Affinity Designer – Perspective Distort Vector Art

Since there’s currently (as of July 2019) no Perspective / Distort / Warp tool in Affinity Designer ($49.99) (which I was totally used to for forever in Adobe Illustrator), ya gotta use Affinity Photo ($49.99). And you can open Affinity Photo directly from within Affinity Designer: File > Edit in Photo…

Currently you can only work non-destructively when performing perspective distortions using the Live Perspective Filter (menu Layer ▸ New Live Filter Layer ▸ Distort ▸ Perspective). There’s no similar live filter for warp distortions at the moment.

Source: Affinity Forum

(NOTE: when the Perspective pop-up window appears you gotta keep it open while adjusting the Perspective Mesh overlay, otherwise the Mesh overlay vanishes).

The above instructions from Affinity Staff Moderator MEB totally worked for my needs: design vector art in Designer, then open Photo from within Designer and non-destructively distort the perspective of the art.

WARNING: Be aware that the resulting distorted art does NOT remain in vector form, as it started out. It gets turned into a non-node-points non-editable bitmap! You can still see the outlines of the art in Outlines Mode in Designer, but you can no longer edit it with the Node Tool once it’s been distorted in Photo.

Affinity Designer: Adding Image Into Multi-line Text

Adding image inside text, and solving lowercase e’s and d’s that mistakenly fill in as solid

  1. Start with 5 lines of lowercase text, and transform into outline: Layer > Convert to curves
  2. In the Layers tab: select all outlined text objects, then click the little blue Add icon in the Tool Bar (top menu location). (This will create a new combined-shapes sub-Layer).
  3. Select image (which has already been Placed onto the art board) and copy
  4. Select the combined-shapes sub-Layer, and choose Paste Inside (Edit > Paste Inside). The image should now be inside the outlined text objects (in the combined-shapes sub-Layer).
  5. BUT the lowercase e’s and d’s (at least in my case) don’t have their holes showing – they’re solid letter shapes. (Lowercase o’s and a’s are fine. Their holes are showing.) To solve this and get the holes to re-appear in the lowercase e’s and d’s, do the following:
  6. In the Layers tab, select the combined-shapes sub-Layer
  7. Then click the little blue Divide icon in the Tool Bar
  8. Then click the little blue Combine icon in the Tool Bar
  9. Now the holes in the lowercase e’s and d’s should be showing

Using Affinity Designer

Designing T-shirt Outside Label Art

Three design options. Let’s create 100%-size mockups and test what the designs look like “in place.” Using Affinity Designer to design the 3 inch x 3 inch graphics, print’em out, cut’em out, and place’em on the back of a t-shirt. Then, post pics on Facebook and Instagram Gallery and ask peeps which one they like most.

Analog DJ Headphones face - Affinity Designer

How To Draw A Face by Darlene Nguyen

Super-helpful tutorial for beginners like myself: Learn how to draw a face in 8 easy steps: Beginners – Darlene Nguyen

Darlene’s tutorial taught me everything I needed to know to draw a face from scratch. I used her instructions to create my Analog DJ Headphones t-shirt artwork in Affinity Designer.

Analog DJ Headphones face - Affinity Designer
Analog DJ Headphones face – Affinity Designer

It All Starts With A Single Pebble

As I update my life’s bio, I gotta give a big shoutout to William Hanford Lee Jr. In the summer of 1983 or 84 (I can never remember), we were all standing in the parking lot of Hiram Johnson High School in Sacramento, CA, just after performing in The Best of Broadway for a couple’a weeks. Billy (as he was known at the time) asked me if I wanted a job doing production layout at his family’s newspaper, The Observer.

Since I didn’t know anything about newspaper production layout, Billy taught me everything from the ground up: Rubylith, Amberlith, double-truck layouts, positioning copy, proper margins, border tape, cutting proper 90-degree-angle border corners (which I always sucked at), pica pole rulers, X-ACTO knives, waxing machine, enlarging photos, fixer and stop-bath in the darkroom. EVERYTHING!

This exposure to layout, graphics, and photo enlarging equipment would carry me on to eventually lead a 7-person team for The PennySaver’s art department a few years later in Rancho Cordova, CA.

In 1988, I was able to easily step into the role of designing t-shirt art for Sunrise Sales in Spark, NV, with all the same skills that Billy first taught me at The Observer.

From there my brother-in-law at the time, Jim Minor, asked if I’d be interested in replacing his advertising agency’s retiring art director. “Sure”, I said. It was here that I first transitioned from doing graphic design manually to using a Macintosh, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe Illustrator.

Today I design my own t-shirts using Affinity Designer, and sell them online at

Thanks, Billy Lee, for throwing a single pebble into the water that continues to ripple across my life.



YouTube thumbnails, t-shirt designs using Affinity Designer, Muscle Milk, rockin’ the scene with Philz Coffee Barista RJ, Capital City Toastmasters club meeting, and a meeting with Toastmasters club members Jonathan Faridian and Jaytika Nand to do a little speech contest coaching.



Always good to see a long line at Philz Coffee Sacramento. Green Superfood by Amazing Grass is amazing (first heard about it from Tim Ferriss). Amazon Locker is a life-saver. A little showcase of Dad’s rescue-dog, Sammy, and his two cats, Brin and Pepper, during Easter Sunday. Really like Dad’s water fountain in the backyard. My brother, Lance, making sure a snake makes it safely across the road. T-shirt designs: one for Sacramento, and one called “Analog” for my audio friends. Taking photos of the cool iron bike rack in front of Philz Coffee. Using Affinity Photo for photo editing, and Affinity Designer for t-shirt design. Converted an old PNG file to vector format with (very helpful). Using iMovie to put together the vlog. And sifting through fonts.



Work In Progress (WIP) 002. Getting used to designing graphics in Affinity Designer, after using Adobe Illustrator since 1990. Finding a really good music mix to enhance the productivity zone is a long and worthwhile journey: Soul Cool Records / Pots & Pans Radio – The Funk Recipe Mixed by G- Spot on Mixcloud. But first, gotta snag some coffee at Insight Coffee Roasters on 16th in Sacramento.