Affinity Photo Studio Presets

by Apr 19, 2021Photo Editing Tutorials

Robin Whalley Landscape Photographer

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Affinity Photo Studio Presets

Affinity Photo 1.9 recently launched with several new features. One simple change that I’m extremely pleased to see is Studio Presets. Whilst the name might not mean much, this feature can help you work more efficiently. It’s also something many people coming from a Photoshop background have missed.

Understanding the Affinity Photo Studio Model

The Affinity Photo Studio is a remarkably simple concept and probably best explained using an example. Let’s look at the Navigator Studio Panel in the Photo Persona.

Affinity Photo Navigator Studio Panel

At the top of the panel is a zoom slider (1), allowing you to magnify the main image. Below this is the navigator window (2). You can use to quickly move around the main image when it more than fills the available screen space. Below this is a dropdown list (3) where you can save viewpoints. Viewpoints are areas of an image that you might want to view as well as the level of magnification.

These are all useful tools that help you navigate your image whilst editing so they’ve been gathered in the same place. This is also true of other Studio Panels which are really collections of tools with a related purpose. You can see the complete list for each of the Affinity Personas by clicking the View menu and selecting the Studio option. This is where you can see which Studio Panels are visible as well as hiding or displaying them.

Affinity Photo Studio Menu

Notice the visible Studio Panels have a tick mark to the left of their name. Clicking a Studio Panel in the list toggles its visibility on and off. The list of available Studio Panels also changes depending on the Affinity Persona you’re using when at the time.

Arranging Studio Panels

The other great thing about the Studio Panels in Affinity Photo is that you can reposition and group them. This allows you to arrange the interface to suit your editing needs. Affinity achieves this by having a Left Studio and a Right Studio area in the interface.

The Left and Right Studios areas are where you can dock the Studio Panels. If you look in the “View | Studio” submenu you will see them at the bottom of the list where you can hide or display them as you would Studio Panels. The Studio Panels themselves can then be arranged into groups within the Left and Right Studios.

Affinity Photo Right Studio with grouped Studio Panels

Here you can see the Right Studio area with 9 Studio Panels. The Studio Panels are arranged into two groups (1 and 2) with 4 panels in the top group and 5 in the bottom. You can move panels between groups by dragging and dropping them.

What this flexibility brings is the ability to display only the Studio Panels you use and arrange them to suit you. If you never use the Stock Studio Panel for example, why have it cluttering up your desktop? Close it and then only reopen it when or if you do need it.

The Affinity Photo Studio Presets

Now that you have the Studio Panels arranged to suit your needs, what happens if you share the computer with someone and they want a different arrangement. Or perhaps you do both photo editing and graphics work and want a different arrangement of panels for each. This is where the Studio Presets can help.

The new Studio Presets feature in Affinity Photo allows you to save an arrangement of Studio Panels. Then if the Panels are moved, you can return to the original arrangement using a saved preset.

To save a Studio Preset, select the View menu in Affinity Photo and select the Studio Presets menu item.

Saving a Studio Preset in the Affinity Photo menu

In the menu select the option to “Add Preset…”. This will open a dialog where you can enter the name of the Studio Preset you want to create.

Affinity Photo dialog saving a Studio Preset

After entering the name of the Studio Preset you want to save, click the OK button. This saves the current arrangement of Studio Panels, after which the preset is available in the Studio Presets menu.

Managing Affinity Photo Studio Presets

To use a saved Studio Preset, select it in the “View | Studio Presets” submenu. Alternatively, you can launch the Studio Presets Manager from the same menu.

Affinity Photo Studio Presets Manager

In the Studio Presets manager you will see the list of saved Studio Presets on your computer. You can then click one in the list before clicking the Apply button to load that arrangement of panels.

The Studio Presets Manager is also useful for renaming your saved presets as well as deleting any you decide you don’t need.

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Conclusion to Affinity Photo Studio Presets

Studio Presets are a new feature released in Affinity Photo 1.9. They are extremely useful helpful in arranging and managing the Affinity Photo interface. If you come from a Photoshop background you will probably recognise the feature as being like the Photoshop Workspace. Adding Studio Presets to Affinity Photo brings another important feature from Photoshop to the Affinity Photo community.

If you would like to know more about arranging and customising the Affinity Photo interface, please see my book “Affinity Photo How To”.

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