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How to scale images using percentages?


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To know the true scale of an image is very important, especially for architects and engineers. So to make sure the scale is correct, we need a quick method to verify that the inserted scaled image is 100% to scale. Distortions can be costly and misleading.

Besides this crucial tool, the affinity programs are very good to the prior option.

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I'm working on a document with equations.  Because AffPub doesn't natively support equations, I've exported them from my math editor as SVG and placed them in my AffPub document.  There are dozens of them, and they all need to be rescaled so the SVG characters render the same size as body text in my document.

Issue number one: Once you've fumbled around with interactively scaling a placed SVG document so its contents are visually the same height as body text, you have to go into Resource manager and do math.  You have to divide the original DPI by the placed DPI to figure out what actual scaling you ended up with.  Because an SVG file is "not an image", the context bar doesn't help you here.  And if you accidently distort the aspect ratio slightly you won't know because the placed DPI reported by AffPub is apparently something like the geometric mean of the X and Y axis DPI. Actually, you won't know right away.  You may figure it out later, when the percentage you've computed doesn't produce the precise scaling you expect on another placed SVG.

Not-an-Issue number two: Once you've worked out a percentage (to several decimal points, to avoid roundoff and fencepost errors), you do not have to select each one, visit the Transform panel, and type that percentage in to either the W or the H box.  This would be achingly tedious.  Fortunately, you can multi-select all the placed documents and use the Transform panel once to rescale them all.

Issue number three: There is no way to reset a placed document to its original size.  Double-clicking to reset on handles for a placed doument resets the aspect ratio, not the size.  The only way to "start over" if you need to tweak your percentage scaling a little bit is to delete the placed document and replace it.

In CorelDRAW, the equivalent of the AffPub Transform panel is right on the context toolbar.  The H and W size boxes are accompanied by H% and W% boxes, which are always relative to the original size of the object.  This includes drawn objects, placed objects, practically anything.  If you resize an object during import/placement by dragging, the H% and W% refer to the original or natural or on-disk or native size of the object, and are not affected by how much you dragged to resize it during placement.  To reset an object to its original size, you just type in 100%, because the H% and W% are always relative to the original size of the object, not the current size.

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I agree with @timme's original complaint. It isn't the most intuitive bit of UI. But it's also one of those things that "once you know it's there" ... you'll know ... until the next time you forget. Just me? 😉

Meanwhile, @timme one approach you may find useful is to use the Preflight pane (even before preflight time), especially in a multiuser workflow, to @MikeW's point. It will report instantly what images are not proportionally scaled. Very cool. Very pro. Very useful for those who require or prefer more precision than eyeballing it. 

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2 hours ago, Incoming Fax said:

the Preflight panel… will report instantly what images are not proportionally scaled.

Even more "instantly" would be to see in the transform panel that the W and H %s are not the same.

This is quickly becoming my number one request, and really does limit the usefulness of the apps for my professional workflow. Hope it gets resolved soon.

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  • 3 months later...
On 11/29/2019 at 2:26 PM, dominik said:

Hi @Edward Goodwin,

while it is correct that one can type in percentages in the transform panel, I think what you are looking for is a little hidden in the image toolbar:

  • Select the picture frame (not the image itself).
  • Look at the left end of the picture frame toolbar. It's a little under the three Publisher Persona icons.
  • There's a read out of the image's dimensions ... and a little downward pointing triangle next to it. Click on it and you will get this:
    image-resize.thumb.jpg.526e1e998dee8443f8a1cf082cdd69fd.jpg
     
  • This is where you type in image scaling.

Cheers,
d.

 

PS: Well, @Joachim_L beat me by the minute :)

I've only every worked in percentages when dealing with images in a page layout app. Quark grab attached - couldn't be simpler. But referring to the above - I can't find this. Is there a secret combo of selected tools?

q1.png

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I think I have an answer as I tested a jpeg and the dropdown appeared. I was using .afphoto - I did think that was the point however, to use the native format and keep all the layering and design options fluid. Of all the file format choices, I would have thought that the native affinity file would have afforded me the full features of all 3 apps.

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1 hour ago, Finrach said:

I think I have an answer as I tested a jpeg and the dropdown appeared. I was using .afphoto - I did think that was the point however, to use the native format and keep all the layering and design options fluid. Of all the file format choices, I would have thought that the native affinity file would have afforded me the full features of all 3 apps.

That might be a nice idea.

But it is also true that a .afphoto file (or a .afdesign or .afpub file) is not an image. It might happen to contain an image, but images are raster files (JPG, PNG, or TIFF), not complex file formats like the native Affinity formats, PSD, PDF, etc.

-- Walt
Designer, Photo, and Publisher V1 and V2 at latest retail and beta releases
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2 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

That might be a nice idea.

But it is also true that a .afphoto file (or a .afdesign or .afpub file) is not an image. It might happen to contain an image, but images are raster files (JPG, PNG, or TIFF), not complex file formats like the native Affinity formats, PSD, PDF, etc.

That, the idea of a container with various types of content, is also true of PDF files. It is also true that InDesign can place ID files in another ID file and display the scaling of such a file.

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Quark will happily display the current res of a placed .PSD as well as tif, jpeg etc and scale that res live as you alter the percentages. The preflight in AP drew my attention to a placed image that was unintentionally distorted and opening the Resource Manager showed I'd over enlarged it too and was pushing the res - school boy errors that I've not made since, well, a while ago. The main advantage I can see within the Affinity environment, is not having to commit to flat artwork and hop between layout/vector/image. I'm enjoying that part. I had set all native files to 300dpi. The information exists. Having to check percent sizes and res at no more than a glance at the screen is a drawback.

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20 hours ago, Finrach said:

I think I have an answer as I tested a jpeg and the dropdown appeared.

You are correct, the tool only is available on a placed image, not on an image frame. You can, though, click on the image within an image frame and access the tool this way. I can not comment on the 'Quark' way because I am not familiar with it. It looks simple, though.

 

20 hours ago, Finrach said:

I did think that was the point however, to use the native format and keep all the layering and design options fluid. Of all the file format choices, I would have thought that the native affinity file would have afforded me the full features of all 3 apps.

I personally came to the conclusion that having 'Studio Link' is a very powerfull feature of the Affinity Suite (if I may call it that way). At the same time it takes a little more thought about where to do what. There are different ways to accomplish various tasks within these three programs. It takes a little time to establish one's own workflow. And I have learned that my workflow is different from e.g. Adobe's way.

I also can imagine (and do hope) that over time many small bumps in the Affinity apps (and their integration) will be ironed out. It just takes time.

Cheers,
d.

Affinity Designer 1 & 2   |   Affinity Photo 1 & 2   |   Affinity Publisher 1 & 2
Affinity Designer 2 for iPad   |   Affinity Photo 2 for iPad   |   Affinity Publisher 2 for iPad

Windows 11 64-bit - Core i7 - 16GB - Intel HD Graphics 4600 & NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M
iPad pro 9.7" + Apple Pencil

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On 6/28/2020 at 4:04 AM, dominik said:

I personally came to the conclusion that having 'Studio Link' is a very powerfull feature of the Affinity Suite

I too am coming around to the way the Studio works. The interconnectedness of the 3 apps through Publisher's personas is a unique and powerful concept. The decades-long workflow habits are quite ingrained, sometimes to the point of almost unconscious muscle memory, but every now and then, I find an Affinity shortcut or process that makes me say "Wow! That does make much more sense."

However, in the current software iteration, those moments are still outweighed by moments of "Wow! Why has Affinity made this task so much more complicated?" Being able to place "complex file formats" as @walt.farrell calls them, with their percentage and resolution information readily available is obviously possible by other software, so I trust we will soon be able to do so within Affinity.

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4 hours ago, prophet said:

Being able to place "complex file formats" as @walt.farrell calls them, with their percentage and resolution information readily available is obviously possible by other software, so I trust we will soon be able to do so within Affinity.

Yes, this is one of the little (?) things that will make workflow more fluent 🙂
I'm confident that we will see this at some point.

d.

Affinity Designer 1 & 2   |   Affinity Photo 1 & 2   |   Affinity Publisher 1 & 2
Affinity Designer 2 for iPad   |   Affinity Photo 2 for iPad   |   Affinity Publisher 2 for iPad

Windows 11 64-bit - Core i7 - 16GB - Intel HD Graphics 4600 & NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M
iPad pro 9.7" + Apple Pencil

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  • 2 months later...

When you drag an image into a file, Affinity does treat it as embedded - keeping track of it's scale. Clicking that image will display the scaling panel posted above by @Finrach. You can also replace the image using the button next to scale panel. As long as the layer remains an image, Affinity will retain it's full resolution, which may not be necessary and hugely bloat the file. Also, you can't edit the pixels when in this state. You can RMB on the image in the layers panel to rasterize it, at which point it becomes a collection of editable pixels and the native resolution is removed.

Agree that it would be nice to have % in the Transform panel, but my # one request, now several years old, is to be able to hide all the selection indicators (bounding box, ants, ...) and keep them hidden until we want them displayed (which is less often than hidden). I could go on about how astounded I am that this fundamental graphics feature has remained missing all these years, but I won't ;)

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On 6/27/2020 at 12:56 PM, Finrach said:

Quark will happily display the current res of a placed .PSD

Quark treats a PSD primarily as a raster image format, with some limited control over the display of the individual layers in the file, but taken out of band from its own layers/objects.  The Affinity products interpret a PSD and seem to internally convert it into a native Affinity format for rendering/editing purposes and thus lean on its nature as an embedded document format rather than as an image format.

 

On 6/27/2020 at 11:05 AM, MikeW said:

It is also true that InDesign can place ID files in another ID file and display the scaling of such a file.

There is no obvious (from the outside) technical reason why the Affinity products could not do the same with their own documents when embedded or linked, but for some reason they have chosen not to for the time being.

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52 minutes ago, fde101 said:

Quark treats a PSD primarily as a raster image format, with some limited control over the display of the individual layers in the file, but taken out of band from its own layers/objects.  ...

Yes, true. And unlike PDFs (and other graphic types), QXP cannot just convert a PSD to native objects. The type of control in Q for .psd files, though, is really all that is needed in a layout application. Even that level of control would be handy directly in APub. In Q, one can toggle layers on/off, change their blend mode & toggle paths on/off. Well, Q also gives access to the channels but I've never had need of that.

Capture_000727.png.a516094146b98cbd0757da43fb340bc1.png

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  • 1 year later...

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