Photoshop: Smart filters, Blur Gallery, Layer FX and any raster masks ignore Artboards

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  • Updated 4 weeks ago
  • (Edited)
I've discovered a HUGE performance increase opportunity!
All filters ignore artboards and use hidden "real document size" instead. This makes photoshop to technically redraw all the hidden pixels.
Situation: you have 6-10 artboards with for ex. layout variations of some design (print, banner outdoor, UI, etc) each artboard has ~50-100 smart objects with some filters/raster masks/of filters. As a result, it becomes almost impossible to edit anything because PS has to redraw all the useless space hidden by artboard bounds and it takes ages!

Here is a video demo (also attached to the post):
https://service.crazypanda.ru/v/monosnap/2019-03-10-18-50-48-MoUt6.mp4



I think it's possible to change how artboards are rendered. Something will definitely break with that change but the win from that will be VERY big.

As an alternative, I think there should be a switch in the settings: "Use old Artboards" which will make all the scripts and plugins backwards compatible. Plus you can create a new scripting API for the new methods instead of replacing old ones.

Imagine even when you create a solid colour it is not actually cropped by the artboards under the hood.
Basically, artboards are acting like simple rectangular vector masks but regular vector mask defines bounds.
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Alexander Vinogradov

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  • frustrated

Posted 1 month ago

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eartho, Champion

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Yes, it's a little crazy how they implemented artboards. Instead of 1 canvas per artboard, you have 1 canvas for all artboards. Seems like they rushed this tech out the door for release and then haven't made any significant adjustments since. 
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Alexander Vinogradov

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Could you please share this post to some of your colleagues so they upvoted it and maybe suggest some edits to the text?
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eartho, Champion

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Honestly, i'm not sure what will ever be done about this... Artboards are supposed to be a tool for professional users, but it's not a professional tool... meaning that as soon as you expose Artboards to professional workflows, everything falls apart.
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Alexander Vinogradov

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For us, it's impossible to avoid using artboards. I've built a production pipeline at my team using them for numerous reasons. We make MMO games played by millions of users every day and produce tonnes of art content delivered in 9 languages to 40 countries.
Here are a couple of examples:

Christmas assets bundle. Passed to other designers for localization and then the set of PSDs passed to the client side programmers.
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/s/9vfwg87m7pxzlwx/Christmas2018_Bundle.png?dl=0
- artboards = human error protection when a change has to be introduced to several artboards
- artboards = versioning a whole seasonal update
- artboards = keeping changes to one state consistent with others

Offers design.
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/s/qc62fhgu1ko0qu9/Offers2018_12_12.png?dl=0
- uses Adobe Generator for instant continuous export of all art assets. Assets reused in all artboards.

Some random screen design.
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/s/376cjjurluihpvn/Reports.png?dl=0
- it would take us tremendously more time and would bring a high risk of errors in states' layout design if there were no artboards.

There are 3712 Layers in such design document and 1422 groups. We have around 300 screens in our MMO game.
https://service.crazypanda.ru/v/monosnap/2019-03-17-02-39-42-02so5.png

There are no dedicated UI design tools other than Photoshop that suit real-world production at a scale. All other tools (name any: Sketch, Figma, Affinity, XD, Illustrator) lack vital irreplaceable features for us and for the whole games development industry.

Taking all that into consideration — I'm sure artboards just have to be fixed asap even if it will take a big portion of dev. resources:
- game dev industry is bigger then print/advertising in terms of money it's making using Adobe products as tools.
- print/advertising has similar problems when you have to re-layout key-visual into 20 different formats.

@Adobe please, just postpone 1-2 "content aware tech" updates and ask your graphics programmers to fix artboards.
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Alexander Vinogradov

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Alexander Vinogradov

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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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I've asked engineering to take a look. It would likely mean rearchitecting the way that Smart Objects/Filters are implemented. 
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Alexander Vinogradov

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Thank you so much! I understand that this can be a big deal because I code on GLSL and C# a little while prototyping VFX for our games. But I sincerely think that this can give a big performance boost for the workflows that include artboards. You can see detailed examples of our workflow and a glimpse of the production pipeline above in the comments.
3700 layers! and it works! But I believe it can fly )
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Alexander Vinogradov

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