Affinity Designer is a powerful Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop alternative. It’s a cross between Illustrator and Photoshop because it allows you to create vector or raster designs. It doesn’t offer the same photo editing capabilities as Photoshop (they have Affinity Photo for that) but the design tools and capabilities are very impressive.
Many designers and creatives would love to get away from their Creative Cloud subscription and avoid recurring payments, and Affinity Designers makes that possible. The software is available for a one-time price, and a very low price at that (currently just $49.99). A free trial is available if you want to give it a test run.
The downside to using new software is the learning curve. Thankfully, Affinity Designer is pretty user-friendly and if you have experience with other design software, you’ll probably pick it up rather quickly. However, it’s different than both Photoshop and Illustrator, so educational resources can be a big help.
If you’re serious about learning and mastering Affinity Designer, this workbook is an outstanding resource. This is an official guide created by Serif, the makers of the software. It’s the most comprehensive resource available for anyone who wants to learn the program.
Affinity Design Tutorials
Let’s take a look at some of the best tutorials that will help you to learn this powerful software in no time. You’ll find video tutorials, as well as text-based tutorials here, and a wide range of topics, are covered.
This video tutorial from Serif is an excellent starting point if you’re new to Affinity Designer. It’s less than five minutes long and it provides a solid overview of the user interface so you’ll understand more about how the software works. I recommend watching this video before moving on to the other tutorials showcased here. Serif also has a more extensive collection of tutorials that cover specific tools and features.
Affinity Designer Tutorial for Beginners
There is an excellent series of tutorials from the YouTube channel Detour Shirts. These videos were created specifically for anyone who is new to Affinity Designer. If that’s you, you’ll certainly appreciate the solid foundation of knowledge you’ll pick up from the three videos below. Each one is between 15 – 25 minutes long.
Affinity Designer Tutorial for Beginners – Part 2
Affinity Designer Tutorial for Beginners – Part 3
How to Use the Shape Builder
Here’s a quick Affinity Designer tutorial (five minutes) that shows how to use the impressive shape builder. There’s no talking or explanation in the video, but you can learn by watching to see what’s being done. It’s a good intro to this useful tool.
Outline Text Using the Contour Tool
In less than four minutes, you can learn exactly how to create this fun text effect.
How to Create a 3D Dial Using Affinity Designer
There are a lot of ways you could use the techniques covered in this video. It’s a little over 20 minutes long and it does a very good job of explaining all of the details and steps for creating this 3D design.
Cozy Cottage Illustration Tutorial
This video covers the process of creating an awesome vector illustration from scratch. It’s a little fast paced, so if you’re new to the software you might need to watch it a few times to get all of the details.
Check out our tutorial roundups for other software:
Character Rendering in Affinity Designer
This is a long (almost two hours) in-depth tutorial that walks through the entire process of creating this character rendering. If you really want to learn and master the techniques, the tutorial is worth the time.
How to Illustrate Using Affinity Designer
This is another tutorial that’s perfect for those who are new to the software. Not only does it show how to create a specific illustration, but it also explains the steps and tools in a way that’s helpful for those who are new.
Learn how to create this awesome wallpaper illustration. Whether you’re creating something for yourself or graphics to sell at a stock marketplace, this tutorial will be helpful.
Here is a great wallpaper design tutorial that features nature and silhouettes. You can use the same techniques to create a variety of different nature-inspired scenes and designs.
Cute Cactus Tutorial
This 15-minute tutorial is a good choice for beginners because the creator of the video really covers the details so you can follow along even if you’ve never used the program.
Creating a Character from Scratch
This 13-minute character design tutorial is ideal for someone who has a little bit of experience with the software. Not all of the small details are explained and it’s more of a high-level tutorial.
This text-based tutorial shows how to create a simple and fun character illustration. You can apply these techniques to your own designs by getting creative.
How to Trace a Character in Affinity Designer
In just under 30 minutes, you’ll learn how to trace a scanned or photographed image, which is an ideal way to create vector character designers. If you’ve done the same thing in Adobe Illustrator, you’ll appreciate learning how to use Affinity Designer to accomplish the task as well.
How to Draw a Pineapple Octopus
Here’s a fun character illustration that’s relatively quick to create. The video is less than 13 minutes long and you’ll learn techniques that can be applied to other types of designs as well.
Logo Design Tutorial
In less than 20 minutes, you can follow along and learn how to create a deer logo. Of course, Illustrator is popular among logo designers, but Affinity Design is a legit alternative if you’re looking for something different.
Emojis seem to be everywhere these days, so why not create your own? With the help of this Affinity Design tutorial, you’ll be able to create several well-designed emojis.
This is a relatively simple tutorial that’s ideal for beginners. Although it’s simple, it’s also very useful. This is an icon that could prove to be used in a lot of different projects and applications.
Use simple shapes to create this back to school icon. Again, this is a good tutorial for anyone who is new to the software.
Now we’re looking at how to create a series of icons that all match and go together. This is excellent for anyone who sells stock graphics as a way to generate passive income.
Here’s a tutorial that shows how to design a fun car icon. Of course, you could take the concepts from this tutorial and adapt the specifics to create a unique design or a different style of car or vehicle.
If you design graphics to be sold at stock marketplaces, the vector illustration created in this tutorial is the style of something you could design specifically to upload to stock sites. It’s a fun illustration and, of course, you can adapt it or modify as needed to make it your own.
If you design characters, or want to learn how to design characters, this text-based tutorial is one you’ll surely appreciate.
Here is a tutorial for a totally different style of character design. You’ll learn how to create a blocky-style character inspired by Minecraft.
Affinity Designer can also be used for print design projects. Here you’ll learn how to design a nice greeting card that could be sent off to a printer.
Mandala Art Step-by-Step Tutorial
Mandalas can be used for a lot of different purposes, including uploading at stock marketplaces as a way to make money with your design skills. This video tutorial shows how to create your own unique mandalas in Affinity Designer.
Patterns are extremely useful, both in your own projects and as a stock resource to sell. You may know how to create Photoshop patterns, but this Affinity Designer tutorial shows how to do it in this program as well.
Here is another pattern tutorial. The process of creating the repeating pattern is very similar, but the elements used to create the pattern are different.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Affinity Designer Easy to Learn?
Like any design software, there will be a learning curve for new users. However, Affinity Designer is much easier to learn than both Illustrator and Photoshop.
Is Affinity Designer Better Than Illustrator?
Adobe Illustrator offers some advanced features that are not available in Affinity Designer. However, Affinity Designer supports raster-based design (like Photoshop), which is not possible in Illustrator. Both Illustrator and Affinity Designer are excellent options. The biggest difference is price. Affinity Designer can be purchased with a low one-time fee while Illustrator requires a monthly recurring subscription.
Is Affinity Designer a One-Time Payment?
Yes, it is. Once you purchase the software, you own it. There are no recurring subscription fees. You’ll have the option to pay for an upgrade when a new version is released.
What Does Affinity Designer Do?
It supports both vector and raster design and editing. In that way, it’s a bit of a combination of both Illustrator and Photoshop.