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What criteria is required that Affinity creates a Layer (Image)?

If I open a TIFF or drag a TIFF into Affinity it will assign it Layer (Image) but... what I find a bit strange is, in the help files under About Layers, there is no mention of Layer (Image) Oddly, if I open a TIFF in Affinity Designer or Right-Click and select Affinity Designer it opens it as a Layer (Pixel) Once I've done that it will also open as a Pixel layer in Affinity Photo.

If I then Export that same TIFF as a TIFF and name rename it it will open in Photo as a Layer (Image) If I drag the TIFF into another doc that has a PJG it will import it as a Layer (Image)

About layers

Layers allow you to edit and design using a non-destructive methodology. This gives you maximum flexibility for your photographic projects.

What are layers?

You can think of layers as being like sheets of paper that are stacked one on top of the other. Transparent areas of a layer reveal the layer below, while opaque parts of a layer obscure the layers below.

All layer management is carried out from the Layers panel.

Here are some important points regarding layers:

  • Once editing and designing has begun, all documents will have at least one layer.
  • The order of your layers is important. A layer at the top of the panel is at the front of your document and vice versa.
  • Any selected layer(s) are highlighted, so that you can always see what layer you are working on.
  • Any layer can be hidden, to exclude its content from displaying in your project.
 

The effect of layer order on a document.

Types of layer

There are several types of layers that can be created:

  • Pixel layer—containing raster images where pixel-based editing takes place.
  • Mask layer—special layer that allows you to define what content is hidden to reveal layers beneath.
  • Adjustment layer—special layer that can be used to correct or enhance the layers beneath.
  • Fill layer—special layer that contains an adjustable solid or gradient colour.
  • Snapshot layer—special layer that contains a predefined project snapshot as a single, flattened pixel layer.
  • Vector layer—vector content, such as curves, shapes, text and placed images, occupy their own unique layer.

Vector layers are automatically created whenever you:

 

 


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45 minutes ago, firstdefence said:

What criteria is required that Affinity creates a Layer (Image)?

My experience: If I Open a TIFF file, Affinity Photo loads it as Background (Pixel).

On the other hand, if I Place a TIFF file, or drag it onto an open Affinity Photo document, I get a new (Image) layer.

I believe that other file types (JPG, etc.) would behave the same. (This is all on Windows, by the way.)


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.676 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.676 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.663 Beta.

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Just now, walt.farrell said:

My experience: If I Open a TIFF file, Affinity Photo loads it as Background (Pixel).

On the other hand, if I Place a TIFF file, or drag it onto an open Affinity Photo document, I get a new (Image) layer.

I believe that other file types (JPG, etc.) would behave the same. (This is all on Windows, by the way.)

It seems a bit random and there is no Help File guideline for Layer (Image). It would be helpful to know what triggers Affinity into creating the Layer(Image) I'm just running some tests to see if I can identify the trigger, be it a file type or a method of import or opening.


iMac 27" Late 2015 Fully Loaded, iMac 27" Mid 2011 both running High Sierra 10.13.6 - Affinity Designer/Photo & Publisher - Illustrator CC, Inkscape, Blender, Sketchup, Pepakura Designer, MTC, Pixelmator & Pixelmator Pro + more... XP-Pen Artist-22E, - iPad Pro 12.9 B|  

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13 minutes ago, firstdefence said:

It seems a bit random and there is no Help File guideline for Layer (Image). It would be helpful to know what triggers Affinity into creating the Layer(Image) I'm just running some tests to see if I can identify the trigger, be it a file type or a method of import or opening.

For me, so far, it seems consistent: Opening gives a (Pixel) layer. Placing, dragging onto, or pasting onto gives an (Image) layer.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.676 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.676 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.663 Beta.

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I started with a standard JPEG and opened it in Affinity, I then exported the image to at the formats Affinity will to export to.

  1. EXR, opens as 2 named Layers RGB and A (Pixel)
  2. PNG, opens as Background (Pixel) 
  3. SVG, Opens as a named Layer (Image)
  4. TIFF, Opens as Background (Pixel)
  5. PDF, Opens as (Image)
  6. PSD, Opens as {Background} (Pixel)
  7. HDR, Opens as Background (Pixel)
  8. EPS, Opens as (Layer)
  9. GIF Opens as Background (Pixel)

 

 


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4 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

For me, so far, it seems consistent: Opening gives a (Pixel) layer. Placing, dragging onto, or pasting onto gives an (Image) layer.

I can drag a Tiff, JPEG and PNG and they all give me a Layer (Pixel) I'm on Mac, if I drag into an existing document it will create a Layer (Image)


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1 hour ago, firstdefence said:
  • EXR, opens as 2 named Layers RGB and A (Pixel)
  • PNG, opens as Background (Pixel) 
  • SVG, Opens as a named Layer (Image)
  • TIFF, Opens as Background (Pixel)
  • PDF, Opens as (Image)
  • PSD, Opens as {Background} (Pixel)
  • HDR, Opens as Background (Pixel)
  • EPS, Opens as (Layer)
  • GIF Opens as Background (Pixel)

It would seem that bit/pixel-based images open as pixel layers. Vector-based images open as image layers.

Simples!

John


Windows 10, Affinity Photo 1.8,3 Designer 1.8.3 and Publisher 1.8.3 (mainly Photo), now ex-Adobe CC

CPU: AMD A6-3670. RAM: 16 GB DDR3 @ 666MHz, Graphics: 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 630

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1 hour ago, firstdefence said:

what I find a bit strange is, in the help files under About Layers, there is no mention of Layer (Image)

I found that strange too. There are several other omissions in the help files but since this causes so much confusion among new (& not-so-new) users, it seems like a major oversight to me.


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13 minutes ago, John Rostron said:

It would seem that bit/pixel-based images open as pixel layers. Vector-based images open as image layers.

Simples!

John

Until you drag that pixel bit image into another open document and then it becomes a Layer (Image) I wonder if this is more to prevent accidentally editing, a bit like a protected mode and choosing to rasterise is a considered choice.


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If your TIF is a scanned image, it'll open as an image (Pixel).
If you open old layered tif from Photoshop, some effects will be rasterised and you'll have some layers, but perhaps not the original ones.

 

I just opened a bunch of old .tif and new ones, and the layers seems ok (I don't have Photoshop to check at the moment). I opened one with a missing font, and pasting/draging the file get the same result : the missing font is replace bu plain Arial.

Those Photoshop's tif are opened the same way as .psd files, with some masks and some pathes. (Only the undocumented/complexes features are missing/rasterized ?).
It's an interesting point since it means it's not necessary to convert Photoshop's TIFs to PSD (in example folders of old logos, than can be replace later by newer ones in another file format).

Thanks you @firstdefence for looking at this, I usually tested opening AP/AD's  TIFFs and PSDs in 'Toshop, but forget to test the other way.

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4 hours ago, firstdefence said:

Until you drag that pixel bit image into another open document and then it becomes a Layer (Image) I wonder if this is more to prevent accidentally editing, a bit like a protected mode and choosing to rasterise is a considered choice.

More like when you drag photos to your AP document they are presented as objects and you can scale, position and transform them non-destructively. If they were pixel layers they would be resampled at each operation and quality would suffer.

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23 hours ago, firstdefence said:

What criteria is required that Affinity creates a Layer (Image)?

If I open a TIFF or drag a TIFF into Affinity it will assign it Layer (Image) but... what I find a bit strange is, in the help files under About Layers, there is no mention of Layer (Image) Oddly, if I open a TIFF in Affinity Designer or Right-Click and select Affinity Designer it opens it as a Layer (Pixel) Once I've done that it will also open as a Pixel layer in Affinity Photo.

If I then Export that same TIFF as a TIFF and name rename it it will open in Photo as a Layer (Image) If I drag the TIFF into another doc that has a PJG it will import it as a Layer (Image)

Hi @firstdefence, all,
Raster files will open as pixel layers everytime you open them directly either by using File ▸ Open or by dragging them to the application window if no document is opened or over the main toolbar of the app if there's a document opened in the work area.

Raster files will be added as Image layers when they are placed on an existing/opened document either by using the File ▸ Place command, the Place Image Tool (in Affinity Designer only), or by dragging them over an opened document on the application window.

Complex documents (PDF, PSD, SVG, affinity files) are imported (opened in case of affinity native files) directly as layers/objects when opened directly (File ▸ Open) or as embedded documents if placed (dragged over an existing document; using File ▸ Place; or in Designer using the Image Place Tool) into an existing document.

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13 minutes ago, MEB said:

Raster files will be added as Image layers when they are placed on an existing/opened document either by using the File ▸ Place command, the Place Image Tool (in Affinity Designer only), or by dragging them over an opened document on the application window.

Thanks @MEB that should be added to the help file ;-)


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image.png.0a628a09647334865f2f767a60700fe2.png

I had the same delete problem. The selection was not getting deleted while pressing the delete key. While trying various things, I noted that the four pen next to the eye in the channels tab should be white. If it is grey, the selection will not get deleted even if del key or CNTRL X is pressed. Click on the pen and eyes to make it white. Then press DEL key or CNTRL X. THen the selection gets deleted .

 

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On 11/12/2017 at 9:29 AM, specworkfan said:

Delete key doesn’t work on the smart keyboard in iOS for this either. 

This is actually the case. And it is inconvenient.

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On 1/27/2016 at 6:22 PM, Macoun said:

I'm become crazy by a stupid simple task: How to delete something in an selection? 

 

I've selected an area (Rect selection) that i want to delete. Then i press the delete key, but it deletes the complete layer!? I've searched in the Edit- and the Selection-Menu, but nothing. Then i use the help to search for delete, and it finds just the Delete Layer command? Searching for that term in google shows me al lot of impressive tricks, but not how to delete the content inside a simple selection.

 

So i switched to Pixelmator to do that in two seconds... - But that's insane, for such a basic function.

 

Where did you hide the simple delete function?

For me (in AP) it is work. just click on layer you want to delete in layer list first, make sure it is pixel layer (if not click rasterize). make selection on the layer, then press delete

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When Affinity works, it's great, but when it doesn't it's maddening. I've spent the past hour trying to delete a selection - literally the easiest thing you can do in a photo editor - and I'm having many of the same problems listed above, and none of the "solutions" work. I use the word solutions roughly, because everything seems like an unnecessary workaround. None of this has ever happened to me in any other photo editor I've ever used and now I'm venting at a 3-year old thread because Affinity is so spotty and unpredictable with the simplest of tasks. If this is so complicated, you need to head back to the drawing board.

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Hi BkkGreg,
Welcome to Affinity Forums :)
Do you have the right layer selected? and is it a pixel layer or an image layer (look at the label between parenthesis after the layer's name in the Layers panel)? If it's an Image layer right-click on it in the Layers panel and select Rasterise to convert it to a pixel layer. You should then be able to delete the selection. Only pixel layers let you perform edits at a pixel level.

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BkkGreg is very right. I am trying to use Affinity Photo for two years plus did a thorough online course, but Affinity Photo is letting me down time and time again. One of the hundreds of little problemes I have is the following. I use the freehand selection tool on a rasterised layer. Deleting the selection doesn't work, nothing happend when I press delete. After ten minutes of trying to solve this problem I use the Rectangular Marquee tool and press delete. The selection is deleted. How is this possible?

And how is it possible that Affinity still doesn't have the selection-option "select similar"?

I am afraid I have to go back to the, in my opinion, totally corrupted Adobe company to return to Photoshop.

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Hi everybody!

I think i've found a tricky moment with selection with ctrl+vector object layer image selection. If vector object was created with pen tool, it might have no fill or stroke. So you need to add fill attribute to vector object first and the problem will be solved

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Ran into the same problem, completely baffeled me as I tried to select a rectangular area and then delete it, which ended up deleting the entire layer. I tried this multiple times and eventually had to search online and find this to realize what was happening. After reading your explanations I understand why it's happening, but it's completely unexpected and very hard to understand for the user, especially when they're used to any other photo editor.

Basically, I think the problem is that when you paste in or drag in pixel graphics they're made into image objects. This has some benefits, but the problem is that it's not clearly indicated to the user, so they don't understand this is happening or expect that they won't be able to edit them without rasterizing them. Next complication is that when you make a rectangular selection the interface clearly signals to the user that this area is selected, and not the entire image layer. This makes it again very unexpected that Affinity actually considers the whole layer object selected and not the selection area and deletes the entire layer when you press delete.

So, a few ideas to make this easier to understand in future updates:

- Communicate more clearly that something you paste in is not a rasterized layer that you can edit the content of. Or maybe offer a setting on how pasted in images are handled.

- Communicate more clearly what is selected, or don't consider the entire layer selected when you make an area selection.

- Offer the offer to rasterize the layer if they try to edit it (like removing a part), or even better, just let the user edit the corresponding part of the transformed bitmap and keep it an image object.

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I find it horrible UX when I fail to perform such a basic as select > delete selection

What if I don't want to rasterize the image? How do I delete selection from an "Image" without rasterizing it??

 

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14 minutes ago, SlavaUX said:

How do I delete selection from an "Image" without rasterizing it??

Use a Mask


Due to the fact that Boris Johnson is now our Prime Minister, punctuation, spelling and grammar will never be worried about ever again.  We now have far bigger problems to be worried about.

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6 minutes ago, SlavaUX said:

What if I don't want to rasterize the image? How do I delete selection from an "Image" without rasterizing it??

You can't. Image layers -- those that have an "(Image)" suffix in the Layers panel -- are treated as single objects that each retain their individual pixel resolutions unless they are rasterized, at which point they are converted to pixel layers at the document resolution.

In this respect they are somewhat like vector objects -- you can scale, rotate, stretch, shear, etc. them non-destructively & either via the Transform panel or with the popup on the context toolbar of the Move Tool, reset them to their original properties with no change to their 'native' resolutions.


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