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Happy New Year, dear friends!

I am ashamed to have to ask this, but here goes.

In this screenshot, I have a round object (white ring) that I want to use as a mask for the sun (star) shape:


The intent is to make the white part transparent and allow the blue background to show through. I have tried the usual masking operations, and I cannot seem to get it to work as expected. I even tried the Layer -> Rasterize to Mask operation, and that didn't work either.

My preference is to keep it non-destructive, if possible.

Also, I am not sure that the way that I created the white ring is the best method. 

  1. Create the circle object
  2. Set the fill to none
  3. Make the stroke large
  4. Layer -> Convert to Curves
  5. Layer -> Expand Stroke

If there is a better way to create this, I am all ears!

The file is attached, if needed.

Sun Masking.afdesign

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@PixelPest that is indeed one good way to do this, but I want to use the transparent mask for other applications, such as masking text or other shapes out of objects. I am sure it is possible, and would be surprised if it isn't.

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I suggest making the ring shape using the donut tool. To make the background show through the star, make sure the donut is above the star in the Layers panel, select both objects, hold down the alt/option key, & click the Subtract button on the toolbar (or use Layer > Geometry > Subtract). By holding down the alt/option key, instead of a "(Curves)" object, you get a "(Compound)" object, so the parameters of its two components (like the hole radius of the donut & the number of points of the star) remain adjustable.

Sun compound.afdesign

Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo & Affinity Designer for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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@R C-R and @PixelPest, many thanks for all your help! :)

First, after I posted my question, it did dawn on me that the donut tool would be the perfect way to create the cutout. Duhhh, I sometimes wonder... ;)

Second, I thought I tried the subtract operation earlier and I couldn't get it to work. I have no idea what I was doing wrong, but after reading your responses, I tried again and it worked like a charm. Go figure!

As you can see below, I went crazy with it to see how far I could go, adding text for cutouts (using a second subtract operation). I added some detail to the background to see if they showed through, and sure enough it did. (This could be my OCD coming through!) B|


Anyways, many thanks for your help!

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