Greeting Card Season is Here! Find the Perfect Card Stock for You Now

Greeting Card Setup / Affinity / Horizontal / Windows

First, let's have a quick talk about Affinity Photo. If you are learning photo editing from scratch, it is a great choice. However, if you are like us and have been steeped in Photoshop for 20+ years, Affinity's tools, processes, and requirements may be slightly disorienting. You will see below some steps that are different from Photoshop in meaningful ways.

If you are moving from Photoshop to Affinity, READ THESE DIRECTIONS at least one time thoroughly before starting work on a card.

For most printers, borderless greeting cards are not possible. There will be a small white margin around the outside of the card. The exceptions are Canon PRO-200, PRO-300, and select TS model printers.

Get Started

Open the image you want for the outside

front of your card. For this tutorial, you will need to choose an image in the horizontal (landscape) orientation.

In Affinity, go to File > Open to begin.

Step 1 - Image Size Rules

Refer to the table below for the maximum size you can make your image by card size. Make your photos this size or smaller using the crop tool or image resize feature.

This table shows you the MAXIMUM IMAGE SIZE you can use for each Red River Paper card size. Do not attempt to make your images larger than the below size.

Card Size Max Image Width Max Image Height
7 x 10 (A7) 6.75" 4.75"
6.25 x 9 (A6) 6" 4.25"
5.5 x 8.5 (A2) 5.25" 4"
5.25 x 5.25 (Square) 5" 5"
8 x 9 Pano 8.75" 3.75"

Step 1B - Crop Your Image

We recommend the CROP TOOL because it gives you precise control over the width and height of your card image. Yes, you will likely lose a part of your original image in the process.

To activate the Crop Tool, click on the crop icon in the tool pallet on the left side of your screen or press the "C" key on your keyboard.

The Crop Tool control bar appears at the top of your screen:

1 - Set mode to RESAMPLE.
2 - Set units to INCHES.
3 - Set DPI to 300. For printing, set no lower than 240.
4 - Set your crop width x height.

Size and move the crop tool to your preferred portion of the image.

Click Apply in the Crop toolbar. The image will update to show the cropped area only.

Affinity works by showing you the area inside the crop and hiding the data cropped out. The data is still in the file. To discard the data:

Go to the Layers menu:

Select Rasterize & Trim

This removes the hidden data and lets us proceed.

Watch an Affinity tutorial on the crop tool here.

STEP 2 - Create Card Layout

You will now create the card layout using the Resize Canvas tool.

The image below has been cropped, rasterized, and trimmed.

STEP 2a - Front Panel

Go to the Document menu.

Click Transparent Background off. It will be defaulted as on.

Choose Resize Canvas.

The Resize Canvas dialog will appear, showing the current image size as the canvas size.

You will set the canvas size based on this table:

Card Size Set Width To Set Height To
7 x 10 (A7) 7" 5"
6.25 x 9 (A6) 6.25" 4.5"
5.5 x 8.5 (A2) 5.5" 4.25"
5.25 x 5.25 (Square) 5.25" 5.25"
8 x 9 Pano 9" 4"

1 - Click the lock icon to UNLOCK the width and height
2 - Verify units are in inches
3 - Set width and height according to the table above
3 - Click the MIDDLE SQUARE on the Anchor as shown above

Click Resize. You will notice the image now has a white border on all four sides.

What just happened? You added space around the existing image to expand the total canvas size.

STEP 2b - Complete Card Layout

Go to the Document menu. Choose Resize Canvas.

Set the canvas size based on this table:

Card Size Set Width To Set Height To
7 x 10 (A7) 7" 10"
6.25 x 9 (A6) 6.25" 9"
5.5 x 8.5 (A2) 5.5" 8.5"
5.25 x 5.25 (Square) 5.25" 10.5"
8 x 9 Pano 9" 8"

1 - Click the lock icon to UNLOCK the width and height
2 - Verify units are in inches
3 - Set width and height according to the table above
3 - Click the BOTTOM MIDDLE SQUARE on the Anchor as shown above

Click Resize. The canvas now expands, and you have a finished card layout.

The top white section is the outside back of the card.

The image will become the outside front of the card.

NEXT - Text Tool

You take this opportunity to add text with the Text Tool. Click the "A" icon on the tool pallet, as shown below. Or you can press "T" on your keyboard.

The text toolbar appears at the top of the screen. It contains numerous controls and works just like text tools do in Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, and many other editing products.

When you begin typing, text appears on the screen and will be a new layer. The example below shows a line of text. Note that the text tool is active; hence the blue resize markers around the words.

If you select the Move tool, see below, you can now click and drag the text around the layout. Remember to stay at least 1/4" from the edges.

 For text and other images to print properly on this layout, items on the back panel of the card must be turned upside down.

To rotate layers (text, images, graphics), start by highlighting the layer using the move tool - click it once.

Go to the Arrange menu as shown below then click Rotate 90 Clockwise. Do this TWICE to make the layer upside down.

Below is the completed card - image on the front, text on the back.

Next Step - What Type of Printer Do You Have?

Epson Printer? - Click Here 

Canon printer? - Click Here