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I used to use Illustrator, Photoshop and Designer a lot. Changed to Affinity suite some time ago. Have been working on logos over Christmas. One of my designs has over 90 layers. Another 30 layers. My experience in all 3 AF pgms with layers has been painfully bad regardless of the number of layers.

When I move a layer up or down there is a 50-50 chance it will NOT end up where I put it. I am tempted to call it a bug. Yes, I am careful not to click on the icon unless I want it to be subsumed under that layer.  Ending up in the wrong place when moving a layer happens so many times in the course of a project, in all 3 AF apps, that I consider the feature to be almost unusable. Some software designer has decided to do my thinking for me with the design of this "feature". I almost NEVER want one layer to be automatically subsumed by (incorporated in, made subordinate to, stuck under, hidden within) another. I suggest you go back and make it simple again. KISS.

Or, put in a switch so I can turn that time-wasting feature OFF. I'll group or merge layers when/if I want to.

There are lots of good features in the Affinity suite to be sure but AFF's hide & seek layering is not one of them.

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Are you carefully watching the blue highlight as you move the layer in the Layers panel? Its position and size indicates what's going to happen when you drop the layer.

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 20H2 (19042.685),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop (2021-04-06):  32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz
, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Affinity Photo 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1024 Beta

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47 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

Are you carefully watching the blue highlight as you move the layer in the Layers panel? Its position and size indicates what's going to happen when you drop the layer.

I am careful about where I drop it, but somehow it rarely ends up where I think it' should.

What does the size of the blue highlight indicate?

Sam

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I suppose Walt is talking about the width of the blue highlight. Highlight with full width of the layers palette means, that the dragged layer is placed beneath the layer above the highlight. Highlight with cropped width means that the dragged layer is placed inside (as a child/sublayer) of the layer above the highlight. Vertical highlight right from a layers thumbnail means that the dragged layer becomes a layermask of this layer.

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Right, @chessboard.

In pictures:

image.png.c3ec78aaa75358cdc9d81330768cff20.png full width, accomplished by moving such that the mouse is located to the left of the target layer icon when you drop the layer.

image.png.b5354feb81946cd5b816a0d2e640b7a8.png partial width, accomplished by moving such that the mouse is located to the right of the target layer icon when you drop the layer.

image.png.7277ba13ece39acee9bb157e4df1b3d3.pngsmall vertical highlight, accomplished by moving such that the mouse is located on the target layer icon when you drop the layer.

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 20H2 (19042.685),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop (2021-04-06):  32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz
, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Affinity Photo 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1024 Beta

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4 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

Are you carefully watching the blue highlight as you move the layer in the Layers panel? Its position and size indicates what's going to happen when you drop the layer.

To be fair I think the blue line/box should be more contrasting at times and is a little bit subtle for my old eyes

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2 hours ago, chessboard said:

I suppose Walt is talking about the width of the blue highlight. Highlight with full width of the layers palette means, that the dragged layer is placed beneath the layer above the highlight. Highlight with cropped width means that the dragged layer is placed inside (as a child/sublayer) of the layer above the highlight. Vertical highlight right from a layers thumbnail means that the dragged layer becomes a layermask of this layer.

This is a joke, right? Ditto the screen snips from Walt. You guys just want to  have fun with an old man by screwing up my mind, don't you?  😒

Give me a few minutes to try it out to see if you are on the level. I'll get back to you. ☁️

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28 minutes ago, SamSteele said:

This is a joke, right? Ditto the screen snips from Walt. You guys just want to  have fun with an old man by screwing up my mind, don't you?  😒

Give me a few minutes to try it out to see if you are on the level. I'll get back to you. ☁️

🙂 You will get a lot of "This is how it works" here. 

Anyway, placing elements above, below or under other elements is a huge part of working with these programs. Most of my drag and drop operations are also mostly "move above" og "move below" operations but I misplace a lot of elements while doing it because of a badly implemented drag-and-drop feature. The usability is not great. It is too easy to make mistakes and the visual indication of what you are about to do is baaad. I use a great mouse for my work - I can imagine that with a less than perfect pointing device the layers panel is Hell.

In a sub-group the visual indication is even smaller and the difference between "place under" and "place inside" is microscopic.

Serif should improve the visual help and also the program so you don't make mistakes so easy. User experience designer stuff. 

Cant upload image *!#🤬"#* -200 error *!"#!🤬"#*

  • "The user interface is supposed to work for me - I am not supposed to work for the user interface."
  • Computer-, operating system- and software agnostic; I am a result oriented professional. Look for a fanboy somewhere else.
  • “When a wise man points at the moon the imbecile examines the finger.” ― Confucius
  • Not an Affinity user og forum user anymore. The software continued to disappoint and not deliver.
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13 minutes ago, Jowday said:

Serif should improve the visual help and also the program so you don't make mistakes so easy. User experience designer stuff. 

I couldn't agree more, Jowday. 

Well I did a layer movement test and the comments of Walt and Ziplock are accurate. but not the screen shots. The blue rectangle, truncated in this instance, is very hard to see AND there is no red marker at either end of it. It's questionable whether the red marker would be much use if one is moving quickly. The attached image below is also 123% bigger than what's on my screen. No use with a light UI, which is my standard.

I thought that only if you put the cursor ON the icon would the layer moved become subordinate to it. Who changed the system?  Why weren't we told? And if I need a mask, I'll make one.

The way it is now is hard to see and creates mistakes. I.E.it's counter-productive. It's become the Swiss army knife of functions: cute to have for paring your nails but not what you need on a construction site. Not just useless, it actually gets in the way. Or as the Brits say, "Too clever by half."

523800662_LayerBlueHighlightscreenshot-lightUI.PNG.ae5f070de03383588734e9aa0062dfb1.PNG

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10 minutes ago, SamSteele said:

AND there is no red marker at either end of it.

Sorry for the confusion. The red marker was simply my annotation to show you what to be looking for.

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 20H2 (19042.685),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop (2021-04-06):  32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz
, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Affinity Photo 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1024 Beta

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13 minutes ago, SamSteele said:

Who changed the system?  Why weren't we told?

No one changed it; the Affinity applications have always worked that way.

You have the visual feedback of the blue bar, as well as the visual feedback of the cursor position, to signal what will happen.

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 20H2 (19042.685),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop (2021-04-06):  32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz
, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Affinity Photo 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1024 Beta

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13 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

No one changed it; the Affinity applications have always worked that way.

You have the visual feedback of the blue bar, as well as the visual feedback of the cursor position, to signal what will happen.

Perhaps it has, but it is too fussy and poorly implemented. The visual feedback is almost non-existent.

Now I have to stop and find a very hard to see blue bar, or part of a bar, to make sure what I want to have happen will actually happen. And then I have to check that it happened the way it should have. With respect Walt, this is not good.

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9 hours ago, SamSteele said:

Now I have to stop and find a very hard to see blue bar, or part of a bar, to make sure what I want to have happen will actually happen.

Or you have to be careful of your cursor position (to the left of, on, or to the right of the layer icon). Once you understand and make use of the cursor positioning, the need to "find" the blue bar becomes less critical.

However, your feedback will be useful to Serif, I'm sure.

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 20H2 (19042.685),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop (2021-04-06):  32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz
, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Affinity Photo 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1024 Beta

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I consend that the blue indicator line could be visible much clearer and the transparent "ghost-layer" (moving with the cursor while dragging) is rather obstuctive than helpful. And in subgroups the difference between the indicator line lenghts is really too small. That said, I think it's not a bad handling at all. It's just the visual feedback that's problematic.

BTW, you can use the three icons in the top right corner to place a layer instead of dragging it. Needs some more clicks and keys (CTRL-C, select layer where the cut one is to be placed under/over/inside in layers palette, press appropriate button top right, CTRL-V) but works also.

buttons.jpg

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1 hour ago, chessboard said:

I consend that the blue indicator line could be visible much clearer and the transparent "ghost-layer" (moving with the cursor while dragging) is rather obstuctive than helpful. And in subgroups the difference between the indicator line lenghts is really too small. That said, I think it's not a bad handling at all. It's just the visual feedback that's problematic.

BTW, you can use the three icons in the top right corner to place a layer instead of dragging it. Needs some more clicks and keys (CTRL-C, select layer where the cut one is to be placed under/over/inside in layers palette, press appropriate button top right, CTRL-V) but works also.

buttons.jpg

I would never use the three icons you refer to for moving layers, only for cutting or adding sections.

BTW, I respect Walt highly. I don't know if he is a paid evangelist for the products, but he should be canonized after he is gone. He has made the Affinity products useful for me and many others. However, things can still be improved.

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2 hours ago, SamSteele said:

BTW, I respect Walt highly. I don't know if he is a paid evangelist for the products, but he should be canonized after he is gone. He has made the Affinity products useful for me and many others. However, things can still be improved.

Ditto. I think @walt.farrell is a real human being. Extraordinarily helpful too. They don't make them like Walt anymore.

He should be included some way in a splash screen one day. 🙂 

  • "The user interface is supposed to work for me - I am not supposed to work for the user interface."
  • Computer-, operating system- and software agnostic; I am a result oriented professional. Look for a fanboy somewhere else.
  • “When a wise man points at the moon the imbecile examines the finger.” ― Confucius
  • Not an Affinity user og forum user anymore. The software continued to disappoint and not deliver.
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There are many others of us here in the forums who also should get some recognition :)

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 20H2 (19042.685),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop (2021-04-06):  32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz
, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Affinity Photo 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1005 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.2.1035 and 1.9.2.1024 Beta

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1 hour ago, walt.farrell said:

There are many others of us here in the forums who also should get some recognition :)

Your are right, there are others who are helpful in this forum. But if there were an award for most helpful Serif forum member, I would nominate you.

I feel like I should contribute to the main subject of this thread, and in fact, I do feel like commenting on this:

17 hours ago, SamSteele said:

Well I did a layer movement test and the comments of Walt and Ziplock are accurate. but not the screen shots. The blue rectangle, truncated in this instance, is very hard to see

[…]

523800662_LayerBlueHighlightscreenshot-lightUI.PNG.ae5f070de03383588734e9aa0062dfb1.PNG

I have never really tried the light interface, but wow, that really is hard to see. It is not nearly so clear as in the dark interface, and I agree that something should be done.

After a little experimenting, it looks like—on Mac at least—the color of that faint indicator is something like 50% of the system highlight color. In my case, my system (Mac preferences, not Affinity) highlight color is purple, and this is what I see:

495408829_ScreenShot2021-01-08at1_38_23PM.png.271c2a3211f1a322693d708c14285e53.png

I am not certain if such a thing is similar in Windows, as you appear to be using. But I notice that your highlight color is already rather light, and a semi-transparent version of that on top of the light interface is indeed hard to see.

Sometimes I have had a hard time knowing where to point to get the indicator to go where I think it should, but I have not had trouble at least seeing it, so I was never in doubt as to where the object/layer would be when I let go of the mouse. Maybe Serif should consider a different way to display that indicator. I would suggest using the same highlighting color as it is now, but using a more definite border with plenty of contrast (adapted for dark and light interface). On my Mac, that border is a dark purple even on light interface and a light purple on the dark interface, but on the Windows screenshot, it appears to be white, which is not so helpful on a light interface.

 

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18 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

Sorry for the confusion. The red marker was simply my annotation to show you what to be looking for.

Haha, good one! - So in this case it maybe wouldn't have helped, if you would have made another sort of annotation (red rectangles around or whatever), otherwise I would have suggested to try/use Monosnap, or the like for such tasks. 😉

☛ Affinity Designer 1.9.3 ◆ Affinity Photo 1.9.3 ◆ OSX El Capitan

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