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How do I convert ‘vector’ brushes to outlines??

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I'm new to affinity but I've been using illustrator for years

I can see that if i draw with the pencil tool with pressure on then select it and ‘expand to stroke’ the line is converted to a shape (as in convert to outlines in Illustrator) - the thickness where more pressure is applied is visible as on original.

The problem arises when I try to do the exact same thing with a ‘Vector brush’ (not to be confused with pixel ‘paint brush’) . If I use felt pen as brush shape and then select ‘expand stroke’ - which incidentally is available as an option, it just deselects it. And the stroke continues to be a data controlled form - not a simple vector outline (shape).

This is causing me issues as when I try to export the file out to other programs (circuit design space for example) that ‘data driven vector’ dosent crossover.

How to I convert it to just a simple outline vector??

Example image attaché after both having ‘expand strokes’ selected

Also totally unrelated question do I have to join the forum ‘separately’ to Affinity account? Although ‘forum & help’ are options on my Affinity account it seems to sign me out and the same login details seem to be unrecognised 🤷‍♂️


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With some brushes you can simply use expand stroke.


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Yeah, no. I’ve just been contemplating the use of vector brushes for some artwork I’m making that needs to be output at different resolutions - including ‘huge’. Vector objects are resolution neutral - they’ll be crisp no matter what size you output them (you probably know this and I state it for all readers).

"Vector" brushes are a bit of a misnomer in my view. The path is a vector, but the brush effect is raster. This means they’re not resolution neutral and beggar-up the whole point of a vector illustration. If you’ve the one output size and can create a document to scale, it’s not an issue of course.

Vector brushes allow you to alter the path after drawing, where you’re committed with a raster brush. From that point of view they’re good.

However.. as you’re realising, you cannot then convert the raster element of a vector brush to outlines. Boy oh boy would that be useful eh. It’d need a trace engine built in and Serif have not done this (yet.. fingers crossed).

I’m currently contemplating whether to export the texture I’ve just created to put it through a trace app I’ve downloaded... or whether to just construct some "raster-vector brush" vector texture (keh!?) myself using the pencil tool ....or download some scribble vectors.... Think I’m going for the second option... just need to ponder the use the artwork will be put to.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 2/25/2021 at 8:09 AM, ProDesigner said:

"Vector" brushes are a bit of a misnomer in my view. The path is a vector, but the brush effect is raster. 

They should definitely rename them and make it obvious to the user that they're not vector, it's very misleading. I don't see the use for them at all; I think they should be removed from the application entirely or perhaps only be employed in Photo where you might expect raster painting on an editable path.  The least they should do is develop some simple calligraphic-style vector brushes; those things have been in vector apps for decades. Obviously it would be nice to have Illustrator-style brushes too, although this isn't a big deal for me..

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  • 2 years later...
On 2/24/2021 at 10:09 PM, AllAppsUser said:

"Vector" brushes are a bit of a misnomer in my view. The path is a vector, but the brush effect is raster.

On 3/6/2021 at 12:33 PM, AndyQ said:

They should definitely rename them and make it obvious to the user that they're not vector, it's very misleading.

I absolutely agree! Now they have the backend for it with Vector Warp. I do not understand that they did not introduce real vector brush strokes in v2. Maybe I missed something?

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53 minutes ago, michacassola said:

Maybe I missed something?

No, you didn't miss it. Still not possible.

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