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I use a pressure sensitive tablet and many times it surprised me how unnaturally endings of some bolder strokes looked.

I want the strokes to end smoothly but instead they often end very sharply so I focused on this (Round Cap, Round Join, Pressure - Size Variance 90 %) and I was quite surprised by the closeups.

Black shapes are the strokes in Affinity Designer and red shapes represent my opinion how the strokes SHOULD look when the "break point" of the pressure gets closer to the end of the stroke.

The last three examples are the especially annoying. When the distance between the "break point" and end point is smaller than the size of the big brush in "break point" I think the end point should simply hide within the circle of the big brush.

By the way I think it should be useful if we could enlarge the window with the pressure graph because the details are not clearly visible.

stroke-ending.thumb.png.5bf38a1422d36a4e50a58df961b4d24c.png

 

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1 hour ago, GabrielM said:

I'm not entirely sure I follow you on this. Can you please attach the project file?

 

Sure. =)

strokes.afdesign

The sample file is created by mouse but the pressure sensitive pen creates many similar pressure profiles (with "pressure points" close to each other) and it's rather annoying to fix them (at least partially) one by one.

Some kind of workaround is to move the points in pressure profile farther from each other but I think the problem should be properly solved by modifying the method how the rounded strokes are constructed.

I suppose it's a question of taste but these stroke endings looks completely unnatural to me.

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Your input is set to 0, so the curve will be tapered to start with, as the curve starts from the bottom left corner. If you want a wider start point, move the bottom left node vertical but not horizontal. This will give you the result you want.  

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8 minutes ago, GabrielM said:

Your input is set to 0, so the curve will be tapered to start with, as the curve starts from the bottom left corner. If you want a wider start point, move the bottom left node vertical but not horizontal. This will give you the result you want.  

Of course - this is an artificially created illustration of a situation I often get using a pressure sensitive pen. It's very inconvenient to tweak such setting after placing each stroke.

By the way, what about a situation when I want to create a stroke with really thin start point and a thick (but round) end point? I suppose the "input" (the starting and ending value) pressure is always the same...?

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You are right regarding the variable length. The strange thing is that with "real life" pressure profiles I often get to the situation when starting and ending points are locked to the same value. Why is that happening at all? I took me a while to find out that I could break the dependency between these two points with ALT key. (I don't see any context help for this.)

affinity-pressure2.gif.ba440037e663783f9f2e75e2fe8df21a.gif

Anyway, I still feel Designer should handle even such border-line cases more elegantly. The displayed pressure curve is smooth but the stroke's outline is not. There are visible "break points" even on your image.

Designer should at least check the pressure profile generated by pressure sensitive pen and fix the most obvious glitches (ie. pressure points too close to each other).

 

strokes2.png.a7c019f608623aa9495038e1324ede2a.png

 

strokes.png.a953ee5e5acb88144fa0f01550fa6dae.png

 

I come from bitmap editors I am not really used to similar glitches...

All the strokes below were created with pressure sensitive pen and "Round Caps" but they don't look rounded to me... :|

affinity-pressure-pen.PNG.a9dac7429c9085e9c7d8c42ad4f56239.PNG

 

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I wondered how are similar situations handled in Illustrator. It seems it uses completely different way how to construct an outline of a stroke and it's definitely more reliable.

By the way, the worst thing you could do to Designer is trying to make dots just by tapping with the tip of the pen.

 

Illustrator

pressure-ai-v3.thumb.png.3e673c6eb3ad2633ec994244cdc9c078.png

 

Designer 1.7.2

pressure-ad172-v3.thumb.png.98b5aaf98c354c8215a3a72ef71c847b.png

 

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8 minutes ago, Gunny said:

By the way, the worst thing you could do to Designer is trying to make dots just by tapping with the tip of the pen.

I think the pressure sensitive pen Pencil Tool in Designer is broken in that we get useless garbage like the above.

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5 hours ago, Gunny said:

I wondered how are similar situations handled in Illustrator. It seems it uses completely different way how to construct an outline of a stroke and it's definitely more reliable.

By the way, the worst thing you could do to Designer is trying to make dots just by tapping with the tip of the pen.

 

Illustrator

pressure-ai-v3.thumb.png.3e673c6eb3ad2633ec994244cdc9c078.png

 

Designer 1.7.2

pressure-ad172-v3.thumb.png.98b5aaf98c354c8215a3a72ef71c847b.png

 

From a few samples done with my own pen I think that Affinity Designer does not intepret the start and end data and adjust it to make the beginning and end look natural. Adobe goes a long way to do this, you can see. 

You can *manually* (sigh) manipulate start and end points in the pressure profile to make the beginning and end look more natural. Designer often adds several pressure curve points in the beginning or end of the curve that needs to be adjusted (and removed) to obtain a natural look:

image.png.c1d03b2dc892138df3ec4a8e175a9837.png

So what we have here is too many engineers involved in the user interface. If customers have to adjust a curve for every stroke they make - who tried this at all in "Serif Labs" and what is the point of a pen tablet if the software doesn't simulate the reality it is supposed to mimic?

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8 hours ago, Jowday said:

Designer often adds several pressure curve points in the beginning or end of the curve that needs to be adjusted (and removed) to obtain a natural look

These redundant pressure points definitely do not help and some automatic optimization of their placement would make it more bearable but I believe the root of the problem really lies in the way the outlines of the strokes are constructed.

The upper stroke was created with TWO additional pressure points (except beginning and end) but it looks like there are at least four additional points.

18 hours ago, Gunny said:

 

strokes2.png.a7c019f608623aa9495038e1324ede2a.png

  

The algorithm is just not robust enough. The stroke's outline must be (re-)constructed as a sum of "circular brush strokes". Interpolation of just a few perpendiculars is probably much faster but it can't achieve the desired "natural" shape. (Not to mention elliptical brush tips etc.)

affinity-stroke.PNG.a06e653e6b2bed386c0919cddc9447ab.PNG

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You are probably right, yes. It is definitely not vorsprung durch technik. :(

  • "The user interface is supposed to work for me - I am not supposed to work for the user interface."
  • Computer-, operating system- and software agnostic; I am a result oriented professional. Look for a fanboy somewhere else.
  • “When a wise man points at the moon the imbecile examines the finger.” ― Confucius
  • Not an Affinity user og forum user anymore. The software continued to disappoint and not deliver.
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  • 1 month later...
On 8/1/2019 at 1:42 AM, Jowday said:

From a few samples done with my own pen I think that Affinity Designer does not intepret the start and end data and adjust it to make the beginning and end look natural. Adobe goes a long way to do this, you can see. 

You can *manually* (sigh) manipulate start and end points in the pressure profile to make the beginning and end look more natural. Designer often adds several pressure curve points in the beginning or end of the curve that needs to be adjusted (and removed) to obtain a natural look:

image.png.c1d03b2dc892138df3ec4a8e175a9837.png

So what we have here is too many engineers involved in the user interface. If customers have to adjust a curve for every stroke they make - who tried this at all in "Serif Labs" and what is the point of a pen tablet if the software doesn't simulate the reality it is supposed to mimic?

Designer is more honest, Illustrator is smoothing things.

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1 hour ago, Tourmaline said:

Designer is more honest, Illustrator is smoothing things.

Illustrator simulates reality; thats good and what one would expect using pen and brush simulations.

Designer is not “honest” - It is just not as advanced.

  • "The user interface is supposed to work for me - I am not supposed to work for the user interface."
  • Computer-, operating system- and software agnostic; I am a result oriented professional. Look for a fanboy somewhere else.
  • “When a wise man points at the moon the imbecile examines the finger.” ― Confucius
  • Not an Affinity user og forum user anymore. The software continued to disappoint and not deliver.
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9 hours ago, Jowday said:

Illustrator simulates reality; thats good and what one would expect using pen and brush simulations.

Designer is not “honest” - It is just not as advanced.

If i would draw with a pencil, it would look more like what Designer shows, not what Illustrator shows, it smooths the drawn lines.

I am not saying that Designer is optimal though.

Corel Painter 2020 is probably way beter then Photoshop/Illustrator for simulating real world media.

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1 hour ago, Tourmaline said:

Corel Painter 2020 is probably way beter then Photoshop/Illustrator for simulating real world media.

I don't appreciate much the simulation of real world media. I think digital tools should do things that are impossible to do with natural tools, and use natural tools when I need natural look. That said, I prefer digital tools to do useful things, and those line endings do not look particularly useful. In this case, more natural look would be useful.

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17 hours ago, Tourmaline said:

Designer is more honest, Illustrator is smoothing things.

Thats just setting up a strawman, this isnt about a subjective interpretation of which application is more 'honest', this about a user expecting a reasonable consistent result. By the same logic, our glitchy broken expand strokes feature must be pretty honest too? 

This application has had problems with consistent results when it comes to certain aspects of their vector engine for a little while now. Its an unfortunate situation that I hope gets straightened out sooner rather than later, but its been years. Fair warning.

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9 hours ago, Tourmaline said:

If i would draw with a pencil, it would look more like what Designer shows, not what Illustrator shows, it smooths the drawn lines.

I don't think the glitchy sample above looks like a pencil... ;) I suppose you mean a different brush type...?

Designer is quite good when it comes to combining vectors and bitmaps but unfortunately it is still not robust enough in pure vector department...

I don't need to simulate a pencil very often - I've got several different pencils on my table and they work just fine. :) Pencil simulation could be useful sometimes but the most important thing I want from a vector editor are smooth curves and smooth looking strokes because I can't create them with real pencils. Unfortunately it usually takes some parameter tweaking to make them look "right" or "real" in Designer so it slows down my work. :(

 

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On 9/22/2019 at 5:24 PM, mkz said:

Thats just setting up a strawman, this isnt about a subjective interpretation of which application is more 'honest', this about a user expecting a reasonable consistent result. By the same logic, our glitchy broken expand strokes feature must be pretty honest too? 

This application has had problems with consistent results when it comes to certain aspects of their vector engine for a little while now. Its an unfortunate situation that I hope gets straightened out sooner rather than later, but its been years. Fair warning.

Consistancy and real world emulation of drawing are two different things.

But I agree, consistant results have to be expected.

 

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On 9/22/2019 at 9:20 PM, Gunny said:

I don't think the glitchy sample above looks like a pencil... ;) I suppose you mean a different brush type...?

Designer is quite good when it comes to combining vectors and bitmaps but unfortunately it is still not robust enough in pure vector department...

I don't need to simulate a pencil very often - I've got several different pencils on my table and they work just fine. :) Pencil simulation could be useful sometimes but the most important thing I want from a vector editor are smooth curves and smooth looking strokes because I can't create them with real pencils. Unfortunately it usually takes some parameter tweaking to make them look "right" or "real" in Designer so it slows down my work. :(

 

Hope they sort it out for you real soon.

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  • 6 months later...

Affinity Designer Windows Customer Beta - 1.8.3.641

* Fixed line caps on strokes with pressure profiles that have sharp pressure changes at the start getting incorrectly expanded

Well, it seems some details look a bit better then in 1.7.2. but I still think it should be completely rewritten... =(

Changing width of a stroke

 

affinity-width.gif.a04a0d104c5b35a97d3f2e83cdc167f3.gif

 

Bunch of strokes and dots... Dots made with Wacom are still deadly and expand screws them even more.

affinity-expand.gif.423e9c2e74e5ada498579569bc42ace7.gif

affinity-pressure-pen-183.PNG.76c2c79fd71b8d286cb94c81800be4dc.PNG

 

 

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