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Julian_K

Masks - my biggest negative so far

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There are many things I love about AP, but there at the moment there is also quite a deal breaker for me and that is the handling of masks for 2 reasons

1. mask editing and refinement is simply too slow. refinement isn't even close to real time and editing with a brush is sometimes extremely laggy.

2. I am not looking for a 1/1 copy of Photoshop and am usually happy to adapt to new ways, if they are as good or better than the old ones.
That being said, I really would want to be able to drag and drop masks onto layers as I can do in PS.It's simply the most straight forward and fast way to apply/copy/paste mask among layers

Maybe I am just missing something. If so, I'd be very happy to be corrected.
As far as I have figured it out though, the mask workflow seems cumbersome, which is puzzling be cause many other and seemingly more complex aspects of AP (like filters) are imho smoother than in PS. 
Masks are however an absolutely crucial aspect of nearly any kind of photo editing and I think it's not a nice to have but a must to get it right and efficient.

 

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I had some similar issues. Copy/paste masks seems to be an issue. Missing? Also, I had a pre-existing live layer and I could not figure out how to apply a selection as the mask. I know if a selection exists at the time of creation the live/adjust layer, the selection becomes the mask. No feature I could find to apply/paste a selection as the live/adjust layer mask for an existing live/adjust layer. 

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I've created a mask on one adjustment layer and I want to copy it to another one and I can't figure out how to do it. Are you saying it can't be done? Say it's not do. Even PhotoPlus has that feature cumbersome but it can be done.

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? Twirl down the layer with the layer mask you would like to copy, select the thumbnail, and copy it. Then drag the copy on a different layer or adjustment/effect layer. It's very simple. Same with deleting layer masks.

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Hi All

 

As Herbert has described if you right click on the thumbnail of the mask you are able to select copy from the context menu and then paste using the edit menu. You may then have to move the mask onto the layer you want.

 

I shall take a look into the performance for the mask refining


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Hi All

 

As Herbert has described if you right click on the thumbnail of the mask you are able to select copy from the context menu and then paste using the edit menu. You may then have to move the mask onto the layer you want.

 

I shall take a look into the performance for the mask refining

Thanks for the response. Yes, I figured that out, but it still remains less straight forward than in Photoshop where you simply drag, or alt/drag from one layer to another, which is a single move.

 

 

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I'm still confused, I don't see any difference between selecting the layer and the mask thumbnail, because when I put the cursor over the mask an right click - copy it copies the whole layer and I end up pasting in another duplicate of the same layer.

In every other editor I've used there where 2 icons on the layer one of the type of layer ie.: curves you see an icon for the curves and selecting it activates the layer and next to it was the associated mask and selecting it activates the mask. Here there is only the mask (I guess) and selecting it just selects the layer. Am I missing something?

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I am in the same boat as DavidW. Copy copies the whole layer and when I paste I get a whole duplicate layer. I have found no way to "move" the mask from the new layer to another layer or copy a mask from one layer to another.

 

Here is a quickie video that shows my attempt. No voice as I have no mic. I created a quickie selection, created a live bilateral blur. Then create an adjustment layer and try to copy or move the bilateral blur mask onto the adjustment layer.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adaet8bveLY&feature=youtu.be

 

The only steps I have found is that the selection MUST be active at the time of live/adjust layer selection. So create/set a selection from the layer layer and then create the live/adjust layer. No way I've found to copy/move *after* layer creation. I can paint or refine a mask after the fact (creation) but not set a mask.

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The easiest way, select the mask you want to copy to another layer. "Ctrl-J" to duplicate it and then just drag it on the layer where you want it.


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I tried what you suggested AlainP and I can drag the duplicated layer onto the new layer and I see it there but the mask doesn't have any effect on the new layer.

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OK, I know what I've been missing; when you create a new adjustment layer it doesn't come with a mask, you need to add it before you can actually work on it and duplicate the layer drag the mask to another layer and then delete the now maskless unneeded duplicated layer. Wow, why did they do it like that? Why not hold down a key and drag a mask to another layer? Seems like that would be good, nice and simple, I like simple.

I thought the little white square when you added an adjustment layer was the mask, that's confusing and lame make the little white square the icon of what the adjustment layer is so it means something. I'm sure there is a reason but it has taken hours to figure out a couple simple things, this is going to be a long road if I go down it. This is the only editor that doesn't add a mask automatically when you add an adjustment layer.

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DavidW,

 

Not sure I've followed everything correctly, but when you create a new adjustment layer, it actually comes with a mask.

Are you referring to the mask channel? If so, it's under Channels, right below the composites. Then you can create a spare channel.

Unless I misunderstood or I'm missing something...


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
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DavidW is right: when a filter or adjustment layer is added, the user must click once more on the layer mask icon at the bottom of the layer panel to add a layer mask.

every live adjust and live filter layer comes with it´s own mask 

 

you can add a normal mask but you don´t have to


 

 

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Yes, the adjustment doesn't have the mask in the layers panel, although there's a mask in the channel panel, and the adjustment layer itself works as a mask already.

I understand that if one wants to drag and copy the mask to another layer, that is not possible.

*But* it doesn't seem to me much more complicated than simply CTRL + Click on the adjustment layer itself to load the mask. Actually, I prefer this method better, if fact that's what I do in PS as well :)


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
Dual Monitor Dell Ultra HD 4k P2715Q 27-Inch

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The more I look at AP's layers and mask, the more it seems just more advanced. Perhaps it needs some time to adjust after years of PS, but there are things that seem just faster.

Since I was playing with the masks, I tried this:

  • I created a new adjustment
  • then CTRL + Click on the Adjustment layer I created earlier to load its mask
  • At this point, I clicked on the Mask Layer icon to add the mask to the new adjustment. This time I've got an actual mask (similar to PS). The cool thing though is that I can re-order this mask.
  • If I move this mask to the very top, is going to affect the layers underneath.

Andrew
-
Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
Dual Monitor Dell Ultra HD 4k P2715Q 27-Inch

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All,

 

You don't need to add a mask to an adjustment - it *is itself* a mask!!

 

Try it - add an Exposure adjustment, set the exposure, choose the erase brush and erase!

 

How other apps have the adjustment layer, then need another layer to be the mask never made sense to me.. 

 

Andy.

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I had problems trying to REUSE a mask I had on an HSL layer to do a curves adjustment and then I realised;

 

1. Click the HSL layer with mask and Click SELECT>Selection from layer (Main window will show marching ant selection)

2. Select layer>New Adj Layer>Curves Adj Layer

3. Make adjustment

 

You will see a Curves and HSL layer each with the same mask.

 

Neat, P

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The more I look at AP's layers and mask, the more it seems just more advanced. Perhaps it needs some time to adjust after years of PS, but there are things that seem just faster.

Since I was playing with the masks, I tried this:

  • I created a new adjustment
  • then CTRL + Click on the Adjustment layer I created earlier to load its mask
  • At this point, I clicked on the Mask Layer icon to add the mask to the new adjustment. This time I've got an actual mask (similar to PS). The cool thing though is that I can re-order this mask.
  • If I move this mask to the very top, is going to affect the layers underneath.

 

Hey verysame's technique works great, There are thousands of details I wouldn't know where to learn except for other users sharing them. Thanks

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I've created a mask on one adjustment layer and I want to copy it to another one and I can't figure out how to do it. Are you saying it can't be done? Say it's not do. Even PhotoPlus has that feature cumbersome but it can be done.

https://forum.affinity.serif.com/index.php?/topic/14157-copy-integrated-mask-of-an-adjustment/?p=62737

here is another good workaround to copy the integrated mask of a live adjustment or filter layer

 

and as soon as macros can reorder layers which I sincerely hope get´s implemented, you can do a macro for that purpose 


 

 

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There are thousands of details I wouldn't know where to learn except for other users sharing them.

 

Hello DavidW,

 

a good starting point are the many 'Inhouse Affinity Video Tutorials' which are listed on this page. They cover quite a bit and are free to watch.

 

d.


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Hi,

 

Also good to note:

 

- ctrl+i works on adjustment layers to invert the mask or selection thereof. So to copy another mask on an pre-existing (=white) adjustment layer:

  1. ctrl + click the thumbnail of the mask you want to copy
  2. ctrl + shift + i to invert selection
  3. select layer you want to copy the mask to
  4. ctrl + i to turn the selection into black/gray

This is quite quick but usually not as quick as alt-dragging a mask in PS.

 

- You can apply adjustment layers and filters to the mask of an adjustment layer. Just don't edit black and white but the alpha channel (levels & curves) and make sure 'preserve alpa' is unchecked (gaussian blur filter)

 

- alt + clicking the layer thumbnail shows the mask. It is not a toggle so regular clicking to exit mask. Is this a bug?: When applying live adjustments to the alpha channel as described above, they don't show up when alt-clicking the parent layer.

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