2017 Preconference

Preconference bundles

Bundled with a MAX full conference pass, these preconference trainings run from one-and-a-half to three days, so you can fully immerse yourself in a topic.

Preconference courses

Preconference courses give you the time to go deep with a product or skill. They are full-day and half-day presentations, demonstrations, and hands-on exercises led by Adobe and industry experts. We’ll provide the equipment; all you have to do is show up.

(Preconference courses are an additional fee to the conference fee.)

Full-day preconferences

October 17 : Tuesday 9am–5pm

  • Creative Synergy: Your Imagination Realized with Creative Image Compositing

    Expand your creative repertoire by learning how to shoot professional photos and use them to build both photo-realistic and surreal composite images. Join internationally recognized Sony Artisan photographer, artist, author, and educator Katrin Eismann and photographer, educator, author, and compositing artist Seán Duggan as they guide you in this action-packed hands-on preconference course.

    You’ll start by learning how lighting, posing, and framing subjects can make the difference between good and great photography. Then you’ll spend time shooting photographs of models and artifacts in a variety of settings — gaining shooting techniques and learning how to take photos that work better for compositing. You’ll have the chance to experiment with professional Sony mirrorless digital cameras, posing, lighting, props, and backgrounds. Back in a lab, you’ll learn Photoshop compositing techniques to bring your ideas to life. Using the photos you took and Adobe Stock images, you’ll create a composited poster that reflects your vision of 'other worlds, dreams and realities'.  The group will share its work in a slide show at the end, and you’ll leave with your printed poster.

    You'll learn new skills and immediately put them to use to create imagery that exceeds what you previously thought was possible. No previous photography experience is necessary, but an intermediate understanding of Photoshop, selections, and layers is strongly recommended. Please bring a camera or a phone and all required cables or card readers.

    Type: Mac lab & Photoshoot

    Instructors: Katrin Eismann & Seán Duggan

  • Designing and Prototyping Better User Experiences

    User experience is the key to business success. The pressure on designers to deliver a compelling and seamless journey across a myriad of devices and possible outcomes is higher than ever. And the modern design process is a complex one: user research, information architecture, wireframing, interaction, visual design, prototyping, and user testing. See how Adobe Creative Cloud applications, including Photoshop, Illustrator and Adobe XD, make it easier to design and prototype experiences that can be shared with and tested by users and stakeholders before moving into production.

    In this session, which combines hands-on work and lecture, you’ll learn:

    • A framework for selecting appropriate research methods given the product life cycle stage
    • How to leverage Adobe XD for wireframing, hi-fi design, and prototyping to speed up the design process
    • Techniques for bitmap editing in Photoshop and icon creation in Illustrator
    • Best practices and pitfalls for moderating user testing sessions

    Type: Workshop and Mac lab

  • Hand-Drawn Type & Lettering: From Line to Sign

    Good design needs good typography and great design needs great typography. Individual letters are the base for nearly all forms of communication and by understanding how today’s letterforms emerged, we can better design letterforms for the future. In this pre-conference workshop, stretch your creativity by designing a unique and totally distinctive letterform. You’ll begin with an abstract form derived from everyday objects and then grow and refine your form in accordance with how alphabets of the world have evolved. The abstract beginning of the letterform will become real as it is adapted and modified. Your creativity will expand as your glyph evolves.

    By the end of this pre, you will:

    • Have a better idea of how curves, loops, and stems interact in lettering and typography
    • Improve your skills at both examining and drawing letterforms
    • Understand how letterforms evolved throughout history to fit into modern landscapes, like that of Las Vegas
    • Leave with your unique letterform to use in your creative journey

    Type: Workshop

    Instructor: Dr. Shelley Gruendler

  • Creating Dynamic Media for Social and Web

    Don’t miss this fun, hands-on class where you’ll create a range of dynamic media that’s perfect for the web and social media.  Join Richard Harrington and Pamela Berry as they show you how to create media that is unique and engaging using a DSLR or Mirrorless camera and applications like Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Photoshop. This class is perfect for all experience levels and features hands-on learning where users will capture images and video onsite and transform it into dynamic online content.

    • Capture and create cinemagraphs
    • Animate a logo for the web
    • Build a looping profile video for social icons
    • Create stop motion animation for social ads
    • Capture green screen material for a virtual presenter
    • Optimize video for delivery to web and social platforms

    Type: PC lab

    Instructor: Richard Harrington

  • Build a Responsive Website in Adobe Muse – No Code Required

    Break free from template-based web design without having to learn HTML, CSS or Javascript. In this one day, hands-on workshop, you’ll see how easy it is to use Adobe Muse CC to create cutting edge web designs including flat design, scroll effects, and responsive design, for any sized screen. Plus, learn about integrating a third party shopping cart — one of over 1,000 widgets available to extend Muse functionality. Learn tips to preview, test, and update before you take your site live. You'll leave with the knowledge of how to deliver professional, unique desktop and mobile sites that meet the latest web standards, load quickly, are search engine optimized, and automatically adapt when viewed on any sized screen or device.

    Type: Mac lab

    Instructor: Dani Beaumont

  • Create a Character in Photoshop

    Learn the techniques to create a character just like those in animated films. Former Disney animator/director Aaron Blaise will teach you how to create a compelling animal character. During this hands-on preconference lab, Aaron will take you through his step-by-step process for creating unique creature designs in Photoshop. He’ll demonstrate concepts and techniques, and then you’ll apply them to your own project. You’ll leave with a creature you can be proud of. Participants should have a strong background in Photoshop and be ready for a fun learning day.

    Steps for this artistic journey include:
    • Working with a strong thumbnail sketch—Aaron will have one for you to start with
    • Roughing in the design
    • Refining the initial drawing
    • Adding color, shadows and highlights
    • Enhancing with photographic textures and how to create or find textures
    • Adding final details such as reflected light, deeper shadows, brighter highlights, and experimenting with focus

    Type: Mac lab

    Instructor: Aaron Blaise

  • Building Design Systems with Adobe XD, Illustrator, and Photoshop

    A UX design system that scales is critical for teams to use as a common design language, to build products in an efficient and flexible way, and to deliver consistent experiences that users can easily understand. UI kits are not the solution to this challenge of consistency and collaboration. How can we as designers lay the foundation that achieves this vision and allows for unique design solutions?

    In this full-day, hands-on workshop with designer, developer and trainer Brian Wood, you’ll learn a process for creating a design system using Adobe XD, Illustrator, and Photoshop. You’ll discover where to find inspiration, how to determine the right elements and components for your system, ways to accommodate multiple teams and stakeholders, and how to test your system.

    Working with Adobe XD, Photoshop, and Illustrator, you’ll learn best practices to build your design system, from creating artboards for your projects in XD and adding content from Photoshop and Illustrator, to testing, sharing and exporting final XD projects.

    Type: Mac lab

    Instructor: Brian Wood

Half-day preconferences

October 17 : Tuesday 1–5pm

  • Skipping the Dark Room: Hands-On Techniques in DIY Printmaking

    We’re skipping the darkroom. Shoot, we’re even skipping the computers. The prints we will be making will revolve around customizing an exclusive version of a poster for Death Valley National Park from the NPS 100 series by Type Hike. We are going to incorporate your real live drawings with existing prints to make truly unique prints! Mama will be providing you screens for screen printing, linoleum for cutting, and National Park-based art. All you need to show up with is inspiration. We’ll be drawing, carving, and exploring techniques with screens to avoid the darkroom since we won’t have one. You’ll leave with a basic understanding of screen and linoleum cut printing, a stack of prints from both processes to prove it, and quite possibly some inky hands.

    Type: Workshop

    Instructors: Nick Sambrato