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Is there still no way to feather edges other than the limited options in gradient tool?


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Is there a way to feather the edges of an object or pixel layer in Designer or Photo yet? I just want to, for example. fade the edges of a triangle in a way that follows the shape of the traingle. The only option I'm currently aware of is the limited options using the gradient tool/masking in photo or the transparency tool in Designer, which both only let you do a straight, radial, or conical gradient rather than feathering according to the edges of your object. This seems like a really simple thing? Is it not in the program or am I just missing it?

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Do you need this to remain a vector graphic? The reason I ask is adding fx will rasterise the exported shape, so with that said, what about adding a Gaussian fx? 

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Blur is an ok workaround for some cases but the radius is limited and it blurs the entire object so if there's something on the fill that you don't want blurred you have to do all sorts of extra steps duplicating and carefully adjusting things and making a stroke object or something so you can just to get a seamless transition to a blurry outline that can only be 100 pixels at most. 

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Outer Shadow, or Outer Glow?

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To save time I am currently using an automated AI to reply to some posts on this forum. If any of "my" posts are wrong or appear to be total b*ll*cks they are the ones generated by the AI. If correct they were probably mine. I apologise for any mistakes made by my AI - I'm sure it will improve with time.

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Create a shape a bit smaller than the object you want to feather. In the layers panel drag the shape slightly to the right of the photo. You can then apply a Gaussian blur to this mask and the bit within the mask doesn't get blurred. It's non-destructive and you can reshape/move the mask to suit. I use it all the time for feathering photos.

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  • 2 years later...

MickRose, I know yours is an old post, but it's exactly what I want to do. The problem is, I don't understand what you mean by "In the layers panel drag the shape slightly to the right of the photo." Could you explain in a bit more detail for novices like me? I can use the shape tool to create an ellipse and move it around over the area of focus, but can't do anything with it! What do I do next?

Affinity Photo 12112021 115545.bmp

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24 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

MickRose, I know yours is an old post, but it's exactly what I want to do.

@MickRose doesn’t appear to be following this thread, so he won’t have been notified about your post because you haven’t tagged him (but I have now). Anyway, what Mick was referring to is the Layers panel in the Studio, which will show a layer for the photo and a layer for the shape. If you drag the shape layer towards the bottom of the photo layer, you’ll see a horizontal blue highlight; when the highlight stretches across the full width of the Layers panel, dropping the dragged layer will leave it below the target layer, but if you drag the shape layer slightly to the right so that the highlight only extends to the right of the thumbnail, dropping it will leave it in the masking position for the target layer. Anything outside of the masked area will be completely invisible, anything within the solid centre of the mask will be fully visible, and anything within the feathered edges of the mask will be partially visible.

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Thanks for taking the trouble to explain, Alfred. I get the layer move now, but I think I must be misunderstanding the mask procedure; having repositioned the shape layer, how do I get to the point where anything outside the blue ellipse is invisible but the part within the shape is showing? I suppose what I'm asking is how to make the shape into a mask? (Or is it already a mask and I just don't know how to use it?)

(I can't upload an updated screenshot - the attachment pane here doesn't seem to be working.)

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7 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

I suppose what I'm asking is how to make the shape into a mask?

I’m afraid I hadn’t bothered to view your earlier screenshot (because it’s a huge BMP file that needs to be downloaded separately, rather than a much smaller JPEG or PNG file which is automatically displayed in the browser) so I didn’t know that the ellipse only had a stroke applied. Give it a fill of any colour, and then try again.

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Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 2 for iPad • iPadOS 17.5.1 (iPad 7th gen)

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Sorry about the file size Alfred. I didn't notice it was a BMP rather than a PNG! I'll be more careful next time.

OK, so I have filled the ellipse (and applied a Gaussian blur to see the effect) - but it's the opposite of what you say should happen; that is, the oval is now solid white while everything outside is visible. When I try to drag a screenshot, or choose the file to show you, it just fills the browser window and I lose my reply. Any idea what's going on there?

Sorry to be a pain.

 

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52 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

When I try to drag a screenshot, or choose the file to show you, it just fills the browser window and I lose my reply. Any idea what's going on there?

How are you making the screenshot? Are you dragging it into the area below the text area of the reply editor with the paperclip icon & the "Drag files here to attach ..." text or to somewhere else in the browser window?

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48 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

Sorry about the file size Alfred. I didn't notice it was a BMP rather than a PNG! I'll be more careful next time.

No apology necessary! I just thought it worthwhile pointing it out, since I know that many users are unaware of the downsides of BMP files.

51 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

OK, so I have filled the ellipse (and applied a Gaussian blur to see the effect) - but it's the opposite of what you say should happen; that is, the oval is now solid white while everything outside is visible.

It sounds as though you haven’t dragged it to the correct position in the Layers panel. Take a look at this tutorial video:

 

53 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

When I try to drag a screenshot, or choose the file to show you, it just fills the browser window and I lose my reply. Any idea what's going on there?

Sorry, I’ve really no idea why that’s happening for you, especially since your BMP file uploaded OK.

 

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18 minutes ago, Alfred said:

No apology necessary! I just thought it worthwhile pointing it out, since I know that many users are unaware of the downsides of BMP files.

It sounds as though you haven’t dragged it to the correct position in the Layers panel. Take a look at this tutorial video:

 

Sorry, I’ve really no idea why that’s happening for you, especially since your BMP file uploaded OK.

 

 

20 minutes ago, Alfred said:

No apology necessary! I just thought it worthwhile pointing it out, since I know that many users are unaware of the downsides of BMP files.

It sounds as though you haven’t dragged it to the correct position in the Layers panel. Take a look at this tutorial video:

 

Sorry, I’ve really no idea why that’s happening for you, especially since your BMP file uploaded OK.

 

Well, I'm puzzled because I've been very careful to place the file in the right area. I'm dragging a 1.00 MB PNG from Windows Explorer. So I've just tried again and notice that left-clicking on the file and dragging shows a thumbnail with an arrow and 'move'. I've not seen that before. Alternatively, clicking 'choose files' just takes me back to the beginning of the conversation! Is that a Windows issue or a Firefox problem, or a Forum glitch? I don't know.

Anyway, I'll have a look at the tutorial and let you know if it gives me the answer. Many thanks for your help so far.

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51 minutes ago, R C-R said:

How are you making the screenshot? Are you dragging it into the area below the text area of the reply editor with the paperclip icon & the "Drag files here to attach ..." text or to somewhere else in the browser window?

Yes, I'm dragging it to the correct place. See my reply to Alfred for explanation.

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2 hours ago, pmcabinet said:

it's the opposite of what you say should happen; that is, the oval is now solid white while everything outside is visible

Oh dear, colour me embarrassed! I’m using my iPad and I misremembered the desktop version’s drop zones, so I got it the wrong way around: I pointed you to the clipping position, not the masking position. The YouTube video I mentioned shows you the right way, as does the video that @Hens has posted here.

I’m sorry to have confused you and wasted your time.

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36 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

Alfred, you haven't wasted my time at all. I've learned a great deal in the process!

Thank you for being so gracious about it.

37 minutes ago, pmcabinet said:

But I still can't upload the d****d screenshot.

And I still don’t know why!

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Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 2 for Windows • Windows 10 Home/Pro
Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 2 for iPad • iPadOS 17.5.1 (iPad 7th gen)

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10 hours ago, pmcabinet said:

Alfred, you haven't wasted my time at all. I've learned a great deal in the process!

But I still can't upload the d****d screenshot.

Use an image host like ImgBB and post a link to the image here.

Example: https://ibb.co/yWx45rQ this is called a viewer link.

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13 hours ago, Alfred said:

The YouTube video I mentioned shows you the right way, as does the video that @Hens has posted here.

As an alternative to dragging, put the shape layer immediately above the image layer and choose ‘Mask to Below’ from the context menu.

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Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 2 for Windows • Windows 10 Home/Pro
Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 2 for iPad • iPadOS 17.5.1 (iPad 7th gen)

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks to Hens for his video tutorial. I have moved across from InDesign and I struggled to find a way to feather easily in Publisher. ID has a couple of feather options right there in the FX panel. Surely Affinity could add this? That masking method is a workaround!

Roger Shufflebottom

www.avid-companion.co.uk

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