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Elodie
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by Elodie » 06 Feb 2018, 17:51

So now every layer has it's own name and every instance on that layer has an identifying Prefix letter and is numbered to the frame.
That feature is also included by default in TVPaint now :)

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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by D.T. Nethery » 07 Feb 2018, 13:06

Elodie wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 17:51
So now every layer has it's own name and every instance on that layer has an identifying Prefix letter and is numbered to the frame.
That feature is also included by default in TVPaint now :)
Is the feature mentioned anywhere in the User Guide or any of the video tutorials ? I'm not sure how the new user would know about this feature ?


However, the reason I still use Mads' Tracker panel is because with TVPaint's default Rename > All Instances I can amend a prefix (and/or suffix) to the instances , but the numbering of the instances is according to how many instances there are , not according to the exposure of the instances on the timeline , where they are positioned at the frame number . So 12 instances (some exposed ON 1's and some exposed ON 2's) get a prefix (A - ) amended in front of the number ,but they are numbered as 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 , not respecting the exposure and the frame number .

With Mads' Tracker it respects the exposure and the frame number , so instances ON 2's are numbered 1 , 3 , 5 , 7 , 9 , etc. and instances ON 1's are 10,11,12,13,14 , etc.

[click image to view larger]
Instance Renaming.jpg

Mads' Tracker panel understands that the animator wants to keep the instances numbered according to the frame number as in the classic system for numbering .
I think this would be better for the default Rename function in TVPaint to behave like Mads' Tracker when renaming instances .
The Best Numbering System.jpg
.
MAC OS 10.11.6 , Macbook Pro Retina 15-inch, Mid 2015,
2.5 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB Memory , TVPaint PRO 11.0.6, 64bit -
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Janet Perlman
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by Janet Perlman » 07 Feb 2018, 16:13

I don't understand why people would want to have instances named for the frame number. What happens when it is retimed? This seems like a holdover from the days before digital, when one might actually go and erase the names of drawings and renumber them if there was any retiming. But actually, that was not a system we ever used, because it adds extra work in renumbering. If I send a series of images to someone, along with a dope sheet, and later I decide to add some drawings, those old drawings better not change name, or I will have to send them the whole sequence again. What if they have already worked on the images, and now I want to send them a new dope sheet with new images with different names? It would be a mess. So I guess I could work with the tracker, even if it gives crazy cell names that seem to me hard to work with. Also, it numbers the first instance "0" which can't be used in other softwares, but I guess I can get around that by adding a new drawing before 0 frames that would be discarded ... Well for the moment I think I will use the tracker so the drawings don't change name, and that will help a lot.

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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by D.T. Nethery » 08 Feb 2018, 14:38

Janet Perlman wrote:
07 Feb 2018, 16:13
I don't understand why people would want to have instances named for the frame number. What happens when it is retimed?
With the custom panel I'm referring to (Mads Juul's 'Tracker Shortcuts') renaming a series of instances on the timeline layer is just the click of a button . So if the timing changes because drawings are inserted or deleted , I just change the name/number of the instances by re-selecting them and click the "Auto" button on the Tracker Shortcuts panel and it's done !

I'm not really sure how renaming the instances (if they are retimed) in my method of numbering to the frame number is somehow more time-consuming than what you would have to do if you retimed a piece of animation that did not have the instance names matching the frame numbers, except you will not have the advantage of being on the frame number , so you would have instance numbers that are off the frame number , and I don't see how that helps with keeping track of the exposures, especially if you're having to do these awkward workarounds to import all the drawings to another software and reconstruct the timing of the images in the other software . (so instance #12 might occur on frame 35 ... I don't see how that is preferred to having the instance be numbered 35 and it occurs at frame 35 ?)

But if you have a better way to do it , go for it. I was just trying to come up with a viable method for what you were proposing to do: sending image sequences to people working in other software , so they can reconstruct the timing of your scene in another software . Numbering the drawings to match the frame makes more sense to me , because someone could reconstruct the timing of the scene (in their software) by simply following the numbering of the image sequence .... when they see the numbering advancing by two frames , as in 1 _ 3 _ 5 _ 7 _ 9 _ 11 _ 13_ 15_ they know it's supposed to be ON 2's , but then when they see the numbering jump from #15 to #25 they will know #15 is supposed to be held for 10 frames ... and then animation resumes at #25 ... if they see the numbering switch to advancing one frame at a time: 26,27,28,29,30,31 , they know it is supposed to be exposed ON 1's , when it switches back to 31_ 33_ 35_ 37_ 39_ 41_ they know it's ON 2's . Animation drawings numbered to the frame number could be reconstructed by using the numbers (as long as it's done consistently) by someone else even if they did not have an X-sheet (although it makes it easier to also have an X-sheet for reference). When exporting the frames using the JSON export option (new in TVP 11.0.8 ) you get a PNG or JPG image sequence of only the HEAD of each instance , with the instance name.

Where this system I'm proposing is sabotaged happens at the point when TB imports the image sequence ,because TB doesn't respect the image file names/numbers , it renumbers each image that is imported in a straight ahead sequence of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, etc. Photoshop will respect the file names . However, working with the clunky Photoshop animation timeline is a whole other set of headaches that I wouldn't want to deal with , but that's another topic ...
This seems like a holdover from the days before digital, when one might actually go and erase the names of drawings and renumber them if there was any retiming. But actually, that was not a system we ever used, because it adds extra work in renumbering. If I send a series of images to someone, along with a dope sheet, and later I decide to add some drawings, those old drawings better not change name, or I will have to send them the whole sequence again.
And using a dope sheet/X-sheet seems like a holdover from the days before digital, right ?

When you're animating on paper you actually hand write a number on each drawing , and then if the timing changes you erase or cross-out the old number and write a new number on it ... do you no longer do that when animating paperlessly ? Because, to me , having the visual reference of the drawing number on the frame helps me to see at a glance where I'm at , and if the drawing is numbered to the frame number then even if I had to reconstruct the exposure of each image in another software I could do it by visual confirmation of the hand-written numbers on the drawings. If the timing of the animation has to be changed , I just erase or cross-out the numbers and write in the new numbers , same as if I were working on paper. (and as I mentioned, with the Tracker Shortcuts , renaming all the instance names on the layer is just one click , so if new drawings need to be inserted or some drawings are deleted , it will rename all the instances after I insert or delete the drawings, then select all and click the AUTO button on the Tracker Shortcut panel .)
What if they have already worked on the images, and now I want to send them a new dope sheet with new images with different names? It would be a mess. So I guess I could work with the tracker, even if it gives crazy cell names that seem to me hard to work with.
I don't see how it's "crazy" cell names . It's a perfectly logical system . You (or a collaborator) can always see how the drawings are supposed to be exposed if they are numbered to the frame number. Honestly, to me, the whole scheme is just a little bit "crazy", having people on the same production sharing the same scenes back and forth, but they work in different softwares . :shock: I'd be curious to hear how else this could work if both you (working in TVP) and your collaborators (working in TB or PS) don't have a common set of numbers (the frame count) to use for reference ? (along with some form of X-sheet , although neither of the options currently available in TVP --- The Japanese format "timesheet" or the CSV export to an Excel spread sheet -- are ideal, in my opinion. The CSV export would be better if they could clean it up so it doesn't add so many extra numbers in front of the instance name in the Excel spread sheet columns, to make it more readable . I made a Feature Request here , asking if it's possible to change the formatting of the CSV export , but no one has responded . I don't know anything about scripting , so I don't know if it's possible , but I suspect it is ... )
Also, it numbers the first instance "0" which can't be used in other softwares,
I'm not sure what you are talking about when you write: "It numbers the first instance "0" ... what is "it" ? Do you mean the Tracker Shortcuts panel I recommended ? If that's what you are referring to , then I am not sure how you're getting the first instance to be named as "0" , unless your scene is set with a Start Frame of 0. You can change the start frame to 1 in the Start Up Panel when you create a new scene or click on the Start Frame button at the lower left of the interface.
Start Frame.jpg
Start Frame.jpg (95.03 KiB) Viewed 2403 times
Start Up Panel_Set_Start_Frame.jpg
I'm uncertain if you are using TVPaint 11 or TVPaint 10 ? The screen shot you included in an earlier post shows TVPaint 10, but in another place you mentioned being able to use the Japanese Timesheet script (which is TVPaint 11 , only) . In the case of TVPaint 10 , there is a little custom panel called Start Frame , which you can install. (I would then copy and paste the 0 and 1 buttons to the Misc tab on the Animator Panel )

You can get the Start Frame custom panel here:
https://www.tvpaint.com/forum/viewtopic ... 431#p34421
Start Frame 0 or 1 .jpg
Start Frame 0 or 1 .jpg (78.78 KiB) Viewed 2394 times


Anyway, I guess my suggestions don't fit your way of working . I hope you find a workable solution.

.
MAC OS 10.11.6 , Macbook Pro Retina 15-inch, Mid 2015,
2.5 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB Memory , TVPaint PRO 11.0.6, 64bit -
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Janet Perlman
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by Janet Perlman » 08 Feb 2018, 16:03

Hey D. T.

Thanks for all this.

"I don't see how is that better than having the instance be numbered 35 and it occurs at frame 35 ?" What if I have already sent the scene to another company, and they have imported everything into Toon Boom Harmony, and then I come back with a whole new set of names for the same drawing that I sent them, because I retimed? That is very confusing. They will either have to rename each image by hand, or reimport everything and start from scratch. The possibilities for error are endless. All because I add another cycle or changed one image.

"you get a PNG or JPG image sequence of only the HEAD of each instance , with the instance name."
I could not find a way to get .psd's which is what I need. I imagine it's because I haven't found the right place to specify.

"If the timing of the animation has to be changed , I just erase or cross-out the numbers and write in the new numbers , same as if I were working on paper. "
I have a long history in traditional before digital, and I never once renumbered drawings. I would add some out of sequence names, or add a letter to the number. As long as the drawing name is unique, there is no problem. This carried overt o digital, where I first worked in Toon Boom. Every drawing automatically gets a new name, which is tied to the image and never changes. The dope sheet is to determine how these images are played. Renumbering is a lot of work, opens up more possibilities for error.

"The whole scheme is just a little bit "crazy", having people on the same production sharing the same scenes back and forth, but they work in different softwares."
You are right, it is crazy. It is an unconventional project, and it is us who want to and I think need to use TVPaint, because we are replicating pencil on paper with shading. But it is hard to get everyone else to go and buy and learn the software for just one short project.

Thanks for the info about the start frame info. I needed that!

Janet

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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by D.T. Nethery » 08 Feb 2018, 17:35

Janet Perlman wrote:
08 Feb 2018, 16:03
What if I have already sent the scene to another company, and they have imported everything into Toon Boom Harmony, and then I come back with a whole new set of names for the same drawing that I sent them, because I retimed? That is very confusing. They will either have to rename each image by hand, or reimport everything and start from scratch. The possibilities for error are endless. All because I add another cycle or changed one image.
Yes, that's a problem. But I don't know how else to do what you want to do
"you get a PNG or JPG image sequence of only the HEAD of each instance , with the instance name."
I could not find a way to get .psd's which is what I need. I imagine it's because I haven't found the right place to specify.
You can export TVPaint to .PSD, but it's a different function. With this JSON export function you have the option of BMP , JPG , PNG , TGA, TIFF.
I've done tests importing PNG image sequences to TB. Those work fine. JPG, too. (never tried BMP, TGA, or TIFF) .
What is the necessity of the image sequences being .PSD ? If it's because you need transparency , just use PNG with no background , so it will be transparent.

Janet - I just made a very interesting discovery !!! When I was testing this again just now to be sure I wasn't giving you the wrong information I noticed something ... if the image file names have an underscore in them , then TB won't import them with respect to the file name/number ... BUT if the file names have a prefix and a dash ( - ) between the prefix and number it DOES respect the numbering. (it doesn't import the prefix , but it keeps the numbering ... however having the prefix is less critical because when you import you can just name the layer in TB to match the prefix or the layer name from TVP and there is also the option in TB to automatically rename the selected drawings with a Prefix, so if having the prefix is important to you , you can add it back after importing the drawings . But the drawing NUMBERS are the critical info for reconstructing the scene timing ) The tests I tried before had the prefix separated from the number by an underscore _ , not a dash - . So this is significant. This means if you use the JSON export to save out an image sequence as PNG or JPG images , with a - between the Prefix and the Number (like so: B-1) it will respect the numbering , so if drawing numbers are matched to the frame numbers it is relatively easy to set the exposures correctly on the TB X-sheet. Blocks of drawings that are numbered for being "ON 2's" can simply be selected and then right-click > Set Exposure to 2 . Holds can be Set Exposure to custom number (8 , 12, 24 , however long the hold should be) .
MAC OS 10.11.6 , Macbook Pro Retina 15-inch, Mid 2015,
2.5 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB Memory , TVPaint PRO 11.0.6, 64bit -
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Janet Perlman
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by Janet Perlman » 08 Feb 2018, 18:40

Hi D.T, It needs to be .psd, with the separate layers embedded, to be used in After Effects to treat the different layers. Not sure - it may end up being image sequences with each layer separate, or all embedded in each .psd. Need transparency, but everyone says specifically in their specs - NO PNG. I don't know why.

I don't really worry about ToonBoom respecting the numbers, because the numbers will be 1,2,3,4, ... So it will be simple that way. I do not want to send them 1,3,5,36,42,43,44 ... But it is very handy to know that TB will respect the name if there are dashes. That may end up being the way we do it. But ... what happens when I redope the scene, while meanwhile they have everything in a TB project and have worked on the images? I need to make sure that ll the original names are preserved. That may be where the tracker comes in handy.

Thanks for all the advice!

Janet

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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Making sheet for people working in another software

Post by D.T. Nethery » 08 Feb 2018, 19:21

Janet Perlman wrote:
08 Feb 2018, 16:03

I could not find a way to get .psd's which is what I need. I imagine it's because I haven't found the right place to specify.
Ok, if you absolutely must have .PSDs for the image sequence (instead of transparent .PNG) there is good news and bad news about that:

Good news : using the Flix export option you can export each image as a .PSD in a folder
Bad news: it does not retain the Instance names on the exported .PSD files , it renames them (starting at 0000.psd ! ) as 0000.psd , 0001.psd, 0002.psd, 0003.psd , 0004.psd , etc.

There is a box to fill in custom parameters, so maybe it is possible to tweak it so that it retains the instance names on the .psd files , but I don't know how
it works. I can't find any tutorials for how to use the Flix export option in TVPaint , including how to adjust the parameters . (Flix is a storyboarding software made by the Foundry: https://www.foundry.com/products/flix ) .
Screen Shot 2018-02-08 at 1.19.17 PM.jpg
Screen Shot 2018-02-08 at 1.19.17 PM.jpg (27.08 KiB) Viewed 2377 times
You can also export to .PSD with Clips Layer Structure > .PSD (Sequence) , but again ,the bad news is that it does not retain the instance names from the timeline , it renumbers them as 0000.psd , 0001.psd, 0002.psd, 0003.psd , 0004.psd
Screen Shot 2018-02-08 at 1.48.03 PM.jpg
Screen Shot 2018-02-08 at 1.48.03 PM.jpg (31.12 KiB) Viewed 2377 times
It needs to be .psd, with the separate layers embedded, to be used in After Effects to treat the different layers. Not sure - it may end up being image sequences with each layer separate, or all embedded in each .psd. Need transparency, but everyone says specifically in their specs - NO PNG. I don't know why.
I don't know why either ... PNG imports to Toonboom and to AfterEffects just fine. Ask about TGA , if that is ok . A friend of mine who uses TB a lot says he always imports images as TGA format . But isn't your first hurdle to get the images from TVP to TB ? So then when images are exported out of TB , can they be converted to .PSD then , before going to AfterEffects ?

The JSON export function in TVP is specifically intended to be used to import TVPaint layers (with the correct exposure and instance names retained) to After Effects.

Here's a demo (not a tutorial as such , just a quick demo ) of it:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HtQIii_AXR0



I hope at some point someone will do a full tutorial , because right now I'm just flying blind with this . I have sort of learned how it works through trial & error tests,
but I don't really know how it works yet .


Here's a thought:


Export from TVPaint to AfterEffects (using the JSON export) then export from AE to PSD image sequence and then import the PSD image sequence to TB , then after it is finished in TB , export again to .PSD to take back to AE for final composite . A lot of workarounds. Oy vey ! It makes my head hurt to think about it ...

UPDATE: I can't stand not being able to troubleshoot an issue to successful conclusion ... SO ... for my own peace of mind I did a quick test exporting a scene from TVP to AfterEffects using the JSON export option. It opens up fine in AE with layer structure and exposure intact (same as what I had in TVP). Then in AE there is the option in the Render Queue to export as PSD sequence . If you render out each layer individually you'll have all your layers as PSD files which you may then take into TB OR PS . This still doesn't solve the numbering/exposure issue with the frames, because although the exposures are intact when exporting from TVP to AE, once you export out of AE as PSD image sequence the images are renamed as single frames starting at 0000.psd . There may be a way to avoid this , I just don't know what it is. I have AE on my computer , but I really don't know how to use it .


Good luck to you on this .

.
MAC OS 10.11.6 , Macbook Pro Retina 15-inch, Mid 2015,
2.5 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB Memory , TVPaint PRO 11.0.6, 64bit -
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