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Note: this will probably end up being a feature request (or several of them), but before I go that route I want to run this list by the staff & user community to see if any of these things are possible now.

  1. Some way of determining if an .afbrushes file contains vector or pixel brushes & how many brushes it includes without having to import it into an Affinity app This is particularly annoying when importing a vector brush set into Affinity Photo, since that app can't use them! >:(
  2. Related, some way to determine how many brushes are installed in a brushes category besides manually counting them. Ideally, this could be as simple as including the brush count in parentheses after the category name.
  3. Some way to reorder and/or sort the category list.
  4. Some way to export or import a selection of categories in one step.
  5. Related, a way to export all categories in one step for backup purposes.
  6. Some way to sync brush categories among as many Affinity apps as are installed.

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 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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None are currently possible, except for two that can be done in very limited and (for most of us) unacceptable ways:

  • For #5 you can backup the raster_brushes.propcol and vector_brushes.propcol files directly. That's not as flexible as having a .afbrushes kind of file that you can import into one of the applications, as restoring it wipes out the current brushes completely. And it requires too much internal knowledge of the application. But for an emergency restore to a specific point in time it works.
  • For #3 it can be done, but in a particularly cumbersome and unacceptable way. You export all the categories, delete them all from the application, and reimport them in the order you want.

-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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1 hour ago, R C-R said:

2. (...) determine how many brushes are installed in a brushes category

Yes! Whereas this Count request is related to several spots in the Apps where a total number is not given though the app is aware of it – which reduces the request kind of to a UI addition. I'd appreciate to get such counts also for ...

Resources Manager: total + total per grouped resources
Layers Panel: total (artboard) + total per grouped layers
Swatches Panel: total + total per palette
Text: Word Count: total (document) + selection: either selected frames (move tool) and selected glyphs (text tool)
Pages Panel (AfPub): total + total per section (without the need to scroll to last page)
Asset/Symbol/Styles Panels: total + total per category

1 hour ago, R C-R said:

5. (...) export all categories in one step for backup purposes.

Also this Backup request would be useful for several setups of the apps:

UI Panel/Studio/Window Arrangement (for use with + without external monitor)
– Swatches/Palettes
– Export presets
– Document presets


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

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If I remember correctly, some of these issues were reported a long time ago,
but no action has been taken as yet.

I would support all the points mentioned, buut would like to add that a mere
sorting to alphabet would suit me fine also.
C.L.


That what you do not yet know is more important than what you already know-Jordan Peterson

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28 minutes ago, catlover said:

sorting to alphabet would suit me fine also.

p.s.: Not for Brushes yet but concerning Swatches the alphabetical order is in the hamburger menu options:

1891641852_swtaches-sortalphabet.jpg.b7aa7ff2de9e322b40f252430263117d.jpg


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

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Forgot : That sorts the swatches, but not the Menu  & that's what I'd like to see : sort the menu alphabetically.


That what you do not yet know is more important than what you already know-Jordan Peterson

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8 hours ago, catlover said:

I would support all the points mentioned, buut would like to add that a mere sorting to alphabet would suit me fine also.

At first, I was going to say that would not suit me because I prefer to sort the categories by an order I choose that is not alphabetical, but then I realized that since we can rename categories, I could get my preferred sort order by adding a prefix to each category name.

However, I am not sure if an alphabetical sort would be useful for every supported language. I have no idea how the English language "abc" order became a standard in the first place since there does not seem to be any logical reason for that particular order. I am not sure what the standard is for languages with more than 26 letters, or for languages based on pictographic rather than phonetic glyphs. Maybe Unicode would work for that? :35_thinking:


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 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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On 9/7/2019 at 6:00 AM, R C-R said:

6. Some way to sync brush categories among as many Affinity apps as are installed.

I have been considering if there is some way to do this with the raster_brushes.propcol and vector_brushes.propcol files. At first, I thought maybe creating one raster & one vector 'master' propcol file somewhere, probably in the per user domain, & replacing each pair of the individual app's brushes propcol files with symbolic links pointing to this pair. On the plus side, it would automatically keep all the brushes in sync across all the apps & could save a lot of file space. But on the downside, it could cause major stability issues because it means two or more Affinity apps could be open at the same time, each able to edit brush categories, brush properties, etc., so I don't know if the other apps could cope with that without crashing.

I am not brave enough to try this myself, but if anybody else wants to give it a try, please let us know how it works.

A less dangerous but less automatic alternative to this is to pick one app's brushes propcol file as the 'master' & periodically replace the corresponding one in the other apps with it. If done while none of the apps are running, I think it should be safe, but it means remembering to edit brushes only in the 'master' app & doing the replacement(s) in the other apps ASAP afterwards.

I might try this myself (with backups of the original propcol files in case it goes sideways). If I do, I will post my results here.


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 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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