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Everything posted by GrahamMYC

  1. I have thoroughly enjoyed using the Affinity Designer Workbook. I have learned an enormous amount, and probably forgotten a lot already! (But it is there for me to go back to). I should explain that I am an enthusiastic amateur, not a professional graphic designer. A professional might see through issues I see as problems, but I think Serif can get a strong place in the amateur market with their brilliant new Affinity products, so I hope the professionals will forgive me. I have a few criticisms, which I offer in the hope that things can get better. 1: A general crit is that when you say “on the toolbar” (for a function such as “divide”, it would help to say which part pf the toolbar is being referred to. For example: the divide function is just one button in a long row. As an inexperienced user, I have spent lots of time hunting for such functions) 2: In the panther exercise, when you apply the divide functon it is very hard to find out where you are unless you have previously named ALL the layers so you can see what has happened. No doubt this is easy for a professional graphic designer, but amateurs should be advised to label the layers. Until I did this I could not work out how the divide function worked. 3: To an experienced user it is obvious, but in the panther example, the distinction between drawing paths (for the lines outside the main animal) and CLOSED shapes is not obvious and should be clarified. [the fact that when inking, the shapes must be closed is not made clear] That said, the way the help files are constructed means that even when you have fallen into this pothole, it is easy to move on, so a definite plus there. 4: In the next (reflections) exercise, I found that the colour ‘things’ (colour wheels, gradient displays etc) in the context toolbar were very confusing when working with gradients. I came to the conclusion that when working with gradients it is far better to use the colour functions in the main panels rather than the context toolbar. 5: The book tends to show colour wheels, but they are tough for an amateur to use. I found it far better to key in the HSL numbers quoted in the book on the sliders. This is badly explained, and I wasted a lot of time before I worked this out. I have never used HSL numbers before but I am thinking of making a ‘shortlist’ of useful colours to have as an aid. Is there a bit of mileage there for help to the amateur user? 6: A small point: Designef workbook p 170 "Lighting windows selectively". I could not get this to work (Windows !0 system). Not a major issue, though, Well, that is as far as I have got so far, It is an exhilarating ride. The combination of excellent video tutorials, and clear explanations of core skills in Ihe beautifully presented book make this inevitably intense learning process fun So at least 8 out 10, Serif. Affinity is fun.
  2. I have just loaded the Nik collection into AP windows (1.5.45) .All works. Tried to load Photozoom Plus 6 but it failed. However, I think AP may have enough horsepower without needing to use it. Is there a list of compatible plugins for AP Windows anywhere?
  3. The DAM is crucial. At present, I am managing my images in Photoshop Elements Organiser, which I find excellent. BUT If I use Affinity as an external editor, the processed images do not nest back into Organiser easily. SO I am hoping that your new DAM will allow me to (a) transfer my existing stock of images from organiser to the Serif DAM retaining the nesting of RAW and processed images (called stacking in organiser, but completely different from photo stacking) (b ) allow me to nest processed images in the same way (it means that you only see the most recently processed image in the nested group, and when you use copy for a selecyion of different images, it is only the top one of each nested group you copy unless you open the "stack". Very useful) © include such features as the event and people selections as applied in elements organiser. It is a tall order, but you have shown with the brilliant ffinit products that you can match, and perhaps exceed the performance of Photoshop and its derivatives.
  4. Well done Serif. The combination of Designer and Photo is immensely powerful and easy to use. Tutorials excellent. I hope your staff have a good Christmas Party to celebrate Just bring on the DAM please!
  5. I have been a Serif customer for a decade. But when I started shooting RAW I was advised t switch to Adobe Elements For me that was a great success. Elements Organiser was far better than Photostack, and the RAW processing in Elements Editor was wonderful I nearly upgraded to Lightroom BUT.... I heard about Affinity. So I decided to wait and see what happened, Slighty frustrating because I am a dedicated Windows user. I took part in the Windows Affinity Designer Beta, and was blown away by its capability. I have bought the first release. Now we have the Windows Affinity Photo Beta. On tests so far it has been brilliant apart from a couple of glitches that have been reported to Serif It is exciting to be involved with the process. BUT To make it all work, Serif must deliver a DAM that surpasses the capabilities of Elements Organisr. I am sure they can do it. Soon Please! WELL DONE SERIF! SO FAR SO GOOD! (but remember that is what the guy said as he fell past the 20th floor having jumped off the roof of a skyscraper)
  6. I have been using Designer to create detailed maps by capturing tiles as screen images then overlaying them (reducing opacity of top layer while aligning). This currently has to be done by drag and drop. In some other Serif applications, this can be done by using the up and down arrows on the transform panel to get a much more accurate placement. This would be a useful additonal feature, and I suspect it would not be too difficult to provide
  7. I am a windows user. The Affinity designer beta arrived just in time. For a variety of reasons, I had become disatisfied with the Serif management systems such as organiser and photostack, and as I started using raw for shooting photos, I was advised to use photoshop elements. This turned out to be very satisfactory, and I have found that the photoshop elements organiser functions very well. Indeed I was at the point of considering upgrading to Lightroom when I was mailed about Affinity. Even the Windows Beta of Designer is exciting, and I have looked at the Mac tutorials on Affinity photo. I am impatient to try that too. But I understand that it is intended that there will be an effective Data Asset Management system. It is major operation to convert a large library of images (I have about 20000) So I hope that the Serif Affinity DAM will have the following features as a minimum. 1: Effective automatic stacking of images, especially adjusted versions of the same image (with copy taking only the top one, but move taking the whole stack) 2: Face recognition and marking 3: Mapping of photo locations 4: Event grouping 5: Tagging of images. 6: Effective backup (full and incremental) 7: The ability to import catalogs from other systems, especially Adobe standards, including transporting the features listed above. I am very amateur, though my flickr site will shortly pass 1 million hits. I am sure that these features and many more required by professionals have already been included in the spec, but I thought it worth putting my views across. Apart from using PS Elements to process Raw Images, I have been a loyal Serif user of the mainstream Plus products produced by Serif, including Photo-, Draw-, Web-, Page- and Movie-, Plus. Affinity has stopped me deserting, and I cannot wait to see the New Affinity products for Windows as they emerge. Regards Graham Rabbitts
  8. Helo. I am Graham. I have been a Serif client for many years, and have visited the site in Keyworth (it is close to my son's house). I have used many of the Serif products for a variety of purposes. After I retired I needed a low cost product range for presentations, Logs of my sailing cruises, my website, and producing the Christmas card mailing list and labels. My Cruising Logs are the main feature, and in 2003 I won the Royal Yachting Association cruising log competition. I tried to develop a CD on how to do it with help and sponsorship from Serif, but the technology was really moving too fast. Since then. my Logs have got better, and many have been turned into videos using MoviePlus (which I understand will not be further updated). Much of that material can be downloaded from my website which is at http://www.ariadnetrue.co.uk/. My photo library on flickr has some 20,000 images and will pass 1 million views some time this year. see https://www.flickr.com/photos/r36ariadne/. None of my utput is commercial. I have just examined Affinity Designer, and it is impressive. But my main interest will be in the photo application and the interaction with products like PagePlus. It would help my evaluation to have some idea of the product range that is proposed and the timetable - to the extent that such information is not commercially sensitive. A few years ago, I upgraded my photographic equipment and started shooting images in raw. I was advised to use Photoshop Elements for processing raw images, and I have been doing so since. I also use the same product for organising and cataloguing my images. The cataloguing and backup of 20,000 images is a daunting task, and I have yet to be persuaded that Photostack is as good. Recently I have almost been persuaded to upgrade to Lightroom, but I am hoping that the Affinity Windows range will deliver the horsepower I am looking for, especially with regard to raw processing.
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