Blend Ranges in Affinity Photo: A Complete Guide

This article will teach you everything you need to know about Blend Ranges in Affinity Photo! We’ll start by discussing what tonal values are, and how they affect the look of an image. Then we’ll go over how to use Blend Ranges to achieve those desired results. Finally, we’ll provide some examples to better explain how this feature works.

What are blend ranges in Affinity Photo?

Blend ranges is a tool in Affinity Photo that allows you to selectively blend layers of an image based on their tonal values. This means that you can control how light or dark parts of your layers are, and Affinity Photo will automatically blend them together accordingly.

What’s so remarkable about Blend Ranges is that you are in control of the opacity levels and the range of tonal values affected.

Blend ranges are another excellent way to combine photos in Affinity Photo. It’s also a great alternative to Adobe Photoshop’s Luminosity Masks.

This gives you a huge amount of power to create natural-looking images that can be very difficult to achieve with other methods.

Tonal values in Affinity Photo

Tonal values are the various shades of light and dark in an image, ranging from pure black to pure white. By targeting specific tonal ranges with blend ranges, you can make targeted adjustments that wouldn’t be possible with traditional editing tools.

They range from black (0% tonal value) to white (100% tonal value). You can think of them as a gradient, with different levels in between those two extremes.

Let’s have a look at the location where you can find Blend ranges in Affinity Photo in the following section.

Where to find blend ranges?

You can find Blend ranges in the Affinity Photo Layers panel.

To begin, choose the layer you wish to work with.

Then, on the right, you’ll see the Layers panel. By clicking on the gear symbol, you can access the Blend Ranges/Options dialog.

Blend Ranges in Affinity Photo

In the following section, we’ll look at how to use Blend ranges in Affinity Photo.

How to use blend ranges in Affinity Photo

Don’t know where or how to begin? Let’s take a look at the controls on the dialog and figure out what they do.

The following settings are available in the Blend Ranges dialog:

  • Blend Gamma- This setting controls the brightness of the image. A lower gamma value will make the image darker, while a higher gamma value will make it brighter.
  • Coverage Map- The antialiasing ramp determines the layer’s antialiasing setting.
  • Anti-aliasing- Applies or disables antialiasing for the selected layer.

Settings for both the Source Layer Ranges and the Underlying Composition Ranges graphs

The following settings can be modified for both the Source Layer Ranges and the Underlying Composition Ranges graphs:

  • Graph- Displays a live preview of the tonal range being affected.
  • In- This setting determines the horizontal position of the selected node. You can type directly the value on the text box or even drag the pop-up slider.
  • Out- This setting determines the vertical position of the selected node. You can type directly the value on the text box or even drag the pop-up slider.
  • Linear- By default, the graduation between two nodes is linear. If this option is disabled, nodes are connected via gentle curves.
  • Reset- This setting returns the graph to the default position.

What is the difference between Source Layer Ranges and the Underlying Composition Ranges?

  • The “Source Layer Ranges” is the layer you’ve chosen in the Affinity Layers Studio Panel.
  • The “Underlying Composition Ranges” are the other layers in the image beneath the selected layer.
Blend Ranges in Affinity Photo: Source & Destination ranges

Let’s look at how to utilize the graph that appears in the Source Layer Ranges and Underlying Composition Ranges.

The grid has vertical and horizontal axes. The opacity values of the selected layer are represented on the vertical axis, while the horizontal axis represents the image tone of the selected layer.

The dark tones are on the left side of the grid, and the light tones are on the right.

This is a great example of how a single line of code can make an enormous difference in the final product. When you drag the left black point down to the bottom of the grid, its opacity is set to 0%.

The top of the grid on the other side represents white in the tonal range, so look at the line on the right that is below. This is located at the top of the grid, which sets the Opacity to 100%. As a result, whites in the Tone strip cover to hide.

Finally, if you go halfway down the line, it cuts through the middle of the grid. Because of this, the mid-tones in the Tone strip are at 50% opacity.

Blend ranges example in Affinity Photo

Let’s check out how to use the Blend Ranges with a practical example. Create a tone strip with a gradient ranging from 0% (Black) to 100% White and place it over a particular layer (ex. a landscape scene).

Select the strip layer and open the Blend Ranges dialog. If you drag the left side of the Source Layer Ranges to the bottom of the grid, the black part of the strip vanishes, and the stripe becomes lighter, allowing for greater concealment of the image. The layer is completely hidden wherever there is a white stripe.

Blend Ranges in Affinity Photo: Blend options

Adding a fresh point in the middle of the line and dragging it to the top of the grid setting the mid-tones in the tone strip takes away 100% opacity.

After you’ve finished editing, use the Reset button below the grid to reset the Blending Ranges.

You can also use the In and Out fields to type in numeric values for the selected node.

That’s all there is to know about how to use Affinity Photo’s Blend Ranges tool! Be sure to experiment with it on your own images to get a feel of how it works. With a little practice, you’ll be able to produce some stunning results.

Conclusion

Affinity Photo is a great tool for photo editing and blending, but it can be tricky to get the hang of at first. In this blog post, we have given you a crash course on Affinity Photo’s Blend Ranges feature, including how to use use it, details about tonal values, and a practical example. Keep reading our tutorials to learn more!

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