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Paradachshund

Nudge Brush Size by Whole Numbers?

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Hello, I've been trying out Photo lately. I'm an experienced Photoshop user looking to potentially switch.

One of the hang ups I've had so far is that the increase/decrease hotkeys [ & ] adjust the brush size by fractional amounts rather than whole numbers (so you get 2.3 > 3.1 > 4.2, etc instead of 2 > 3 > 4). I do a lot of pixel art, and this is rather problematic for that. Photo's awesome preview of what your brush will draw if you click makes this slightly less of an issue, but I still really dislike it and was wondering if there's a way to set this to only use whole pixel amounts?

Thanks,

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Hold down Shift to get integer numbers I think shift moves in 10s so 10, 20, 30 and hold down Alt to get 1.1, 1.2 etc using the arrow keys will get you whole integer numbers.

If you have scroll wheel just mouse over the size box and scroll the scroll wheel. 


iMac 27" Late 2015 Fully Loaded, iMac 27" Mid 2011 both running High Sierra 10.13.6 - Affinity Designer/Photo & Publisher - Illustrator CC, Inkscape, Blender, Sketchup, Pepakura Designer, MTC, Pixelmator & Pixelmator Pro + more... XP-Pen Artist-22E, - iPad Pro 12.9 B|  

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Hey, thanks for the response. Unfortunately I'm not having any luck with that. Holding down shift and alt didn't seem to have any effect on the bracket keys. I also don't get anything from the arrow keys (they move the layer around).

It's good to know about the scroll wheel working in whole numbers, but I would really prefer a way to get the bracket buttons to do it that way so I don't have to keep moving my mouse up to the size control over and over again.

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Option/Alt gives me tenths on the Mac and Shift gives me Tens. This is with the Width highlighted in the Context Toolbar

5 hours ago, Paradachshund said:

Holding down shift and alt didn't seem to have any effect on the bracket keys

What do you mean by bracket keys?


MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2012) Mac OS 10.12.6 || Mac Pro (Late 2013) Mac OS 10.14.6

Affinity Designer 1.8.4 | Affinity Photo 1.8.4 | Affinity Publisher 1.8.4 | Affinity Designer Beta 1.9.0.2 | Affinity Photo Beta 1.9.0.199 | Affinity Publisher Beta 1.9.0.742

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5 hours ago, Old Bruce said:

Option/Alt gives me tenths on the Mac and Shift gives me Tens. This is with the Width highlighted in the Context Toolbar

What do you mean by bracket keys?

The [ and ] keys can resize the brushes
566721782_ScreenShot.png.5579f21cad8a6492e1ae1725239f20ef.png


iMac 27" Late 2015 Fully Loaded, iMac 27" Mid 2011 both running High Sierra 10.13.6 - Affinity Designer/Photo & Publisher - Illustrator CC, Inkscape, Blender, Sketchup, Pepakura Designer, MTC, Pixelmator & Pixelmator Pro + more... XP-Pen Artist-22E, - iPad Pro 12.9 B|  

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Ahh, I see. The shift and option keys do  nothing here either.


MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2012) Mac OS 10.12.6 || Mac Pro (Late 2013) Mac OS 10.14.6

Affinity Designer 1.8.4 | Affinity Photo 1.8.4 | Affinity Publisher 1.8.4 | Affinity Designer Beta 1.9.0.2 | Affinity Photo Beta 1.9.0.199 | Affinity Publisher Beta 1.9.0.742

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Use the "pixel tool"  instead of normal brush, and the brush size slider in top bar slides then in integers (1,2.3...) when dragging the slider. If that is too slow, I'd build my own pixel-tool brushes (1,2,3,4, 5px) library, have a special category (or just main one if u only do pixel art)  , detach the brushes library window/panel, reduce this panel so to place on canvas very small (extremely similar setup to old pixel artists' UI distribution, back in the day), and always place it near (I believe it remembers exactly the placing between sessions) where you are drawing.  In the other side (I usually put brushes on the right, swatches/color on the left), maybe your color swatches (I tend to have in the hidden tab the normal color selector, too, for some new color), with a good pallete (you could even have saved before some image pallete with all colors you need (create pallete from document), and then hit 'create pallete from image' so you get to have those colors in the swatches, great also for working with sprite frames, use the colors from one team mate, etc), and as well, your recent used colors are always listed there.

workspace.thumb.png.fafa58d77a31058367d880d6a6e0801b.png

You can definitely use X-Mouse tool to replace wheel for brush size (just tested). Can also, if  having an intuos with the disc wheel, set the wheel with [ , ] keys,or whatever keys you set in AP preferences, so to increase/decrease brush size with the wacom disc (this is what I do for all my art, high res or pixel art). But that kind of brush size increase/decrease (is always the same, the based on keys) makes the increment grow per step, which is handy when changing in very large brush sizes in hi res illustrations and photo retouch, but not for your pixel-art. With pixel tool happens so just like with any brush. But with pixel tool if you drag the size slider in the top bar, it jumps from 1 to 2, 3, etc, as you want. If that is too much of a journey fo the cursor -which it is- then the collection of 3 -5 brushes, well configured in each brush settings, reduced and detached the brush library, is pretty fine for the usual small space needed on canvas for pixel art.

I'd use so, the brush library detached and reduced, as I mentioned, over other systems. Actually, I tend to block like in normal digital painting, with a large brush, then the  95% is 1px tool work. While I do that, I like to see the whole canvas, with no panel over it, very much in the sides. As I still am seeing the global composition. (in case is a large background instead of sth built by tiles on a map editor or whatever)

Yet another thing that works as a workaround is, always using the Pixel tool, create a big square brush, and set disable any dynamic value in the brush to be non affected, but the size (actually, how the pixel tool comes pre-configured., but activating pressure sensitivity to size) So, size varies with pressure. You might need to deal with your Wacom's pressure (maybe also the brush curve) and set it as firmer for AP in Wacom's panel for that app, so it's less subtle for this blocking stage. Kind of 3 steps before hardest in the wacom slider. It worked for me. You can now block stuff fast having a somewhat variable brush size with pressure, yet hard edges, no transparency or other bad stuff for pixel art. For this working best, to me it helps to disable preview brush, and only leave the crosshair cursor, in preferences.

I'm of the kind tho, that prefer to just use the 1 px brush move the slider up in size, and fill large areas so or with  just square selections , doing my main scene blocking which gives me the global contrast/lighting, tone, colors... then start the whole thing, the 95%, with the 1px tool (being actually 1 px ).

 


AD, AP and APub.  Ryzen 9 3900X, 32 GB RAM, GTX 1650 4GB, 500GB m.2 SSD, 1TB HDD 7200rpm. Wacom Intuos 4 XL.

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Thanks for the very thorough response! The preset brushes things sounds like an OK work-around. What do you mean by X-Mouse?

I hope they eventually add a preference to disable partial-pixel amounts in brush size. It doesn't make any sense for making purely raster art, and it's odd that so many things seem to snap to the whole amounts except brackets (which I would say is the fastest way to change brush size on a keyboard). It might seem a little nit-picky, but after using my workflow for 15 years, it's a big slow down to switch. If you're listening, Affinity, I would appreciate more customization options for things like this in the future. You would have a new convert with some more preferences on the tools.

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9 hours ago, Paradachshund said:

I hope they eventually add a preference to disable partial-pixel amounts in brush size.

Yes a small check box that says Integer Only or Whole Numbers Only.

Re Xmouse I think SrPx means this: https://www.highrez.co.uk/downloads/xmousebuttoncontrol.htm (Windows Only)


iMac 27" Late 2015 Fully Loaded, iMac 27" Mid 2011 both running High Sierra 10.13.6 - Affinity Designer/Photo & Publisher - Illustrator CC, Inkscape, Blender, Sketchup, Pepakura Designer, MTC, Pixelmator & Pixelmator Pro + more... XP-Pen Artist-22E, - iPad Pro 12.9 B|  

Affinity Help - Affinity Desktop Tutorials - Feedback - FAQ - most asked questions

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1 hour ago, firstdefence said:

Yes a small check box that says Integer Only or Whole Numbers Only.

Re Xmouse I think SrPx means this: https://www.highrez.co.uk/downloads/xmousebuttoncontrol.htm (Windows Only)

Yep, exactly (both things).

X-Mouse Button Control is a tool to replace key shortcuts, mouse buttons or any combination of it all (other ppl use Autohotkey, but I believe is more complex for the average user). But in this case it wouldn't improve anything, really. I suggested this possibility the other day to an user who is too used (is logical, after decades of using a workflow...) to work with the mouse wheel since always for changing the brush size  (I've used every formula, I can sort of adapt).    But I tested yesterday, of course, as all I was doing was replacing the wheel (and not using zoom at all with the wheel, which is my fav) and making it call the [, ] keys (c and v in my case), it still would do both things : non integers brush sizes, and growing exponentially (which again, very useful in many other cases) the increase step.  I believe I even used an old shortcut I had configured in X-Mouse to substitute the long combo (u have it here in AP, but is more complex than PS's) to vary size + hardness with ONLY middle mouse button CLICK-drag (horizontally or vertically to vary one thing or the other). BUT...Even if it had worked, not good for the case, you don't want to accidentally change hardness in pixel art ) . As far as I remember (from yesterday, lol)  it  still was doing those two things that, aren't a bug in any case, but not good for pixel art (so, for that mouse based task, probably same code is used than the increasing with keys)

About the change you request, actually, I agree that better if an optional, non default, setting in preferences (because we need the way it increments for higher res illustration and photo retouch). Actually you would need two settings in prefs : 1) Make the key based brush increase to be in only whole numbers (integers?) , and 2) Another check mark to disable incremental growing of the brush size increase. I bet this was done for fast switching from detailing brushes to a large blocking brush, is done so by many painting software apps, otherwise you'd have to hit the keys like playing invaders every time you'd need to switch from tiny brushes to large ones. For pixel art, this is a problem, of course.

Not going to name it as a (3) option, as the two above solve the issue,  but as an apart case, another partial solution for the problem, better than the best current workflow (detaching brush library as a small window, detailed in the previous post) tho never as good as adding those preference settings, but would as well solve other people's workflow needs request in high res illustration, and this petition has had one recent instance, there's a third solution. In one thread an artist requested recently (am sure has been asked before) to have the capability of keys for "next brush" and "previous" brush (referring to the current order in your current brush library, I guess) , and/or, (not sure if he asked both solutions or one of them) a number to select the brush (1,2,3,4...) . In photoshop, the numbers were used for an opacity level (1,2,3 would produce 10, 20, 30) or flow, if your last touched setting was flow. Also, if u did hit very fast the keys, could do finer opacity settings (01, 05....32..). All this of the opacity and numbers is the same in AP. Only that the flow thing doesn't work like that (which I prefer, never liked that in PS). This is the kind of gift done to old time users, experienced pros, who can find their workflow shortcuts in the new app.  So, as numbers are already doing that, my take at it is... of this third via/option (which can live with the other options as well, the more, the merrier) , maybe best just to use next brush and previous brush keys, whatever the two keys the user prefers. 

The problem is that with PS, Painter, and etc, each artist developed own's habits. Some ppl say they can't even consider using AP without the wheel changing brush size. Others need the next and prev brush keys. Others need to pan with the pen, others with the mouse. Others can't stand zooming with the wheel, some others can't work without it. There's people who can only consider zooming with the actual zoom/hand and and the ctrl + space workflow. Others with ctrl + and  ctrl - ...You know... My whole global take is... in the end, it depends on how strong is the will of changing of tool, moving away from the cloud. If it is too small, any obstacle would seem like a a barrier made of concrete and steel. If not the case, workflows will be found. The big problems would stop even those motivated ones ( core functionality issues where no workaround can help). But those issues are getting to be fewer and fewer.... my 2c.  Anyway, eventually some of this might be implemented. For pure gravity. More options is better, and better workflows tend  to end showing up one way or the other. ( I saw it happening with every thing I wished in Blender, during more than 16 years...)


AD, AP and APub.  Ryzen 9 3900X, 32 GB RAM, GTX 1650 4GB, 500GB m.2 SSD, 1TB HDD 7200rpm. Wacom Intuos 4 XL.

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