Affinity Photo Introduction course - hands on approach | Alexandru Taradaciuc | Skillshare

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Affinity Photo Introduction course - hands on approach

teacher avatar Alexandru Taradaciuc, Photoshop Enthusiast

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (48m)
    • 1. Intro - My mission

    • 2. Affinity Photo Interface

    • 3. Develop Persona

    • 4. Photo Persona

    • 5. Negative film develop

    • 6. Focus stack a lovely flower

    • 7. Create a HDR image

    • 8. Create a pano from 6 images

    • 9. End credit

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About This Class


Affinity Photo is a professional image editing software. A good replacement for Adobe Photoshop. And in the next minutes, you will see why.

The software comes with a big bag of tools: Raw editing, HDR Merge, Panorama Stitching, Focus Stacking (and it works super nice - see lesson 5), Batch processing, PSD Editing (so you can edit your Photoshop files), Smart object support, and for you artists out there - it supports digital painting (with nice tools and brushes).

This small tutorial is designed to get you started using Affinity photo. I will show you my workflow, editing some images and getting them ready for print or web. I’m not sponsored by Affinity Photo - so my thoughts on the software are unbiased.

Meet Your Teacher

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Alexandru Taradaciuc

Photoshop Enthusiast


Hello, I'm Alexandru.


I am a Photo-edit enthusiast and an excited photographer. I like to share my knowledge with my fellow friends.

I'm creating my workflow video tutorials. What works for me could work for you also but I challenge you to find your own workflow. 

Follow me taking this journey, discovering news stuff along the way... and who knows, maybe we will make a better world.


See full profile

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1. Intro - My mission: Hello and welcome to Affinity Photo introduction. My name is Alex dot dot dot UK. And in the next hour or so, I will be teaching you how to use Affinity Photo. We will go through the interface, we will edit some photos, we will import some raw photos. We will convert negative film from my film camera. We will focus stack some images in order to create that crisp image full of details. We will create an HDR, high dynamic range image, and we will stage a panorama, all of this in Affinity Photo. Now a few words about this particular software. It's a very good replacement of Adobe Photoshop. If you don't want to pay a subscription, then this is a onetime buy. And at the moment that I'm recording this, it's around 47 pounds or €50. Now enough talking and let's start editing. 2. Affinity Photo Interface: So let's start with Affinity Photo interface. Now if you are coming from Adobe Photoshop, you'll probably be familiar with the interface. It's similar. The only things that are different are persona's, basically the different options that Affinity Photo put in the software. Lets see them and how they work. Let's open up an image. And I'll drag in an image here. Basically, you have the toolbar on the left. You have the studio tools on the right or the panels IV. These panels are not here. You can bring them from view studio and basically show right Studio. Depending on your screen resolution, you can add a left Studio as well. And of course you can drag them from one side to another. Let's say you want the adjustments and a histogram to be on the left and the rest of the options on the right. So I have the layers panel here and adjustment panel on the left. If you want to reset this and go to View studio and reset studio. Now, I was talking about persona's. Basically you have incorporated in the software bridge camera roll and have another persona called Liquify, where you have the luca options. So I think you are familiar with liquify different part of and different options. So let's cancel this one. It's enough with liquefy, you can play with that mode. Focus on the develop persona. Here. This Developers Donna is going to show up when you open a row image. So you open a row image, you get this interface and you can play with crop. You can crop your image. You can remove red eyes, you can heal, can zoom in, zoom out. Basically the same options that you have for camera roll. You have tone mapping. Basically. These are some presets and apply some quick options. So you have the black and white dramatic. You can change to the extreme, and you can see that it's adding some presets here. Usually, I don't use this, but there you go. You need to know that there is this option as well if you want. So I'll click Yes to reset that. And also you have the export persona where you have more options on exporting an image of, let's say for example, you want to export this in three slices. Just say random slices here. Don't like this. Snap to the, and there you go. You have three slices. And we go and you have three slices. You can modify the sizes of the slices here on the transform option. But again, I'm not using this option, at least not for the moment. This is the last persona. Let's go back to Photo Persona and go through all the options that we have here. So let's clear this better. Let's also left studios. Well, as I have a big green last day, the macro of they're not going to use it for the moment. And of course, for each individual tool, you have the tool option here on the top bit. So basically, this is the interface. We will go through some of these tool more in depth in the next lessons. So let's jump to lesson number two. 3. Develop Persona: Okay, so let's open a row image and see what options do we have in the develop a persona. So File Open Image C, R two is a row canon file. And there you go. Nothing complicated. Basically, it opens directly in the software. You don't need breed of camera roll or other bits of software to open this image. Now Let's modify a little bit this image in the develop module. So first of all, I want to straighten the horizon and crop a little bit the image. So we'll use crop tool or C on the keyboard. And you have the option to straighten the image and you'll get this lovely level. And as in Photoshop, if you're familiar with this tool, click on one side and drop on the other. And there you go. You have imaged straighten. Now, if you want to crop the image to certain ratio, Let's pick, for example, for this image, I think around six by four should be okay. And create landscape, a humane edge should be. Okay. Now, Enter to confirm. And there you go. You have cropped image with a straight horizon. What else you can do in this software? You can apply some curves. You can make it black or black and white. And you can do some detail refinements or for example, can see, brings in a bit of detail some luminous Lens Correction. And of course, this was made on a cannon with a lens Canon EF 740 F4. Recognizes lenses well, you can defer a hinge, you can remove the chromatic aberration and so on. Basically, all the options that you had in camera row and some of the options from Lightroom. You have n this persona. Now, if I'm happy with this, I developed my image and it imports it as a layer. And next important persona that is the photo persona, where it can modify, you can dodge and burn and you can remove elements. But I will show you that in the next videos. 4. Photo Persona: Okay, so let's continue with the next lesson we will go through, I think what is the most important bit of Affinity Photo, and that is the photo persona where all the magic happens. Now, let's first analyze this image a little bit. What I want to do is to take this cups away, put more emphasis on this bench. Maybe create some spots we dodge and burn on the grass and just modify a little bit the colors through some adjustment layers. So all the modification will be non-destructive. You can see the progress and you can come back to previous steps. So let's get started. First of all, a 100 Navigator to be here on top. Let's zoom in a little bit. Hit space, and modify it a little bit to get a handle. That's it. Great. So first of all, let's duplicate layer. The way you can do that is right-click on the layer and duplicate it. Or you can go to layer and duplicate layer as well. Let's zoom in this area. You can use Alt and move the cursor. And what I want is basically the cups to be gone. So let's select the cup first. And we'll do like this. Move it a little bit. And with the healing brush with I think it's too big. Let's make the width smaller on 15 should be okay, opacity 100 below 100 hardness. So basically it's how hard your tool needs to be. Have more options here. So for example, 15, accumulation harness spacing. That's a different situation. We are not going into dynamic of the brush right now. So Alt, click from wherever you want to copy the up to big souls. And as you can see, it started to look a little better. And of course, if you want the photo to look more realistic, you can copy from different parts. And nobody will know. So, Oops. Click Alt D to deselect and zoom out. It's like it wasn't there. And of course, you can, for example, freehand go and add more pixels here, some random pixels, oops, not that much. Alt or Command Z. And we can do the same thing on the other side. So select the edge of this one. This is a little bit at an angle. So let's use a different tool, retina. We can use freehand tool. Add these pixels here. So with the Control key held down, you can select this bit as well. And there we go. Now, let's do the same thing. Click on the Healing Brush. Click on the pixels that you want to copy. And just go nuts bit. That's too much, I think on the left side, Alt D to deselect. And you can free draw here. All the modification that I'm doing is with a mouse. You can use also a tablet. Let's see, let's minimize a little bit this one, and you can use the bracket keys to make it bigger or smaller. Vary. Go. Click on the hand. And before, after, before, after. Like magic as an IT. Okay. So I'm happy with this one. Let's rename this as working layer and hit enter. Now, what we can do is to add a level and the default level. And let's play with the image a little bit. Make this darker, this will be lighter. I think this should be enough for the moment. And as you can see, already added a level adjustment. We can add some curves as well. So click on the curves and adjust that. And of course you can play with the green bit as well for influencing a little bit the green areas. So that's parked at n. And there we go. Now, if you want to create a layer where this level adjustments are incorporated, you select all the layers, right-click Merge Visible. What it will do is create a new layer with all the adjustments created. So let's modify the name of this Adjustment added layer. Okay, So let's use some burn. Make it bigger. And what is nice is if you create, for example, this big brush, you can see how it will affect the image. So basically right now, it's going to affect only the highlight. Or you want, for example, midtones. And you can see that just bringing some details on creating a more dramatic sky like this. And of course, underwater as well. Just try to add a few. Bob. Now we can use Dodge as well. I've Dodge what it will do. It will lighten the areas that you bring with you touch with this tool. And of course we can use this, make it smaller. As you can see, there are some layers here of grass that are more license or let's say before and after, before, after, before, after. Again, again, use this to bring more oomph to the image. Okay, let's add vibrance layer and more, five brands and more saturation. And to really make this image, Bob can close this bit. Once you're happy with this image, export, select the extension. You can go PNG, JPEG, tiff, PSD, and it will preserve the layers as well. Pdf, f, g, EPS, and so on. What I usually do is export as a JPEG and full resolution. Save the image. Or as I said, you can go to Export persona, have this image is a single PNG. You can select the presets here, retina PNG, single peers, PNG JPEG, and of course, all the different options here in the slices. You can export the slice less than images and export. We have the image here. And it's a big image. It's, it has 140 megabytes. So it's a very big image, but it has all the details. And there we go. I think this wraps up this bit of the lesson. In the next lesson, I will show you how to convert a 35 millimeter negative film by importing the row image, crop it, invert the colors, and make the basic adjustments in order to create a beautiful image. So see you next lesson. Well, it occurred to me that we didn't talk about masks. What are masks? Well, to explain a better, let me create two new layers and just add some colors to that layers. So let's say we have this bit and we can go bucket and other color side, also d. And then we can move it. And Let's create another layer like this. And again, with the bucket, select, another color, gave it a greenish D to deselect. Now how layer mass works? If, for example, I want to see part of the white layer going through this green layer. I add a mask to this green layer by clicking on the layer and adding a mask. What happened? Nothing. With the layer mask selected. Let's click on the brush. With white. We paint on there. Oops, nothing happened but I'm painting with white. So what's happening? Let's paint with black. We already have a preview here on what will go into happen. So if I paint with black, what happens? It will show the back of the layer. I'm not painting with white, I'm just painting with black, meaning it is going to hide this green layer and it will reveal what is beneath. So if I paint with black, black will show me what is behind the layer. If I paint with white, it will bring back the green layer. Why is this useful and how you can use this bit as part of your edit? Well, let's say you want to create a frame, let's say photophobia. How can you do that? You click on the Mask. Let's say quickly. Create a quick selection on a mask and you fill it with what color? Correct? With black. It all D to deselect. And there you go. You have a frame in your picture. Simple as that. But how can you, let's say we're, WE other layers. So in the previous lesson, we added the vibrance adjustment layer. So you can see before and after, can I apply a layer mask to this one? Of course I can. But let's make this adjustment ballpark. This is just to show you how layer masks are working with adjustment layers. So click on Mask layer, it will automatically link to this Vibrance adjustment. Click on the mask, and by selecting a brush, you can work this out. So black as our foreground color, you can make this brush bigger. And you can start painting. And you can see already, how can we use this particular tool? This is nice. Now, if I want to make this brush softer, we're going to go here. And again, this is a quick edit. And if you want to go back and forth, you can hit X. And you can swap quickly the foreground and the background color. So now you have white. With white, you can bring back the colors. And of course, being a non-destructive, you can modify it, you can hide it, you can delete it. And there we go. I hope you understand a little bit the concept of layers and layer masks because you are going to use them a lot when you edit a photo. See you next lesson. 5. Negative film develop: All right, let's continue with our lessons. Let's first close this one. Don't want that. And let's import open. Let's import a negative. Now, this is an image that I've taken an add-in Bre on Portobello beach. First of all, as you saw, I opened a row image straight into This develop persona. What I want to do here is straighten the image, crop the image, invert the image. So from the negative will have the positive and apply base a OTO leveling, edit. It. I'll show you how easy it is to transform this negative into a fall color. Let's straighten the image by clicking on the straight and option. And you can choose trade line here, click, drag and drop. And there you go, you have a straight frame. Now moving the crop borders here, crop it. And this image has a little bit of banding. Basically when I scanned edit was not led, but it is what it is for the moment. Now, once you are happy with the crop, just hit Enter to commit to this crop. And there we go. This is a lovely image, but it's still negative. What we can do to this here, we can do, let's say curve layer and we want to invert colors. So the master will affect the red, the green, and the blue colors from this image to invert it, simply click on this bid, move it up. Click on this, and move it down. Move it up again until you reach or inverted. Now, if you want to save this preset, you can go and add preset, but you put the name here, invert negative, hit. Okay, and next time when you open a negative, you just click on the preset and will automatically inverted. Now, I'm not going to do anything here because I'll show you a quick way to get this image. Perfect. Click on the Developer option on the top left side of the screen. And now we're back into the photo edit. And as I said, this should be something straightforward. So Filter Color, also level. There we go. Magnificent. Filter color. Let's add the colors. Contrast, white balance. And to be honest, it looks amazing. Now, if you want to remove this artifacts, you can do it by a stated Healing Brush. Zoom in. And this I know for certain that this is a strain of hair stuck to the fell. So we can remove it by simply Alt click drag. And their ego was removed. The rest, the scratches. I will not remove because it will add personality to your image. And to be honest, It looks amazing. Nothing to do here. I, the only thing that I am considering doing is just add a crop so it can crop this image here. In Photo Persona. Let's see what we have. To be honest. I think 16 by 9, looks great. You move this around until you find the sweet spot. So what I want is basically have it hit Enter to commit the changes. Let's see how we can split this image into three. So first of all, what's the size of our image? And we want to slice this image into three. So first of all, document, resize document. So we can see we have 2651 pixels by 1491. Let's do some math. 26, 51 divided by three equals 883.666 period. Okay? So we need to split this into three layers of 883 pixels. So go to Export. Divide this. And doesn't matter at this moment how you put down, okay? Because they are all length. So click on the first and we said 883.6. Hit Enter. The same with this 1.6893. And are there. And the next one should be 883.6, and this should be a line here. And let's export the slices. Basically whatever is selected here is going to be exported. So export slices. And we can create a new folder here, slices, create and expert. And if I open the folder, you can see that it created three slices. And that should be it. See you on our next lesson where we will focus stack multiple images to create a super detailed photo of a flower. 6. Focus stack a lovely flower: Okay, so in this lesson, we will focus stack some images. Now, what is focus stacking? Let me try to explain by opening an image. Let's say this one that we already worked on. Lets me create a weak layer. We can draw some images here. I can go with red. Usually focus stacking is used when you want to have a crisp image and a focused from, let's say front-to-back here. So you can do this in camera by increasing the f-stops to, let's say F 16, F 22. But you can increase so much the f-stop into iL, the image will become unusable. So the way you can do this is by taking multiple pictures with different focus plane. For example, you take this photo focusing first on this plane here. Then you focus a little bit more. This is going to be our second plane. This is going to be our third plane, and so on and so forth. Fourth plane, plane. Then let's say you focus on her head here is going to be an x plane. Then you focus on this end. You focused on the sea, on the horizon. And then you try to find some clouds around here. So you'll have one picture, 234567, 8, 9, 10, and 11. You'll end up with 11 photos. You want this photos to be merged in automatically. So you will have this entire image sharp. What we'll do is basically take the first image, number one, number two, number three, and so on and so forth until we reach number 11. And it will group them together. Now, this will be done automatically. Let me show you how. So let's close this image and you can follow the steps with me. I've attached the image is onto this lesson files. So new focus Merge option from file. Let's add the images. So you have the focus stack images. You can see that all of the images are CR2. Click and select all the images and click Open. Now an important bit. All the images needs to be in a row. So you have 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, and so on and so forth. What's happening? This is a guide. So this software will know exactly which one is first and which one is last. And it will focus. Quito, Okay. And let the magic happen. But you can see how this is working. Pulling the information one-by-one from the image. And the result is amazing. Let's zoom in a little bit and see what we have here. This is call. Everything is in focus. And of course, if you want more details, you can take more pictures decreasing the focus planes. So I think I've used, at this point, I've used like a few millimeters, like 34 millimeters between the planes. Because this is a layer. You can adjust the levels. You can do whatever you want with this image and try to edit. To look perfect. I can see that the red is a little bit on for it, so that's increased to read a little bit. Close this. What else? Let's see, exposure. Exposure is good. Curves. If you want to use curves as well. There are some people that curves are the best way of editing. I tend to agree with them. Let's flattened colors a little bit. And there we go. It's ready to be exported. This is how you focus stack an image. Hopefully this was helpful. If you have more questions, please let me know in the chat or leave me a message on. See you next lesson where we will create a high dynamic range image by merging three images. 7. Create a HDR image: High dynamic range photos or HDR. Well, you want to use this technique when you want to add more drama to your image, as you can see here, this is a more dramatic look of the image. In comparison, I can show you the original photo, and of course I have attached all the images so you can follow along. So let me show you the difference between the original photo and the high dynamic one. And you can judge which one is better. So as you can see, there is a very big difference in the imaging. First of all, you have more shadows in the image, more depth. It's more crispier effect can say so. You have more details in the area where you have more light and of course, you have more details on the dress, on the hat, and so on. So how do you obtain this image? After you've taking the bracketing images, you go and file HDR merge. And again, you can follow me using the images attached to this lesson. Select all the images. Click Open here, automatically align images. I took these photos hand-held, so a little bit of movement in the image could occur between the brackets. It's good to automatically align the images. Let's use the perspective. Remove ghost. Basically, when the images are overlaying, you could have some ghosting or some, let's say traceability between the top layer and bottom layer. So you can see some goes there. So click on automatically realm of cost as well. Noise reduction, I usually let say 30 percent and tone map, HDR image, leave that on as well and hit Okay. And let the magic work. Okay, So after the software finishes analyzing and overlaying the images, you'll get this persona that we talked in the beginning, the tone mapping persona. And you can start modify the image. You can use the preset as you can. For example, if you like it, there you go, you can use it. But I think this is a little too dramatic for me, but you can modify it. So let's choose, for example, let's choose this one. And let's try to modify it a little bit. You can work with the exposure, bring the exposure backend. Brightness, go back. Black point. Like this. Tone compression or it 100%. Now use the saturation and vibrance. Bring back down compression, local compression. And of course, hoof, look at these curves. If I disable them or curves, it's everything. So bring back the curves. And let's adjust the curves layer, basically, bringing it back in. There we go a little bit more normal. You can play here, find different presets. I have this one. This looks nice. This is more cold. I am a beach. Green NDK as not good enough for this image. Urban grief. But let's go with the default and put a detailed one. These are more normal, Let's say. So detail, we'll bring the shadows more into your image. Let's say if you're happy with this one, click apply. And it will create a layer with all the options attached to it. I hope that this helped you have a better understanding on how HDR is working and how you can create images with Affinity Photo. 8. Create a pano from 6 images: Okay, We reached the final lesson. So I will show you how to state up this panel. This panel consists of six images that were staged using Affinity photo. You can follow along using the file is attached in this lesson. So let me close this. I don't want to save it. File new panel. And you can add the six images shown here. Stage panel. As you can see, the images are images as well. There you go. This is the final result. Hit, Okay? And let the software do its magic. That was fast. Now, let's have a quick look and see if the image was statue stitched. Okay. I think it worked perfectly. You cannot tell the difference basically because here it's full of rain. So let's crop this image and try to preserve as much information as we can. So try to find edges. And the like this, like this. There you go. If you're happy with this, it Enter. And now you should have a full image. From here. We can click Apply. And it will take us to our photo persona. And of course, from here you can apply some adjustment layers to make this particular image look good. Let's look at some vibrance and images. Well, I'm going to do a quick edit of this. Let's play with the curves and bring up those values. I'll show you something cool. So basically what I want to do now is bring details here on the bottom part of the image. Okay? And now let's add a mask. With the mask selected. Let's add a gradient. Okay, let's invert the gradient. Move it up, up, up, up, up. And because this is the mask, you can click on the paint brush and just paint with black. Basically, what we wanted is to have more detail on the bottom part of the image. And there we go. This is how you stitch up a panel you want. You can export it by using the Export persona or file from the photo persona file and export. There we go, 8,764 pixels. This is a big image. And there we go. This is how you stage up a banner. 9. End credit: Hey, you've managed to finish Affinity Photo introduction course. I hope you enjoyed it and you learn something new. If you need more info, please don't hesitate to contact me by leaving a comment to this class. I will get back to you as soon as possible. Also, I would appreciate if you find time to leave me a review on Skillshare for this class, it will help me improve the quality for future lessons until next time, take nice pictures and stay safe.