Questions about current and (maybe) future features?


I’m a total noob with Synfig, trying to learn it though. Here’s a few thing I’ve been really missing so far, it might be I just haven’t found it yet, so be forgiving with my ignorance.

  1. A proper line tool based on simply two points. This could be done by adding the option to allow open polygons for instance.
  2. A way to lock the width of a stroke, regardless of canvas zoom parameter setting OR a separate scale parameter for the geometric layers.
  3. A canvas already has two types of built-in transforms, zoom and origin (translate), why not add rotation to it as well? It would be useful when you have many parts rotating in a single animation, all those extra rotation layers take up UI space and time. In fact, rotation and scale parameters would be much appreciated on all geometric layers.
  4. A way to store a pose outside of the frames, maybe by exporting it or similar. Right now I store each pose in the beginning frames, set the animation start at frame X and then duplicate the frames. If you could add exported poses directly into the timeline editor that would be a tremendous help when animating things like speech.

I also wonder
5) what is the best way to introduce a layer in the middle of the animation? Is there some visibility/render on/off? Right now I set amount to 0.0 and then make it 1.0 instantly when I want it to apear. I also experimented with moving layers outside the rendering area, but since they no longer visible, it was unmanagable for me.
6) do you guys render each scene in a separate project and edit the rendered material in some video editor or do you put it all together, with transitions, in synfig?

Phew! :slight_smile: That’s about it. Thanks for your time reading and, perhaps, responding!

  1. I do separate projects for each scene and stitch them together with sound, transitions, etc. in the Blender Video Sequence Editor.

FWIW, my biggest wish for Synfig is an easy way to handle frame-by-frame stuff for those times when auto-tweening just isn’t the best way to accomplish the task. Synfig is awesome as is at anything that you’d want to auto-tween, but difficult to manage, for me at least, for the frame-by-frame stuff.


What’s wrong with the Bline tool? You can create straight lines just by clicking and not dragging. Maybe what can be interesting is a way to convert a Bline into a “polyline”, where each vertex is a convert type of a BlinePoint that ignores the tangents (the results ones are zero. Of course include inverse manipulation. That can be added as an option to the current BLine tool.

I agree.

This is interesting too. Original Synfig concept is transformation by layers. But it can evolve to any direction really.

That would be very interesting.

I also wonder

If you need to repeat the same tast several times a small trick can be used. Convert the Amount parameter to a Switch type. Give to the OFF parameter a value of 0.0 and to the ON parameter a value of 1.0. After that you can make the layer appear and disappear instantaneously just by a single click on the Switch parameter. Anyway that’s a feature that I’ve in mind long time ago. It can be a boolean parameter that overrides the Amount behavior. It is a large change though, because it is applicable to all the layers.


Yeh, Synfig is great for the 2d renders but not much else - I do what muhkayoh does, use blender’s compositor for the transitions and audio. I’m using audacity for sound sync, primitive but it works
A few good ideas here, I like your suggestion of a rotate parameter on the canvas layer, though it would be better if it was controllable with ducks. The origin parameter is controllable with a green duck, but it don’t think there’s a duck control for the zoom parameter (or is there?)

Hello all and thanks for the nice (and quick) responses!

There’s are two good reasons for making open polygons available (yes, I love lists):

  1. Consistancy with the b-line tool (loop/unloop feature)
  2. No need to turn tangents on/off.

An alternative might be that tangents on/off is a layer parameter rather than an UI option, that way you could turn tangents off on your b-line and
not have to Alt-3 manually every time you select it.
It seems (he writes without even having glanced at the sources, hehe) that it would be the easiest way to implement true lines and make the UI experience more intuitive.
The line and exporting poses are the two major features that could save me a lot of time.

Saorsa: each layer has loads of parameters that are not available in the UI, like amount, zoom, etc. The zoom, IMO, is weird. A better name would be “scale” where 0.5 is 50% and 1.0 is 100%, etc. They could probably make a duck for rotation, but I would be happy typing an angle too.


ps edit… someone mentioned frame by frame animation and, oh yes! that would be sweet! I have a drawing tablet and sometimes I would just like one layer to morph into another layer, in particular when I have tried animating talking mouths. Simply redrawing each frame (or every second, whatever) is easier, more creative and takes less time than adapting an existing layer to a pose. For me, anyway, I like drawing. ds

ps2. as I was thinking about it, making a parameter on the b-line layer for turning tangents on/off would basically make the poly tool redundant. You can make a looped or unlooped polygon with the b-line tool and tangents turned off. Merging the two tools and making tangents optional would be a sweet way to go. ds2