you’ll learn to animate balls of different weight, a tow truck, and the hips and legs of a simple character to learn about timing, arcs, spacing, ease in and out, weight, gravity, drag, secondary action, overlap, follow through, squash and stretch, and exaggeration. This class is part of a broader, three-part 3D animation program. But you can choose to take the class on its own as part of the school’s 'Express' option for $1,620, plus you’ll need to buy textbooks. 09. Feature Quality Animation with iAnimate iAnimate offers online training to recent graduates and working animators Pros: Feedback on your work, weekly Q&As Cons: Set term times, not suitable for beginners The days when studios gave on the job training are long gone, so iAnimate offers one-to-one live classes aimed at training animators to be better prepared to meet the needs of the industry and get better jobs. This class is very much not for beginners, then, but aimed at recent graduates and working animators wishing to up their game and get their dream job. The 11-week class, which costs $1,698, is directed towards polishing your principles and refining your skills in fields such as animation, paths of actions and the 2D and CG planning process, while reinforcing areas such as initial body mechanics, overlapping actions and walks with a focus on acceleration and deceleration. You’re given access to thousands of hours of training videos. Your work is also critiqued live by pro animators from top studios in a way that simulates the real studio 'dailies' environment. These critiques take place once a week and are recorded for later viewing. There are also weekly live workflow webinars, where everyone joins together to see how professionals approach the exercises on hand, plus a live and recorded Q&A session with your instructor. 10. Character Design for Animation with Nate Wragg Nate Wragg's course focuses on the design of characters for animation. Image by student James Frio. Pros: Interactive, niche focus Cons: Set term times, not suitable for beginners Want to make stronger character designs that work better as animated characters? Well, this eight-week class from Computer Graphics Master Academy (CGMA) provides exactly that. It’s taught by Nate Wragg, an industry veteran who was one of the primary character designers on Toy Story 3. The theme is developing an understanding of the elements that make strong, compelling characters and designing characters that will work in animation. You’ll start with simple shapes and develop your ability to push the design to its limits. This class is aimed at Intermediate level students who have either completed a Foundation & Design Program or who otherwise have good understanding of analytical figure drawing. Expect to spend between eight and 10 hours a week viewing lectures, taking part in weekly Q&As, and doing weekly assignments. Note that this class is primarily about designing characters for animation, rather than how to animate the characters per se. It costs $699 and you’ll need Photoshop and a Wacom tablet, or similar, to take part. Read more: Pixar Animation Studios: 4 secrets to success Perfect your animation portfolio with these tips Top animation tools for digital artists View the full article
  20. Are you sitting on an amazing design portfolio? Or perhaps your studio is overflowing with incredible pieces of art? If so, creativehub wants to hear from you for its free to enter, open-call competition, the Ultimate Solo Show. Illustrators, graphic artists and photographers are all eligible, with the winner receiving a fully funded, large-scale exhibition at theprintspace's Shoreditch Gallery. This is a potentially career-changing opportunity for an artist, and the good news is that creativehub is looking for unexhibited artworks from everyone including emerging, mid-career and professional creatives of any discipline, regardless of the artist's theme or style. If you're interested in taking part, creativehub is looking for "exciting, original, and unexhibited work that forms a single coherent series". Hopeful artists should submit between 8-20 images of their most accomplished work along with a short project description. People could be admiring your work! You can enter until 21 October. Work will be judged by Niall Flynn of Huck Magazine, Kate Edwards of The Guardian and Tom Robinson of Handsome Frank, so be sure to bring your A-game. Reckon you've got what it takes? To enter, simply head over to the Ultimate Solo Show competition page, set up an account, upload your work and follow the submission instructions. After the open call has closed, a shortlist of 10 artists will be chosen by the judges. Each artist will then receive their own online art store and the public will decide on the overall winner via print purchase; so the store that sells the most wins. Exhibiting work in a London gallery is a dream come true for artists, so why not turn your aspirations into reality by entering? Good luck! Related articles: The best online art classes in 2018 Get started with ink drawing 18 phenomenally realistic page drawings View the full article
  21. Today’s world is defined by material excess. If the global population reaches 9.6bn by 2050 as predicted, we will require almost three planets' worth of natural resources to sustain current lifestyles, according to the UN. We need to revise how we create the products powering today’s globalised economy. 15 online packaging design resources For businesses that want to maintain or increase their bottom line, this means re-engineering the fundamentals of their supply chain by developing or adopting new material solutions that achieve a lot more with a lot less. "The smart companies, manufacturers and brands are the ones who are starting to invest in sustainable material innovation," says Caroline Till, co-author of Radical Matter: Rethinking Materials for a Sustainable Future, adding, "There’s a thirst from consumers for this." It’s clear that tomorrow’s leaders will be those who are brave enough to invest in this research today. Transformative materials are those that innovators can turn into new resources, instead of environmental excess For The Future Laboratory's new Material Far Futures report, we’ve compiled the most transformative case studies in material innovation into the 10 paradigms that we believe will disrupt industry in the coming decades, each with original visualisations from Studio Brasch. From fabrics that generate power through motion and new forms of kinetic architecture to bio-engineering’s impact on luxury fashion, the materials of tomorrow will be smarter, stronger, more dynamic and, crucially, less ecologically damaging. The Future Laboratory's report details indicative materials that hold communicative potential, as represented here Alongside assessing these 10 vital areas of investigation, we also interviewed innovators such as Paul Yong and JJ Ismail, the co-founders of Malaysian creative studio Aesthetid. They have created a preprogrammed ink that has the potential to transform food into an intuitive labelling system. They decided to start with the humble egg. "There is a lot of ambiguity in packaging design, particularly in expiry dates, and we identified how eggs have a particular problem. Use by dates are lost when you put the eggs in the fridge and dispose of the packaging," they told us. "There is no natural signifier to say they are not suitable to eat, which is why we developed the Honest Egg concept. We have designed a reactive bio-ink made of natural microbes and a stabiliser, which is a chemical you can program to communicate when the egg is about to expire. The ink is printed as a simple character face, which is very expressive and emotional, contributing to the user experience. Most importantly, it’s not a piece of software or hardware embedded into the egg shell, but a surface ink that is natural, biodegradable and programmable." Genetically engineered matter can purportedly be manipulated at a molecular level to grow a whole new generation of materials We also talked to Sébastien Fontaine and Claude Boes, the senior industrial designer and principal engineer from Goodyear’s Innovation Centre in Luxembourg, about the importance of cross-sector collaboration to create cleaner, more connected cities. They’ve just created The Oxygene, a 3D-printed concept tyre featuring a non-pneumatic structure that absorbs water from the road and provides photosynthesis to convert CO2 to oxygen. "We envisaged cities of the future with tens of millions of inhabitants, where you will have more vehicles and industry, and consequently more problems with pollution," they say. "In a city of potentially 2.5m vehicles, these tyres will produce 3,000 tonnes of oxygen and absorb 4,000 tonnes of CO2 from the air every year." Elsewhere, Puma’s global director of innovation Charles Johnson examines the potential of bacterial feedback systems; Skylar Tibbits, co-director and founder of the MIT Self-Assembly Lab, discusses pioneering research into programmable components; and designer Christina Haxholm looks at how synthetic biology can create a more sustainable fashion industry. It’s unlike any report we’ve ever done, because these materials are unlike anything the world has seen before. It will make you look at everything you touch, wear and consume with totally new eyes. Discover more about The Future Laboratory's new Material Far Futures report now. This article originally appeared in issue 285 of Computer Arts, the world's leading graphic design magazine. Buy issue 285 or subscribe now. Read more: 5 ways to use your design skills to earn extra income 6 times brands temporarily changed their packaging 45 awesome packaging designs View the full article
  22. Want to become a published author? In this day and age, it's easier than you think. All you need is some know-how about self-publishing. The eBook Self-Publishing Bundle can help you get there! These twelve courses will guide you through the process of writing, publishing, and monetising your novel. You'll learn everything from how to write a novel quickly, to how to get paid as a writer. You'll discover different income streams that are available to you on the Kindle publishing platform. Make money doing what you love – get started with The eBook Self-Publishing Bundle for only $29. Related articles: 22 free ebooks for designers and artists Free ebook on Practical Typography Techniques 5 free ebooks for freelancers View the full article
  23. Drupalgeddon 2.0 vulnerability is being exploited again by attackers using a time-honored technique of Shellbot, or PerlBot. View the full article
  24. Thousands of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals are about to be unleashed – and that's just from Amazon. We're around six weeks away from two of the biggest shopping events in the retail calendar, so we've put together this guide for what to look out for, and how to find the best deals at Amazon on Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2018. Of course, the savings won't be limited to just the two days. Black Friday falls on 23rd November this year and Cyber Monday on 26th November, but we're expecting deals to start dropping a week or two before – and to carry on into December, too. So what are the best Amazon Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals we're expecting for designers, artists and creatives this year? And when's the best time to buy? Here's everything you need to know... When to get the best deals at Amazon on Black Friday / Cyber Monday in 2018 We expect to see some deals on Amazon products over Black Friday and Cyber Monday this year Although we expect to see some of the best deals over Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, we know from last year that Amazon will be dropping decent deals for a much longer period than this. In 2017, the retailer launched its Deals of the Day scheme on 17th November – seven days before Black Friday – effectively stretching Amazon’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales period to a massive 10 days. Were the discounts any good? Yes. There were a couple of cracking bargains early on – but we saw the best Amazon deals on Black Friday and Cyber Monday itself, and would expect this to the case again. If the retailer runs a repeat of last year, we’ll start seeing offers from 16th November. How to get the best deals at Amazon on Black Friday / Cyber Monday in 2018 Aside from bookmarking this page, if you’re serious about bagging a bargain this Black Friday and Cyber Monday, you'll need an Amazon Prime subscription. One of the key benefits is that you'll get access to Amazon's Lightening deals 30 minutes earlier than everyone else, giving you a better chance of success. Lightning Deals are time-sensitive promotions that last until the deal expires or the available stock runs out. Amazon launched extra Lightning Deals every day leading up to and over the Black Friday weekend last year – the best ones can start and end in minutes, so those extra 30 minutes are often invaluable. Prime membership will set you back $12.99/£7.99 per month ($6.49 if you're a student) or $119/£79 annually. But if you're not a Prime subscriber already and don't want to commit, you can sign up for a free 30-day Amazon Prime trial and you'll be eligible for Lightening deals (as well as all the other Prime benefits). You can then cancel any time within that 30 days with no strings attached. Just don’t sign up yet – wait until 1st November. Other than being a Prime member, our top tip is to keep an eye on this page in the weeks running up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and get a feel for the savings on offer. Don’t part with any cash until you see the right offer for you. 11 of the best Amazon Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals last year To give you an idea of the sort of discounts we’re expecting this year, here’s a selection of some of the best savings we saw last year – and the good news is we saw similar price cuts over Prime Day this summer. While we can’t promise that we’ll see these deals again, this information should help you make a better judgement call in November as to whether a deal is worth grabbing. Stay with Creative Bloq to get the best Amazon Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals in 2018 We’ll be working around the clock to curate all the best Amazon Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for designers, artists and creatives on this page. We don’t know how good this year’s discounts will be - but we can tell you that our expects will be picking through all Amazon’s offerings and posting only the best-value deals here. So bookmark this page and check back in November. Related articles: How to get the best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals in 2018 View the full article
  25. Finding the best noise-cancelling headphones will depend upon several different criteria, such as sound quality, design, comfort, price, and exactly how much ambient sound they are able to remove. Active noise-cancelling (ANC) has been around since the 1950s, having initially being developed to enable pilots to communicate in noisy cockpits. But it wasn’t until the mid-'80s that Bose developed the first commercially available headsets to feature ANC, and since then it has become the go-to brand for noise-cancelling headphones. More recently, the likes of Sony, Plantronics, and Sennheiser have all produced ANC headphones that compete with Bose in almost every respect. So how do you go about choosing the best noise-cancelling headphones for you? Read on to find out. Not quite what you're looking for? Take a look at our guide to the best wireless headphones around. How to choose the best noise-cancelling headphones Active noise control (ANC) technology is a vital ingredient when choosing the best noise-cancelling headphones. Put simply, what ANC does is isolate external noise – whether it’s coming from an engine, a thunderstorm, or a busy train carriage – and then neutralise it with hi-tech circuitry, leaving you with an audio feed bereft of ambient intrusion. Or at least that’s the hope. This means that you can either fill the empty soundstage with your own music, or simply use your noise-cancelling headphones to dampen the acoustic environment around you. But it isn’t the be-all and end-all. Beyond ANC, you will also need to think about fit, weight, codec support, durability and general sound quality. Which are the best noise-cancelling headphones? Despite the growing competition, Bose still holds the crown of best noise-cancelling technology with its QuietComfort 35 II headphones, but there’s a big caveat: the price tag (around $350/£320). Add to this the uninspiring design and lack of features in the QC35 IIs, and the race starts to get a little more interesting. Close behind Bose is Sony, with its WH-1000XM2 headphones. At the time of writing, they're around the same price or a bit cheaper, depending on where in the world you are. Lots of factors play a part in choosing the best noise-cancelling headphones, and in this post we consider some of the main areas you need to think about when choosing which ones to buy. The battle for best noise-cancelling headphones is a two-horse race between the Sony WH-1000XM2s and the Bose QuietComfort 35 IIs. Bose still rules the roost when it comes to flat out noise-cancelling chops – though the XM2s still do a great job of blocking out lower frequency audio. But in other departments, Sony excels. Out of the box, both the XM2s and the QC35 IIs sound incredible, and there’s little to separate them. However, one thing to note about sound quality is that Bose doesn’t currently support aptX (for streaming hi-res audio via Bluetooth). Do these letters matter? Maybe not so much right now, but increasingly they will, as more devices begin to incorporate the aptX codec. Design-wise, the QC35 IIs are uninspiring, and although Sony doesn’t do a whole lot more with the XM2s, what it has done well is to pay attention to refining details, such as hiding the hinges on the earcups. This gives the XM2s a more premium feel. Lastly, let’s take look at features. This is an area where Sony has tried to innovate, and although the gesture controls on the WH-1000XM2s may flummox some people, we found them intuitive and responsive. Swiping up or down on the right earcup controls the volume; tapping the earcup stops and starts playback; swiping back and forth selects previous and next tracks; and you can even place your hand over the earcup to lower the volume and allow ambient audio to enter the headphones. In a head-to-head fight it’s almost impossible to split these two titans of noise-cancellation, but if you're in the UK, the difference in cost (around £50, at time of writing) could sway your choice. We think the WH-1000XM2s currently provide the best overall combination of ANC, sound quality, comfort, design and affordability. What do you look for in a good set of commuter headphones? Top of the list for some people is noise-cancellation, to block out the constant thrum of rush hour. For others, long battery life might be the most important thing. And then there are the people who need headphones to remain comfortable over prolonged use. The Plantronics Backbeat PRO 2 headphones tick all these boxes, and then some. Weighing just 290g, the Backbeat PRO 2s can be worn for hours at a time without becoming uncomfortable. And with a Class 1 Bluetooth transmitter enabling extended connectivity, you should get up to 330 feet of range (and it also comes with support for the aptX codec). Operating the PRO 2s is done via a set of touch controls on both earcups, and a jog wheel is also set into the left earcup, which enables you to turn the volume up and down. Beyond the basics, the Pro 2s are packed with features. With the flick of a switch, you can allow outside audio through, which is a useful feature if you need to interact with other people whilst commuting. And the PRO 2s also have pressure-sensitive earpads that detect when you don and remove your headphones, playing and stopping your audio accordingly. Brilliant. At the time of writing you can pick up a pair of Backbeat PRO 2s for around $200/£150, which – though not what many would call budget – is still only half the price of most of its peers in this category. And for that you get a set of headphones that sounds great (particularly in the mid-range) and also boasts a build quality that puts some of its more expensive competitors to shame. If you’re looking for a set of noise-cancelling headphones to turn heads, the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Wireless headphones are – hands-down – the best-looking headphones in this category. From the metallic headband with its leather padding and colour-matched screws, to the curved lines of the earcups, all the way down to the violet charge light, every small detail has been considered. And the best thing of all is that Sennheiser has made sure that they sound great, too. Outside of Sony and Bose, Sennheiser’s proprietary NoiseGard system offers up some of the best noise-cancelling we’ve come across. NoiseGard uses four mics to detect and dampen sound, and it effectively removes most steady background noise. (Other notable features include support for aptX and a soundstage that manages to avoid being as claustrophobic as some other over-ear headphones.) For the price, we feel that Sennheiser could have added more features, but the few it does have work well. The power button doubles up for Bluetooth pairing duties, and there’s also a multi-function button that slides for volume and depresses for pause, play, skipping and calls. Beyond the lack of features, there’s little to dislike about the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 headphones, and if you can bring yourself to part with the cash, you won’t be disappointed. Read more: 5 top tips for creating a productive workspace The best VR headsets for 2018 15 ways to stay motivated for longer View the full article
  26. A fake Adobe update actually updates victims' Flash - but also installs malicious cryptomining malware. View the full article
  27. Concerns over data privacy and security push California to roll out the first legislation on connected devices. View the full article
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