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basementjack

how to do transparent work in Affinity Photo?

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Is there a tool for creating images with transparent regions?

 

I have a stock photo of a cat on a white background, I'm trying to make the background transparent so I can export to a PNG and import into powerpoint, where the cat will be placed over different color backgrounds.

 

Also, is there a way to get Affinity Photo to display the background in a grey and white checkerboard pattern so we know that a region is actually transparent?'

 

Lastly, I know this is the questions forum, but the export options in photo are surprisingly complicated, partially because of the transparency issue, but also, there is no usable preview of what you're going to get when you export something. 

 

We really need WhatYouSeeIsWhatYouExport WYSIWYE!

 

For an example of this:

start a new AF document - any size

Grab the paintbrush tool and draw a single line

switch to the export persona

What you see on screen is a black line on a white background

Click to export at 1x

What you get is a black line on a transparent background

(I know this can be fixed by setting the 'matte' but the trouble is, then, I'm not working with that matte color as I do my work)

 

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Hello basementjack,

Welcome to Affinity Forums :)

 

To remove the white background around the cat go to menu Filters ▹ Colors ▹ Erase White Paper.

 

Regarding your second question, If you delete part of the background layer you will see the checkered transparent background.

[EDIT] There's also an option to set the background transparent in the New document dialog.

 

The Export Persona will be improved soon and will offer realtime previews of the export settings.

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I think something is broken.

 

If I create a new document with a transparent background I see the checkerboard. All is good in the world.

 

If I create a new document 'without' a transparent background, the workspace has a white background, but that's not included in any export.

 

It's as if both documents actually have a transparent background internally, but one displays a white background during editing and one displays checkerboard.

 

This is quite confusing during export, as the non-transparent background is not being included in the exported image!

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Hi MEB, 

 

Hello basementjack,

Welcome to Affinity Forums :)

 

To remove the white background go to menu Filters ▹ Colors ▹ Erase White Paper.

 

Regarding your second question, If you delete part of the background layer you will see the checkered transparent background.

 

The Export Persona will be improved soon and will offer realtime previews of the export settings.

 

I have the same problems like basement jack. 

 

I often have to copy graphics from PDF documents to use them in high quality for special guides or so. 

 

I have to know, which of the imported content is white and which is transparent. But there is no chance to know this except in the already exported PNG. "Erase White Paper" does nothing in my case. 

 

In addition: is there a way to lets say select and delete everything that is white outside closed (black) paths or shapes (from b&w PDF documents)? Until now I used Photoshop Elements in which I was able to do this with a magic brush that selects everything inside or outside shapes and I was able to delete the fill easily. 

 

Any suggestions?

 

Thanks in advance and BTW: I love the Affinity Tools like Photo and Designer. Keep on the good work. In my opinion it would be nice to have he forums separated for Designer and Photo. Just a thought ...

 

Kind regards, 

 

hp

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Hi hape13

 

Regarding the transparent background:

In Affinity Designer, when you open a PDF, you can set its background to transparent going to the Colour section in the Document Setup... dialog (File ▹ Document Setup...) and checking Transparent background. You should then be able to see which objects are transparent and which are not. This option is not available in Affinity Photo.

The Erase White Paper is a filter to remove the white from raster layers. It doesn't work with vector objects.

 

Regarding selecting and deleting objects from a PDF:

If the elements on the PDF are vector objects (paths and shapes) you should be able to select and delete them directly with the Move tool. Simply click on them (or draw a selection marquee around them) and press delete. If they are overlapping other background shapes press and hold ⌥ (option/alt) before starting drawing a marquee. This will avoid to select the background shape.

If you are having trouble selecting a particular object/shape you can "force" select it, pressing and holding ⌘ (cmd) while clicking on it. 

 

Sometimes, depending on how the file was structured originally, there may be various objects nested inside groups and layers. In that case it may be easier to select them directly in the Layers panel. If you press and hold ⌘ (cmd) while clicking on them in the Layers panel you can select several at once for deleting.

 

Without seeing a specific example it's difficult to be objective on what may be the best approach.

The Help documentation have a section just for selecting objects. You can find it in Affinity Designer Help ▹ Object Control ▹ Selecting objects.

Hope this helps a little.

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Hello MEB, 

 

thanks for your help. 

 

Hi hape13

 

Regarding the transparent background:

In Affinity Designer, when you open a PDF, you can set its background to transparent going to the Colour section in the Document Setup... dialog (File ▹ Document Setup...) and checking Transparent background. You should then be able to see which objects are transparent and which are not. This option is not available in Affinity Photo.

The Erase White Paper is a filter to remove the white from raster layers. It doesn't work with vector objects.

 

This works fine for me. Maybe this feature would be nice for AF also for users that don't own both programs. 

 

Regarding selecting and deleting objects from a PDF:

If the elements on the PDF are vector objects (paths and shapes) you should be able to select and delete them directly with the Move tool. Simply click on them (or draw a selection marquee around them) and press delete. If they are overlapping other background shapes press and hold ⌥ (option/alt) before starting drawing a marquee. This will avoid to select the background shape.

If you are having trouble selecting a particular object/shape you can "force" select it, pressing and holding ⌘ (cmd) while clicking on it. 

 

Sometimes, depending on how the file was structured originally, there may be various objects nested inside groups and layers. In that case it may be easier to select them directly in the Layers panel. If you press and hold ⌘ (cmd) while clicking on them in the Layers panel you can select several at once for deleting.

 

This helps also for a few things. But may PDF documents contains a huge amount of shapes. So it isn't easy to find the right one to be edited or it will take very much time. I provided a link for my example. I am searching for a very quick way to fill transparent areas like the marked one and AF or AD should simply know which is transparent and to be filled and which is white, black or any other color. I believe you'll probably know this feature from even Photoshop Elements. 

 

Screenshot

 

I tried the selecting brush but this takes very much time too and ain't really exact enough for those purposes. In other cases the selecting tools are much better than PS but in this situation I am searching for a better way. The help file couldn't help me. And BTW: I was looking for a crop tool in AD like in AF. I know that I can forward my document from one to another and back but I think an easy way to crop would be nice in AD too. 

 

Thanks again, 

 

kind regards

 

hp

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I watched a you tube video on how  to create photo text with reflection. A transparency tool (looks like a wine glass) it's used to drag over the reflection. I can't find this transparency tool (looks like a wine glass) in my tools. Where can I find it?

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Hi edgarcia57,

There's no "upgrade path" since they are complementary programs. Affinity Designer is a graphic/web/UI design and illustration application, while Affinity Photo is a RAW developer/converter and photo/painting editing app. If you have bought the application within the last 14 days and you aren't happy with your purchase you can request a refund. See this page for more details (for Windows). If you have bought the Mac version you can request a refund through Apple support.

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