Moleskine have added to their range of “smart notebooks” with a collaboration with Adobe: the Moleskine Adobe Creative Cloud Connected Notebook. (Yes, it is a bit of mouthful!) It’s a notebook, paired with an app, that allows you to painlessly get your drawings into editable files into Photoshop or Illustrator. The iphone’s camera essentially acts as a mobile ‘scanner’. The page design features four boxes that allow you to get your image lined up perfectly.

Our NoteMaker head designer, Rachel, took the notebook for a test drive to see how it performed. We’ve included her impressions below and her ‘step-by-step’ demonstration on using the notebook and app.

Designer impressions of the Moleskine Adobe Creative Cloud Connected Notebook

Paper: The paper is thicker than standard Moleskine paper. It’s also very smooth, lovely to draw on and didn’t smudge (when using a brush pen from Craft Design Technology). It isn’t, however, fountain pen friendly.

Cover: It’s a hard cover notebook, which makes it great for carrying around and keeping it looking great. The cover is embossed with a lovely pattern and the Creative Cloud logo – subtle but adds interest and texture.

Did it work?: Yes, exactly as promised, and it was quite simple to use.

Who would this suit?: A busy artist or designer on the go, or one who doesn’t have easy/ongoing access to a scanner.

Price: The notebook isn’t especially cheap, although it’s not a lot more than other Moleskines of the same size. However, if you think it’s for you, it would be better value to buy a few at a time and get a multi-buy pricing discount (NoteMaker’s discount for buying three at a time is about $7 per book).

What else you need: You’ll need an Adobe account (create one free here), an iphone and the free Moleskine Creative Cloud Connected app.

Step-by-step demonstration of how to use the app

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Step 1. Create your illustration in the Moleskine Adobe Creative Cloud Connected notebook.

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Step 2. Open the Moleskine Creative Cloud Connected app and tap ‘Capture’ to take a photo of your sketch/drawing.

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Step 3. After taking the photo, you will see a red line joining each square on the page. The lines help correct the alignment distortion.

If you are not happy with the lighting, tap the Filter Settings on the bottom right of your screen. You can adjust the lighting if your drawing is too light/dark. If you’re not satisfied, just reshoot.

Step 4. Once you are happy with the image, tap Process Image. You then can choose your format. SVG conversion converts your JPEG into vectorised paths in Adobe Illustrator. (I used this option in this demo).

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Step 5. Then save the file into your Creative Cloud account. You can now open it on your desktop and is ready for you to work on.

Here, I opened the SVG file in Illustrator, copied the vector paths and pasted it into Photoshop, where I then worked on the final artwork. (Note: You can’t open the SVG file in Photoshop).

 Final image after it has been edited using Photoshop

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Buy the Moleskine Adobe Creative Cloud Connect Notebook at NoteMaker