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Since Publisher comes with some assets like iOS icons and has some predefined Styles like "80s Poster Shines" I wondered if there should be some decorative frames included.

I'm talking about an easy way to apply frames like https://www.vecteezy.com/free-vector/decorative-frames to Picture Frames.

I also attached a screenshot from a photobook creation software of their masks.

The point is that you can do it with Photoshop and I'm pretty sure that by using mask layers this can be achieved somehow in Publisher too, but it's really cumbersome.

If you want to create a nice photobook really quick it's cool to have predfined masks you can apply to an image with one click.

Also it would be nice if there is a way to save a created mask to easily reuse it or share with others.

masks.thumb.PNG.de2912daedfff4af57f4b041b50b171e.PNG

My background with using Publisher is that I want to create a photo book and order that as PDF.
I know it's easier to just use propritary software of photobook printing services, but as they don't give you a PDF for your digital archive I watch out for solutions like Publisher.

This feature may be useful to reach more normal end users like me that like to order photo books and hate that vendor lock-in that prevents getting a proper PDF of your work.

I find the Publisher really easy to use compared to Scribus and VivaDesigner. And of course InDesign is way too expensive for a hobby.
So there may be only very small adjustments to be made for a broader audience beside professionals.

What do you think?


Windows 10 Pro x64 (1809). Intel Core i5-4670K @ 3.40GHz, 16 GB memory, NVidia GTX 780
Affinity Publisher Beta 1.7.0.221

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51 minutes ago, fde101 said:

A few of those look like they could be done with the shape tool then apply styles to them?

You can convert a shape to a picture frame using the "Convert to Picture Frame" option in the Layer menu.

My point is to make it really really easy with "one click".

In all photobook software I have Seen so far you can drag a frame onto the picture and the frame is applied.

Think of this as an convience method.


Windows 10 Pro x64 (1809). Intel Core i5-4670K @ 3.40GHz, 16 GB memory, NVidia GTX 780
Affinity Publisher Beta 1.7.0.221

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This isn't exactly photobook software, but this does seem like a reasonable extension to the assets panel.  I believe you can already set up a custom group of objects and store pre-designed "frames" there:

You could store them to be used as masks; to use them as masks (currently) you would need to drag one out, resize it over the picture/frame, and drag it in the layers palette to the mask position of the image/pixel layer.  Potential improvement would be able to mark it as a mask in the asset panel and clicking on it with an object selected would replace the object's mask (if any) with an appropriately scaled copy of the asset.  Note that using as a mask would not allow for them to become "borders" - they would constrain the shape of the image but would not add a border to them.

You could alternatively use them as preset frames, which would allow for a border; for this you would convert them to picture frames before storing them in the asset group, then you would drag one out and have an empty "fancy" picture frame to add your photo to.  Currently I do not believe this would allow for dynamic switching; potential improvement would be for the asset panel to replace a selected container with a scaled copy of the one clicked on in the palette when another frame of the same type is selected (ex. if a picture frame is selected and you click on a picture frame in the asset palette, the selected frame would be replaced with a scaled copy of the one clicked on in the palette, which would receive the content of the one that was replaced - similar could be done with a text frame).

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4 hours ago, fde101 said:

potential improvement would be for the asset panel to replace a selected container with a scaled copy of the one clicked on in the palette when another frame of the same type is selected (ex. if a picture frame is selected and you click on a picture frame in the asset palette, the selected frame would be replaced with a scaled copy of the one clicked on in the palette, which would receive the content of the one that was replaced - similar could be done with a text frame).

+ 1


MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2012) Mac OS 10.12.6 || Mac Pro (Late 2013) Mac OS 10.14.5

Affinity Designer 1.6.1 | Affinity Photo 1.6.7 | Affinity Publisher beta 1.7.0.337 | Affinity Photo beta 1.7.0.128 | Affinity Designer Beta 1.7.0.12

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Thank you for elaborating this idea, @fde101

I really hope that devs may read this and see if they can come up with one of your solutions.

---

EDIT:

I played a little around with that. Now I have three layers in a group I named "My decorative border":

  1. The border as Pixel or Vector
  2. The mask
  3. The empty picture frame

I moved that group to my assets and deleted it. I dragged it back after that.

Now I place an image in my document. To get in into the frame the only way is to use the layers
panel and move that directly onto the Picture Frame layer. The group must be expanded first of course.

If the image is not already in the document I can choose the Picture Frame directly from the layers panel
and use the "Replace Image" option.

What I like to see is dragging the asset (which has ONE empty picture frame) ONTO an image and
the image gets automaticly wrapped into that group.

I think this is what happens in photo book software behind the scenes and maybe dev finds
that this convenience feature is easy to implement.

---

EDIT 2:

And beside making it easier to use I think the Publisher should already come with a small set of decorative frames.

There are icons and glyphs. Why no frames?


Windows 10 Pro x64 (1809). Intel Core i5-4670K @ 3.40GHz, 16 GB memory, NVidia GTX 780
Affinity Publisher Beta 1.7.0.221

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4 hours ago, Steps said:

What I like to see is dragging the asset (which has ONE empty picture frame) ONTO an image and
the image gets automaticly wrapped into that group.

What happens to the image I already have on the page that I do not want to get wrapped into the frame? This would cause a tonne of problems.


MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2012) Mac OS 10.12.6 || Mac Pro (Late 2013) Mac OS 10.14.5

Affinity Designer 1.6.1 | Affinity Photo 1.6.7 | Affinity Publisher beta 1.7.0.337 | Affinity Photo beta 1.7.0.128 | Affinity Designer Beta 1.7.0.12

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8 minutes ago, Old Bruce said:

What happens to the image I already have on the page that I do not want to get wrapped into the frame? This would cause a tonne of problems.

There is a tonne of software out there that behaves as described and it works really good and intuitive.

The exchange would only happen if you drag it onto the Image. Drag it anywhere else to add it normally.

Try a photo book software of any company and you will see yourself.

Also also there could be a Key to hold down for enabling or disabling that behaviour.


Windows 10 Pro x64 (1809). Intel Core i5-4670K @ 3.40GHz, 16 GB memory, NVidia GTX 780
Affinity Publisher Beta 1.7.0.221

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19 hours ago, Steps said:

To get in into the frame the only way is to use the layers
 panel and move that directly onto the Picture Frame layer.

Correct, this is why I gave my set of potential improvements.  I don't think it needs to be dragged onto the picture; I think the picture should be selected then click (or maybe double-click) on the frame in the assets panel... but the Affinity team would obviously need to be the ones to decide if any of this happens at all and how.

 

19 hours ago, Steps said:

There are icons and glyphs. Why no frames?

Probably because this is not picture book software and no one likely thought of this use case or spent the time on it yet.  I do think this should be an easy enough request to flesh out if they decide to do this and it does not seem at all unreasonable.  Also, assets can be exported/imported so even if there are not frames included by default, if the functionality to swap them onto the pictures is provided, this would be a relatively easy thing for a 3rd party to offer a library of (even if they DO include frames by default, 3rd parties should be able to offer additional frame collections...)

 

Now that I am starting to think of groups in the mix, here is the behavior I am thinking would work:

 

If an asset in the panel is double-clicked on (or maybe single-clicked, not sure what the exact action should be here), it should be checked for the presence of a single picture frame or text frame object, possibly as the asset, or as a child layer within it.

If such a frame is found, and there are one or more objects selected in the document:

Loop through the selected objects.  For each one:

    if the object is an image or pixel layer and the asset contains a picture frame:

        check to see if the object is currently inside a picture frame; if it is, send that frame into step "replace frame" below

            if it is not currently inside a picture frame: add a copy of the asset to the document scaled to match the transform

                of the frame in the asset to the transform of the selected image or pixel layer; move the selected layer into the new

                frame as its content layer

    else if the object is a text frame and the asset contains a text frame:

        replace the selected object with a copy of the asset, scaled so that the text frame in the asset matches the transform

            of the one that was selected to begin with; if the original text frame was linked, connect the replacement frame in the

            same manner as the frame being replaced and reflow the existing text - otherwise, add the text from the object being

            replaced to the new text box

    else if the object is a picture frame and the asset contains a picture frame:

        send that frame into step "replace frame" below

end loop

 

to replace frame:

    add a copy of the asset to the document, scaled to match the transform of the contained frame to the transform

        of the frame being replaced.

    move the content layer of the frame being replaced into the new frame added as part of the asset (replacing any

        that might have been included in the asset)

    delete the original frame

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Yes, this is exactly what I would expect. You did a great job working this out.

And you are also right about first selecting a picture and then clicking in assets as this would be consistent with the way styles are added to a layer.

I'd love to see that functionality and at least some predefined sample frames in the assets.

Please, devs, read this and consider it.


Windows 10 Pro x64 (1809). Intel Core i5-4670K @ 3.40GHz, 16 GB memory, NVidia GTX 780
Affinity Publisher Beta 1.7.0.221

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Plenty of published books, magazines, sales pamphlets, and brochures, etc., use decorative frames, or nested frames, to contain graphics and photos. The idea should not limited to "photo book" publishing. I love the idea of integrating it into Affinity Publisher in some way that is flexible for many publishing needs.

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Just now, thetasig said:

Plenty of published books, magazines, sales pamphlets, and brochures, etc., use decorative frames, or nested frames, to contain graphics and photos. The idea should not limited to "photo book" publishing. I love the idea of integrating it into Affinity Publisher in some way that is flexible for many publishing needs.

Yes, I agree. And I'm certrain that's why DrawPlus also had such a library of frames.


Windows 10 Pro x64 (1809). Intel Core i5-4670K @ 3.40GHz, 16 GB memory, NVidia GTX 780
Affinity Publisher Beta 1.7.0.221

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