Brush System and Texturing: Call for Ideas?

addons
user-interface

#1

I love blender. And I’d love to pretty much do everything using this amazing pieze of software.
But there is one area, where it’s currently really difficult to reccomend using it and it’s texture painting. Here are some of my reasons:

  • First of all there is not that good of a connection between Texture Painting and the Node editor. Blender can pretty much be used for most stuff you’d do in substance designer, but everything needs so much more clicking work by the user.
  • The brush system is not that great to be honest … you can’t do that much with textures, the blending has a kind of dated look to me, important tools such as a ruler, a stabilizer, tilt pressure controls or more easy to use layering seem to be missing.
  • the baking probably also needs a bit of love regarding, what kind of maps are bakable and also what kind of options you have for baking (the name matching from substance designer but done with collections’d be soo nice…)

And I’d like to hear your thoughts:

  • What existing features have I missed?
  • Are there great mods I don’t know about?
  • What are your Ideas on fixing it?
  • Do you like to work with me on an addon to improve it? (I can help with a bit of scripting knowledge, a good bit of UI knowledge and a lot of artists, that’d like to share their needs)
  • Do you even think it’s feasible to make a new brush system work?
  • What are your favorite Texturing/Painting tools and what’s great about them?

Feel free to post your Ideas, I’ll gradually also post mine as well, but I’m also a bit curious about unbiased feedback, so I’ll post my own Ideas a bit later…


#2

I honestly think just being able to use the node edtitor for all the textures is the way to go in the long run. All the necessary UI elements are already present, it’s just a case of marrying them together.
I think this stuff is one of the first things on the list for everything nodes, so we’ll have to hang tight for now.


#4

Then again there is a reason for the existance of both Substance Painer and Subdstance Designer. And while I think blender has no need to be concerned about designer too much right now, the Painter part is somewhat lacking right now…


#5

Agree on the Node/TexturePaint mode marrying, really important. I can imagine a sort of layer system based on the nodes, simplified and easier to access while painting… but there are more things, smaller, that should be done by now, imho.
For instance, I just suggested today on the interface design forum a much needed color selector popup/widget… Blender 2.8 user interface design

Other small things that come to my mind now:
-Brush Jitter/dynamics for color, size, opacity… (really missing those)
-Quicker line tool (should be one click, like grease pencil)
-A button/shortcut to switch the orbit style (makes more confortable painting in many contexts)
-Shortcuts to toggle pen pressure (I change that quite frequently, and we don’t even have the right click option to add a shortcut)
-A quicker way (button&shortcut) to paint trough the meshes (right now we have to go to the “project paint” panel and click on three checkboxes, then check them again to go back)

And the list could go on, with bigger more complicated stuff…


#6

What kind of more complicated stuff? It’d be great to hear!


#7

Okay I’ve talked to some of my artist friends and the feedback I’ve gotten so far is:

  • Baking needs improvements. (pretty much, what I already wrote: more maps to Bake (Cavity, thinkess) as well as an Option to igore certain objects while baking similar to the name matching in Substance Painter but with Layers)
  • Brushes need to use a linear color space (it seems to me as if they currently work with gamma distortion)
  • It’d be incredibly cool to have node based brushes (We might want to have a look at Black Ink for that Porpuse)
  • It’d be cool to have a good collection of preset brushes and masks to work with. (Having some kind of deafult texture Libary might sounds like a good Idea to me in general for multiple reasons …)
  • It’d be cool to have a good collection of preset materials
  • we need a Color Palette to just save a bunch of colors
  • we need easy acess to stuff like gradients, layers, filters etc (so basically a better interface between Node Editor and Texture Editor)
  • It’d be a good Idea to have particle brushes
  • If we want to go totally nuts, we might as well provide an option to use flip fluids and physically based pencils (hair dynamics…) for texture painting

So yeah … in conclusion I think blenders backend is probably capable of fulfilling all those requirements, but there is no frontend yet capable of it.

I will try to gather some people to submit an addon or mabye a feature and I’d be glad for any assistance I can get…also there will be more feedback from my art friends in the future, they all need a bit time to think about stuff that’s important to them while drawing…