Adobe has opened its free Photoshop plugin for textile design to a public beta in tandem with the product’s launch during Fespa.
Now on the sixth beta, the Textile Designer plugin is available to all Photoshop licensees as of 4 May via the Adobe website and is being showcased for the first time at the expo in Munich this week.
It is designed to address the particular needs of designers working in the textiles market and is compatible with both traditional and digital textile printing techniques. The plugin is also recommended for PSPs when working on short runs or prototyping textile jobs.
“Many people are familiar with the Adobe brand and our reputation for delivering tech to be used in manufacturing,” said director of print technology and strategy Mike Scrutton.
“With Textile Designer, we are closing the loop for companies that want to design and then manufacturer the stuff they see on screen. Page layouts tend to work in nice rectangles for paper print, but this is not the case in textiles, and colour is very different in that you have to be precise and it can react to various natural fabrics and man-made materials in different ways.
“Consistency is difficult to attain so we have talked to users about the elements of the workflow they are struggling with so we can change it to keep everything efficient and also so textile designers can continue to enjoy the non-destructive benefits of Photoshop.”
For colour consistency, the new plugin allows colour definitions to be brought directly into Photoshop so that they no longer need to be meticulously propagated, which previously meant late-in-process changes would result in designs having to be restarted entirely.
Textile Designer also makes use of a check box tool to identify repeating elements of a print, boiling down an initially complicated process to a “single button”, according to Scrutton, and letting the software accommodate the varying requirements of different fabrics and techniques.
Beta testing will continue in its sixth iteration until the end of the year, with users able to provide feedback for the further development of the software.
Adobe is showing at stand B6-C90 in Messe Munich until Friday (17 May), where the new plugin is also being run as part of Fespa’s Print Make Wear workflow showcase.