Affinity Designer is one of the main Illustrator’s competitors. And it is not without a reason. Affinity has stepped up its game over the last few years and appears to offer one of the best graphic design packages on the market. For $54.99, you will get a perpetual license.
Affinity Designer 101
Affinity Designer is an award-winning graphic design app that works with vector files. Developed in 2014, it has two major features: Affinity Publisher and Affinity Photo. The software is exceptionally light for a vector program. It is easy to distinguish it from Adobe Illustrator and CorelDRAW, both hardware-demanding. It has more than enough features for easy tasks and professional design work. It is so well optimized for iPad, that it trumps most apps on the market.
The question relies on why people love it. G2 users rate it with 4.6/5 stars. According to most design experts, Affinity is extremely intuitive for everyday use, does not come with overwhelming features, and most importantly, it is an affordable option. $55 for a one-off purchase is considered a bargain today. Most apps working with vectors charge for annual subscriptions and they all cost more than Affinity’s product. Add that to the lower hardware equipment requirements and we can easily see why many small agencies turn to Affinity Designer for the main graphic design software.
Affinity Designer is relatively easy to learn, so it will not take you much time to get used to it, especially if you have a background in graphic design. This Affinity Designer tutorial shows you how to understand the user interface, create a new document, play with colors, add text, and some other basic lessons. The good news is that you can learn fast, even if you don’t have a lot of previous experience.
Affinity Designer is getting a lot of praise, and a lot of converts joining the brand as it continues to expand with modern features and a seamless user interface for vector editing.
The company is now actively involved in the iPad market too, delivering a stellar vector editing experience for all Apple tablet users. You can try out the software for yourself on a 10-day trial. Those ten days should be more than enough to experiment with many of the tutorials and learning resources that you can find below.
Affinity Designer is a funny app to work with. While it does not come with Illustrator’s features package, there are some tips and tricks that can help you create stunning designs, with features like isolation mode, changing view modes, and others.
How to Learn Affinity Designer
In this section, we will present to you some of the most efficient ways to learn to use Affinity Designer and how to make the most out of it.
1. The Official Channel
You can get yourself fully equipped with the many functions and features of Affinity Designer. The following resources will give you enough understanding of this amazing app that you will be able to recreate industry-level designs in a matter of days. You can never go wrong with learning directly from the source. The Affinity team has put all of their Designer videos up on Vimeo, 94 of them in total. Each video is at most only 10 minutes long, giving you plenty of homework to do afterward.
One thing to note about video learning is that videos teach you the fundamentals of specific actions. Creativity is hard to teach, but these videos can give you a solid base for understanding how the software works. Here are some good ones to start with.
First of all, it comes Discover. This tutorial gives you an introductory tour of Affinity Designer, a program that offers truly professional graphic design on your Mac! Learn the basics of the workspace so you can get started in the shortest time possible. Then, you have Film Noir Style Illustration. It shows you how you can use a photo, an adjustment, the Pen Tool, and global colors to create a Film Noir style illustration. Last, of all, you can access Artboards Basics. Here you can learn how to add, select, delete, move, resize, and rename artboards, and view at Zoom to Selection.
The videos in the WorkBook are great, and you should watch them, but books can prove to be even better. You can pick up a book without needing an internet connection, so that means you can sharpen your skills while on a long train ride. The official Affinity Designer Workbook is designed to help you get the most out of this beautiful vector software.
The book takes you on a journey of designing nine unique projects, with each project being submitted by some of the best talents in the biz. In the book, you’re going to find information on how to design as a modern professional, but also have the privilege to learn the best vector design techniques from the real pros. You will need an internet connection initially as you have to download the necessary files for each project so that you can work on your machine uninterrupted.
3. Flat Vector Illustration
There are several reasons why you should explore this tutorial, other than its long-form nature and clear formatting. First and foremost, it is a sponsored tutorial by Serif (maker of Affinity products), and second, it is written by an experienced designer who has been in the industry for multiple decades.
And despite the tutorial being sponsored, it is not written in a way to promote or advertise the product. All this put together makes this one of the best tutorials for Affinity Designer newcomers.
You are going to be learning how to create a flat vector illustration, just like the one shown in the photo above. To create something this pixel-perfect, you have to pick up some new skills along the way. And that is precisely how this tutorial is structured, from one technique to another, showing you how to get it done.
All in all, this guide shows you the way to learn to use Affinity Designer and how to make the most of it to become a better designer.