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Not too long ago, in a land not very far away, I came across the concept of focus merges to dramatically increase depth-of-field of photos, especially macro ones. This was one of the reasons I bought Affinity Photo, as having learned the technique I had a requirement for affordable software the could do a good job of a focus merge. The focus merges I have done thus far have typically been hand-held and of fairly large 'macro' subjects such as mushrooms and flowers. Generally, these consist of 10-30 shots that Affinity Photo churns through and merges in very short order. Due to the hand-holding, there are often a few ghosting artefacts around some edges, but nothing that a bit of AffinityPhotoShopping can't sort out. Yesterday, I came across an unfortunately-demised beetle which seemed to be a perfect opportunity to try a more technical, tripod based, photo merge. One of the reasons for this post is to showcase the ability of Affinity Photo which coped with a quite staggering amount of data (the other reason is a desire to share what I think is a quite stonking photo!). To achieve the focus merge, I took 270 20-megapixel raw photos, totalling 7.8 GB of data. These I then processed into 16 bit/channel PNGs using RawTherapee which came to 24.7 GB. I then fed them into Affinity Photo's Focus Merge and let it churn away. It took just over 1.5 hours to complete the merge, and I'm very pleased with the results: In case anyone is interested in the hardware involved, here's the list: Camera: Panasonic DC-G9 Lens: Olympus 60mm f/2.8 Macro Images shot at: 0.5 sec, f/3.5, ISO 200 CPU: AMD Ryzen 1500X RAM: 16 GB DDR4 2666 GPU: nVidia Geforce GTX 970 I largely seemed to be CPU-bound during the various processing stages. Memory usage from RawTherapee and Affinity Photo pottered around the 2-3 GB mark; RawTherapee thrashed all 4 cores / 8 threads in the Raw -> PNG conversion (but still took ages; I left it going over night, so I don't know quite how long...) , whilst Affinity Photo used 1 core / 2 threads for the stack. A lower core count / faster GHz processor would therefore seem to be an advantage during the stacking process in Affinity Photo, whilst RawTherapee clearly liked all the cores it could get it's sticky little paws on. I included my GPU in the list as Affinity Photo does seem to use it a bit: 5-8% GPU activity shows up in Task Manager during Focus Merges; I've no idea if it makes a difference though. In conclusion, I'm very impressed with the ability of Affinity Photo to deal with huge amounts of data without choking. A few more threads might be nice though
Dear all, as seen in the Beetle Builder Example, I am wondering how I can move a Background to the combined three Artboards, (The Leaflet's Artboards, Panel, Back and Front). Or do I have to cut some background in three equal parts and move them separately? :)
So I worked on this orchid tonight for about 3 hours and I am extremely happy with how it turned out! :-) I might put some bitmap texture in the light area of the background, but I'm sitting on that for now until I am sure. As for my other image, that was last night's practice with Affinity and I am not as sure about it. I love the shape of the beetle, but I'm not sure about the portrait on its back anymore. I am relatively happy with the background, but again, I'm still thinking about that one! So, if you have comments or suggestions please let me know.