Adobe, renowned for its pioneering software like Photoshop, has unveiled a groundbreaking material capable of changing color and patterns in real-time. While still in its proof-of-concept phase, the technology holds tremendous potential for applications in advertising and fashion, according to the company.

Christine Dierk, a member of the design team behind the innovative material, expressed the perpetual quest of creatives for fresh canvases. Dubbed Project Primrose, this material features reflective light-diffuser modules embedded in oversized sequins, effectively creating a wearable digital display.

This revolutionary fabric opens doors for advertisers to create dynamic walking billboards, as its images can seamlessly change in real-time. It empowers wearers to showcase content generated using Adobe Firefly, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Stock, and Adobe Illustrator, offering versatility in both static and animated presentations that respond to the wearer’s movements.

Dierk highlighted the fabric’s interactive potential, likening the sequins to miniature screens crafted from smart materials. Adobe officially introduced Project Primrose at its Adobe MAX 2023 event in Los Angeles, showcasing its transformative capabilities to the world.

However, Adobe faces significant challenges ahead. Past endeavors in wearable technology, such as Google and Levi’s collaboration in 2015 to develop interactive clothing and Google Glass, have not gained widespread adoption. Similarly, the partnership between Google and Saint Laurent in 2017 to launch a backpack with Jacquard support did not achieve significant traction.

Nonetheless, Adobe’s research on Project Primrose, published in the journal UIST ’22: Proceedings of the 35th Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology, outlines the technical foundations of the material. Leveraging reflective-backed polymer-dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC), a common electroactive material, the system enables dynamic light diffusion within everyday fabrics, paving the way for a new era of interactive and visually stunning attire.

By Impact Lab