Acrylic Material

Learn about using Acrylic Material in Windows App SDK with this Tutorial

Acrylic Material

Acrylic Material shows how you can use AcrylicBrush with the Windows App SDK which can colour an area of an application with a semi-transparent material that uses multiple effects including blur and noise.

Step 1

Follow Setup and Start on how to get Setup and Install what you need for Visual Studio 2022 and Windows App SDK.

In Windows 11 choose Start and then find or search for Visual Studio 2022 and then select it.
Visual Studio 2022
Once Visual Studio 2022 has started select Create a new project.
Create a new project
Then choose the Blank App, Packages (WinUI in Desktop) and then select Next.
Blank App, Packages (WinUI in Desktop)
After that in Configure your new project type in the Project name as AcrylicMaterial, then select a Location and then select Create to start a new Solution.
Configure project

Step 2

Within Solution Explorer for the Solution double-click on MainWindow.xaml to see the XAML for the Main Window.
Solution Explorer MainWindow.xaml

Step 3

In the XAML for MainWindow.xaml there will be some XAML for a StackPanel, this should be Removed:

<StackPanel Orientation="Horizontal" 
HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Center">
    <Button x:Name="myButton" Click="myButton_Click">Click Me</Button>

Step 4

While still in the XAML for MainWindow.xaml above </Window>, type in the following XAML:

        <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
        <RowDefinition Height="*"/>
    <ComboBox Grid.Row="0" Margin="25" Name="Options" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" 
        <ComboBoxItem IsSelected="True">None</ComboBoxItem>
    <Viewbox Grid.Row="1">
            <StackPanel Spacing="5" Orientation="Horizontal" 
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Black"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Gray"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Red"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Orange"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Yellow"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Green"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Cyan"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Blue"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Magenta"/>
                <Rectangle Width="50" Height="50" Fill="Purple"/>
            <Rectangle x:Name="Overlay"/>

This XAML features a Grid containing a ComboBox which has some of the Acrylic Material colours that can be used with AcrylicBrush, it also contains another Grid with a StackPanel with Rectangle elements that will be used to demonstrate the AcrylicBrush and a Rectangle of Overlay which will be coloured with the AcrylicBrush.

Step 5

Within Solution Explorer for the Solution select the arrow next to MainWindow.xaml then double-click on MainWindow.xaml.cs to see the Code for the Main Window.
Solution Explorer MainWindow.xaml.cs

Step 6

In the Code for MainWindow.xaml.cs there be a Method of myButton_Click(...) this should be Removed by removing the following:

private void myButton_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
    myButton.Content = "Clicked";

Step 7

Once myButton_Click(...) has been removed, below the end of public MainWindow() { ... } type in the following Code:

private void Options_SelectionChanged(object sender, SelectionChangedEventArgs e)
    if (Overlay != null && Windows.Foundation.Metadata.ApiInformation.IsTypePresent(
        string value = (Options.SelectedItem as ComboBoxItem).Content as string;
        Overlay.Fill = value != "None" ? 
            Application.Current.Resources[value] as AcrylicBrush : null;

The Method of Options_SelectionChanged will be triggered by the Event of selecting an item from the ComboBox then the code will check if the Rectangle of Overlay has a value along with checking to see if the Acrylic Material is supported, if so it will use the SelectedItem from the ComboBox and will set the Property for Fill of the Rectangle of Overlay to the AcrylicBrush that was selected in the ComboBox this uses the Conditional Operator of ? and : where if the value before the ? is true, then it will set the Fill to one of the Acrylic Material resources, if it is false it will set it to null or have no Fill.

Step 8

That completes the Windows App SDK application. In Visual Studio 2022 from the Toolbar select AcrylicMaterial (Package) to Start the application.
AcrylicMaterial (Package)

Step 9

Once running you should see the ComboBox and the Rectangle Elements.

Acrylic Material Running

Step 10

If you select an item from the ComboBox you will see the Acrylic Material of the AcrylicBrush being applied to the Rectangle of Overlay.

Acrylic Material Output

Step 11

To Exit the Windows App SDK application, select the Close button from the top right of the application as that concludes this Tutorial for Windows App SDK from!
Close application