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How to blur backgrounds in AP (requesting instructions)


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2 minutes ago, owenr said:

 

Sorry, but that's a great example of the problem with using that technique to simulate depth of field. Look at the breaking wave closest to the horizon, for example: the focused image is showing through the partially transparent blurred image as if the shot was taken through a fogged lens. The wave should be either in focus or out of focus, and not both simultaneously.

 

 

 Yes, but incredibly easy to adjust with the gradient slider. 

 

I'm sure you could tweak or mask specific areas.

 

The point is, unlike a gradient mask, you can see what you are doing and adjust as you are doing it. The quality of the result is up to you.

 

 

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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5 minutes ago, owenr said:

 

Easy to adjust, but never producing a remotely realistic depth of field effect. I fail to see the usefulness of that. 

 

Well, you could make a gradient mask if you wanted. Recreate the photoshop type gradient mask and attach it to the lens blur layer.

 

The whole point of this was to avoid those halo artifacts that require so much time and effort masking in Photoshop, with poor results on hair and such. Not to mention lack of editing flexibility.

 

 

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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owenr

 

Why not create one that you do like, doesn't matter about masking the girl or the halo effects,.

 

And I will see if I can recreate it in Affinity.

 

You can download the file I posted with the image in it.

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49 minutes ago, MEB said:

You are seeing the "halos/nasty blur", because you are not masking out the subject (woman) from the background layer (on bottom), so the filter is picking the woman colors from that bottom background layer and spreading it around behind the pixel layer with just the woman on top.

@toltec Attached is a version of your "hellohalo" file using a mask created directly from your pixel layer of the model isolated from the background & reshuffling the layer stacking. Note the (at least to my eye) complete absence of any halo effect at any blur radius. (BTW, in the file you uploaded the blur radius was set to zero so I set it to 15 px in my attachment.)

 

Compare this version to your "Terms and conditions apply" screenshot, paying particular attention to the area around the back of the model's hair in front of the tree. Also compare what happens as you vary the blur radius in both AP files.

 

What do you think? Which yields better, more realistic looking results?

hello *no* halo.afphoto

All 3 1.10.6, & all 3 V2.03 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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Ah yes very good. Much better I agree.

 

The thing is though, the original poster wanted to use the lens blur. As per the attached Photoshop video. The Photoshop video did not use a DOF blur.

 

Sometimes people might want to use Gaussian blur or Box blur etc etc. All a question of taste or circumstances

 

The main thing is, being able to isolate the subject from the background so not to get halo effects. You can then apply any blur you want. Which is great !!! :)

 

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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58 minutes ago, R C-R said:

@toltec Attached is a version of your "hellohalo" file using a mask created directly from your pixel layer of the model isolated from the background & reshuffling the layer stacking. Note the (at least to my eye) complete absence of any halo effect at any blur radius. (BTW, in the file you uploaded the blur radius was set to zero so I set it to 15 px in my attachment.)

 

Compare this version to your "Terms and conditions apply" screenshot, paying particular attention to the area around the back of the model's hair in front of the tree. Also compare what happens as you vary the blur radius in both AP files.

 

What do you think? Which yields better, more realistic looking results?

hello *no* halo.afphoto

 

It is not a Lens blur. It is a Gaussian Blur. Totally different result and look.

 

The OP wanted a Lens Blur.

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Right. I did this from a screengrab and did not mask out Cheryl properly, so she has a halo. I was only interested in the background Lens Blur. Please ignore the rest of the image as I was being lazy.

 

I used a Live Lens Blur Filter with a gradient drawn on the Lens Blur Layer Mask. As we have been discussing. I could have tweaked it a bit but hardly see the point.

 

With Affinity it is totally non-destructive, doesn't need you to create a mask first and I can go back and change the blur, any time I want in just seconds.

 

What, apart from the colour (due to the glow effect), is so different about the Affinity Photo blur that you would say "Hopefully AP will soon have as sophisticated a Lens Blur filter as PS has.".

 

With Affinity you don't have to create a gradient mask and hope it is right. Just move the gradient slider to get what you want in real time.

 

I would say "Hopefully one day Photoshop will be as easy and sophisticated as Affinity is for applying a background blur".

 

APdof.jpg

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Just for the hell of it. I went back and redid the gradient on the Blur Layer.

 

Yes, I know it's ugly but of course, it's easy to change at any time.

 

 

 

b2.jpg

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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22 hours ago, toltec said:

 

Dear JJ

 

I think to some extent, we were talking at cross purposes. You thought I was Cloning and Inpainting as something to do with masking. In fact it was all to do with avoiding the halo from the lens blur filter. ...

 

Good Morning T,

 

Thanks for posting the file!

(BTW, To the above: not at all. I completely understood what the cloning/painting was being used for. B|)

 

So MEB explained why you were getting the halo. Is that issue now off the table?

 

 

 

3 hours ago, toltec said:

There is absolutely no need to make a mask in Affinity Photo and it is totally non-destructive and editable afterwards. Unlike that inferior Adobe product.

 

Definitive background blur method.  (I hope)

 

Select the girl, Refine Edges and from the Refine Edges box, Output: to a new layer.

 

On the background layer, use the same selection and delete the girl........ etc

 

 

Well at least we got rid of all the nasty terrible :P inpainting (Seinfeld: not that there's anything wrong with that :D). But the above IS destructive. (not picking on it, just pointing out.)

And at this point in the process, you have already, faiap, made the mask. So that work is done.

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3 hours ago, toltec said:

It is not a Lens blur. It is a Gaussian Blur. Totally different result and look.

??? The above was a reply to my earlier post with the hello *no* halo" file. Did you download that file & look at the Layers panel? 

597b68148dde4_LensBlur!!!.jpg.965de956c03f0d649fba17126128f311.jpg

I did not add a gradient mask because I was modifying your hellohalo.afphoto file, which did not include a gradient either. That could easily be added if that is the 'look' you want, but the modified version of your file most certainly used a Live Lens Blur & not a Gaussian one.

 

Are you confusing my post with someone else's?

All 3 1.10.6, & all 3 V2.03 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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4 minutes ago, R C-R said:

 

 

Are you confusing my post with someone else's?

 

That sort of thing happens to me a lot these days. 

 

I think it's age related. 

 

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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2 hours ago, JimmyJack said:

Well at least we got rid of all the nasty terrible :P inpainting

 

Well, I still like the inpainting tool :x.

 

But yes, your preserving alpha thing did the trick so I don't get to use it so much. Think of all those ten seconds you've saved me. :)

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@toltec Please download my hello *no* halo" file if you have not already done so & compare it to your own hellohalo.afphoto file or the one from your your screenshot in your earlier 'Terms and conditions apply' post. You keep saying the point is to avoid halos so compare them for that. Feel free to change the blur radius to whatever you like or add or change different blurs or whatever you want.

 

Like JJ said many posts ago, you already made the selection around the model, which is the hard part. Converting it to a mask is very quick & easy & is likely to save you a lot more than 10 seconds per image messing around with the inpainting tool.

 

P.S. On the age thing, I think your clock is getting old & slow, thus the 10 seconds you observe from it are much longer than you think! xD

All 3 1.10.6, & all 3 V2.03 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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8 minutes ago, R C-R said:

@toltec Please download my hello *no* halo" file if you have not already done so & compare it to your own hellohalo.afphoto file or the one from your your screenshot in your earlier 'Terms and conditions apply' post. You keep saying the point is to avoid halos so compare them for that. Feel free to change the blur radius to whatever you like or add or change different blurs or whatever you want.

 

Like JJ said many posts ago, you already made the selection around the model, which is the hard part. Converting it to a mask is very quick & easy & is likely to save you a lot more than 10 seconds per image messing around with the inpainting tool.

 

P.S. On the age thing, I think your clock is getting old & slow, thus the 10 seconds you observe from it are much longer than you think! xD

 

 

I found that the halos were much worse with Lens Blur than Gaussian. So it's not a very good comparison for me. I will be trying the various methods again though, including yours. Just as soon as I have 10 seconds to spare ;)

 

"Inpainting tool". What inpainting tool.?

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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4 minutes ago, toltec said:

Tried that but it wouldn't open in 1.5.2.69

That is because I used your "hellohalo" file as a starting point & you must have made that using the 1.6 beta -- the text layer you added makes it incompatible with 1.5.x versions.

 

Try opening it with the 1.6 beta.

All 3 1.10.6, & all 3 V2.03 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
Affinity Photo 
1.10.6; Affinity Designer 1.10.6; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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20 hours ago, JimmyJack said:

So MEB explained why you were getting the halo. Is that issue now off the table?

 

Absolutely not. I would very much like to see if you can solve it with a mask. Obviously without any sort of inpainting :)

 

No offence to MEB but his method requires you to make a mask from the original selection. That denies you the option to use Refine Edges. Which I would like to use. 

Sometimes little bits are missed from the selection, such as just above where here legs cross and around various edges and refine is very fast at correcting that.

 

It probably wouldn't matter for most occasions but I am looking for a fast, easy, 100% of the time approach. I also wanted to avoid creating and editing a separate mask. 

 

It is not the fact that the missing parts of MEBs mask matter from the blur point of view. It's that the little missing bits can show as sharp bits of colour from the original on a blurred background that might have blurred in a different colour.

 

However, using the Refine Edges Mask does create a problem. It introduces semi transparent areas  that cause some issues. Unless you inpaint them first of course ;)

 

 

 

Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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