Do Not Adjust Your Set

TV set with distorted test card

Made in Photoshop

Image made in Photoshop. Because I upgraded to OS Catalina, and it does not support 32bit files, I am now using the subscription model of Photoshop. A pretty seamless transition, and Photoshop is nice to work with, as is Lightroom.

I have Affinity Photo, but I am not that impressed with it: It is not a Photoshop replacement and it doesn’t handle text very well. I will plug away at it when I have time to see what I may be doing wrong or missing.

I also have Capture One Pro 20 and that is a superb RAW converter.

Update 24 November 2020

In the end I decided to take up the Photoshop subscription plan. It has worked well. The only thing I don’t like is the thing I have always not liked, which is that if one stops one’s subscription then you can’t open your own PSD files. Well, you can because there are other programs that will open them. But still, it rankles. It’s not a problem now because I am using it and I am impressed with how much better it is than Photoshop CS6 that I used for years.

Affinity Photo

I tried Affinity Photo again with an image that is a bit noisy, shot in poor light. And I tried it with Photoshop 2021 and here is a screen grab of a part of the image as rendered by the two programs. Click the file to see a larger version.

I also went back and tried the text tool in Affinity Photo. And I read the book (Affinity Photo Workbook) that I bought ages ago from Affinity in the hope that it would teach me the tricks of how to use text. But the program is not really designed for detailed text use. You can tell that from the index in the boo, which barely mentions text. So for me, it is a so-so RAW converter and not what I need for using text.

There’s something else, but this may be an unusual use case, so I won’t make a big thing about it. But for my work it is essential.

That is that I use layers with a cut-out in one of the layers. I copy the layer with the main image but cropped to square format, then reduce it to about 47% of size and then reposition beneath the layer that has the cut-out.

If you are wondering what the purpose is of doing it, it’s for the back of our greeting cards. On the back of the card we show a small cropped version of the main image. It is super easy to do in Photoshop and for all I know it may be easy in Affinity Photo, but I don’t see it.


  1. writemeow says:

    I upgraded to Catalina when it was released. Cancelled my PhotoShop subscription a while back because I didn’t use it enough to justify the cost. If I get back into photo again I might reactivate it. That RAW converter sounds interesting …


    1. I thought you meant Affinity Photo as a Raw converter, and not Capture One (which is hugely more expensive) but then I re-read my post and I see that you must be talking about Capture One.

      So – apologies for not being clear – Affinity Photo, too, is a RAW converter.

      Just for info, Affinity also make a desktop publishing application, and a vector design application.


  2. writemeow says:

    Yes. When I get back into photography, I’ll check these out more thoroughly. Just dragged out the Nikon and shot a .RAW picture. It was easy to export it as .JPEG in the native Photos app so for now … I’ll do nothing.


    1. That was easy then 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  3. dg28 says:

    Capture One is great but the Adobe Camera RAW + Photo Mechanic workflow is ingrained in my psyche now and every time I try one of the other options I just go back to it. Affinity is clunky, Lightroom only really works properly for individual photographers and so my workflow only changes with upgrades of the two key bits of software.


    1. My organisation is just my hard drive split into folders. Sometimes I can’t locate things, but mostly I can. Capture One is for RAF files because nothing else can touch it. Everything else goes through Photoshop. Capture One has its own logic for folders, as you will know, and I am not fond of the duplication. The number of times I have looked at Photo Mechanic and thought about using it.


  4. JenT says:

    Thanks for the comparisons. I’ve been using PhotoShop Elements for at least a decade and my last upgrade was to the 2018 version. It really is my go-to program for all things photo, until this last update, 2021. The hardware requirements are now such that my 2-year-old computer cannot handle it and it looks to be because of the AI Sensei features Adobe added. It’s a shame, and I was hoping that Affinity Photo would be a good replacement for editing. I have their other two programs, Publisher and Designer, which I’ve been using, but neither “do” photos as well as PSE. And then there’s photo cataloging, too. As much as Adobe wants me to upload and store my images in Creative Cloud and use their subscription services, some of us are hobbyists on a budget. I’ll keep looking. Really appreciate the write-up, David. Thanks!


    1. Mmmm… I don’t upload any images to the cloud, although my subscription does allow it. I store everything locally. If it’s only (only!) a RAW converter and processor that you want, then (hardware capability aside) there are several. What kind of things do you need to do besides develop images?


      1. JenT says:

        For me cataloging my images is really important. I use PSE to download my images from my camera (or card) and then tag and categorize them. Afterwards I make minor corrections, but if I have to do something major, PSE also can handle that. As I already mentioned, the newest version is a no-go on my current computer, so I’ll keep using the 2018 until Adobe cripples it or I get a new computer (which is unlikely anytime soon). Thanks again.


        1. Never tried it but I know people who like PhotoMechanic from CameraBits.

          Liked by 1 person

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