Adobe Captures My Attention

A classmate in my Producing Media for Learning course at CU Denver enthusiastically recommended the Adobe Capture mobile application and I was immediately intrigued to learn about an exciting Adobe app. As an avid and longtime user of Adobe’s Creative Suite desktop software, I have yet to find many of their mobile apps useful for me. I was interested to see what kind of app, a free one at that, could fulfill the promise made on their website “to transform the things you see into creative building blocks for all your designs” (

Adobe Capture is available for iOS and Android platforms and is designed to inspire users to convert digital images captured on a mobile camera or saved on a mobile device into a variety of design assets that can then be shared through the cloud to use on a desktop, and/or used directly in other mobile apps to create digital designs. Below is a breakdown of Adobe Capture’s various functions, SHAPES, TYPE, COLOR, MATERIALS, PATTERNS, and BRUSHES:

  • If a mobile user wants to convert captures to clean vector images (which usually requires Adobe Illustrator), the SHAPES function creates crisp, high-contrast, and high quality images.
  • Ever find a font out in the real world you would love to use? Just use the TYPE feature and Adobe Capture will help you match it!
  • Grab colors from anywhere with the COLOR function that allows users to create  customized color palettes from captures.
  • Apply images and textures to 3D objects with the MATERIALS feature.
  • See the world through your own adjustable kaleidoscope with the PATTERN function.
  • Turn your captures into brushes for your digital painting with the BRUSHES feature.

 See slideshow below for examples of functions (all images my own):

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

While I have not had a chance to play around on my desktop computer with the mobile assets I created yet, I have used them in other mobile apps and so far Adobe Capture has delivered what it promises. The app interface was fairly intuitive and easy to use, especially for an experienced Adobe user, but I think simple enough for any smart-device user to pick up. The app encourages experimentation with assets and has just the right amount of customization to make the experience meaningful but not overwhelming (as some Adobe software can be). I found Adobe Capture to be a fun and useful app. I even created a design for a creative online group I participate in, DS106 Daily Creates, where I was challenged to illustrate a word from a book:

Design by Laura Seward inspired by Adobe Capture and DS106 Daily Creates @ds106dc

I anticipate that once I get back to my teaching school year I will find even more uses for Adobe Capture around the classroom and school. I could see this app being very useful in an educational setting, provided all learners had access to adequate devices and connectivity to take advantage of the application’s capabilities. I would love to use this app to expand upon photography scavenger hunts I facilitate for my students at the beginning of digital art classes to start team- and content-building. Typically the photos taken by students for the scavenger hunt activities are shared right after the activity in class, and rarely used again. If students were encouraged to create Adobe Capture assets during their scavenger hunts, not only would they learn a very cool mobile tool, they would also begin connecting their outside, everyday experiences to their designs in my classroom! The ability for students to learn to create beyond fancy computers and expensive software is invaluable to building lifelong creators.

I highly recommend the Adobe Capture app for digital creatives and will be sharing it with my social and education circles. Please share with me your experiences with this and similar apps. Thank you for reading my review, now go create!

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