Making Synfig easier to use brainstorming


a silly question before we go further in confusion, are you talking from your experience of ?


I’m not at a PC which can compile latest version in, so used synfigstudio-0.65.0-20131230.morevna.8.i386.tar.bz2 dev snapshot I had lying around. Maybe it has changed since then.


normally, if user miss/lose a window/panel, he will go to Window Menu and call it by clicking corresponding menu entry. Miss/Lose is meaning user can not find out on screen, there are two cases in fact:

  1. the window/panel is closed at the moment (user closed it intended or accident);
  2. the window/panel is hiding behind other UI elements.

Regarding opened document/file (canvas window), almost the same, but it is always go to File menu -> Open to open a document, everyone knows it.

From my point of view, there is no need to identify if a panel opened or not in Window menu, just list out all panels and opened windows there, if user loses and would like to call back a panel or a canvas window, just go and click the menu entry, it popups. If a panel is closed before, it reopens, if a panel is opened, then it gets UI focus (in this case, it is nice to have a visual feedback). An opened document window is the same case.

As an addition, listing all panels in this Window Menu can help new comers in learning, he can find out and check those panels easily. And listing all opened document windows is also helpful, user can easily get the idea how many files he opened, and switch to a certain one.

In adobe, the Window Menu entry behaves as a toggle menu entry, I found it is quite annoying, particularly when I lose in panels and windows, and am going to call a panel back, I go to Window Menu, and see the menu is opened ( a symbol attached to the menu entry), I click it, panel closes, and then, I do the same again to bring it back on my workspace. so as you can see, in adobe you have to take double actions to call a panel back. Maybe one will say, when you see a symbol attached to the menu entry, it means the panel is opened and you should not click, just go through out the workspace to find it out. But based my experiment and observations, when user would like to work with a certain panel/window, he will, at first moment, seek it on the workspace, and then, if he can not find out from reasons, he will go to Window Menu. This workflow make an indicator attached to a menu entry of opened panel useless and even caused more unnecessary actions which interrupts user’s creation in fact.

The purpose of Window menu is not exactly same as View menu:

  1. figure out how many panels Synfig Studio has
  2. open panel to work with
  3. find an opened panel and switch to it to work with (bring it up*)
  4. figure out opened documents( canvas windows)
  5. switch a opened document to work with (bring it up)
  6. organize workspace: place/layout panels, windows and adjust the spaces, grouped in Workspace sub menu.
  • the Bring it Up feature doesn’t work at the moment in Synfig Studio.
  1. and 2) is combined now, it is safe to say, user doesn’t care if a panel is opened or not, he cares about a speed way to get(open or bring up) it in hand, and work with it.


cool, look like we are talking from the same point of view… ! if i don’t do mistake, uix speaking, we have just toolbar diff.

?? maybe i do not understand, but i think that work for me (debian7). when a panel is stacked, if it is masked, menu/window/panel bring the panel to the top of the stack.

one (should be) is already done : bring to top, is it useful to (1) add a highlight ?

What do you think to (2) bold opened panels ? (3) current canvas ?


Should there a feature to Copy parameters? Like, the Origins for an object have two variables but you can’t copy both at the same time, so this feature allows you to “copy” the data of this Origin to apply to another object? Should save time for a lot of animators.


Tool presets would be a great thing to add. In inkscape the caligraphy tool has presets that you can save, which really speeds up drawing. If synfig had presets for options for each of the tools that would be great.
Also adding an autogroup option would be good, like the cutout tool has. I spend a lot of time grouping after i draw a layer set. if you draw a region outline and advanced outline at the same time you probably want to group them. Autogrouping is really needed for gradients. Maybe an option for which other layer you apply the gradient to makes sense


two thing you can add has feature resquest i think.


I know I’m new here, yet I have tried out Synfig recently to see if it was capable of vector tracing traditional animation keyframes to help create autotweens and coloring, similar to the keyframes are frame by frame animations on a layer underneath a vector layer with points that generate tweening paths, while possible in synfig to draw with pencil etc. current layout is difficult to navigate and create quick draft of frame by frame animation on a lower level then then vector points layer,having a draft timeline that doesn’t require clicking animate button to record actions with simple ad frame options would probably help with quick storyboarding etc would help improve animation workflow., plus current act of moving many vector points is very time consuming and I’ve experienced a couple crashes in the time it takes to do so, one tool I do not even think animestudio possesses is a motion betweening brush or pen, such as one used in Paperman animation by Disney if possible it would simplify some tweening and vector actions making animation process more organic for artist more so than even animestudio.


I wish an able of effects personalizables that can generate with commandos from the terminal (shell) and generate parameter inside synfig studio.
These could only affect during the render or have a way of previsualización (if these are slow)

similar .inx extension of inkscape


Synfig needs some kind of indication of how far along a render is. This could be a progress bar, an indicative movement in the timeline (like Blender), or even just a percentage complete number somewhere. Put it in a pop-up menu, the actual UI, anywhere. Just please do it. :smiley:


Another idea is to have different views for different task - drawing, bone rigging, animation.

Affinity has some sort of process like that called personas.
Krita has something similar to workspace types like photoshop.


It already exist workspaces (which should be enhanced in the future).
This has been requested many times here and on GitHub Issues, so no need to create a new one.

Please avoid necro-posting, open a new thread in case of other suggestions :slight_smile: