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I believe my post is worth the bump. So, a little disclaimer: I am not huge on GFX design and nor with the tools. That being said, I managed to crop the canvas by applying an artboard on the part I wanted to crop out and then rasterising it. I don't know what exactly an artboard is for - I'm assuming it's just to focus on a certain part of the image) - so this way of doing it might not be exactly the correct way. Though, it works.

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The ability to quickly crop the whole document using the crop tool is basic and necessary. This is a serious limitation to an otherwise great app. It didn't occur to me that such a basic function would be missing. I wouldn't have bought this app if I'd realized. Will this capability be added? Seeing numerous requests over two years, with little response, is disheartening. Can someone please post an update?

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I agree with this. It should be a simple but important tool that saves time and guessing work when you need it. I don't want to open other program or jump through hoops just to adjust the canvas or document size. let's hope it can be introduced in the next update.

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But crop is not standard tool in vector graphics like it is in pixel editors. Unless I am way behind times I believe Illustrator hasn't it either.

There is a nice article how to do it in Illustrator, you can apply the methods in AD: http://www.wikihow.com/Crop-in-Illustrator

For example using art board tool for cropping looks straightforward. 

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ok @Fixx, but is it possible to go back when you have created an artboard. Like if you don't want to use the artboard tool anymore in a document?

If you delete an artboard, AD asks if you want to keep the objects in it or not. However, if you delete the artboard & keep the objects, they no longer will be clipped to the artboard's dimensions & you will be right back where you started from.

 

But I am not sure why you would want to delete the artboard. Like Fixx said, document cropping is not a standard feature of a vector graphics app. Because vectors are defined in geometric terms they don't use a lot of file space compared to a raster image -- for example, a rectangle shape uses the same small amount of file space no matter what size it is, & any part of it not on the canvas or in an artboard won't print or be included in a raster format export.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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 Like Fixx said, document cropping is not a standard feature of a vector graphics app. Because vectors are defined in geometric terms they don't use a lot of file space compared to a raster image -- for example, a rectangle shape uses the same small amount of file space no matter what size it is, & any part of it not on the canvas or in an artboard won't print or be included in a raster format export.

The problem is for users, like me, that are more use to a photo environment than a designer one. The moment i've read about the artbooks my mind exploded and even the export persona started to make much more sense. I guess this is solved for me but there will be other people who could ask for this option and @MEB could point to this concept  :). There are tutorials, but we need a pointing finger. Guys, if you need to crop a doc, subfold your piece under an artboard, which is even selectable in the export persona with the hand selector, nice and easy!

 

Maybe the hand selector could be the primary mode as sometimes I go to export with nothing selected and the first tool I click is the slice (crop) tool -habits are hard to beat- or at least make the slice tool in the export persona snap to the first layer it touches (which for noobs like me is going to be the border of the doc, again, old bad habits). It's horrible to be a noob and blame a more clever software than I am.  :D

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But crop is not standard tool in vector graphics like it is in pixel editors. Unless I am way behind times I believe Illustrator hasn't it either.

There is a nice article how to do it in Illustrator, you can apply the methods in AD: http://www.wikihow.com/Crop-in-Illustrator

For example using art board tool for cropping looks straightforward. 

 

AD has a vector mode and a pixel mode (personas). The pixel mode doesn't have a crop tool, nor a crop command in the menus.

So we have a crop tool that works nothing like any other cropping tools (it's more like a mask) and it is in the "wrong" mode too.

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It is not in the wrong "mode" (Persona) -- it is a vector cropping tool. That's all it is. Also, Designer's Pixel Persona is not intended to be a full featured, stand alone pixel editor, just a limited feature one useful when doing things like adding a raster texture to a vector object.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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Hi fernandolins86,

The Crop Tool available in Designer is a (non-destructive) object based crop tool. It's intended to be used directly with any object mostly for layout purposes such as getting a better image composition in place when designing a layout without the need to edit it in an image editor. The crop tool you are looking for is a document based Crop Tool such as the one you find in Affinity Photo whose purpose is to compose the whole document/image as a definite step. They serve different purposes and as such differ in their functionality.

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I believe that simple "Trim to edges" tool would serve perfectly in many cases. It just resizes document to remove empty space around objects. Why there's no such one in Affinity Designer? :)

 

For now we need ugly workarounds like that:

 

A. Select all layers, copy them and then "Create New from Clipboard..."

 

or 

 

B. Export image as PNG and then trim to edges in another editor like Acorn or similar one.

 

UPD. Another option which is often OK:

 

C. On export choose "Selection with background" or "Selection without background" but it's not always convenient to use it.

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@ rudyryk

 

Since Designer is a vector oriented app, there really is almost no benefit to removing empty spaces if the document contains only vector based objects (including text). There is nothing in the empty space -- it uses zero file & memory space. The only possible benefit I see is when using zoom to actual size, but that is arbitrary since vectors are resolution independent & actual size can be defined in several different ways.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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Hi rudyryk,

Welcome to Affinity Forums :)

When you create a document, if you tick Create artboard (right below the Document Units dropdown on top) Affinity Designer will use an artboard based document which lets you easily resize it selecting it in the Layers panel and dragging its bounding box handles with the Move Tool. For existing documents you can convert them selecting the Artboard Tool and clicking Insert Artboard in the context toolbar.

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Hi MEB,

thank you! I'll take a deeper look at the Artboard Tool.

 

Actually one of my primary use cases for Affinity Designer is working with Photoshop files (prepared by other designers) to extract graphics from there and save as PNG/JPG/SVG for web. I understand that it's probably not the most common case but I was wondered how Affinity Designer is great with many complex things and a little bit harsh with some basic stuff :)

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Hi fernandolins86,

The Crop Tool available in Designer is a (non-destructive) object based crop tool. It's intended to be used directly with any object mostly for layout purposes such as getting a better image composition in place when designing a layout without the need to edit it in an image editor. The crop tool you are looking for is a document based Crop Tool such as the one you find in Affinity Photo whose purpose is to compose the whole document/image as a definite step. They serve different purposes and as such differ in their functionality.

 

I understand, but it is counter-intuitive.

 

To me, the Crop tool does exactly what moving a bitmap inside a vector shape in the layers panel does: it masks it. Even the user manual refers to it as such:

 

Masking - "reveals part of a layer while the rest of it is hidden".

Vector Crop - "removes part of the selected object in non-destructive manner".

 

I believe that if you're "removing part of it non-destructively" you're just masking it with a vector shape, right? If it's not the same result, please enlighten me.

 

Also, if the tool has the same name in AP, why does it behave differently?

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Yes, that's correct. The Crop Tool adds a vector based mask to the object you are cropping. We expose that vector mask to the user (expand the cropped object layer in the Layers panel to see/access it). That's how it works. In Designer it's used to mask any object  (single objects, layer(s), group) etc) rather the whole document (including all layers) at once as in Photo.

I believe the issue you are describing has more to do with the semantic than with the tool itself?

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Yes, that's correct. The Crop Tool adds a vector based mask to the object you are cropping. We expose that vector mask to the user (expand the cropped object layer in the Layers panel to see/access it). That's how it works. In Designer it's used to mask any object  (single objects, layer(s), group) etc) rather the whole document (including all layers) at once as in Photo.

I believe the issue you are describing has more to do with the semantic than with the tool itself?

 

Correct, this semantic issue is what causes confusion, especially given that previous tools's (Photoshop, GIMP, Lightroom, Paintshop, Fireworks, etc) crop tool's behaviour does not mask objects, but trims the document's dimensions. I believe that if it works like that in Affinity Photo, then the behaviour should be the same in Designer, and then there would be another tool to apply this masking effect.

 

So IMHO, the Crop tool should be exactly the same as in AP, and a new tool that masks the object as Crop does in AD 1.5.x should be created and named something other than "Crop". Otherwise people will keep trying to crop the way they're used to from Photoshop and AP with no success and this will be an ongoing complaint source.

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So IMHO, the Crop tool should be exactly the same as in AP, and a new tool that masks the object as Crop does in AD 1.5.x should be created and named something other than "Crop". Otherwise people will keep trying to crop the way they're used to from Photoshop and AP with no success and this will be an ongoing complaint source.

In AD, the tool is called the "Vector Crop Tool," the Status (hintline) bar indicates what is selected (which is clearly not the document itself), & crop marks appear around the selected object in the workspace, not the entire canvas. How many more clues do you think people should need to figure out this is not the same as the PS document crop tool?


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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AP edits pixels, AD edits vectors and elements. Crop tools can hardly be identical. After all, you do not use same cropping tools in PS and InDesign either.

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Agree with everybody else. There is File→New From Clipboard. Select everything you want and it creates a new document sized to the contents of the clipboard. Still not great though.

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