Launched by Serif back in 2014, Affinity Designer, has already gone on to find fame and success in the design community. Pitched as a low-cost but just as powerful alternative to competitor tools on the market, such as Adobe Illustrator, Affinity Designer has been touted as the fastest, smoothest and most precise vector graphic design software available, and even won the Apple Design Award back in June 2015.
To guide new users through the basics of everything the software has to offer, as well as offering seasoned hands a chance to brush up on core skills, Serif has released an official Affinity Designer workbook. Authored by a selection of some of the world's finest designers, including Romain Trystram, Kevin House and Neil Ladkin, this book shows off what's possible with the software, as well showing readers how they can achieve similar results.
Following an introduction from Affinity Designer's Managing Director Ash Hewson and an about us spiel, the work book itself is split into four main chapters that guide the reader through the interface, core skills, illustration projects, and design projects.
The nature of the work book means that it's best read in order as you will accumulate skills that get deployed later on. However if you're already familiar with the software, it's easy enough to dip in where you want and get stuck in. But even if you jump on board and find you can't figure out what's going on, there are handy page references that guide you back to specific tool tutorials.
For new users, the introduction and interface tour is a clear-cut walkthrough of the tools and systems. Considering that this is a book by designers, it's good to see that the information is well laid out and easy to understand, and that there's a clever use of icon imagery to help relay details as quickly as possible. Tools, panels and toolbars each get a look in, with each getting a decent amount of room to breathe (a big positive seeing as readers will probably be flipping back to this information later on.)
Each subsequent chapter is based around a project that readers will complete with the help of the work book. These all come with resources that are free to access online. By breaking down each project into manageable steps, this book smoothly guides readers through gradient lighting, raster nozzles, boolean operations, and even more professional techniques.
Once readers reach the end of the book, they'll have a wealth of technical knowledge under their belts and prove that they can combine their vector graphics skills to create fully rounded design projects such as product and packaging designs, posters, and press-ready documents.
With clear explanations and an even clearer layout, the Affinity Designer Work Book looks set to make the already popular software even more accessible.