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Displaying brush names in the brush panel


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I'm really loving the Affinity Suite, they are fantastic products. But it's become frustrating that my biggest pain point with the desktop software is seemingly something so easy to fix. I'm talking about how you can only see the brush names in the brush panel by hovering your cursor over the brush. For someone who has bought a lot of brushes for the software this is really painful. This has really hampered my ability to find a brush, or even remember what brush I had used previously. It seems like a small thing, but it really isn't. Seeing the names in the panel helps greatly with memory retention and creates a much stronger user experience. Right now I either have to hover over the brush, taking an extra second to let the name pop up (getting me out of my artistic flow and annoying me, and that annoyance meaning I'm unlikely to bother), or I have to not register the name in my consciousness at all, leaving me to hopefully remember later which in a long line of squiggly shapes is the brush I used.

While I realize this isn't the most important feature in the world, it's also really low hanging fruit. And doesn't the ipad versions of the suite already have this (I don't have the ipad versions but I'd swear I saw in a video that they do)?

Is this a result of someone in UI wanting to make the panel look prettier and more streamlined and thinking it doesn't hamper our workflows? Because if so please, please put that strange notion aside. You are most definitely hampering my workflow. 

Please don't tell me we have to wait for 1.9 for this. It's such a small thing but so important. 

 

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I also think it would be useful if the brush name could be visible – switchable via an option, not all the time for everyone – in the Brushes Panel. However, I don’t know where I would like the name to be.

If it is placed to the left/right of the sample then there may not be enough space to display either properly, e.g. some brushes have long names such as “Gouache 04 (for short strokes)”.
If it is placed over/under the sample then either the sample must get smaller, and possibly be less useful, or the vertical space for each brush will have to get larger, thus allowing for fewer brushes being displayed in the panel at any one time.
Placing the name over the sample isn’t an option I would like as it could obscure some detail in the sample which could be important.

I think it’s a good idea, I just don’t know how it could be best achieved.

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22 hours ago, Cecil said:

This is available iPadOS

It is a pity that this is not the case in desktop versions, even optionaly.

I think the main reason why this is in the iPad version is because there is no Tooltip/Hint on tablets, which seems to Serif the right way (unfortunately).

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On 3/19/2020 at 12:54 AM, Pšenda said:

It is a pity that this is not the case in desktop versions, even optionaly.

I think the main reason why this is in the iPad version is because there is no Tooltip/Hint on tablets, which seems to Serif the right way (unfortunately).

Yeah, that's my fear as well. That it's not even that they haven't gotten around to it because of more important priorities, but it's just some guy in the UI department who decided it looked better more streamlined like that rather than be practical and useful about the matter.

If you can see the names in the panel you're registering those names each time you use the brush, you're gaining muscle memory about which brush does what as you use them. It's easy to find them again in the list as well. Hovering over the item just gets in the way and as something that gets in the way the user isn't going to do that, and so they don't build that muscle memory. In the end it's just a list of different squiggly lines which mean nothing to me. 

 

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Tooltip/Hints, meaning the Desktop tool instructions when tool selected are not available, a competent context menu is and a neat feature, press ?, see attachment.

5800B643-D66F-44FE-89EF-47473C342B18.png

Cecil 

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5 hours ago, DragonWhimsy said:

list of different squiggly lines which mean nothing to me. 

I have a similar problem using colors from Presets (Pantone, etc). I need the selected color to remain somehow marked/highlighted so that I can easily select a lighter/darker shade. Unfortunately, the selected/used color is not highlighted in any way, so it is just a confusing array of colored squares in which I easily get lost.

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On 3/21/2020 at 4:09 AM, Pšenda said:

I have a similar problem using colors from Presets (Pantone, etc). I need the selected color to remain somehow marked/highlighted so that I can easily select a lighter/darker shade. Unfortunately, the selected/used color is not highlighted in any way, so it is just a confusing array of colored squares in which I easily get lost.

That would also be a great quality of life feature I'd love to see. 

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  • 1 year later...
  • 1 month later...
  • 1 month later...

What I would find really usefull is being able to see what brush was used for a stroke.
 Can we allready see this?

I am trying to find which brush was used on a stroke in AFD.
I can select the stroke in the layers but it won't tell me which brush.
I know I should have noted it but there...

 

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7 minutes ago, Albo said:

What I would find really usefull is being able to see what brush was used for a stroke.
 Can we allready see this?

No.

Edit: Though, with the stroke/layer selected, and the Brush Tool selected, the More button in the Context Toolbar will show you the details of the brush, but not its name.

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10 hours ago, Albo said:

What I would find really usefull is being able to see what brush was used for a stroke.
 Can we allready see this?

I am trying to find which brush was used on a stroke in AFD.
I can select the stroke in the layers but it won't tell me which brush.
I know I should have noted it but there...

 

I would love to see that too. I feel like there's a lot of low hanging fruit that Serif could pluck that would make the overall brush experience a lot more enjoyable without them even touching the bush engine. The lack of a few simple features is really making using brushes in Affinity a painful and annoying experience for me. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

Yes! Really backwards on their brush selection.. really annoying how the blue outline around the current brush selected disappears when you simply change the size too! Can easily forget which one you have been using.. my current plan is to move all the brushes to the top in a kind of hierarchical system.. that way I can easierly try and remember them rather then scrolling down very similar ones, that look the same.. even the ones that are actually quite different 👎 

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Currently the Affinity brush interaction system forces artists to be a bit random, unless you happen to have some neurological photographical memory. It can be kind of interesting but would like to see an improvement in brush usability for sure ✍️ Basically just keep the blue outline on selected brush always.. I can’t see why anyone would complain if it remained on the brush selected.. I see comments that it is not the same brush anymore if you change the size (or other variables) as besides the point - I mean just changing the size, it’s still the same brush really.. when I work on large scale documents most brushes all look the same small thin line until I increase the size significantly. 

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On 2/5/2022 at 2:04 PM, thomasmoulson said:

Currently the Affinity brush interaction system forces artists to be a bit random, unless you happen to have some neurological photographical memory. It can be kind of interesting but would like to see an improvement in brush usability for sure ✍️ Basically just keep the blue outline on selected brush always.. I can’t see why anyone would complain if it remained on the brush selected.. I see comments that it is not the same brush anymore if you change the size (or other variables) as besides the point - I mean just changing the size, it’s still the same brush really.. when I work on large scale documents most brushes all look the same small thin line until I increase the size significantly. 

I agree, when changing the size of a brush it's still the same brush, at least for the user, no matter what the app is thinking. And every other design and art app out there presents it in the same way.

Speaking of changing brush sizes, another of those low hanging fruits would be a brush size panel. Sometimes that just seems faster than using the size adjuster already in the app or using the dial on my pen tablet. It's an easy feature and it's pretty standard in competing software. 

Also adding the brush name in the history panel. Instead of "Paint Brush Tool" it would be something like "Paint Brush Tool: Chalky Brush 1" or something. Clip Studio Paint has that feature and it's great for remembering what brush you just tested out 3 brushes ago and want to go back to.

Just those 4 really easy features to add would enhance my experience with the program so much. Displaying the brush names in the brush panel on desktop, keeping the selected brush highlighted even when changing sizes, a brush size panel with different brush sizes already all laid out, and the brush name in the history panel. Super easy to add, super standard in design and art programs. And such a huge improvement to the brush experience. All without even touching the underlying brush engine. They're quick additions that add a ton of value. 

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