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designerUK

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Oh well if you're right about the target market TonyO, I need to stop wasting my time in here as it's not for me and I've misunderstood.

 

"If a mac user likes the way adobe illustrator works, then they will likely just use illustrator.".. I like (even love, now) how Illustrator works (mostly), but I don't like Adobe. (I'm ex FreeHand which was the better software by far). What I don't like is the monopoly Adobe have (it's bad on all levels) and is having a real effect on how I organise my business that it shouldn't be having. It's business, pure and simple. It's not about 'liking' or 'loathing' a bit of software over another. It's about whether it will do the job I need it to (no software is perfect) and support my business. If this means I'm not the target market, then that's fine, I'll go look for a real alternative to Adobe elsewhere.

 

Best

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Hey Tony, it's all cool. I've no problem with debate and I always presume good-nature is behind it. I rarely if ever take anything personal. Respect to you :-) No offence taken and I hope my somewhat plain, forthright style hasn't offended your good self.

 

I think the Affinity team (if I am right in understanding, which I'm not sure I am) have taken on a big challenge here and having the courage to 'target' their software rather than try to please 'the many' is something they'll need a steel backbone for. I admire what they do - I couldn't do it (I only have to work with one client at a time!).

 

The software they appear to be planning seems to directly correlate to the suite: Illustrator, PhotoShop and InDesign, so if they're not targetting the designer who works more or less equally in all three on a daily basis (see my signature), then why that set?

Edited by designerUK

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designerUK,

I see where are you coming from and understand why you are voicing this approach to Adobe workflows, but that's your particular view, doesn't mean all people will share the same concern. You seem pretty happy with Illustrator to the point you know almost every single shortcut of the app and how to take the best of it. The question is, if you are so proficient with it why changing to another tool? Just because you don't like the subscription model Adobe is forcing everyone upon (which i agree is stupid), doesn't mean every single new software out on the market should mimic Adobe software workflows (without their business model attached). You should voice your disagreement in Adobe Forums in an effort to change their business model and show them it isn't adequate for all users (i doubt they care but that's another point). That seems to be your biggest problem, as Illustrator seems to fit your needs as a tool.

 

I like Affinity precisely because it doesn't work (thankfully) like Illustrator. It has a logic and vision of his own that hopefully will be more visible as soon as the rest of the suite becomes available. I'm all for features that improve the app no matter if inspired by other apps or not, what i don't see the point of  is adding stuff just for the sake of mimicking other pre-existing app's workflows. Being a standard in the industry doesn't mean they are doing things the best or most efficient possible way. Replicating that behaviour doesn't make Affinity a better app in any way. Just turns it in a clone that hardly will add any value over what Illustrator does/offer.

 

If there's anything that may do someone reconsider Affinity Suite as the first tool of choice is what it brings as innovations/different to the table. Not what it does like the rest of competitors. People already proficient with those tools will hardly change for something that does a similar job... 

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Adobe is a behemoth, its the Microsoft Office of the design world. haha!

 

I'm hopeful a full suite of Affinity apps on Mac can put a dent in that. I read elsewhere that they are planning to push a photo/pixel app after the launch of Designer, I'm interested to see what they come up with as a photoshop competitor. It's nice to see a company starting from scratch on Mac to make something really fast and modern, instead of trying to port old apps to a new platform along with all the associated problems with it (i'm looking at you adobe).

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Affinity Photo will hardly be a Photoshop competitor in the broadest sense of the term. Nowadays Photoshop is able to cope with photo edition, web design (css exports included), video, 3D etc etc. It's hardly only a photo editor. They are monetising it's name and fame to the max. They even use it's name for Lightroom.

Hopefully Affinity Photo will focus on photo edition mostly with focused and intuitive tools and without the rest of the bloat Photoshop carries on.

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What's at the heart of this debate is Serif's definition of who the customer is for this Affinity project. I've re-read (er, read properly rather than skimmed, apologies) the article out there, from Serifs MD I understand: http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/photo-editing/1400759/serif-explains-how-its-taking-on-adobe-creative-cloud and it clears up some things for me.

I'm assuming Serif have a really clear definition internally of who their target for this stuff is, otherwise their product development will suffer. Doubt it uses the word 'Pro'. 'Pro' is ok for marketing communications that want to include rather than exclude like the above. You see a 'Pro' = Everyone who thinks they are. I think I'm a pro, I may not be ( Will face up to that on my own time ;-), or I may not be the kind of pro Serif are after.

To me 'current usage' is a more precise approach. As in, for example (not saying this is correct or appropriate): "All print designers who currently use Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign on a daily basis as their only paid activity". This is still likely to lead to software bloat as I'll explain. So it also needs a quantity element: 'more or less equally (…on a daily basis)' to me in order to be specific and clear. Perhaps MEB, you'd suggest there should also be an 'attitudinal' element in the definition because it currently includes me and you don't think Serif do. This definition would describe a big, largely, homogenous segment of the design industry.

The reason it needs a quantity element in there is becuase it includes all specialists otherwise. Now having read the article I'm confused - Serifs target may well be the specialist Illustrator. Illustration specialists for example, probably use InDesign and Photoshop very regularly, even daily, but Illustrator is the app they spend the bulk of their time in each day (that's how come they're Illustrators) and it's where their focus mentally lies. Now if Serif are after specialists, then why dilute effort developing a whole suite of apps in such quick succession? Illustration specialists will probably put up with an Illustration programme that doesn't quite mesh so seamlessly with photo and layout software if the app is awesome enough.

 

Attempting to cater for a market that includes the (Vector) Illustrators, and the Photographers, and the Painters and the print people is where the bloat has come from - not from Adobe having a 'thang' for bloat.

(FYI MEB - the number of keyboard shortcuts I know is minimal… only recall and use two Illustrator tool shortcuts for example, I'm not particularly wedded to Adobe's workflow which I thought was clear in my post immediately preceeding yours. You've perhaps missed that post between arriving, posting and page update as this thread's been a bit busy. No offence taken)

Affinity team, I could do with some clarity on this, if I'm to spend any time testing and providing feedback on your beta.

 

Finally - I'm not here after a personal app designed just for me ;-)

Regards all & goodnight.

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designerUK,

I think you missed my point. I´m not debating if this tool is for professionals or not. I don't intent to upset you or anyone else.

 

What i´m saying is (seems to me) that your motivation to approach the Affinity Designer Suite seems the disappointment with the Adobe business model rather than the tools they provide. And that alone shouldn't be motivation to make Affinity Designer mimic Adobe Suite worflows (when it goes against Affinity Designer logic). Then i added that the fact that Adobe is the standard doesn't mean they do everything right or that nobody can improve over what they've done. That's all. 

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Hey MEB.

'Pro' is one of those dangerous words isn't it. I was commenting on Serif's use of the word 'pro' in the article to describe who their customer is, not in response to any interpretation of your post. I can see that wasn't clear.

I think we've missed each others points, tbh. No reflection on either of us. Simply that the written word is open to interpretation.

>> Quote MEB: "What i´m saying is (seems to me) that your motivation to approach the Affinity Designer Suite seems the disappointment with the Adobe business model rather than the tools they provide."

 

Correct though their tools are not perfect, no software is. (The way quotes are displayed in this forum is confusing)

 

I hadn't understood you were interpreting my difficulty doing business with Adobe as a supplier, as a 'motivation to make Affinity mimic Adobe suite'. Surpised me that one.

  • Firstly, there's no motivation to make Affinity a mimic of Adobe - I did say: "I'm not recommending Serif blindly copy Adobe", and…
  • Secondly, I was trying to help Serif understand the inertia they're up against. Even those who "loathe" the application and don't have a problem with Adobe's business model - how many loathe it sufficiently strongly to jump ship and re-learn all/most/large part of what they know while trying to earn their income, especially as the rest of the industry might not be coming with them? "I'll send you my Illustrator file to amend and send back to me" "Oh, can't send you it back, I work in Affinity or will a PDF do?" [click of phone disconnecting]

>> Quote MEB: "Then i added that the fact that Adobe is the standard doesn't mean they do everything right or that nobody can improve over what they've done."

 

Completely agree and as I've said before: it's a fine line to tread - innovation for the sake of it is never clever. And what one person thinks is great about how an app works, another person "loathes". You'll never please all.. all the time… .. so focussing on a clear definition of who the app is for is paramount.

Regards

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>I was trying to help Serif understand the inertia they're up against.

 

When we decided to develop the Affinity range of applications we knew aiming at the professional market would be hard work with Adobe being so entrenched but I believe we have a good chance. It's difficult to show the advantages of our platform until we release Photo and Publisher but we are aiming to achieve a range of applications that truly work together in a way Adobe Creative Suite can't.

 

All we want to do is offer creatives a choice. Adobe wanted to offer Quark users an alternative, it took a decade of designers saying that nobody could touch Quark but Adobe kept at it and InDesign was the result.

 

Affinity is a 10-15 year project. We are in year 4 and still have a long way to go but i believe Designer is already better than Illustrator for some use cases and this time next year I hope it will better for most.

 

One advantage we have for adoption is price. Your example of passing an Affinity file to someone without Affinity is true but the problem can be solved by a £35 purchase and a bit of learning. We also are planning to release a free version of Affinity that will enable people to open, edit and output files.

 

All we ask is give us a chance.

 

TonyB (Head of SerifLabs)

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Hey Tony.

 

Thanks for bobbing in here on your Sunday evening, I was feeling a little downhearted. The commitment of you all to this project comes across well you know.

 

The graphic design industry, specifically the print focussed part, has suffered from a succession of two monopolies and I'm not sure it's been good for it. It would be great if designers could work in any number of applications and yet still collaborate. I can see all sorts of recruitment issues of course.

 

> a range of applications that truly work together in a way Adobe Creative Suite can't.

Sounds very exciting (you big tease).

 

I must admit, your low adoption price is a good stance, hopefully designers will think of it as offsetting the cost of "a bit of learning".  *a bit* O_o.

 

You know, I neither hate nor love Adobe, it's business, it's a tool, and I've adapted how I work over the years (ie: moving more to shape combining rather than line drawing when I switched from FreeHand to Illustrator because the pen tool was deeply inferior in Illustrator), it's what professionals do - adapt. I'm onboard here, I am giving you a chance - I'm keen to see what you've done with the app - would like to give it some quality time and help if I can.

 

Take care

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In regards to necessary  keyboard shortcuts, I would like to point out "command + shift + O" in Illustrator converts text to outlines. Some version of this to convert text to curves would be amazing. I work in signage and custom logotypes, being able to switch from type to curves is a constant part of my day. Being able to do so with a quick shortcut would boost my productivity greatly. Thanks.

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In regards to necessary  keyboard shortcuts, I would like to point out "command + shift + O" in Illustrator converts text to outlines. Some version of this to convert text to curves would be amazing. I work in signage and custom logotypes, being able to switch from type to curves is a constant part of my day. Being able to do so with a quick shortcut would boost my productivity greatly. Thanks.

So you are creating text, and then need to edit the text's shape with the Node tool? Or are you doing something else with it? You can do a lot with Designer text without needing to convert it to curves first; for example, you can give it a line style, gradient fill and transparency, and clip arbitrary shapes to it. You can do everything you can do with a curve, except reshape it.

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