Walkthrough: 2.5D Effect Using Motion and Affinity Photo

Walkthrough: 2.5D Effect Using Motion and Affinity Photo

Note from Izzy: The format of this article is an experiment. We’re curious to hear whether you like it. Of course, we’ll continue to make videos (which is our main thing), but some folks prefer text which is why we gave this format a try. Let us know if you want more. :)

Now here’s Blake…

Several years ago, my dad showed me this crazy cool effect he used in a video. He took a still photograph of my mom and him in the desert and made it appear three dimensional.

They seemed to be separated from the desert background, and the camera moved to the side, showing depth between the two layers. It blew me away.

I’ve since learned that this effect is usually called 2.5D (pronounced “two and a half D”) because it’s not quite three dimensional. It’s more like arranging flat layers in a 3D space.

Anyway, I’ve started seeing this effect in other places (mainly documentaries), and it’s still just as cool to me now as it was back then.

It’s an alternative to the Ken Burns Effect and a great way to create visual interest. It has a similar slideshow appearance but now with depth.

Here is an example workflow to create this effect. We’ll use a combination of Affinity Photo and Motion. Continue reading Walkthrough: 2.5D Effect Using Motion and Affinity Photo

How to Have Compressor Send You an Email When Your Video Transcode Is Complete

Transcoding a video can be super time-consuming. It can tie up your computer for a while.

If you’re like me, you might find yourself frequently coming back to check on the transcoding Job because you want to know the moment it’s done.

Well, there just might be a better way. Here’s what I did…

I used Automator (an app that is included with MacOS) to create an automation where my computer sends me an email the moment Compressor is done transcoding a video for me.

Cool, right? I know. :)

Want to see how to do it?

Here are the steps…

Continue reading How to Have Compressor Send You an Email When Your Video Transcode Is Complete

Affinity Photo Macros: Use Them to Speed Up Your Workflow

Affinity Photo Editing Macros

True or false? We should always be looking for ways to speed up workflow.

For me, that answer is always true.

Affinity Photo has lots of ways of making photo editing faster. One example: Macros.

Macros are an easy way to speed up workflow. When you’re working on an image and you think you have an idea for an interesting style or effect, one that you might use again later, you can turn it into a macro. A macro is a file that includes a series of edits. Affinity Photo makes the process simple.

Let’s say you have three images open in Affinity Photo and you want to apply a similar effect to each of them. You can use a macro to record the edits you make on the first image and apply those edits to the other two images automatically.

Creating the Style

After hitting the record button in the Macro window, Affinity Photo will keep track of any steps you take while editing an image.

For this example, I’ll add two adjustment layers: a Curves Adjustment and a Black & White Adjustment. I can use the Curves Adjustment to create an S-shape on the graph and increase the contrast of the image. The Black & White Adjustment will make the image black and white as well as increase contrast when I adjust the sliders.

Affinity Photo Macros Window

Exporting Affinity Photo Macros

Once I’m done creating my black and white look, I can export the macro as a file, saving as a .afmacro file anywhere on my computer. This also gives me the ability to email it to someone so they can use it.

Affinity Photo Macro Export

Importing Affinity Photo Macros

On a separate photo, I can simply import the macro file and hit the play button. The macro instantly applies all the included steps to the photo.

Editing the Macro

If you want to adjust a macro before applying it to a photo, you can change the edits inside the Macro window. Optionally, you can uncheck steps which will leave them out of the macro when it’s applied. This is a useful feature because sometimes the edits won’t work exactly the same for each image.
Affinity Photo Editing Macros


Macros are just one way that Affinity Photo speeds up workflow. You can save a lot of time by storing a series of edits in a macro file. I consider my time valuable, so I dig tools like macros.