2020-11-26 Animation & Rigging Module Meeting

Present: Joseph Brandenburg, Juan Pablo Bouza, Luciano Muñoz, Maxime Casas, Sybren Stüvel, Wayde Moss

The main goal of this meeting was to prioritise work for 2.92. The meeting was be open for everybody who’s interested.


Since the Last Meeting

  • Sybren created a home page for the module in the wiki.
  • Sybren moved TODOs to various columns, deleted, reclassified as Design, or moved to the Bigger Projects wiki page.
  • New workboard column “Responsibility of Other Module” has been added. The UI module has a similar column. It’ll allow us to acknowledge a task is animation-related, but that it won’t be addressed by the A&R module.
  • UI clarity: Adding a label to indicate where moved items have been moved to. Sybren was to discuss this with the UI team, but this didn’t happen.
  • Ctrl+Click in the graph editor for adding a keyframe to a curve should adhere the snapping rules. Bassam suggested this could be looked at for Blender 2.92, and would create a design task for it, but this didn’t happen. Luciano will take over.
  • Bundling the Pose Thumbnails add-on with Blender. The envisioned Pose Library functionality of the Asset Browser has been pushed back, so we’ll have to use this add-on for a while longer. Francesco talked with Sybren about this to continue development in the short term, for the Blender Animation Studio team.
  • Another topic Francesco discussed with Sybren was a better Bone Picking UI system, which could possibly interact with the active Bone Selection Set.
  • Stanislav and Luciano made T82932: Mirror Pose: Custom center of symmetry.

Short-term goals

From last meeting

New short-term goals

  • Split X-Mirror option between Mesh Edit and Weight Painting modes, so that each can be enabled/disabled individually.
  • Add a “Refresh Motion Paths” operator to the pose context menu, which refreshes all motion paths of the current armature.

TODOs removed to make place for the above

Goals for 2.92

Originally planned for 2.92: re-implementing Visual Keying so that it makes sense. Sybren is unsure of the priority of this, though. After some discussion, the conclusion was that it’s a nice feature but probably for a later release.

Copy-paste of world transforms, such as T57003: Copy visual pose and paste over frame range, can can be used for similar things (like performing some changes while keeping the world transform), but has more applications. Work on the Pose Thumbnails add-on also has higher priority.

Smart Action Baking is a goal for 2.92 as well. This basically works the same as regular Action Baking (i.e. evaluate the animation and key the result), except that it only updates existing keys (instead of keying on every frame).

Help Needed

Discussion topics mentioned last meeting

Other ideas

  • It would be nice if the release notes were linked from the Help menu. To be discussed with the UI team.
  • Luciano was wondering if it were possible to show the curves in the graph editor in world space, rather than in local space. This could help fine-tuning things like walk cycles.
  • For the “Clean Motion Paths” operator, Luciano suggested swapping the default behaviour when it comes to removing all paths or only those of the selected bones. The current default is to delete all motion paths; he suggests changing that to delete only those of the selected bones. The Shift key can be used to swap to the other behaviour. Which default is used could also be dependent on the selection (one or more bones selected: delete only those paths, no bones selected: delete all paths). Luciano will create a design task for this.

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be on Thursday 17 December, 16:00 CET/Amsterdam time. Again it will be open for everybody who’s interested. The provisionary meeting agenda will be linked in the #animation-module channel before the meeting.


If I may propose a topic of discussion, can one of the artists in the module provide better images for the 2.91 release page?

1 Like

I remember someone mentioning that native support for onion skinning (for 3D objects) was planned for Blender. At the moment, I am using add-ons, which mostly rely on object duplication, with associated speed penalty.

Is a native implementation planned? It would help so much with animating!

As far as I know there is no concrete plan for this.

The next meeting has been pushed backwards by a week, and will be on Thursday 17 December 16:00 CET.

As far as I remember, onion skinning would require multi-threading animation calculation and being able to calculate onion skin positions in other threads, and possibly some kind of caching? So a seemingly simple thing takes a lot of effort to do well (but the upside is that the changes would be good for the animation system in general)