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Rhys Stenhouse

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Everything posted by Rhys Stenhouse

  1. Well I don’t know much about Blender’s other modifiers, but you’ve made me realise that vector apps could really use a subdivide feature for nodes!
  2. AD 1.5’s Clip to Canvas setting (View > View Mode > Clip to Canvas) is a very useful new feature, thanks for adding it. However, two things that would improve this setting: 1. Allow Clip to Canvas to be set on or off by default for new documents i.e. to be able to set it when no documents are open, and have that setting be respected by new documents. Having to set it manually for each new document is a small extra hassle. 2. Allow Clip to Canvas to be used when working with artboards. The setting currently is greyed out in the menu when working in a document that contains artboards, so working outside of an artboard is currently impossible. (I’d imagine these are mostly likely underway for future updates already, but wanted to make sure they got a mention!)
  3. This is slightly less of a feature request and more a way for me to get an idea out of my head and out there where others might be able to find it. I think it would make a great feature for Designer, and to be honest I’m quite surprised no other app has something like this yet. Yesterday I was putting together the artwork for a logo (in Illustrator CS3, so not entirely analogous to AD), and part of the design consisted of a series of leaf shapes arranged around a central point of rotation. What I had to do to achieve this was draw my original leaf shape, and then use the rotate tool and duplicate that leaf shape the number of times I needed. If this arrangement then didn’t look right, I have to undo/delete all of the duplicated leaves until I only had the original drawing, then edit that drawing and re-duplicate it to test my changes. It was a clunky way to go about the process, but to my knowledge there still isn’t a better way to do this. -- What I’m proposing is a feature that allows you to take an object/group/layer in the document, and apply a live mirroring or instancing feature based on a defined plane(s) or point of rotation. The workflow would be something like: 1. Select the object that you wish to mirror/instance 2. Add a mirror/instance effect/adjustment to the object 3. You would then have the ability to customise the mirroring/instancing effect based on: - Type of mirroring (plane or point) - Whether the object is “reflected” when mirrored or retains its original appearance - Number of planes to mirror on (if using a plane mirror) - Position of the point or plane(s) - Angle of the plane(s) (if using a plane mirror) - How many instances to create around the point (if using a point mirror) - What angle distance should separate instances (if using a point mirror) When editing the original object while the mirroring effect is active, all mirrored instances of the object would update live based on the mirror effect’s settings. The parameters of the mirror effect could be updated live in a similar way to adjustment layers. Finally, there would be an option to commit the mirroring and convert all instances to editable shapes. -- I would see this as a powerful companion to the new symbols and assets feature, as it would allow for even more flexibility when working with reusable objects. In particular, this would be very helpful when creating patterns and other designs requiring symmetry and repetition. EDIT: I should also mention that this idea is inspired in part by 3D apps such as Blender, Maya etc, which make use of mirroring when creating meshes.
  4. Just posting to add my support for picas, I’d mentioned it on Twitter a while back but never actually got around to posting a request here. More than anything else, it’ll be an especially useful feature to have ready for when Affinity Publisher is released – picas are at their most useful when designing full-page layouts and multi-page documents, I use them all the time in InDesign.
  5. The best way to do this would be using the built-in Font Book app: Open the Font Book app. Font Book separates out fonts pre-installed on the system and fonts installed by the user – the User tab will contain all of the fonts that you’ll want to move over. Select the fonts in the list that you want to export, then go to File > Export Fonts... (or if you want to export all user fonts, select the User tab and then go to File > Export Collection... Save the fonts in the place you want them to go, and Font Book will create a folder with the font files for the fonts you exported. Move this folder onto your new Mac. To install the new fonts in bulk, open Font Book on the new Mac and go to File > Add Fonts... then browse to the folder you created. Select it, and click Open. Font Book will then read the folder contents and install all of the fonts it finds!
  6. I’d like Affinity apps to have a keyboard shortcut for the “Place…” tool. When I’m using InDesign for page layouts, I often have to place a large number of files in the document, and the Cmd+D keyboard shortcut really comes in handy for that as it saves having to navigate up to the menu bar each time. However it really bugs me that this isn’t consistent between different Adobe apps – some have a different shortcut for it, while others simply lack the function entirely. As Affinity apps are designed to be interoperable, and since placing files is already a feature in both Designer and Photo it would make sense to give this tool a consistent keyboard shortcut between the apps. Having the ability to select multiple files to place at once while in the Finder modal window (again similar to InDesign) would also help massively.
  7. Overall I quite like the refresh, although I do have a couple of minor critiques: The colour gradients are a touch too extreme, and a subtler graduation might be more effective. I wouldn’t get rid of them entirely because a well-done gradient does a great job of adding volume to a shape. In fact, most “flat” design actually uses subtle gradients and very slight borders and shadows to imply depth! Compared to the old icons the highlight colours are a bit washed-out. More vivid colours would in my opinion would be more attractive. The purple for Photo is closer to lavender now, but the colour that stood out to me in the old icon was the magenta in the top corner of the triangle. I have a few thoughts on some of the other criticisms posted in the thread. Firstly, I don’t think the argument that an icon should demonstrate the app function holds water. I have in my dock right now a mix of OS X defaults, design apps, web dev apps, and communication/chat apps. A few have obvious descriptive icons (iTunes = musical note, Transmit = truck, Mail = postage stamp), some have more abstract descriptive icons (Safari = compass, which you can sort of extrapolate to be users “navigating” the web), but the rest are a mix of logos (Tweetdeck, Blender, Slack) and totally random graphic elements (Coda is a leaf, MAMP is an elephant and Finder is, well, a face). Most of these apps are recognisable to me and to the others who use them. We figure out what apps do and how we use them not by the icon, but by actually using them, or by hearing or seeing others use them. People discover apps through word of mouth or by searching online, not by dissecting icons. So what purpose does the app icon serve? Recognition. When I’m looking for my app in my dock (or Finder, Launchpad, cmd+tab app switcher), I look for the icon. It’s a visual anchor, so I can quickly spot it and launch or bring into focus the right app. This means that the main feature of a good icon has to be its distinctive visual qualities – and what qualities do people usually notice first? Colour and silhouette. We don’t tend to focus on fine details because we aren’t stopping to look, we’re just finding the icon so we can get to the app and get to work. Now when I look at the old Affinity app icons, something else I notice is how the small details don’t show through very well at normal size. While they may look great on a website promo, in the dock/Finder/Spotlight the details are obscured. Designer’s pentips and Photo’s camera lens are just sort of blobs of colour in the middle of a coloured triangle. -- It’s easy to see the old and new icons isolated on a page and then get caught up in examining the details – the old icons have more depth, they’ve got better descriptive elements, the new icons are flatter and more abstract. But it’s really important to consider how the icons will be used before making snap judgements on which is better. This is why I think the new icons are more successful. By stripping out the details and focusing on simple shapes and bright colours, Affinity’s icons will stand out from all the other icons they’re surrounded by and catch my eye much quicker than before.
  8. Perhaps take a look at the sensitivity of scrolling? It can get a little twitchy.
  9. OK, disabling all user fonts solved the problem so it must be an issue with a particular font I have installed. I’m going to have some work to do to find out which though ;)
  10. I disabled the font, but the problem is still there. I tried disabling the other suspicious names, but nothing has changed. There’s no other enabled fonts that I can see which have unusually long names.
  11. I have this same issue too, but in the font menu I can’t see any font names which are long enough to cause the expansion – none of them fill the dropdown box to more than half the width. The only thing I can see is a few dingbats and display fonts tend to be the longest names, but even then they aren’t stretching to fill the whole space. The Linux Biolinium Keyboard font in the screenshot is the longest visible name in my font menu.
  12. The dropdown box in your screenshot is actually the text leading/line height, but you do also get font sizes in px. The px measurement is pixels. Usually you’d use pt for measuring type for print, but in web design a lot of type measuring is done in pixels so as to get consistent sizes on different screens. I believe it’s showing up because you’ve set your document units to be measured in px, which is a new feature added in the beta. If you want to change it back to pts you can either change your document units to pts in “File > Document Setup > Document Units”, or in “Preferences > User Interface” there should be a checkbox for text sizes in points.
  13. I’m just using the Designer beta to lay out some typography, and I’ve noticed that the snapping tool only works with the usual object geometry of bounding box, midpoints, centre points etc (for both art text and text frames). Obviously with typography, the baseline is an important point of alignment, and Illustrator currently includes it in its snapping options. I’d love for the Affinity suite to include the same functionality.
  14. That is true, but making adjustment layers to emulate colourblindness would probably not be possible, and making adjustment layers to target specific print profiles or RGB profiles would be very difficult to do as well. Adobe’s method of doing this is having a “Proof Setup” option in the View menu along with a “Proof Colours” toggle to quickly switch between your working colours and your proofing colours. This is a much more convenient way of doing things, although I’d always be interested to see if the Affinity team could think up an even better implementation.
  15. A feature I often use in Adobe apps is the Proof Setup option. In InDesign this allows me to check how document colours will look across different print and screen colour profiles, including some greyscale profiles. In Illustrator and Photoshop this menu option also checks how document colours would appear to someone with Protanopia or Deuteranopia-type colourblindness (for some reason this feature isn’t in InDesign). The colour profile previewing is nice to have, but I usually focus on just using the greyscale profiles as a way to test contrast in my artwork colours, and in Illustrator I often like to check that I’m not using colours that wouldn’t read well for a colourblind person. I’d love for Affinity apps to include greyscale and colourblindness preview options, as well as any other preview modes for visual impairments that may be useful. Having the ability to proof specific colour profiles would also be useful.
  16. I would probably prefer to give snapshots meaningful names up front, so I would like an implementation as Photo does it now. Perhaps a “quick snapshot” button or keyboard shortcut could be provided in addition to the current system?
  17. Snapshots aren’t something I’ve come across before but I’ll be looking out for them as a feature from now on, seems very useful! I can see myself using it to mark major revisions to a document, a little bit like code project version numbering. I’d definitely like this to be implemented across all the Affinity apps, not just Photo.
  18. @MEB: Sounds fine to me – it’s just something that I immediately got to like switching over from Illustrator, and I wouldn’t want to see it being removed through popular vote.
  19. Just as long as this feature doesn’t disappear entirely – I actually quite like it enabled, in Illustrator I’m often accidentally selecting the wrong layers when shapes are overlaid.
  20. Hi folks, I’ve been using Designer to draw up a logo which relies quite a bit on geometry. I’ve been trying to work around the lack of diagonal or custom guidelines by using lines drawn on another layer at the angles I need and using snapping, but it doesn’t seem to be working like I was hoping. Through conversation on Twitter it seems that some of the features I was hoping for aren’t included yet. Quick description of what I’m trying to do: Basically I was hoping to be able to have my nodes snap to the lines and to the intersects between them. I have snapping enabled, including “Snap to shape key points” and “Snap to object geometry”, but the only geometry that nodes will snap to is other nodes or line endpoints – it doesn’t seem to snap to anything else that “object geometry” should describe. Examples: (I’ve eyeballed the measurements in these images by zooming in up close to the intersects, but better snapping would make this hassle-free) In this image, the two white object nodes should be able to snap to the red/blue intersect and the red/cyan intersects. In this image, the nodes should be able to snap to the green/blue and green/cyan intersects. (Note the guideline which one of the shapes is snapped to – ideally this feature would also cover intersects between guidelines and regular lines) Feature requests: I’d like the snapping function to have an option allowing snapping to lines, including line midpoints and intersections between two lines. I’d like to be able to create guidelines at angles and at specific lengths, so I can (for example) draw a guideline starting at a particular point on the page and drawing this at an angle for a specified length, rather than just extending through the entire document window. When dragging a new guideline in from the ruler, I’d like for it to snap to object geometry including nodes and lines. (I noticed this just before posting – if an object is selected as a snapping candidate then guidelines will snap to the bounding box, but not to other geometry within that object) I know that these features are probably already being worked on, but I wanted to highlight them as to me they’re very important tools for creating more technical artwork such as logos, diagrams, infographics/charts etc.
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