How to Lighten a Photo in Affinity Designer

When you need to brighten a photo, there’s few better software to use than Affinity. With that said, how do you use software like Affinity Designer to lighten a Photo?

To lighten a photo in Affinity, use the Photo program instead of Designer. Within Affinity Photo you should create a levels adjustment layer, then adjust the white levels and gamma for a brighter image. 

If you’re looking to make an image a little bit brighter in Affinity’s software but you’re not sure where to start, you’ve come to the right place. In our guide below, we will discuss everything from whether you should use Designer in the first place, to how you can use Affinity Photo to make an image brighter. So come along, and let’s dive right into it!

Can You Lighten a Photo in Affinity Designer?

Before we really tackle how you can use Affinity software to lighten a photo, it’s important we establish that you can even do it in the first place. So, can you lighten a photo in Affinity Designer or do you need to use different Affinity software? 

Affinity Designer isn’t the best Affinity software for lightening a photo, as Affinity Designer is more for editing vector graphics. That said, Affinity itself still has a great option for brightening photos. 

Affinity Photo is what you want when your goal is to lighten an individual photograph. Fortunately, the process of using Affinity Photo to brighten a photo is straightforward and easy to accomplish. Hopefully, you’ll see that in our next section when we describe exactly how to do just that. 

How Do You Lighten Up a Photo in Affinity? 

So now we come to the main event. How exactly do you use Affinity Photo to brighten up a photo that’s too dark? Fortunately, it’s quite simple as long as you know the right steps to take. 

Follow the steps below to smoothly and easily brighten any image in Affinity Photo:

  1. Open the program and import or load your image: Before you can do anything else you’re going to need to open the program and either load the file with your image already in it or import the image itself into a new document. 
  2. Add a levels adjustment layer: Click the icon to add an adjustment layer and select levels from the dropdown menu. The icon you click should be near the bottom right of the screen on the panel where your layers can be found. It is a small circle with one shaded. 
  3. Change the Blend Mold to luminosity: Before we start adjusting the levels that will change your phone’s brightness, it’s a good idea to change the Blend Mold (located at the bottom of the window) to luminosity by clicking the dropdown menu next to it. This will prevent your adjustments from inadvertently changing the saturation. 
  4. Adjust White/Black Levels and Gamma for a brighter image: To get a brighter image you simply need to slide the white levels to the right or the gamma to the left. Additionally the black levels will also have an impact on the brightness of the image. You can experiment until you get the brightness you desire. 

This is the easiest and most basic way to manually adjust the brightness of your photo. Still, it may not be the only way. In the next section we’ll take a dive into whether or not there are multiple ways to change brightness and what they might be. 

How to Lighten an Image in Affinity Designer

While Designer may not be ideal for lightening a photo when compared to Affinity Photo, it still has features to brighten images and vector graphics as well. 

If you don’t have Affinity Photo, follow the steps below to use Affinity Designer to lighten your image: 

  1. Open or import your image into Affinity Designer: Start by opening the program and either loading the file that already has your image in it or import it into a new file. 
  2. Add a brightness and contrast Adjustments Layer: Click the adjustments icon beneath your layers and select “Brightness and Contrast.” 
  3. Use the slider to change the brightness and contrast: Now you will be presented with a slider adjustment for both brightness and contrast. Slide it until you have the brightness you desire.

With that you will have adjusted the brightness of your image. While Designer is meant more for vector editing, you can use it to do this with an image as well.  

Are There Multiple Ways to Change Brightness in Affinity? 

What we’ve shown you is the very basics of how to change the brightness of an image in Affinity Photo and Affinity Designer. Still, that doesn’t mean it’s the only way to do it or the only way you should learn. 

There are actually multiple approaches to brighten an image or parts of an image in Affinity Photo. Depending on why you’re making a photo brighter one way may be better than others.

Fortunately, if you want to try one of the more advanced techniques, there are plenty of good tutorials on YouTube

So Really, How Do You Lighten a Photo in Affinity?

The first thing we should point out is that you shouldn’t use Affinity Designer to lighten a photo. Instead, you should use Affinity Photo. That’s because Affinity Photo is specifically for photographs and has the tools you need to get the job done right. Designer on the other hand, is more for vector graphics and your own designs. 

To actually change the brightness you’re just going to want to create an adjustment layer for levels. Then you can adjust the black/white levels as well as the gamma of the image, making it brighter or darker.