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I'm a former user of old Freehand to create vector illustrations. Importing them into very old Photoshop, I would use magic wand to select & use airbrush, etc. I can't afford PS any more. Would Affinity Designer, or other Affinity products, be a good alternative? Attached is an example of the type illustration I do.  Thanks.

post-26911-0-45965000-1454598616_thumb.jpg

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Hello steve-halloween,

Welcome to Affinity Forums :)

Yes, Affinity Designer is a good alternative to Freehand. It's possible to create that type of illustrations with it.

Take a look at some of the works being posted by other users in the Share you work section.

Here's some threads with similar characteristics: Affinity illustrations and experiments, Fox Illustration Affinity Designer #Concept, Whales dream of french friesA drawing - from start to finishKawaii metal covers"R" for alphabet series. There's a lot more styles and examples: check the works of Paolo Limoncelli, Kevin (@retrograde), George (@eejits), and the list goes on... there's no way i could mention all. Sorry those not listed.

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Welcome steve-halloween--there are both vector and raster tools available in Affinity Designer, so AD may be all you need. There is a free 10-day trial, so it is worth a try. If you need more options for pixel painting, Affinity Photo is great for raster editing, and it also has a 10-day trial.

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Be aware that if you have very old Freehand files -- anything stored in the Aldus or Macromedia Freehand formats used before Freehand MX was released -- it is very unlikely you will be able to open them in Affinity Designer. (If you are not familiar with the sad history of Freehand & Adobe's efforts to kill it, the Adobe Freehand Wikipedia article is worth a read. This should explain one of the reasons why some of us want to rely on Adobe products as little as possible!)

 

Freehand MX will open the older Freehand formats & convert them to MX files, but Freehand MX on the Mac won't run on anything later than OS X 10.6 because it is a PPC app that requires the Rosetta emulation software that is not a part of later OS X versions (because Apple's license to use it expired).

 

Since newer Macs will not usually run OS X versions older than they are (because those versions lack the necessary support for the newer hardware) this will be a problem if you want to work with those files unless you have an older Mac & a copy of Freehand MX. There are some partial workarounds for this but they are convoluted (& the legality of using some of them is at best uncertain) so I cannot recommend any of them.


Affinity Photo 1.7.2, Affinity Designer 1.7.2, Affinity Publisher 1.7.2; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.153 & Affinity Designer 1.7.2.6 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iOS 12.3.1

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Considering how new AD is, I am amazed by the number of tutorials (both video & step-by-step) that are already available on the web from various sources. The last time I did a Google search on "Affinity Designer tutorial" it returned over 270,000 hits! Of course, some of them aren't really about using AD, but even so it is a very impressive number, a strong indication of how enthusiastically the app is being adopted by the user community.


Affinity Photo 1.7.2, Affinity Designer 1.7.2, Affinity Publisher 1.7.2; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.153 & Affinity Designer 1.7.2.6 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iOS 12.3.1

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