2021-07-20 Asset Browser and 3.0

Check the “Future Development” section of Pose Library v2.0 — Blender Developers Blog, where I explicitly describe this as planned for a future version.

A bug is something that’s implemented but not working well; if something isn’t implemented at all, it’s not a bug but a feature request, and it doesn’t belong on the bug tracker.

The first focus of the project is to get something that’s better than the old pose library, which:

  • doesn’t have any thumbnails
  • cannot support animation snippets due to the way it stores poses
  • has a nasty interaction between stored poses when different bones were keyed in different poses, again due to the way it stores poses,
  • doesn’t have anything to get further organisation, like the Catalog system or tags,
  • doesn’t have a way to blend poses from the library into the current pose, and
  • doesn’t have a way to copy a pose from an animation file into the pose library.

These are all limitations that are lifted by the new asset-based pose library.

Are you asking that the pose library project is not put into Blender 3.0, and delayed until more features are ready to go in? I think it’s already an improvement over what Blender (2.93) has currently, and I don’t see this as a reason to delay its release further.

Pretty much every time a new feature X is added to Blender, there are people saying it’s impossible to use without also implementing Y. So far I think Blender is pretty useful. For example, the Blender Animation Studio has produced plenty of short films with just the pose-based library.

Update: don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the feedback. It’s just that there are very few developers available to work on this, and choices have to be made on what to implement first, and what to implement later. It’s simply impossible to do everything we want to do and have it part of Blender 3.0 as well.

@DeXoN A few things you point out will be solved by the new catalog system (linked above). The list view is a nice touch, I’ve forwarded it to @julianeisel who’s working on the UI.

Assets remain in the file they are defined in. Marking as asset is just that: it only adds a mark. It doesn’t magically copy things to some other place. If you want to have the assets show up in an asset library, make sure the blend file that contains them is saved to that asset library.


This is planned already:


First of all, thanks for the reply and sorry if the last message sounded offensive, didn’t mean it like that.
I am definitely not saying that you should scrap pose library 2.0 just because I personally won’t use it much.

What I actually meant is for future projects to adopt geo nodes development style, where at first widespread and more straight-forward use cases are developed for (as example scattering stuff in geo nodes could’ve been an action library to store animations in asset browser) and then you go deeper, building on the existing framework. It just felt to me like with pose library you guys went from 1 straight to 9, skipping the numbers in-between.

I read the post and saw the bit about animations snippets. I think why I didn’t pay attention to that is because snippet sounds more like a multi-frame pose than a full action.

Also, I agree with DeXoN that action datablock selector is so painful to work with that you can’t help but ask for asset browser to ease the pain a little.


@sybren Thank you for your response and clarification.

So, I see files with assets must be saved to the respective “Asset Libraries” file paths created under “File Path” preferences. Assets from the current file will not show up even if it is saved under that path, unless one chooses “Current File.”

It’s a little unorthodox, but I would find it extremely useful.

I guess my big question to the developers is what the thought process is behind requiring one to ‘mark assets’ at all? If I’m going to build a library of .blend files under an asset library path, then I would either create assets (animations, meshes, objects, armatures, materials…) from scratch, or delete/append whatever I need from working files into new files that would be saved to that path. Either way, to me the fact that it ended up in that path would be sufficient designation as an asset in a library. ‘Mark as Asset’ seems to be an unnecessary step for a redundant property. Moreover, would there be a way to instantly see from within blender if an asset has been marked or not, or is this a hidden property that one’d have to navigate to and somehow keep track of? Wouldn’t it be simpler and more slick to eliminate the ‘marked as asset’ property altogether, and just have everything inside .blend files under the asset browser paths be designated as assets automatically?

Thank you for pointing me in the right direction on how this works.


@julianeisel Thank you! I’m relieved to hear that one is in the pipeline.

Sorry for off-topic but:
Date in topic is wrong or that meeting notes are from future.

This was explained here if I understand it correctly

Corrected, thank you.

It would be really nice to be able to save a 5 second video as the thumbnail.

This is the most common problem I see in every discussion about new Blender features. I wish someone could provide detailed numbers of the budget and workforce that Blender’s competitors have enjoyed over the last 23 years so I can make some graphs comparing their resources to Blender’s resources over the same time period. MAYBE then more people will be able to understand.


You can have a file with objects, meshes, materials, armatures, cameras & lights to render preview icons, a scene to put everything into, collections to organise the scene, and actions to do some animation tests. Blender wouldn’t know which of these datablocks would be assets (and thus be presented in the asset browser) and which are merely “helper” datablocks. This is why you need to mark specific datablocks as assets.

That would give a horrible mess.

Currently the preview image is just stored as in-memory bitmap (so really all pixel values, uncompressed). In order to support video, it would probably require a big refactor of the preview icon system to support compressed data, different kinds of data for different previews, etc.

You mean like People — blender.org ? It lists 2 Principal Engineers and 11 Blender Developers. Those are the people doing the majority of the development work. If you want the financial overview of 2020, take a look at Blender Foundation annual report 2020 — blender.org

I do think animated preview support is quite important to have, at least eventually. Right now I prefer the focus is on other things to get the Asset Browser in good shape for 3.0.


@sybren I fully understand that. Can we take this discussion offline?

@sybren and @julianeisel:

Would you be willing to have a brief zoom call with me on this topic tomorrow or Monday sometime? I’ve been testing the workflow and I think this is very important to get right.

This asset browser/library is in my humble opinion the most momentous blender development since v.2.8. I don’s say that lightly. Please see my profile. I’m very interested and would be willing to help with testing and feedback.

That might be tricky, given that you’re listed as being in the USA and we’re here in NL (and the pandemic and stuff).

Pop over to the #asset-project channel on Blender.Chat. There are already a lot of ideas that simply need time to get implemented, so it would be a shame to base our discussion on the current implementation (instead of the envisioned one).

Found the missing info.

What’s the current status of the asset bundle? 3.0 is already beta but not a sight of it.

3.0 won’t have asset bundle, there is no time for it, it will be delayed for 3.1 AFAIK

The plan is currently to have the artists from the Blender Studio work on a first simple asset bundle for 3.0. They have time in their planning for the coming weeks allocated for this.
It would be nice to have more assets from more authors (not just Blender Studio artists), but organizing and managing that adds quite some overhead, and there currently isn’t anybody available for this. I think a bigger bundle makes more sense once we support browsing online asset libraries from the Asset Browser, so you don’t have to download the entire library first.


Awesome! Glad to be wrong :slight_smile:

I hope cycles materials are close to CORONA renderer, there are more programmed advanced materials, I know the gods do not like this, but the public like simple renderer with fast results, Octane where we are called beauty show (can be interpreted as sugar water camera) but it is difficult to stop the public love him, including CORONA is also easy to squeeze out vray by simple fast results in just 3 years to become the mainstream renderer.

Asset browser editor is awesome! It’s really useful and fun to use editor.
Collection asset feature seems basic and really important feature which isn’t implemented yet. I found it on the list as kinda most important target of 3.1 though even design task isn’t made yet.
I’m gonna be excited if it can be implemented for Blender 3.1.