Adobe Firefly review: How does it measure up?

Not the best image generator, but we stay hopeful

By Matic Broz, editor-in-chief of Photutorial covering stock media, Adobe, and design. He founded Photutorial while finishing his PhD in computational biosciences.

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Adobe Firefly review

In the ever-evolving world of digital art and design, Adobe has been a trailblazer in providing innovative tools for creatives. With the recent introduction of Adobe Firefly (Beta), the company is taking a significant leap by merging the power of artificial intelligence with the creative process.

This groundbreaking platform aims to unlock endless possibilities for artists, designers, and other creatives by providing AI-powered tools to generate unique images, apply text effects, and manipulate vector artwork, among other features.

What is Adobe Firefly?

Adobe Firefly is a suite of generative AI art tools launched by Adobe in March 2023, designed to seamlessly integrate AI into Adobe’s suite of apps and services, specifically for generating media content. This innovative, AI-powered creative platform is currently in its Beta phase and offers a wide range of generative tools to help artists, designers, and other creatives unleash their imagination and bring their ideas to life.

Firefly is made up of multiple AI models that work across a variety of different use cases, with the first available model focused on the creation of images, text effects, and recoloring vectors. Users can type commands to quickly modify images, and Firefly can generate content brushes, variations on existing images, and potentially transform photos and videos based on user prompts.

By combining cutting-edge artificial intelligence with the creative process, Adobe Firefly aims to transform the way we create and interact with digital art and design. The platform is continuously evolving, with several additional features in exploration that promise to further enhance the creative experience. Currently in beta and without firm pricing, Adobe plans to integrate Firefly into its existing suite of products, revolutionizing the creative landscape for artists and designers.

How much does Adobe Firefly cost?

Currently, Adobe Firefly is completely free to use. However, not everyone has access during the beta version.

We also expect it to become a paid feature of the Creative Cloud once Adobe improves the quality.

Text to image

Adobe Firefly text to image
Adobe Firefly text to image (Image credit: Adobe Firefly; Created by Matic Broz)

One of the most powerful features of Adobe Firefly is its text-to-image capability. This innovative tool allows users to generate unique images by providing detailed text descriptions. By harnessing the power of AI, Firefly interprets the text input and creates visually engaging artwork that matches the user’s description, making it an invaluable tool for artists, designers, and creatives across various disciplines.

The text-to-image feature has a wide array of use cases, ranging from concept art and illustration to advertising and graphic design. Some possible applications include:

  • Concept art: Artists can quickly create visual representations of their ideas by simply providing a text description, making it an ideal tool for brainstorming and iterating on concepts during the early stages of a project.
  • Illustration: Illustrators can generate unique characters, environments, or objects based on text prompts, helping them bring stories to life and add visual depth to their work.
  • Advertising: Ad agencies and marketing teams can leverage Firefly’s text-to-image feature to generate compelling visuals for ad campaigns, social media posts, and other promotional materials, saving time and resources.
  • Graphic design: Graphic designers can use the text-to-image feature to create custom graphics, icons, and imagery for websites, logos, and branding materials, ensuring their designs are unique and tailored to the project’s specific needs.

Adobe Firefly’s text-to-image capability is a game-changer for the creative industry, offering an efficient and flexible solution for generating captivating visuals that cater to various requirements and use cases.

How does it work?

Adobe Firefly comes with an intuitive interface that consists of three main parts: the central area where images are generated, the bottom bar for typing prompts, and the right sidebar to choose style and other settings.

To begin, you should type a description of the image or art you want to create in the prompt box, like “Laptop in a well-lit office.” Unlike some other tools that require in-prompt parameters for settings, with Firefly, you use the right sidebar to make adjustments. Here, you can select from various:

  • Aspect ratios: landscape (4:3), portrait (3:4), square (1:1), and widescreen (16:9)
  • Content types: photo, graphic, art
  • Styles: 12 different options
  • Themes: 15 choices, such as product photo, hyper-realistic, pixel art, etc.
  • Techniques: 12 options, including painting, pencil drawing, doodle, etc.
  • Effects: 9 selections, like bokeh effect, fisheye, etc.
  • Materials: 9 choices, such as clay, origami, metal, etc.
  • Concepts: 6 options, including chaotic, kitschy, nostalgic, etc.

You can also choose multiple options from each category to achieve your desired effect.

Additionally, you can pick various colors and tones (black and white, warm tone, muted color, etc.), lighting options (backlighting, golden hour, etc.), and composition. This level of customization allows you to create unique and tailored images using Adobe Firefly, making it a valuable tool for various creative projects.

Example images

Adobrable teddy bear on the beach with sunglasses Firefly
Prompt: Adobrable teddy bear on the beach with sunglases, a beach ball, and a cocktail; Styles: Widescreen (16:9), Photo, hyper realistic
Firefly a vector infographic of a woman and a man painting a graph
Prompt: Firefly a vector infographic of a woman and a man painting a graph; Styles: Art, vector look
Firefly a photo of people in an office
Prompt: A stock photo of people in an office; Styles: Photo, hyper realistic

Text effects

Adobe Firefly Text effects
An example of a text effect in Adobe Firefly (Image credit: Adobe Firefly; Created by Matic Broz)

Text effects are another powerful feature offered by Adobe Firefly, designed to help users apply styles, textures, or visual enhancements to text elements using a text prompt. This AI-powered tool makes it easier for creatives to experiment with typography and add visual impact to their designs, making the text more engaging and appealing.

With Firefly's text effects, you can transform ordinary text into artwork by simply providing a description of the desired style or effect and the word you want stylized in the prompt box. The AI then generates the text with the specified characteristics, allowing for endless possibilities when it comes to creating eye-catching titles, headings, or captions.

What we like

  • You can enter any style through the text prompt window.
  • The generative AI understands prompts well.
  • You can pick text effect fit, giving you control off "overflow" of the pattern from the text.

What needs improvement

  • You cannot use custom fonts. You're limited to a total of 12 preset fonts.
  • Very noticeable inconsistencies where edges meet.

Recolor vectors (coming soon)

Adobe Firefly is continuously evolving, and one of the highly anticipated upcoming features is the ability to recolor vectors. Although details are limited at the moment, we can speculate on the potential benefits and applications of this new tool based on its name and Adobe's track record of innovation.

Recoloring vectors in Firefly would likely allow users to generate unique variations of their vector artwork based on detailed text descriptions. This feature could significantly streamline the process of experimenting with color schemes and adjusting the visual appearance of vector-based designs.

-- We'll add our review as soon as Recolor vectors is released --

Upcoming features in exploration

Adobe Firefly is an evolving platform, continuously exploring and developing new features to expand its creative capabilities. The following are some exciting features currently in exploration that have the potential to enhance the user experience and further revolutionize the creative process:

  • Inpainting: This feature will allow users to use a brush to add, remove, or replace objects in an image, generating new fill content with a text prompt. This could be particularly useful for photo editing and retouching.
  • Personalized results: Generate images based on your own object or style preferences, making the output even more tailored and unique to your creative vision.
  • Text to vector: This feature will enable users to generate editable vector graphics from detailed text descriptions, providing a seamless way to create scalable and versatile artwork for various projects.
  • Extend image: With just a single click, change the aspect ratio of your image, maintaining the content and visual appeal of the original design.
  • 3D to image: Generate images from the interactive positioning of 3D elements, opening up new possibilities for creating realistic and immersive visuals.
  • Text to pattern: Create seamlessly tiling patterns from a detailed text description, perfect for designing backgrounds, wallpapers, and textures.
  • Text to rush: Generate custom brushes for Photoshop and Fresco from a detailed text description, giving you even more control over your creative tools.
  • Sketch to image: Turn simple drawings into full-color images, making it easier to visualize and develop your ideas.
  • Text to template: Generate editable templates from a detailed text description, streamlining the process of creating layouts for various design projects.

As Adobe Firefly continues to grow and evolve, these upcoming features promise to make the platform even more powerful and versatile, catering to the diverse needs of creatives across different disciplines.

Usage rights of Adobe Firefly generated content

Adobe Firefly, the creative generative AI platform, empowers users to create stunning visuals and text effects based on their prompts. However, it's essential to understand the usage rights and limitations surrounding the content generated using Firefly.

  • Non-commercial use during beta: During the beta phase of Adobe Firefly, all generative imagery and text created using the platform should not be used for commercial purposes. It's important to adhere to this restriction, as using Firefly-generated content for commercial purposes during the beta period could lead to copyright issues and potential legal consequences.
  • Respect intellectual property rights: While using Adobe Firefly, you are responsible for the content you create. Ensure that your creations do not infringe on the intellectual property rights of others. For example, avoid generating images that include copyrighted or trademarked elements, such as logos or characters.
  • Adhere to Firefly user guidelines: Adobe has established Firefly User Guidelines to maintain the quality and integrity of the platform. Users should not create, upload, or share content that violates these guidelines, including but not limited to abusive or illegal content, pornography, hateful or offensive content, graphic violence, or promotion of self-harm. Violating these guidelines could result in action taken against your Adobe account.
  • Future commercial use: While commercial use is restricted during the beta phase, it's anticipated that Adobe Firefly will eventually allow users to utilize generated content for commercial purposes. However, until such a change is announced, it's crucial to abide by the current restrictions.

Freqeuntly asked questions

Can I use Adobe Firefly for commercial purposes?

During the beta phase, all generative imagery and text created using Adobe Firefly should not be used for commercial purposes. Please adhere to this restriction until further notice from Adobe.

What platforms support Adobe Firefly?

Firefly can be accessed on the web and supports Chrome, Safari, and Edge browsers on the desktop. It does not currently support tablets or mobile devices.

Does Adobe Firefly support languages other than English?

Currently, Firefly only supports English prompts. However, Adobe plans to expand support to additional languages in the future.

What is the maximum resolution that Firefly produces?

Firefly can produce images with a maximum resolution of 2000 x 2000 pixels.

Does Adobe Firefly work with video?

Firefly does not currently support upload or export of video content. However, you can share your video support needs via Discord or the Adobe Community forum.


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