Why invisible objects are bad !?

Hey guys,

There are several things I would like to discuss/ask about the behavior of invisible objects.

First of all, I have to give a small inside in what projects I’m working on, so you can understand my problem. We do “digital hybrid” photoshoots of medical equipment, which is rigged and has a lot of small objects that have to be keyframed in visibility, location and rotation. After a shooting there are blend files with about 200 objects, keyframed over 100 frames and with 100 different cameras each frame. Every frame has to be perfectly animated. At best this has to be done in 1-2 days while the
shooting is done.

Things I struggle with:

  1. Objects that are invisible or disabled in the viewport, can’t be selected over hierarchy (ctrl + click on icon). They can only be selected manually in the outliner.

  2. Curves of invisible objects only show up if “Display hidden” is activated, but then you see ALL Curves of every object in the scene.

  3. Invisible objects can’t be copied at all, even when they are manually selected in the outliner. (That’s a big problem when trying to copy complete hierarchies)

  4. It is difficult to animate the visibility of complex hierarchies in the outliner, every visibility keyframe has to be set manually.
    I made a small script for this, every “disable in render” and “disable in viewport” of the selected objects is keyframed. The problem here, you have to make sure every object is visible before keyframing. So it is not possible to keyframe a hierarchy of object to be invisible :smiley:
    (Would be nice to find “disable in render” and disable in viewport" under the “i” shortcut for easy keyframing of multiple objects in the future :slight_smile: )

  5. Modifying parameters of multiple objects with “alt” doesn’t work for invisible objects.

  6. In general it’s really really difficult to be sure if keyframes are well placed when invisible objects in the hierarchy aren’t keyframeable. So you have to make sure, that every object in the hierarchy is visible before you keyframe anything also positions and stuff.

So I’m wondering is there a specific reason for this? I don’t know this behavior from other DCC’s at all.
I think its really important to get complete control over every object in your scene at every time.

Maybe the reason for this is, that objects are only keyframed on intention. But it would be nice to have a option to disable this feature, at least for the more professional blender users.

What are your thoughts about this?

Cheers Daniel


Disabling operation on hidden faces in edit mode is great.
Now, your post demonstrates that is not great for objects.

I don’t make big scenes. But I am used to switch object’s maximum display type from Textured to Bounds to satisfy those needs.

I think that such pie-menu to change this maximum display type is really something basic that is lacking in Blender.

Yes that’s true, for modeling this feature is nice.

@brecht what’s your opinion on this? :slightly_smiling_face: