Join global creative and marketing visionaries at Adobe MAX 2023

As Robert Half ramps up to sponsor and exhibit at Adobe MAX 2023, we had a chance to speak with Adobe Principal Product Manager for Creative Cloud Services John Nack about advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) — and get a preview of what’s to come at this year’s event.

Here’s what John shared with us:

What is your role with Adobe?

Our team is responsible for helping people make beautiful, compelling content through a really fast, fun experience. I’m one of the product managers responsible for shaping the overall Firefly feature set and experience, focusing mainly on the web experience.

What are you currently working on? 

We’re working closely with everyone, from individual designers to large enterprises, as well as with research and product teams, to determine what’s needed and what’s possible. We’re exploring all kinds of new tech and new interfaces — such as using 3D shapes to guide image synthesis — to offer excellent quality and creative control.

What trends are you seeing in the creative, digital and marketing fields right now?

Everyone’s expectations move at light speed, as does the tech available to meet them.

Clients expect superhuman levels of productivity from creators, requiring not just a million variants of assets to reach across social and advertising channels, but now output (incredible illustrations, video, animation) that previously required large teams to create. And creators expect similar superpowers from their tools, demanding incredible visual fidelity and control.

In your opinion, what are the biggest impacts AI will have on the creative industry in the next six to 12 months?

It’s a period of constant disruption — some welcome, some not so much.

It’s also exciting to be able to produce amazing results that were never previously attainable. But for some people, there’s anxiety and sadness about their hard-won skills feeling less essential. Techniques that people mastered via the proverbial “10,000 hours” of practice are now available — at least in a good-enough form that many will accept — with next to no effort.

On our side, we try to offset the fear by opening up new creative avenues. If, for example, you’re not spending your time painstakingly filling in a gap in Photoshop because Generative Fill can do the job in seconds, what are you freed up to do instead?

Are there any specific AI trends or technologies on the horizon that creatives should keep an eye on?

I’m personally most excited about tools that enable customization and fine-tuning, letting people extend the base model. It’s fun watching my Adobe teammates go back and forth, racing to enable new capabilities — which of course we’ll endeavor to weave together in ways that makes sense.

I’m also incredibly intrigued to see what will emerge around video, 3D and storytelling.

Why is it important for creative, digital and marketing professionals to continually stay up to date on these and other emerging trends? 

The step change in one’s capabilities and efficiency that AI-powered tools can deliver is so great that it’s hard for me to imagine keeping pace in the market without them.

At Adobe MAX, attendees can explore the latest tools in design, video, 3D and generative AI and discover new ways to improve collaborative workflows via 200+ sessions.

If you support a team, what can you do to help keep them up to date on trends and technologies? 

At my old design agency, I loved organizing brown-bag lunch conversations where I could show new tools I’d discovered and learn what my peers were finding. Those in-person meetings remain excellent, and now we have many more tools for collaboration, from Zoom calls to Slack channels. Building a company culture of curious inquiry pays off many, many times over.

You can also divide, conquer, share your learnings and save more when you attend Adobe MAX as a team. Save US$500 per person with group pricing of three or more when you bring your team.

Are there common traits and soft skills you notice among the creative and digital professionals and teams successfully implementing new technologies? 

As always, a ton comes down to “learning to learn.” It’s about being in love with the journey, about being “stubborn on vision but flexible on details.” Individual tools will come and go, just as they have before us — for example, transitioning from literal cut-and-paste to computer-based creation. They’re all just the means to creative ends.

Join Robert Half at Adobe MAX, the world’s premier creativity conference, in Los Angeles and online October 10-12. Save $400 on a full conference pass with promo code M23RH.

Looking for jobs in the creative field? Contact Robert Half today.