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Mark Oehlschlager

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Everything posted by Mark Oehlschlager

  1. I've discovered a new bug in Designer 1.7.2 for the Mac: fractional inches round to the nearest tenth of an inch in the Guides Manager dialog box, even though in Preferences I've set inches to show up to three decimal places. If I enter a margin of 0.25 inches into the Guides Manager dialogue box, the figure is rounded to 0.3, though the margin is correctly placed at 0.25 inches.
  2. When I invoke the Guides Manager in Designer 1.7.1 to set up column guides, I notice that the Margins fields do not accept changed values. Is this a bug, or am I missing something?
  3. @MCFC_4Heatons I've just checked with my 1.7.2 version of Designer. The bug I was experiencing seems to be quashed. I'm now able to set margins in the Guides Manager – even when there is an artboard. However, I've discovered a new bug: fractional inches round to the nearest tenth of an inch. If I enter a margin of 0.25 inches, the Guides Manager rounds the figure to 0.3, even though the margin is correctly placed at 0.25 inches. My application preferences show that my inches are supposed to show up to three decimal places. Very weird and disconcerting.
  4. I was recently in an Apple Store playing with the new iPad Pros, and noticed that there is a wider array of sample files available to iPad versions of Designer and Photo. For example, there is an amazing photorealistic rendering of the Star Wars droid, BB-8, available through the iPad version of Designer. Is there a way to get access to these sample files from the desktop versions of Designer and Photo?
  5. @Chul -------- Postscript To simplify, I should just add that the PPI ratio (or Affinity's DPI) really only has meaning for those preparing raster art for print. The key measurement for image quality in print is the ratio of pixels per inch on the page. For artwork intended for electronic display, the key measurement is simply the pixel dimensions (e.g., 600px by 800px). If Google tells you that they want you to prepare your art for a 600px by 800 px canvas, that's all you really need to know. You're not preparing this for print. On the other hand, when preparing raster art for the Web or mobile apps, I suppose you could make use of Affinity's DPI setting in the following way: 1) set up your canvas with your intended display dimensions in inches and the DPI setting at 300. This will become your @3x art. Then you can create down sampled versions of that art where a DPI setting of 200 will work for your @2x art, and a DPI setting of 100 will work for your @1x art. These roughly correspond to 288 PPI, 192 PPI and 96 PPI.
  6. @Chul The reason that your 10.5 point type appears large to you on your canvas is because at 300 DPI (actually PPI) your canvas dimension translated into inches is 2 inches wide by 2.67 inches tall. (600 pixels ÷ 300 Pixels Per Inch = 2 inches; 800 pixels ÷ 300 Pixels Per Inch = 2.67 inches.) Also, points as a unit of measurement are a fixed unit of measurement just as inches and millimeters are. Traditionally, typographers and printers measured type size in terms of points, and there are 72 points to the linear inch. So, 12 point type (the distance from the lowest point of a descender like the tail of a "y" to the highest point of an ascender like the vertical stem of a "d") would take up a vertical space of 1/6 of an inch (12/72). So, on your 2" x 2.67" canvas, your 10.5 pt type takes up just over 1/8" vertically, from descender to ascender. As a side note, DPI (Dots Per Inch) is incorrectly used by many, including the Affinity developers. They conflate the concepts of DPI (Dots Per Inch) with PPI (Pixels Per Inch). True DPI (Dots Per Inch) is a ratio of printer's dots per inch: the number of tiny specks of ink per inch laid down by an offset, laser or inkjet printer. To add to the confusion, the web and app development industry has redefined DPI to mean "Device Pixels Per Inch". Whereas early computer monitors adopted a pixel density of 72 pixels per inch, contemporary monitors and handheld displays have radically increased their pixel densities to upwards of 400 pixels per inch. And web and app developers have been forced to draw distinctions between "device pixels" (the actual physical pixels of a display) and "display pixels" (the arbitrary fixed dimension for design and layout purposes, which is assumed to be 1/96 of an inch). Having said all that, you should just interpret "DPI" in the Affinity user interface to mean "PPI", because what's really being described is a ratio of Pixels Per Inch. If you are preparing raster art for high-quality, commercial offset printing, the rule of thumb is to prepare your art with a pixel density of 300 PPI (Pixels Per Inch). This provides the print service provider enough pixel data for his image setting equipment to translate your electronic imagery into much higher resolution printer's plates (C, M, Y, and K), where the density of ink dots (DPI or Dots Per Inch) can be as high as 2,400 dots per inch. If you are preparing raster art for a desktop laser or inkjet printer, you can get away with pixel densities as low as 150 PPI. When it comes to preparing artwork for electronic displays, which come in a maddening variety of device pixel densities, designers are encourages to build three versions of their artwork: @1x (where art is to be displayed on older desktop monitors with a device pixel density of 96 PPI), @2x (where art is to be displayed on higher resolution displays with device pixel densities of close to 192 PPI), and @3x (where art is to be displayed on even higher resolution displays with device pixel densities of close to 288 PPI or higher). Typically the coding of web pages and applications will determine the pixel density of the device being used, and will display the appropriate version of your art (@1x, @2x, or @3x). From the designer or layout artist's point of view, he/she would indicate the intended display size in terms of points, which by modern convention assumes a display pixel ratio of 96 PPI. So, for electronic display, if your are creating vector art, to begin, assume you are creating art for a desktop monitor. with a pixel density resolution of 96 PPI (or DPI in Affinity terms). If you want your artwork to appear to be 1" x 1", create your art to fit within a canvas size of 96 px by 96 px. That will be your @1x version. Use the Affinity Export Persona to automatically generate the @2x and @3X versions in addition to your @1x version. If you're creating raster art, you'll have to work backwards from large to small. For an image that's meant to display at 1" x 1", build your art on a @3x canvas size – in this case 288 px by 288 px. Then you can export copies for a @2x size (192 px by 192 px) and an @1x size (96 px by 96 px). I hope that clarifies some issues, and doesn't overwhelm you.
  7. Good question. In Photo, one can go to the Image Resize command and uncheck the Resample option before changing the DPI, which will preserve the pixel dimensions even as it changes the ratio of pixels to linear inches. In Designer, there is no option to uncheck/disengage Resampling. If you've set up a document that is exactly 600 x 600px with an initial DPI setting of 72 pixels per inch and you wish to change the DPI setting to 300 pixels per inch, in the Document Setup dialog box you must make sure that the Document Units are set to Pixels – NOT Inches or Millimeters or any other physical, real-world, linear measurement. If your Document Units are set to pixels, you can change the DPI setting from 72 to 300 and your pixel dimensions will be preserved. The only change will be to the ratio of screen pixels to linear inches/millimeters on a printed output. On the other hand, if you have Document Units set to inches or millimeters in the Document Setup dialog box, and then you change the DPI value from 72 to 300, Designer will resample the pixel data (in this case upwards, increasing the total number of pixels per linear inch/millimeter such that your new document pixel dimensions will be 2,500 x 2,500 px rather than your original 600 x 600 px). If you want to preserve your pixel dimensions while changing the DPI in the Document Setup dialog box, make sure your Document Units are set to pixels.
  8. I'm running the latest 1.7.2 Affinity apps and have discovered that raster brush work can be painfully non-responsive. For example, using the recolor brush over a 300ppi image can take up to 60 seconds to begin to render, and even then the recoloring slowly materializes. Many complex DAUB brushes are not immediately responsive. I'm running Mac OS X, High Sierra, 10.13.6, on a late 2012 iMac, 2.9 GHz Intel Core i5; 16 GB RAM; 512 MB VRAM (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M). Is there a recommended performance setting in the application preferences that would resolve this?
  9. Mark Oehlschlager

    Settings for Improved Performance?

    Thanks all. FWIW, attached is a shot of my preferences. Annoyingly, I'm not able to reproduce my problem. I'll just keep monitoring the situation to see if I can better document when and why it happens.
  10. In Photoshop, when setting up template files for brand application mockups (generic books, bottles, boxes, etc. shot in perspective to which branded graphics will be applied), over the top of the base image layer I'm able to embed flat art as so-called "Smart Object" layers, to which non-destructive distortions and blend modes are applied to make the flat art conform to the shape of the 3-D object below. Once the Photoshop template file is constructed, It's a trivial matter apply new branded graphics to the 3-D object by double-clicking on the Smart Object layer, opening up the embedded flat art layer in a separate window, pasting in new flat art, then closing and saving the changes. All of the original non-destructive distortions and blend modes associated with the Smart Object layer get applied to the newly added art. Is there an equivalent to Adobe's Smart Objects in Affinity Photo and Designer? If not, is there an alternative Affinity method for creating the type of template files I've just described?
  11. Mark Oehlschlager

    New Betas after 1.7.2 Release?

    @Patrick Connor Hi. Now that 1.7.2 versions of the Affinity apps have shipped, what's next? Will there be new 1.7.3 Betas for users to download and test in the near future?
  12. How does one go about creating duo-tone images in the Affinity Suite apps such that the two spot colors used will separate correctly onto the spot color printing plates? I can't find a way to do this, and though i can simulate a duo-tone effect with adjustment layers and effects, the final result always separates out as CMYK.
  13. @Palatino Are you able to create spot color channels in Photo? Perhaps there's a way, but I can't find a way. Any art I create in Designer or Publisher involving spot colors always get interpreted as either RGB channel separation or CMYK channel separation when opened in Photo.
  14. @silvergelatin Yeah. I hold out hope that this will get sorted out before the next official release, but Serif have not published a roadmap of features to be built and so it's uncertain. It would also be nice if they would build in a pre-press studio panel that could preview color plate separations so that we wouldn't have to pay for Acrobat Pro to run prepress checks.
  15. There is an interface bug in the Zoom/Pan pop-up menu for all three Affinity apps that was not corrected in the 1.7.1 releases and which persists in the latest betas (Designer, Photo, Publisher Notice that the down-facing arrow for the pop-up menu is clipped and un-clickable.
  16. Mark Oehlschlager

    Display Bug in Zoom/Pan Pop-up Menu for all Affinity Apps

    Right, but it is an interface bug – a fit and finish issue that Serif should be aware of and should fix.
  17. I just applied the technique described in the video above to a denim image I found through Unsplash.
  18. In a Photoshop tutorial, I remember seeing a presenter using the Liquify feature with a very large brush to manually edit a flat image of a fabric to create the appearance of folds. He then created a layer on top of his image filled with 50% grey in Softlight blend mode do do a bit of non-destructive dodging and burning by painting alternately with white and black. Here's the video: I think the part about using Liquify to create the illusion of folds is around the 21:00 mark.
  19. Mark Oehlschlager

    Designer: 3D Objects

    To my knowledge, one cannot create actual spheres (though one could fake it with a circle and a radial gradient), and one cannot revolve or extrude shapes into 3D models (though one could fake things like a bottle shape using a flat vector profile and gradient fills). As for warping text and other artwork to conform to the illusion of a 3D form, there are no vector warp tools in Affinity Designer, but one can rasterize vector art or a bit of text and then use the Mesh Warp tool from Affinity Photo to convincingly "bend" the art around the "3D-like" object.
  20. Mark Oehlschlager

    Affinity Photo Customer Beta (

    I had been following the Betas for all three Affinity apps prior to the release of the 1.7.1 store versions. I now own the 1.7.1 suite for Mac. I would like to be able to test and follow the latest Beta versions of the Affinity apps. However, I notice that the old Betas I have installed (e.g., Photo no longer launch, and instead present a challenge screen for a valid product key. Questions: If I have purchased versions of the entire Affinity Suite 1.7.1 installed from the Apple App Store, can I run the latest Betas from the Affinity Suite without conflict with the store bought versions (1.7.1)? Is it necessary or advised to delete the old pre-1.7.1 beta apps in oder to install the latest beta apps, or is there a way to run an update from the pre-1.7.1 betas? If I must first delete the pre-1.7.1 betas before downloading and installing the post-1.7.1 betas, are there support files and system files associated with the old pre-1.7.1 betas that I must delete? If so, where are these support/system files located, and what are they titled? Are these support/system files clearly marked so that I don't accidentally delete support/system files for the store-bought 1.7.1 apps? Thanks for your attention and assistance.
  21. I would like to request that Affinity Photo add the features of pattern tile creation and fill. One should be able to define a rectilinear selection as a pattern tile, and be able to use that as a repeating fill. The pattern tile might be a repeating graphic motif, suitable for a wallpaper pattern, or it might be a material texture used to render surfaces. In the case of creating seamless texture pattern tiles, it would also be useful to build an offset filter that would allow one to offset a tile diagonally and wrap the edge pixels so that a clone stamp tool or an in-painting brush tool could eliminate visual seams for the repeating tile pattern.
  22. Clearly the translation problem is not unique to Serif. What's the solution? Are there German abbreviations that could be used? Is it possible to create custom layouts for panels in foreign language versions of the software?
  23. Mark Oehlschlager

    Designer Export

    Brenda, I've just downloaded your file and exported to several PDF standards including "for print" and "for export". I could not reproduce the problem you describe. I'm running Designer 1.7.1 for Mac.
  24. InDesign has a File > Package... command that collects the InDesign document, along with fonts used and linked artwork into a single folder. This makes it easy to collect all the necessary assets for a single project to either archive or to share with a printer or collaborator. Does/will Publisher have a similar feature?
  25. Mark Oehlschlager

    Product Design

    Ah! I see. That makes sense. Thanks for the reply.