Shortcuts + Improved Sketch + Forums maintainence

Usually adding more features aren’t as useful as improving the ones we’ve already got, and while working in Synfig I’ve realized how slow it can be to work with vectors on virtually any vector software. What sets Paint Tool Sai apart, though, is its ease of use and quick ways to set up linearts intuitively, and as such I’ve been thinking of various ways to speed up productivity in Synfig.

  1. Bline shortcuts: Not just for the tool, but also for the two most important options in the right-click context menu; Insert Vertex and Delete Vertex (also Loop Bline, if someone’s feeling adventurous). Right-clicking may not be farfetched but it does take enough time to add up and waste when you’re working on complex designs, and one hand on keyboard usually speeds up your workflow. Example: how about keeping Q for insert vertex and W for deleting them? Setting up a cartoon face would be easy and fast for new and old users alike.

  2. Buffing up Sketch Tool: This is a favorite tool for most tablet users to sketch up rough ideas and visualization which won’t be rendered. But it’s downright frustrating to use with a mouse, especially when its freehand, so this is how it can be improved.

Rename “Sketch Tool” to “Guides”. Upon clicking this tool you get another drop-down menu with some more tools, namely “Sketch Tool”, “Line Tool”, “Eraser”, “Rectangle”, etc. all of which will not render. So you see where I’m going; makes it more mouse-friendly too and helps a lot in planning and lining shots. Also, in the Tool Options, you get yet another option called “Cell-it” (okay, bad pun) which, when toggled, will stick the drawing specifically on the frame you’ve been drawing in. Think Pencil: each frame would have its own rough drawing for quick penciling. When you toggle off the “Cell-it” checkbox the drawing remains the same on all frames.

  1. Re-imagining the layout: You guys may have head me say this before, but layouts usually matter when it comes to productivity. I know the floating boxes are easy to arrange and customize, but it becomes frustrating spending more time with the boxes rather than work. Here’s some hints:

One window mode: Similar to what GIMP 2.8 will be doing, but in the style of Blender 2.5. Tools will be on the left, layers, options, parameters and everything on the right, and a “simple” timeline (like on the canvas) will be at the bottom but will have an extra button called “show details”. When you click on that button the Timeline will be replaced by Keyframes, Metadata, Curves and what have you, for all the detailed animation part. Also, there would be a “show/hide” button for both the toolbox and the box on the right so people can easily switch to a minimalistic environment which is quite useful for small monitors and/or artistic details.

  1. These features should be implemented on THIS SITE; personal messaging and Captcha codes for registration. Why? I saw a user register to the forums and posting horrid ads here.
    and I had no way of contacting the admins without posting. Captcha codes usually prevent bots from registering on websites, so yeah.

:mrgreen: So whadya guys say?

wow, that’s elaborated, i think the sketch tool is fine as it is, and i’m talking as someone who always sketch for every project, also as a mouse user, usually when sketch tool don’t fit my needs i go to GIMP, make my trace and export into B/W bitmap for import into Synfig, of course it works for me but that’s because i’m also very used to GIMP

I think this has been discussed before, perhaps even i proposed a revision in the layout, the main problem with the layout is that icons for tabs for example takes an important amount of screen, minimal at first sight, but important for the whole layout, Similar to GIMP 2.8 and like Blender, i can think on an example with Anime Studio in it version 5 it has it workspace shattered in many windows, but now on it 6th release it works as a whole window with arrangeable elements, for the near future, i would suggest being able to have the tool properties tab attached to the tool window, that will do just fine for a while =p-

agree, just yesterday the whole forum was bombarded with useless posts, and i doubt their products are even worth to check out.

XD Ah yes; opening a different software, sketch there, exporting layers as frames, making the LST, importing it to Synfig, adjusting it and THEN getting on to work. I know it works, but isn’t that a big waste of time? The whole point of modifying the Sketch Tool is to save time.

I know, thus I mentioned the “show/hide” buttons. For instance, some people have a tendency to modify the parameters, and they mistake this gigantic box for a “pop-up box” because it’s taking space and just close it. Whoops! Then they try to reset the windows and have to re-arrange the entire thing again.

So if the Timeline is merged with the Parameters/Metadata/Keyframes/etc. window with only a “show/hide” button to toggle it that’d be pretty useful, especially for those who don’t have big screens.

XD Also, I don’t mind the Tools Properties being in the Toolbox itself since it leaves good room for the layers. But then again re-arranging the tabs based on the monitor is also useful.

Hi there!
Starting with the last issue, I usually clean the forum from spam one time per day. This time I’ve been in vacations for four days (out from home) and probably the spam has been there more than desired. Luckily rylleman has taken care of the forum and seems that all those crap has come out (thanks mate!). If someone else want to help on that just ask! :wink: Also, there is not need to contact anyone by email to clean the forum. There is a (!) button that allows to the registered users to report posts that are suspicious or clearly spam. Later or earlier a moderator will clean it. So I repeat if someone want to help just hands up.

For the other feature requests I agree on all them. There is one person starting to work on GUI review. The plan is to first migrate the current GUI to Glade templates. Then once the GUI has been reworked think on a full redesign.

My short terms intentions are:

  1. Release 0.62.02
  2. Continue working with nikitakit on bones GUI design.
  3. Back to debug/improve/newfeatures cycle.

I would like to have time to implement all those things but I believe that bones feature (even with the lack of some others that would improve the workflow) with a good GUI will attract more artists and then more developers…


It would be good to have a sub-forum or wiki for UI Brainstorming just like what GIMP & MyPaint did.