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Feature Request: Make Colour Picker Tool use the values of a Mask


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Working with Masks is greater than in any other application I have worked with so far, the ease of having child layers and being able to stack a mask over the other truly is amazing.

However...

One thing that I have found disorienting is that when I use the colour picker tool, rather than picking a value of black an white from the mask that I am working on, Afphoto decides to pick a colour from the Parent Layer (Even when the Source is set to "Current Layer" while having the mask selected).

Even though working a mask will only paint with the luminosity value of the sample taken, as you may well know, the values on the Parent Layer are part of a whole and having the Colour Picker Tool to take a sample from the Parent Layer and not the Mask you are working on results in picking an unwanted value when I am actually trying to pick a shade of gray that has already been used on said mask

In the long run this means that for me to be able to take the desired sample, I must go to the colour wheel / sliders manually and try to guess what that value was or take my attention away from the whole and having to isolate the mask to get the value that I want.

If the colour picker could be adjusted in a way that it picks the shades of gray FROM the mask while working INSIDE the mask it could certainly enhance workflow speed and consistency.

Thanks for the attention and time to read this request. Cheers!

Edited by kraslonewolf
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  • 10 months later...

I second this feature request. 😀

What is the use case for this current behaviour of using colors from other layers when editing a mask in isolation mode? I assume there is one.
Then when Source is set to "Current Layer", what is the use case for ColorPicker always returning black?

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Newcomer tip: ALT + Click on Layer to edit mask in isolation mode.
 

Partial work arounds:
1) Show the INFO View, change Model to Grayscale, select a tool (Move/ColorPicker) that doesn't have a preview (because Paintbrush blocks INFO Alpha from working) and read the Alpha and then set your Grayscale manually.

2) Use Paintbrush ALT+Click ColorPicker to pick the Alpha value. Then set your Grayscale manually.
ColorPicker Note: The ColorPicker and Paintbrush ALT+Click ColorPicker work differently in that the Paintbrush ALT+Click ColorPicker will pick the Alpha value.
Color View Note: In the Color View (Grayscale mode), after you've done an ALT+Click ColorPicker pick, the first time you adjust the Grayscale value the Alpha will immediately jump to 100%.

3) Goto mask's Channel View and from its mask create a Grayscale layer. ColorPicker works. Then can Rasterize to Mask.

4) Release mask. Create white pixel layer below it. Use Paintbrush ALT+Click ColorPicker. Paint using White+Alpha method.

5) Switch Color to RGB mode. Use Paintbrush ALT+Click ColorPicker to pick the Alpha value. Shift click drag R all the way to the right. Paint using White+Alpha method.

 

Careful Note: Watch your combination of Color & Alpha. As 50% Grey + 50% Alpha will result in a 25% Alpha.

 

Edited by od@westnet.com.au
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  • 5 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I agree this is an essential feature. I was swearing a tiny bit this afternoon while trying to retouch a simple picture which would have taken about 1/3 of the time in Photoshop.

Please Affinity Photo team: this feature has been requested since 2016. 4 years ago.

Thanks.

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I don't understand the problem. In my screenshot, I applied a Black & White Adjustment, which like all adjustment layers, comes with a mask. I placed 2 rows of circle shapes over the image of the guitars. The first set of circles, using the color picker, I selected areas of the Les Paul, which has a Bourbon Burst color theme, and then applied the selected color to the circle shapes. As you can see they are all shades of grey.

Next I selected colors from the image, below the mask, and applied the selected colors to those circles, and yes they were color. But selecting from the B&W mask, I could only get grey.

Are you placing a mask on a mask? It seems those that are proficient with PS tend to do this. I'm guessing they don't understand how the adjustment layers and live filter layers have masks, (the white box), so they apply a mask.

 

 

 

colorpicker-bw.JPG

Affinity Photo 1.10.5.1342 ; Affinity Designer 1.10.5.1342;Affinity Photo 2.0.0.1640 Affinity Designer 2.0.0.1640; Affinity Publisher 2.0.0.1640; Affinity2 Beta versions. Win10 Home Version:21H2, Build: 19044.1766: Intel Core i7-4770, 3.90GHz, 32GB Ram, Nvidia GTX 645, 3-Internal HDD (1 Crucial MX5000 1TB, 1-Crucial MX5000 500GB, 1-WD 1 TB), 4 External HDD

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Yes, color picker tool actually feels broken in many areas //
For example i have no idea who invented the "feature" of filling inner layers of group in case group was selected when you pick some color (with all the default settings)

I litterally lost hours by ruining layers inside rarely used group (references) by underlooking what layer was active at the time of picking.
Why the f*** user should recheck what layer is currently active just to pick color from the screen?

 

 

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On 11/21/2020 at 11:58 AM, Pan.Klobaska said:

I admit, this is Photoshop workflow. I would welcome any hint how to do this in Affinity Photo.

I was also thinking that at first. However, there are about 3-5 ways of doing the same things in Photoshop. Affinity Photo shouldn’t force the user to a single way of doing these things.

Maybe Affinity Photo team should hire heavy Photoshop users, let them test thoroughly, listen carefully to their feedback then adjust AP accordingly.

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  • 2 months later...

Thanks to everybody backing me up in this request. Also, sorry about my rusty English in the first post (I have gotten better with the language since).
 

I will admit that this problem boils down to being accustomed to a Photoshop workflow. Yet, it would be nice to hold down ALT and have the picker grab the value FROM THE MASK and not the GLOBAL colour displayed on the screen.

It really breaks my flow when I have to switch between Isolated mode and normal mode back and forth each time I want to work with masks, sometimes I just want to be able to see the results of my changes as they happen.

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  • 1 month later...
On 5/12/2020 at 12:12 PM, Oden Dee said:

Partial work arounds:
1) Show the INFO View, change Model to Grayscale, select a tool (Move/ColorPicker) that doesn't have a preview (because Paintbrush blocks INFO Alpha from working) and read the Alpha and then set your Grayscale manually.

 

It is very very partial 'cause you can read the alpha value of a mask only if it is applied to a pixel layer. You can't do that when masks affect (or are drawn directly in) adjustment layers. Also Alpha is expressed as a percentage while grey scale goes from 0 to 255, so you have to do the math.

On 2/12/2021 at 4:27 AM, kraslonewolf said:

Thanks to everybody backing me up in this request. Also, sorry about my rusty English in the first post (I have gotten better with the language since).
 

I will admit that this problem boils down to being accustomed to a Photoshop workflow. Yet, it would be nice to hold down ALT and have the picker grab the value FROM THE MASK and not the GLOBAL colour displayed on the screen.

It really breaks my flow when I have to switch between Isolated mode and normal mode back and forth each time I want to work with masks, sometimes I just want to be able to see the results of my changes as they happen.

I second your original request 'cause, even working with isolated masks, it's not possible to directly sample the grey/alpha value of the particular area we need to work on.

A very annoying workaround is: select the mask, go to Channels and create a Greyscale layer from Mask Alpha. Reveal this layer to sample from it, hide it and go back to the mask to work on it. Or work this greyscale layer and make a new mask out of it. This makes it really too complicated and annoying for something that should be immediate as color picking from the mask.

The problem is that actually, even though when isolated (and in layer's preview) masks appear as greyscale layers, they're not greyscale but "alphascale". Masks are not made of grey values but of alpha values. In fact you can create a mask even with white only, just decreasing its opacity in Colour panel (0% to hide, 100% to reveal). That's why you can't take a greyscale image and make it a mask just nesting it inside another layer (as long as the greyscale image is completely solid, it won't hide anything regardless its pixels values. Actually it is just a -uselessy uneven- clipping mask not clipping anything), but you can't even paste a grayscale image on a mask as in PS to convert it to a mask.

It's like there's a grey to alpha converter between front end and back of masks, but it works discontinuously or juust in one direction. So we can paint grey on a mask (and this is converted to alpha) but we can't pick grey from it (i.e. alpha is not converted to grey for us). But the "stupidest" thing is that, when trying to pick from an isolated mask, the picker's zoom show the mask pixel value. So why can't we just have that grey value in one click? 

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