In addition to 32-bit editing support, Affinity Designer also implements OpenColorIO; a color management system that provides a full color-managed workflow. It is predominantly used for motion picture production but can be used for any situation where accurate end-to-end color management is required.
Setting up OpenColorIO
By default, Designer's OpenColorIO features are not immediately usable. An .ocio configuration file is required alongside a number of supporting files such as lookup tables.
The OpenColorIO website (http://www.opencolorio.org) contains some sample configurations that provide a number of suitable input and output profiles, including several Academy Color (ACES) configurations.
To configure OpenColorIO:
Download and extract your chosen OpenColorIO configuration to a folder.
From the Affinity Designer menu, select Preferences.
From the Edit menu, select Preferences.
On the Color tab, under OpenColorIO Configuration File, choose Select and navigate to the extracted directory. Choose the .ocio configuration file.
Under OpenColorIO Search Folder, click Select and choose the extracted directory (it should already be the current highlighted directory from when the .ocio configuration file was selected).
You will be prompted to restart the app, which is necessary for the OpenColorIO settings to take effect.
OpenColorIO is exposed through two methods:
The 32-bit Preview panel contains a Display Transform option that only becomes available with a valid OpenColorIO configuration. This can be used to achieve a non-destructive, color managed workflow. See 32-bit Preview for more information.
An OCIO adjustment layer (see OCIO Adjustment) can be added to losslessly convert between color spaces. You can have multiple OCIO adjustment layers within a document, which allows you to accommodate composite layers from different color spaces. An example layer stack might be (in hierarchical order):
OCIO Adjustment—from Utility - Linear - sRGB back to Role - scene_linear
sRGB Pixel Layer—composite element
OCIO Adjustment—from Role - scene_linear to Utility - Linear - sRGB