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MTH

Adding opened windows in Affinity Photo to a "new HDR merge"

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I have opened windows of photos in Affinity Photo that I want to combine in an HDR image. How can I add these open windows directly to a new HDR merge? When I select a few photos in the desktop Mac Photos with the Affinity Photo plugin extension, Affinity Photos opens with windows for the selected photos open. However, when I select new HDR merge, I can't find the photos already open in Affinity Photo to add to the HDR merge and I can't enter the Mac Photos Library through the HDR merge window's "add" button. My tedious work around has been to export the selected photos from Mac Photos to a separate folder and then add the exported files to a new HDR merge, then  after creating a new HDR image in Affinity Photos, import it back into Mac Photos. The whole process uses my time and storage very inefficiently and defeats the whole purpose of the Affinity plugin for Mac Photos, so there must be a better way that I haven't been able to discover. I look forward to your guidance in using the Photos plugin to efficiently create HDR images.

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11 hours ago, MTH said:

However, when I select new HDR merge, I can't find the photos already open in Affinity Photo to add to the HDR merge and I can't enter the Mac Photos Library through the HDR merge window's "add" button.

None of the File > 'new' items will work with already open documents; but you can create an HDR merge from photos in your Apple Photos Library. Here's how:

  1. After clicking the "Add" button in the "New HDR Merge" window, first make sure the sidebar is visible in the select items window. (If it is not, the method to show it may vary by Mac OS version but for me the first icon on the left at the top of the window shows & hides it.)
  2. Scroll down in the sidebar (if needed) to show the "Media" section.
  3. There should be an item indented in that section named "Photos." if not, hover the pointer just to the right of the section name until "Show" appears there & click it.
  4. Click the sidebar "Photos" item, then the "Photos" item on the right & wait for it to begin to fill with items from your Apple Photos Library. (This can take a while depending on the size of your library, the speed of your Mac, how often you open Apple Photos, etc.)
  5. As it fills, you should see all the Apple Photos categories ("Moments, Collections, etc.) appear -- this works just like Finder views with disclosure triangles; selecting multiple items via dragging, shift-clicking; etc.
  6. Select the photos you want to merge, then click "Open" to add them to the "New HDR Merge" window.
  7. Set the "New HDR Merge" window options you want & click OK.

Note: The sidebar "Media" item is the Apple-provided way to open items in Apple apps that use Apple Library containers. It should appear in any app that uses the standard Mac OS Open dialog to open media files. Thus, it should work with all Affinity apps, & with Affinity Photo's other 'new' items like panoramas. The Affinity apps only provide the interface; how the rest of it works is controlled by the Mac OS.

Edited by R C-R
added more info about sidebar Media function

Affinity Photo 1.8.3, Affinity Designer 1.8.3, Affinity Publisher 1.8.3; macOS Mojave 10.14.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 
1.8.3.180 & Affinity Designer 1.8.3.2 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.3.1

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8 hours ago, R C-R said:

Note: The sidebar "Media" item is the Apple-provided way to open items in Apple apps that use Apple Library containers

Thank you, I hadn’t thought about using the Media file in the sidebar. That works much better than having to export image files from Photos but I still need to import the new HDR back into Photos. I have to admit that I’m a little disappointed that I can’t take advantage of the Affinity’extension in Mac Photos, but I at least learned away to navigate to individual photos in Photos from Affinity. Thanks again!

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