2023-03-30 Animation & Rigging module meeting

The meeting was on 2023-03-30T16:00:00Z. Note that The Netherlands have moved to summer time. It is open for everybody interested to join on Google Meet (link below).

People present are referred to by first name for brevity. Others are referred to by full name.

Present: Ares Devaux, Armin Halac, Christoph Lendenfeld, Denys Hsu, Harley Acheson, Ivan Cappiello, Jason Schleifer, Joseph Hansen, Marc, Marion Stalke, MohammadHossein Jamshidi, Nate Rupsis, Paul Thuriot, Sybren Stüvel


Since the Last Meeting / Announcements

  • New faces:
    • Armin, friend of Brad. Works in games as tech animator, for the last decade. Uses Blender completely the last few years. Wrote some add-ons, f.e. GameRig making Rigify game-friendly. Just finished a book on rigging, comes out in 5-ish months.
    • Ares, from Dominican Republic, living in CA, USA working as animator on movies. In 2004 he started following Blender as hobby. Lately interest in coding, learning Python from Scripting for Artists. Created the Animaide add-on.
  • Julian Eisel writes: This Friday (March 31) is the next technical documentation day. Developers are asked to focus on writing and improving Blender developer documentation on that day: Project board with tasks
  • Blender 3.5 has been released.
  • A recording of last week’s ‘how to edit the manual’ demo is available on YouTube. It’s marked as unlisted because it’s not polished enough for publishing. If you don’t know it’s a recording from the module meeting, the sudden questions from unseen people might be confusing, and also mentions of the old system (Phabricator) and future changes (Subversion to Git) get in the way of clarity.


Short-term goals / Ongoing Work

Patch Review & Decision Time

  • #104565: Allow select range in animation editor
    • Sybren suggested code improvement, but that changes behaviour as well. Needs a decision.
    • To decide: shift-click for selecting range of channels, should that include summary-style channels (groups/objects etc.) as well? Or only ‘actual animation’ channels?
    • Christoph: new behaviour (select-all) makes sense, because shift-select objects should work
    • Nate: matches file browser behaviour
    • MohammadHossein +1 for only fcurves
    • Luciano: hiding is not good to have at all
    • Marion: +1 for only fcurves
    • Sybren: limit to current ‘level’, so when selecting animation data channel (fcurves, GP), only select other of those. Otherwise also allow objects / groups. Armin: agrees.
    • Christoph: we may also include that behaviour to box select, to keep things consistent.
    • Sybren: hmmmm hiding doesn’t work, this is a mystery.
    • Denys: limiting to only the clicked type makes sense.
    • MohammadHossein we should use ctrl key like the shortest-path mesh vertex select. Sybren: outliner uses shift for range select.
    • Sybren: will summarize on PR.
  • #106060: UI: replace "copy/paste buffer by “clipboard”
    • Luciano: YES to the rename
    • Armin: Buffer is more common in DCC’s than clipboard
    • Marion: why not only say “copied”
    • Jason: Just call it “the Blender Clipboard”
    • Joseph: what about “application clipboard”?
    • MohammadHossein “internal clipboard”
    • Harley: is adding support for images on the clipboard, maybe we can expand this to any file, like a blend file?
    • Sybren: size in memory might be an issue.
    • Harley: not deleting the ‘clipboard file’ could also work.
  • #106214: Only show FCurve modifier toggle widget when there are modifiers
    • Exposes some UX issues with the modifier toggles, since the FCurve has a ‘modifiers’ toggle, but each modifier also has a toggle of itself. Especially when there is only one modifier, this can get confusing.
    • To decide: is this a blocking issue for this PR? Or shall we land this and address this some other time?
    • Decision: Not an issue.
    • Sybren: hypothetical issue of ‘add modifier before disabling is possible’. Jason: no issue, if ppl complain we can look at it again.
    • Sybren: remove the wrench altogether?
    • Christoph: no, because enabling/disabling en-masse over multiple FCurves is useful.
  • #106113: Animation: Clean up “Key” menu in Graph Editor
    • To decide: ‘density’ or ‘complexity’ for the submenu with Decimate, Sample, and Clean operators?
    • Harley: was more concerned it’s a noun vs. verbs around it.
    • Jason: ‘densify’ :stuck_out_tongue:
    • Nate: likes ‘complexity’
    • Armin: ‘dense’ is a term used in animation to indicate lotsa keys.
    • Luciano: lots of the menus like ‘add modifiers’, ‘bake curve’, even ‘euler filter’ maybe should be moved to the Channel menu?
    • Christoph: if it works on the selected keyframes, it should be in ‘Key’, if always operators on the entire channel it should be in ‘Channel’.
    • Christoph also wants to drop the sampling of curves, in favour of faster implementation & smarter caching.
  • #106302: Animation: Graph Editor - grey out area outside of normalization range
    • Joseph: I think it’s beautiful
    • Jason: it feels constraining, maybe give it some padding to make it feel ok. He’s looking at tangents often, and this feels too ‘touching the curve’.
    • Marion: maybe a gradient?
    • Armin: it feels too much of a limit – even in a normalized view you can beyond the normalized -1…1 values.
    • Ivan: maybe the top/bottom darkening just slightly transparent, instead of so dark?
    • MohammadHossein agrees, it would be similar to the passepartout in the 3D Viewport’s camera view. You can work outside that as well, it’s just a guide.
    • Sybren: maybe horizontal lines instead of a dark area?
    • Christoph: the scene frame range has darker lines, maybe that works. Will try some alternatives.
    • Ivan shows in-promptu mockup of a less-dimmed overlay, it works well.

Help Needed

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be on Thursday 2023-04-06T16:00:00Z. 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.