Live Perspective Mockup in Affinity Photo and Designer

**Update: due to migrating issues from Squarespace to WordPress the images weren’t updated. If you want some in depth video tutorials there are great ones on the Affinity website. But I’ll leave the text instructions for whoever may prefer them.

Using the Live Perspective Filter in Affinity Photo & Designer to Create Mockups in Real Time.

This is an Intermediate Tutorial but I tried to document all the steps so that a beginner could follow along. Let me know how it turned out for you or if you have any questions in the comments below.

1) Getting the Affinity Designer Files Prepped

If you were following along with the previous tutorial on creating business cards in Affinity Designer you can go back and use that file in this tutorial. First you should duplicate the file and give it another name. One of these files will be used for the front of the card, the other for the back of the card. Open up those files and resize each one individually. Click on “Document Setup” near the top of the window and make your dimensions 2″x3.5″. Next, in the “Anchor” section of that window, click on the center box so the new constraints will be measure out from the middle of your document. Save both those documents.

2) Open Affinity Photo

For this I downloaded an image from Bench Accounting on Unsplash. After downloading I right clicked on the image and opened it with Affinity Photo.

3) Embed Your Document

Go to FILE > PLACE. When the dialogue window pops up choose one of the business card files you created in step 1. Your mouse will then have the PLACE icon and you just click and drag it onto your file, making a new box appear with your embedded document.

4) Live Perspective Filter

With the embedded layer selected, go to LAYER > NEW LIVE LAYER FILTER > PERSPECTIVE FILTER. A wire frame appears around that layer with four handles at each corner. Click and drag on these corners to manipulate the perspective of this layer.

This step is a little bit finicky to get it completely right so just keep playing with it until the perspective looks good. If you need to readjust the perspective filter just double click on the perspective filter within the layer you’re working on. (It’s the icon to the right of the layer thumbnail. It’s white with a gray hourglass on it).

5) Repeat Step 3 & 4 with the other Business Card File

Just repeat the steps so that you have both the front and the back of each card.

6) Making A Shadow

In a perfect world you would just be able to add a drop shadow from the effects panel but I’ve noticed that it doesn’t look right for me, when using a perspective filter on it. So we are going to make ours manually.

Copy and past (or duplicate) the first embedded document in the Layer panel. Right click on the new layer and click “Rasterize”. Now, holding down Command, click on the layers thumbnail image in the Layers panel. An active outline should be around the image.

With the outline active click on the Paint Brush Tool [or click ‘b’ on your keyboard]. Paint onto that layer with a hard brush making sure it is completely black. Then move the layer behind the Card Layer.

Repeat Step 6 with the Other Business Card

8) Making A Shadow (Continued)

Now select both black layers. You can do this by clicking on the title of one, then holding command while clicking on the title of the other layer. With both layers selected move them a few pixels down and to the right. You do this by pressing the down arrow key a few times and the right arrow key a few times.

Next, add a Gaussian Blur of 2.8px. To do so look at the Layers window. There should be an EFFECTS tab above this area. Click on it and tick the Gaussian Blur box. For the Radius make it 2.8 px.

9) Stack some Cards

If you want to make it look like a few cards are stacked, you click on a business card layer and the shadow layer beneath it, copy and paste. With both layers still selected you can rotate it by using the handle at the top of the box. Rotate it a bit and move it accordingly. Paste it again and rotate it accordingly. You should have 3 cards stacked on one side. Do the same for the other side.

10) A Complete Mockup

You should have a pretty good mockup by now. But we aren’t yet using the best part which is that because we used a Live Perspective Filter the embedded document can still be changed.

11) Using the Live Filter

In the main document, click on top layer of your business (which is an embedded document). Now double click on it. It should open up the actual document which you embeded.

12) Separate Windows

Go to WINDOW > SEPARATED MODE
All the toolbars, and document windows you had open should separate from one another. You probably have to resize the windows and move around the toolbars so you can see what you’re working on.

Once you’re set up, whatever changes you make to the embedded document window will change on the window with the live perspective layer! This is pretty great for developing concepts and creating mockups.

How did it turn out for you?

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