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Export from iPad to Mac in affinity format

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Hi

I have a design made in Afffinity for iPad, and I need to pass it to my Mac, but keeping this same Affinity format. How can I do it?

I've seen that I can export in png, jpg, svg ... but I can't find an option to do it from Affinity for iPad to Affinity for desktop.

Can you help me?

Thank you!

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You did not say which Affinity app (Photo or Designer) you are using, but for either app you can use AirDrop, iCloud Drive, or another cloud storage service for this.


Affinity Photo 1.8.4, Affinity Designer 1.8.4, Affinity Publisher 1.8.4;  2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 40GB RAM; macOS 10.15.6
Affinity Photo 
1.8.4.186 & Affinity Designer 1.8.4.4 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 14.0.1

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5 minutes ago, Bo Schafers said:

You can go to the File menu, use the ‘Save A Copy‘ command and save it in afdesign format to icloud drive or locally.

"Save A Copy" saves the file with the same format extension (afdesign or afphoto) as the original. It does not give you an option to change the extension.


Affinity Photo 1.8.4, Affinity Designer 1.8.4, Affinity Publisher 1.8.4;  2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 40GB RAM; macOS 10.15.6
Affinity Photo 
1.8.4.186 & Affinity Designer 1.8.4.4 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 14.0.1

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Go to the home screen, check your preferences to ensure your default save location is iCloud, close preferences, select the three bars and rename your work, then press save. File will be saved to your Affinity  Designer folder in iCloud that will have been auto created by this step. This folder is accessible in finder on your Mac. Open file on your Mac. This all obviously assumes you are using iCloud on both iPad and Mac.


Affinity Photo 1.9 beta, Designer 1.9 beta, Publisher 1.9 beta on MACOS Big Sur beta.
Affinity Photo 1.9 beta, Designer 1.9 beta, Publisher 1.9 beta on Windows 10 Pro.
Affinity Photo 1.8, Designer 1.9 beta on iPad Pro 9.7" on iPadOS 14.4 beta.

https://www.facebook.com/AffinityForiPad/

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@Paul Mudditt Thank you so much for this. A refined version of this tutorial should be front and center for the AD iPad app, it's crucial. On top of that, though, you should just be able to easily airdrop these files from iPad to OSX.

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@Paul Mudditt Problem: I've changed the default save location to iCloud Drive but when I click on the file in iPad Affinity Designer and "Save", it says "saving to location "on my ipad""... I've reset the program and tried after, the default save location says "iCloud Drive" - any ideas?

 

 

edit: once I duplicate and save, it does save to iCloud Drive... odd?

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Probably because your file was opened from the 'local' directory it is being saved back to the original file location. Close the file and reopen using the 'import form cloud', navigate to the file open it (import it), then use the menu Save option.


IPad Pro 10.5/512GB   lpadOS 14.3 Apple Pencil (1st gen), Affinity Photo 1.8.6.198,  Affinity Photo beta1.9.0.211, Affinity Design 1.8.6.1, Affinity Designer beta 1.9.10, waiting for Publisher for iPad

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I've been trying to get my design from the iPad to the desktop for an hour now and it's just incredibly obscure. Finally, I hit the right keywords and found this thread, but Save a Copy doesn't show new save locations every time, it's hit and miss for me. Saving to Dropbox fails. I don't use iCloud Drive because it's so unreliable and doesn't even work on my home desktop.

It should be dead simple to jump between the iPad and desktop versions. This is a crucial step in the workflow, I can't understand why it has been basically ignored in development. This is so different from other apps on iPadOS that it's almost impossible to find this feature without finding this thread. 

The Export dialogue or an option in the project selector screen would be a better fit for this functionality and more in line with other apps.

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My iPad Pro, I select export, when windows open, bottom left Share.  Look at the options. I never had a problem with saving to iCloud.  


Cecil 

iMac Retina 5K, 27”, 2019. 3.6 GHz Intel Core 9, 40 GB Memory DDR4, Radeon Pro 580X 8 GB, macOS,iPad Pro iPadOS

 

Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection 

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3 minutes ago, Cecil said:

My iPad Pro, I select export, when windows open, bottom left Share.  Look at the options. I never had a problem with saving to iCloud.  

I'm trying to export it in the Affinity format, to continue working on the desktop. Share doesn't have that option. Finally got it to work by connecting a USB stick. Physical works best.

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Just now, Samuli said:

It should be dead simple to jump between the iPad and desktop versions.

Yes it should, but the big problem is that in the iPadOS all Affinity app documents remain 'open' even if they are saved from the home screen, so unless they are both saved to some location the desktop OS can access (like iCloud Drive) and then closed in the iPadOS app, there is no way to guarantee that both the iPadOS & desktop apps will have access to the same version of the document.


Affinity Photo 1.8.4, Affinity Designer 1.8.4, Affinity Publisher 1.8.4;  2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 40GB RAM; macOS 10.15.6
Affinity Photo 
1.8.4.186 & Affinity Designer 1.8.4.4 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 14.0.1

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In AP, I opened a photo from Import From Cloud, made one adjustment, clicked Save History, Save A Copy, next window Opened, selected Cloud location, clicked save.  The picture was saved in my icloud Drive I selected with the name and .afphotos file extensions. I opened AP, +, Import for Cloud, opened in .afphotos with layer.


Cecil 

iMac Retina 5K, 27”, 2019. 3.6 GHz Intel Core 9, 40 GB Memory DDR4, Radeon Pro 580X 8 GB, macOS,iPad Pro iPadOS

 

Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection 

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52 minutes ago, R C-R said:

Yes it should, but the big problem is that in the iPadOS all Affinity app documents remain 'open' even if they are saved from the home screen, so unless they are both saved to some location the desktop OS can access (like iCloud Drive) and then closed in the iPadOS app, there is no way to guarantee that both the iPadOS & desktop apps will have access to the same version of the document.

I'm not actually looking for simultaneous access to the same document, I'm talking about exporting a specific state of the document in the Affinity format. The functionality is there, it's just very hard to find. As Cecil pointed out, once you actually find it and if your cloud services work as expected, it shouldn't be too difficult to achieve this.

The problem is discoverability. This is a core feature and it should be obvious even to a new user without scouring the forum for the answer. I'm not a new user, I've been using Affinity Designer as my main design tool for over a year, but I couldn't find this feature. A big part of it was the apparent misfire of the "save a copy" screen the first time. I don't know why it didn't give me the option to save at a different location. I have actually done this before, but it was some time ago and I had forgotten how to do it. I had to google it the first time too. If I was up against a deadline, having to use an hour to search for the answer to a simple task would have been catastrophic. As it is, it's merely an annoyance.


The other issue, that's a bit of a tangent, is that reliability of cloud services varies wildly from one geographical location to another. Where I live, Apple's servers are on the other side of the ocean. They are slow and prone to mistakes. For example, restoring a 16GB iPhone from an iCloud backup takes two days and most apps never restore completely. iCloud Drive doesn't work on my home computer because it's old.

Dropbox probably has its servers closer because they work faster and are more reliable. For me, it's quicker to dig out an old USB stick and a CCK than to battle with the cloud. For you, Cecil, it's probably the other way around. That's great, I'm happy for you.

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9 minutes ago, Samuli said:

I'm not actually looking for simultaneous access to the same document, I'm talking about exporting a specific state of the document in the Affinity format.

OK, but how many users would understand that would likely often result in two (or more) versions of the same document being saved to each of what could be more than one supported cloud service?

More to the point, what could Serif do to make this possibility obvious to users or somehow prevent it from happening by accident?


Affinity Photo 1.8.4, Affinity Designer 1.8.4, Affinity Publisher 1.8.4;  2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 40GB RAM; macOS 10.15.6
Affinity Photo 
1.8.4.186 & Affinity Designer 1.8.4.4 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 14.0.1

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9 hours ago, Samuli said:

I'm not actually looking for simultaneous access to the same document, I'm talking about exporting a specific state of the document in the Affinity format

Save a Copy in Workscreen Document menu. You now have a .afxxxx file stored wherever you chose to store it. Open Files app, navigate to .afxxxx , tap Select and then select the file. Tap Share sheet. Select Airdrop. Use Airdrop to transfer file to Mac.  Simples... 😁


IPad Pro 10.5/512GB   lpadOS 14.3 Apple Pencil (1st gen), Affinity Photo 1.8.6.198,  Affinity Photo beta1.9.0.211, Affinity Design 1.8.6.1, Affinity Designer beta 1.9.10, waiting for Publisher for iPad

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On 4/1/2020 at 6:45 PM, R C-R said:

OK, but how many users would understand that would likely often result in two (or more) versions of the same document being saved to each of what could be more than one supported cloud service?

More to the point, what could Serif do to make this possibility obvious to users or somehow prevent it from happening by accident?

I'm sorry but you lost me there. What do you mean by this resulting in two or more versions being saved to each cloud? How would that happen with a simple export. Again, we're talking about an existing feature, that is difficult to find, not new functionality.  

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On 4/2/2020 at 3:01 AM, DM1 said:

Save a Copy in Workscreen Document menu. You now have a .afxxxx file stored wherever you chose to store it. Open Files app, navigate to .afxxxx , tap Select and then select the file. Tap Share sheet. Select Airdrop. Use Airdrop to transfer file to Mac.  Simples... 😁

Well, I wouldn't call that exactly simples, there are a whole bunch of unnecessary steps but that's not the issue. The issue is that Affinity is doing this differently from every other app on iPadOS and that makes the export / transfer feature very difficult to find for someone who doesn't do this every day. The normal UI spot for this feature is either in the document selector screen or the export menu item or both. This is practically a standard. If you do it differently, you had better have a very good reason and I don't see one.

Sure, I'll probably remember it now that I've spent time arguing about it here, but that doesn't help the next guy who also has to google it and find the right keywords. It's not trivial.

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37 minutes ago, Samuli said:

I'm sorry but you lost me there. What do you mean by this resulting in two or more versions being saved to each cloud? How would that happen with a simple export.

Earlier, you mentioned exporting a specific state of a document in the Affinity format. So if a user exported a document more than once, each time with even tiny differences, each one would be a different version of the same document.

The only way that could be avoided is if the user always uses the same file name & exports to the same folder of the same cloud service each time (to overwrite the previous version), but there is no way to guarantee that.

53 minutes ago, Samuli said:

Again, we're talking about an existing feature, that is difficult to find, not new functionality. 

This time you lost me. What is this existing feature?


Affinity Photo 1.8.4, Affinity Designer 1.8.4, Affinity Publisher 1.8.4;  2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 40GB RAM; macOS 10.15.6
Affinity Photo 
1.8.4.186 & Affinity Designer 1.8.4.4 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 14.0.1

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On 4/2/2020 at 12:21 AM, Samuli said:

but Save a Copy doesn't show new save locations every time

That is odd because every time I tried it, it opened Files app thus giving me the option use the current copies location or to choose a new location.  It even allows you to save at the same location while keeping the previous version (if you leave same file name, app adds an incremental digit to file name).

2 hours ago, Samuli said:

Well, I wouldn't call that exactly simples, there are a whole bunch of unnecessary steps but that's not the issue.

Tap menu, tap Save a Copy and choose a suitable location. No unnecessary steps there. 
The OP was asking how to move the afdesign file to their Mac. That’s what  the Share sheet/airdrop explanation was for. Could have just as easily chosen iCloud in the Save a Copy location step, and downloaded  the file from iCloud to Mac. AirDrop just savesthe BB data usage and is very fast.

2 hours ago, Samuli said:

The issue is that Affinity is doing this differently from every other app on iPadOS and that makes the export / transfer feature very difficult to find for someone who doesn't do this every day. 

Are you suggesting that the 'Export' screen should include an .afdesign output format option in place of the current Save a Copy? That would add an unnecessary additional step to the existing simple process. 
Documents PDF editor (by Readdle) uses Save a Copy in its Document menu too, and then uses Share sheet to choose an output format for Exporting finished product. Very similar to Affinity in that respect.

2 hours ago, Samuli said:

I'll probably remember it now that I've spent time arguing about it here

No need to remember, or Google either, for that matter. Just type 'Save' into the built in Help files Search menu. It explains the process quite succinctly.
I don't believe anyone is 'arguing' with you here. UI design is subjective but there are any number of what I consider ui 'issues' with the Affinity iPad products. For me, most issues relate to 'visibilty', (I find the menu contrast poor when screen brightness is reduced and bright screens make my eyes sore), but menu layout also has issues. Saving a Copy of the file I'm working on has just never been an issue for me. I see Save a Copy listed in the workspace document menu and it seems pretty obvious (to me at least) what it does. I see Export and think 'output format selection' rather than export a copy of current file. 
It’s a complex app with many more features than similar drawing/painting apps. Given the small screens realestate it’s not surprising that some functions are hidden deep in menus. 
The Feature Requests-thread is a good place to request these sorts changes. 🙂 
 


IPad Pro 10.5/512GB   lpadOS 14.3 Apple Pencil (1st gen), Affinity Photo 1.8.6.198,  Affinity Photo beta1.9.0.211, Affinity Design 1.8.6.1, Affinity Designer beta 1.9.10, waiting for Publisher for iPad

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18 hours ago, DM1 said:

That is odd because every time I tried it, it opened Files app thus giving me the option use the current copies location or to choose a new location.  It even allows you to save at the same location while keeping the previous version (if you leave same file name, app adds an incremental digit to file name).

Tap menu, tap Save a Copy and choose a suitable location. No unnecessary steps there. 
The OP was asking how to move the afdesign file to their Mac. That’s what  the Share sheet/airdrop explanation was for. Could have just as easily chosen iCloud in the Save a Copy location step, and downloaded  the file from iCloud to Mac. AirDrop just savesthe BB data usage and is very fast.

Are you suggesting that the 'Export' screen should include an .afdesign output format option in place of the current Save a Copy? That would add an unnecessary additional step to the existing simple process. 
Documents PDF editor (by Readdle) uses Save a Copy in its Document menu too, and then uses Share sheet to choose an output format for Exporting finished product. Very similar to Affinity in that respect.

No need to remember, or Google either, for that matter. Just type 'Save' into the built in Help files Search menu. It explains the process quite succinctly.
I don't believe anyone is 'arguing' with you here. UI design is subjective but there are any number of what I consider ui 'issues' with the Affinity iPad products. For me, most issues relate to 'visibilty', (I find the menu contrast poor when screen brightness is reduced and bright screens make my eyes sore), but menu layout also has issues. Saving a Copy of the file I'm working on has just never been an issue for me. I see Save a Copy listed in the workspace document menu and it seems pretty obvious (to me at least) what it does. I see Export and think 'output format selection' rather than export a copy of current file. 
It’s a complex app with many more features than similar drawing/painting apps. Given the small screens realestate it’s not surprising that some functions are hidden deep in menus. 
The Feature Requests-thread is a good place to request these sorts changes. 🙂 
 

Oh, I don't mean arguing in a bad way, I mean it in the neutral sense – we have differing opinions and present arguments in favour of those. But I would argue, that "save" is not among the first words you would try when you want to export something from iPadOS to a desktop. It's just a different way of thinking about it. Save on iOS and iPadOS has traditionally meant local saves, "Save a copy" is a macOS concept that isn't something native to the iOSes and hasn't even become very common on macOS outside Apple's own app suite. 

But to be honest, I'm not going to start a separate feature request thread, there is close to zero chance of success and it would just be the same as this thread. But don't get me wrong, people have been helpful and argued thoughtfully. I'm just not in the majority, apparently :)

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18 minutes ago, Samuli said:

Save on iOS and iPadOS has traditionally meant local saves ...

Not true. One of the features Apple promotes heavily for iOS/iPadOS is cloud based storage for 'anywhere access.' Because iPhones & iPads generaally have much less local storage capacity than desktop systems, it is a feature a lot of people use.


Affinity Photo 1.8.4, Affinity Designer 1.8.4, Affinity Publisher 1.8.4;  2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 40GB RAM; macOS 10.15.6
Affinity Photo 
1.8.4.186 & Affinity Designer 1.8.4.4 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 14.0.1

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6 hours ago, R C-R said:

Not true. One of the features Apple promotes heavily for iOS/iPadOS is cloud based storage for 'anywhere access.' Because iPhones & iPads generaally have much less local storage capacity than desktop systems, it is a feature a lot of people use.

Well… that's true, Apple promotes it heavily, but it was very limited for a long time. The semi-transparent file system is a fairly new addition. As I don't use Documents by Readdle (Documents by Savysoda uses the share icon), I struggled to think of a second app that uses "Save" as a way to export to a cloud, but then I opened Clip Studio Paint today, and it has just in the latest update moved its export function to "save as". The other apps I use are Procreate (share), LumaFusion (share/export), Nanostudio 2 (export), Pixelmator (share icon -> send a copy), Stop Motion Studio (Share icon -> Export), Audioshare (share icon).

I don't know if there's a paradigm shift going on, there might well be, but judging from my perspective, it hasn't really even started yet. There's the majority that uses the share/export language and then the couple outliers that use save, of which I think Affinity's use of it is the least transparent. I guess if the pendulum swings more into the "save" territory, this will become a non-issue. It doesn't take much, so I guess I'll hope for that. Affinity's apps kind of follow the same UI scheme as all my other apps except for that one thing, so it's easy to get fooled. I had a hard time finding the feature twice, so I judged it an issue, but no one has chimed in, so it's probably more my issue than Affinity's.

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