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Sneak peeks for 1.7

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Fatih19 is refering to this feature request, I guess:

Best regards!


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8 minutes ago, Mithferion said:

Fatih19 is refering to this feature request, I guess:

Best regards!

Yep! Switched from Inkscape and still missed that feature ever since. 

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You know, I thought I'd already done that - turns out I hadn't yet.

 


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:o

 

Like the old song says:

 

'Cause you know that you've heard it before
And you feel that this moment in time is surreal
'Cause you know when you feel deja-vu

 

Best regards!


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On 3/28/2018 at 3:06 PM, Ben said:

...I just meant the tool(s) that create the dynamic shapes - such as Cog, Star, etc.  They are already well documented, and fairly easy to use.

Hi Ben 

 

Really need to thank you for the big work you are doing with affinity ... but now ... i can't sit on my chair anymore since i've watched the short videos of the snapping.

i just know we will do crazy things with Affinity Designer 1.7 when it's released.

... You made me go crazy saying Whoooooow every 5min and thinking what kind of crazy stuff i will do with ADesigner 1.7 when it's released.

 


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…the tool(s) that create the dynamic shapes - such as Cog, Star, etc.

Since you mention that...

One of the most useful "shape tools" that would go hand-in-hand with the axo grids you're working on is a "threads" tools. For example, the one in Corel Technical Designer lets you simply drag to fill an ellipse with automatically trimmed half-ellipses to create a threaded hole. Huge time-saver.

Related: As I mentioned in one of the threads requesting a spiral too, ordinary "me, too" spiral tools are everywhere. But in both technical and general illustration, it's arguable that the need to draw a coil is actually more commonly needed than just yet another flat  "spiral." One of the oft-repeated threads in drawing software forums is "How do I draw a helix." And tech Illustrators need to draw springs just as often as they need to draw cogs.

Springs are tedious to draw manually. It's my most common use for the "path stretching" features ("Rubber Band Mode" in Corel Draw, or the "Reshape Tool" in Illustrator). But I see no reason why a live Spiral Shape tool shouldn't:

  • Provide control for both uniformly and progressively-spaced coils.
  • Allow the spacing of uniform coils to go all the way to zero, so that the path coils effectively lay exactly on top of each other.
  • Provide endpoint handles that can allow the spiral to be "stretched" so as to serve as the centerline of a spring.

By way of example, here's a screenshot of my isometric springs "library" in Illustrator. Each of these was tediously derived by:

  1. Drawing an ellipse.
  2. Cutting the ellipse at one of its nodes.
  3. Using the Reshape Tool to "stretch" the cut ellipse into a single "spiral" coil.
  4. Storing the coil in the "side tile" of a Pattern Brush.
  5. Drawing the end coils separately and storing them in the "end tiles."
  6. Repeating that process for every 5° increment about an isometric ellipse.

You can imagine the tedium involved. But once done, each of the Brushes can be used to instantly create a spring of any diameter and any length. (And actually, of any bend, too; it's not just for tech illustration. I could use any one of the Brushes to draw a Slinky toy, for example.)

IsoSprings.png

So in the above, I've used in non-obvious ways several features which many users consider the "high end" differentiators between ostensibly "professional" Illustrator and its competitors. But they're not really so "high end"; they're just needlessly cumbersome and not very well integrated.

I've done the same thing to create libraries of vector Brushes (or combinations of Brushes) to semi-automate drawing hex bolts, wires with terminals, wire rope, various kinds of chains, and more. Again, you can imagine the hours.

TechBrushes.jpg

 

But I don't build such things in Illustrator anymore because I'm not going to continue to invest the effort in a program that I would have to rent (and which would thereby hold my own working files hostage). So I also do not share them, because I'm not really interested in promoting the use of Illustrator for the same reason.

Along similar lines, I've explored the related features in enough drawing programs to be convinced that such things and more could be accomplished more intuitively and more powerfully by a better-integrated set of more straightforward vector-based features, including:

  • Path Ends (not just arrowheads)
  • Path Strokes (repeating or stretched)
  • Symbols (as ends or repeating along strokes)
  • Graphic Styles
  • Blends

As they say, "The devil is in the details." It's all about thoroughly and thoughtfully integrating the functionality between the features. For just one example, both Illustrator's Brushes and its Symbols are woefully debilitated by failure to abide by the option in the program's Transform palette to disallow scaling of stroke weights in the base artwork.

It's arguable that the piecemeal and standalone nature of such features in the very old programs is a consequence of their being added one at a time. I don't buy that, but Affinity's being new from the ground up should help avoid that "random grab bag" of functionality feeling of the long-in-the-tooth competitors.

Anyway, that's what I hope to see in Affinity.

JET

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On 22/01/2018 at 0:54 PM, Ben said:

I have another sneak peak for you.

 

This one might be a little hard to follow, but I'll try explain it best as I can.  Something that has always bothered me is when I put a linear or radial gradient fill on something, and then try scaling or shearing the object.  The gradient fill is unstable in that it doesn't track the object transform.  This is because linear and radials fills are positioned relative to two key points, forming a line through which the gradient is rendered.  Elliptical (and bitmap) fills don't suffer from this because they have three key points, forming a rectangle in two axis.

 

So, I decided we need to fix that. See this video: CorrectedFills.mov

 

The top objects have a legacy linear, radial and elliptical gradient fill.  You'll see that when I shear the first two objects, the fill kind of moves around inside the object and doesn't conform to the shear.

The bottom objects have a corrected fill.  When I shear these objects you'll see that the fills continue to adhere to their placement relative to their object.

 

I then show you some new handles that appear in the Fill tool, which show you the "correction" points of the linear and radial fills, connected with dashed lines.  (You'll notice that the elliptical fills appears the same as they need no correction).  These new handles show you when a fill is being corrected, and give you opportunity to place the extra correction points if you so chose.  You can double click the correction point handles to adjust the fill into a conventional linear or radial fill in document space.

 

Why is this important?

 

If I create an asset or a symbol, I can then place it, and transform it, and maintain the visual appearance without the fills distorting.  This is then especially useful for 2.5D drawing - I can use assets and symbols that were designed in 2D, transform them to grid plane (using the new planar tools coming in 1.7 which make use of shear and scale), and they will maintain their fills.

Of course, it is just generally useful, in that it kind of maintains a more WYSIWYG approach to gradient fill placement.

 

 

 

Just, don't ask about conical fills - they are going to take a bit more figuring out.

Ok I will not ask about conical fills....:) 

 

But... I noticed that if you add a graduation into a say semi circle object; then mirror the semi circle; the original graduation is 'not mirrored' and is left outside the object boundary in its original position...You have to manually re-position the graduation everytime!...would this be covered in your 1.7 updates?


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On 28/03/2018 at 0:15 PM, Ben said:

You know, I thought I'd already done that - turns out I hadn't yet.

 

Hi Ben, would you also be adding more snapping options to the control points of geometric shapes as well?

 

 

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Holy cr&p I just found this thread...! I guess I had this forum section hidden and then forgot about it... :-\

 

Anyway, this is getting damn good, super excited for these new features... all the great snapping and node tool improvements. Yes nodes alignment please Ben!! ;) really miss that.

 

... and here I was thinking things had quieted down over the last few months... doh!  Keep up the great work, more vids!! ;)

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11 hours ago, rubs said:

 

Hi Ben, would you also be adding more snapping options to the control points of geometric shapes as well?

 

 

 

I have been thinking about it, but it will be quite involved.  There are a number of not-so-obvious things that I'd have to solve to make it a fully useable feature.


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39 minutes ago, Ben said:

 

I have been thinking about it, but it will be quite involved.  There are a number of not-so-obvious things that I'd have to solve to make it a fully useable feature.

Hopefully you can, because it would be great to have the feature when you have a VERY customizable shape builder :D

Edited by Fatih19
Incomplete

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Actually - if you all have examples of how you think Shape snapping should work, that might help.  Some snaps are easier to define than others, so I'm interested to see what people have in mind.


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7 minutes ago, Ben said:

Actually - if you all have examples of how you think Shape snapping should work, that might help.  Some snaps are easier to define than others, so I'm interested to see what people have in mind.

I think one of the most basic one is if we can plug in our own fraction when selecting the control point, after we enter our own fraction and click enter, the control point will move to the plugged fraction.

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You can already do that - only you need to express the value as a percentage - so "100/3" to get 1/3 (33%) for example.

 

.. and that's not really anything to do with snapping.


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37 minutes ago, Ben said:

Actually - if you all have examples of how you think Shape snapping should work, that might help.  Some snaps are easier to define than others, so I'm interested to see what people have in mind.

What about snapping to other shape "geometry" and "key points"?

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41 minutes ago, Ben said:

Actually - if you all have examples of how you think Shape snapping should work, that might help.  Some snaps are easier to define than others, so I'm interested to see what people have in mind.

 

Here's an example. When making a donut chart composed of two colored sections, you may:

 

1) Create two identical donuts, one of each color.

2) Adjust donut #1's angle to something other than a multiple of 90°.

3) Adjust donut #2 so its start angle is the same as the end angle of donut #1. This is currently only possible by typing the same values.

4) Adjust one hole radius to something other than a multiple of 25%.

5) Adjust donut #2's radius to match #1's. Currently you have to type the same value.

 

Snapping the control points just like nodes do would be tremendously helpful in steps 3 and 5 (specially considering this can already be done with the node tool itself).

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3 hours ago, rubs said:

 

Here's an example. When making a donut chart composed of two colored sections, you may:

 

1) Create two identical donuts, one of each color.

2) Adjust donut #1's angle to something other than a multiple of 90°.

3) Adjust donut #2 so its start angle is the same as the end angle of donut #1. This is currently only possible by typing the same values.

4) Adjust one hole radius to something other than a multiple of 25%.

5) Adjust donut #2's radius to match #1's. Currently you have to type the same value.

 

Snapping the control points just like nodes do would be tremendously helpful in steps 3 and 5 (specially considering this can already be done with the node tool itself).

 

This is already significantly more complicated than it seems on the surface.  Taking two shapes and deciding how they might snap in parametric terms.  Visually, it might appear obvious, but programmatically I'd have to decide that two pie objects provide complementary snapping - do they have the same centres, do they have common shear, rotation and scaling.  Angular snapping is more complex than linear snapping, and anything that alters dependant geometry (lengths and angles) is also difficult.

 

Within the context of a single shape, determining snapping parametric points is involved, but easier (I only have to consider the geometry for that one shape).  For example, determining the snap points on the double star where it forms parallel or inline edges.  Each of these cases requires it's own maths.  Now, take two random shapes, and try and decide whether adjusting parameter X of one shape makes a snap with certain properties of the other shape.  This is far from trivial.

There will be some properties which I can determine common rules for.  There will be other properties that require specific maths.

 


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29 minutes ago, Ben said:

 

This is already significantly more complicated than it seems on the surface.  Taking two shapes and deciding how they might snap in parametric terms.  Visually, it might appear obvious, but programmatically I'd have to decide that two pie objects provide complementary snapping - do they have the same centres, do they have common shear, rotation and scaling.  Angular snapping is more complex than linear snapping, and anything that alters dependant geometry (lengths and angles) is also difficult.

 

Within the context of a single shape, determining snapping parametric points is involved, but easier (I only have to consider the geometry for that one shape).  For example, determining the snap points on the double star where it forms parallel or inline edges.  Each of these cases requires it's own maths.  Now, take two random shapes, and try and decide whether adjusting parameter X of one shape makes a snap with certain properties of the other shape.  This is far from trivial.

There will be some properties which I can determine common rules for.  There will be other properties that require specific maths.

 

Maybe you could do that in 1.8 instead, turn the 1.8 to "shape revolution", and if possible sprinkle in some warp /distort there ;). While using the 1.7 for "isometric 2.5 D" and "snap them all". 

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I am looking forward to this beta. Just the new node features alone are going to make a big difference in my workflow. Would be nice to see a new lasso selection tool option to compliment it. :-) I could see selecting certain nodes quickly being a little tricky with the box selection method.

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Hey @Ben, regarding your video sneak peeks. Are you targeting the node to snap to somehow for all of these snapping maneuvers?

 

How would some of these works with more nodes along a path? (and/or) Does it always have to be an adjacent node or can it be any node on a path?

 

Just wondering how you're enacting the behaviour or how this might work in a slightly more complicated situation. Thanks.

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12 hours ago, retrograde said:

I am looking forward to this beta. Just the new node features alone are going to make a big difference in my workflow. Would be nice to see a new lasso selection tool option to compliment it. :-) I could see selecting certain nodes quickly being a little tricky with the box selection method.

Yeah, like in Moho 12. There is a node selection tool that is a lasso tool. The new node rotation capability would be very useful. 

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1 hour ago, Fatih19 said:

Yeah, like in Moho 12. There is a node selection tool that is a lasso tool. The new node rotation capability would be very useful. 

 

For an illustration app, some sort of lasso selection tool would be very handy to select non rectangular sets of nodes... especially with those upcoming new node editing possibilities.

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22 minutes ago, retrograde said:

 

For an illustration app, some sort of lasso selection tool would be very handy to select non rectangular sets of nodes... especially with those upcoming new node editing possibilities.

Agreed, I would like to know what Ben thoughts about the difficulty of implementing this. 

Edited by Fatih19
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…some sort of lasso selection tool…

I've long maintained it would be less tedious and more accurate to simply provide a set of straightforward commands or buttons which allow the user to convert any ordinary path into a selection marquee or a cutting path (complete with appropriate contact-sensitive and select/subselect options). That way, any path drawing tool could be used, with all its accuracy advantages, instead of the conventional separate screen pixel-based marquee selection tool that:

  • Makes it far too tedious to weave around the desired selection in tight circumstances (a very frequent problem when working with the disjointed polylines exported from CAD programs).
  • Prevents being able to zoom in or out while making a selection.
  • Wreaks havoc when the "lasso" comes into proximity of the screen edges, causing you to have to start all over.

I see no reason for separate functionally-limited "lasso" selection and "path cutting" tools, when the whole set of drawing tools could be used to perform both with more versatility.

Consider how ironic it is that conventional-wisdom vector drawing programs always resort to a clumsy screen-pixel tool for a so-called "lasso" tool, while Photoshop and similar raster imaging programs let you draw an accurate vector-based path and then convert it to a selection.

JET

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6 minutes ago, JET_Affinity said:

I've long maintained it would be less tedious and more accurate to simply provide a set of straightforward commands or buttons which allow the user to convert any ordinary path into a selection marquee or a cutting path (complete with appropriate contact-sensitive and select/subselect options).

 

We can already convert an ordinary path into a selection marquee (but not the other way around). We don’t have cutting paths yet, of course.


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