Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

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UsaMiKo
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Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by UsaMiKo » 08 Aug 2017, 22:29

A little over a year ago the announcement that the software that Ghibli used to scan and color their movies was going to be released for free. As you could expect everybody lost their minds with excitement, and when the software finally dropped there were tutorials made by fans up within an hour. While the idea of such a well known company releasing their software for free sounded pretty good, I was a bit skeptical of it. To start off, the little bit of interface we did see seemed incredibly cluttered and hard to manuever, and later on there were dozens and dozens of reports of crashes and strange bugs. And, in all truth, I think I was a bit bitter that this program was getting so much attention when Krita, a well known drawing app, had just added a pretty cool, easy to use, animation feature and no one was talking about it ! (I'm still kind of bitter about that! Do people not like it because of the brush lag or what?)But the thing that turnes me off immediately was the lack of drawing tools. A big brush set might not be necessary, but it seemed like the only drawing tool they had was a strange vector brush.

Either way, I sort of ignored the program for the most part, until recently when I decided to take another look. It seems that the program has made it all the way to a 1.1.3 version and has changed some things. The interface seems to be mostly the same, but just a little smoothed out; there's less bezel on all the menus. The most endearing part though is that, yes, it does have proper drawing tools now. Well, at least this version does.

https://morevnaproject.org/pl/opentoonz/

This is a version of the software made by a group of animators using it for their own projects. They even added a horizontal timeline (which doesn't affect me since I actually like xsheet-like timelines, but I know other people weren't happy about it), and a lot of these features are said to be added to an official release soon. Heres's a video of people sketching with a few of the brushes.

[youtube]https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=RAUcZEwqEaM[/youtube]


[youtube]https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=_R_ByEmRRGk[/youtube]


A new interface and drawing tools maybe nice, but the thing that really surprised me was this.


https://morevnaproject.org/pl/2017/07/22/7620/

This software is already being used in a feature film!? Not even Blender, one of the most popular open source applications, can boast that yet.

Image

I suppose its kind of nice to see creators make such use of this kind of software. Sometimes it feels like these programs never make it into the hands of the people who can use them the best (still don't know why no one's checking out Krita). Either way, if Opentoonz becomes something that more people can add to their pipeline then I guess there's still something to be excited about.

VGmaster9
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by VGmaster9 » 25 Oct 2017, 00:47

This may very well end up being a direct competitor to Harmony and TVP, and free no less.

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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by D.T. Nethery » 25 Oct 2017, 12:38

"the announcement that the software that Ghibli used to scan and color their movies was going to be released for free. As you could expect everybody lost their minds with excitement"
And here is something that demonstrates a huge problem among the fandom : why did they lose their minds with excitement ? Because of the false belief that software makes the movies look the way they do . Many people really believe that if they get their hands on the same software that Studio Ghibli used , they can make the same quality of animation as Studio Ghibli. This is like when people used to ask: "what kind of pencil does Glen Keane use to animate?" If I can get those kind of pencils , my animation will look like Glen's animation." . These people don't understand that the tools don't make the magic, the artist makes the magic. Miyazaki or Takahata could make a movie animated with Sharpie markers on Post-It Notes , shot under a webcam , and do something brilliant , but some people would immediately be posting in forums : "what brand of webcam did they use to shoot it ?" "what size Post-It Notes ?" "Thin tip Sharpie or Thick tip Sharpie? (I heard for some scenes they used a thin felt-tip pen ...)" .
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Thierry
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Thierry » 25 Oct 2017, 12:45

"Welcome to the world of overreacting" I guess.
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by slowtiger » 25 Oct 2017, 13:08

Exactly my thoughts when that whole thing started: it was a scan software, not a drawing software. What did those people expect?

OTOH I was asked how much money one has to spend for hard- and software to be able to produce animation independently. This was a much more legitimate request, and I did my best to point out bare necessities and free alternatives, besides recommending TVP, of course.
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by neonnoodle » 25 Oct 2017, 14:45

OpenToonz is, to be blunt, a UI nightmare. The Morevna branch is admirable, but it is a kludge of multiple open-source products that are in no way production ready. OT is being used for feature films because Toonz has been used for feature films for years prior to being made open-source. I have no doubt that Toonz/OpenToonz is a high-quality piece of software, but it is not optimized for artists the way TVP is.

TVPaint has been, and I believe will remain, the #1 choice for people who want to draw. It is the easiest software to adopt coming from a traditional method. Most pro-level animation software suites (such as ToonBoom) are optimized around reducing the amount of drawing being done. You see this pattern in features like bone/rigging for puppet animation; deformation tools; symbol libraries for swapping out body parts... This is understandable from a production/budget standpoint. I don't begrudge any studio which needs to get work out the door on time and under budget. But when I want to strive for animation in the traditional spirit, I look to TVPaint. When I want to draw with a nice heavy pencil tool, easily flip drawings, or otherwise work in the traditional way, nothing else comes close.

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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Jet » 29 Oct 2017, 19:09

Agree with the points @neonnoodle is making, but I'd point out in Japan they're using Clip Studio Paint for the drawing process, so whether OpenToonz is any good in that regard won't matter.

In regards to the tools don't matter remark, I don't agree. I think it's actually more difficult for a beginner to learn when they're constantly being discouraged by their own marks. I remember teaching someone awhile back who was a big fan of Chuck Jones and his line work but felt they just couldn't match him, I kept saying "it takes practice", that was until I tried to replicate his line work myself and even I couldn't do it, not without effort at least. Turns out (after discussions) it's due to the pencil he used, Palomino Blackwing 602 which allows you to be very light with your hand. I purchased a few packs of those and immediately we were producing much higher quality line, instead of focusing on line the focus was on the subject.
Last edited by Jet on 30 Oct 2017, 03:15, edited 1 time in total.
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slowtiger
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by slowtiger » 29 Oct 2017, 21:26

I really don't believe it's just this pencil (and the Palomino is just a reissue of the original Blackwing Warrior, which I know and still have a package of), other pencils are good enough as well for the job, it just takes the insight to evaluate one's tools and maybe research for alternatives.
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Elodie
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Elodie » 30 Oct 2017, 06:20

Agree with the points @neonnoodle is making, but I'd point out in Japan they're using Clip Studio Paint for the drawing process, so whether OpenToonz is any good in that regard won't matter.
What studios ? Most studios I visited in Japan still animate on paper, then use a bunch of software like Retas or Sai for the painting process (when obviously they don't use TVPaint for these both tasks).
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Jet » 30 Oct 2017, 14:03

Elodie wrote:
30 Oct 2017, 06:20
What studios ? Most studios I visited in Japan still animate on paper, then use a bunch of software like Retas or Sai for the painting process (when obviously they don't use TVPaint for these both tasks).
CELSYS specifically list Kamikaze Douga, Asahi Production and Production I.G.

Studio Colorido has a detailed seminar on their process using Clip for Typhoon Noruda.
http://studiodomo.jp/wordpress/digital- ... niversity/

The traditional process is slowly but surely being phased out as the newer generation introduce digital workflows and they're more globalist and want to work with people from all over the globe. Depending where you live, if the city generates a lot of renewable energy then animating digitally is cheaper even when considering the cost of the computer equipment and software than pencil and paper.
slowtiger wrote:
29 Oct 2017, 21:26
I really don't believe it's just this pencil (and the Palomino is just a reissue of the original Blackwing Warrior, which I know and still have a package of), other pencils are good enough as well for the job, it just takes the insight to evaluate one's tools and maybe research for alternatives.
Absolutely. I just thought that at the time how interesting it was a premium pencil made a difference at all. We were sat for awhile trying to reproduce Jones marks with various Staedtler pencils, but the Blackwing 602 was like turning pen pressure on in Photoshop.

Today I have lots of comparable pencils, Mitsu-Bishi 9850, Hi-Uni, Faber-Castell 9000, Tombow Mono 100, Monolith etc, though none glide as smooth as the Blackwing 602.
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Elodie
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Elodie » 30 Oct 2017, 16:29

CELSYS specifically list Kamikaze Douga, Asahi Production and Production I.G.
We can list them too among our TVPaint users :wink:
The traditional process is slowly but surely being phased out as the newer generation introduce digital workflows and they're more globalist and want to work with people from all over the globe.
In the rest of the world, the traditional process is almost over (except a few studios here and there that still animate on paper) : most studios are now using digital solutions. But in Japan the process is much slower and paper is still the main hardware for animation. Please don't tell me I'm wrong, most features we added in TVPaint for the past few years are for the Japanese industry to make the steps easier from paper to digital. We opened an office in Tokyo a year and half ago and Lise visits studios daily to understand their needs :D
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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by D.T. Nethery » 30 Oct 2017, 19:35

Jet wrote:
30 Oct 2017, 14:03

Absolutely. I just thought that at the time how interesting it was a premium pencil made a difference at all. We were sat for awhile trying to reproduce Jones marks with various Staedtler pencils, but the Blackwing 602 was like turning pen pressure on in Photoshop.

Today I have lots of comparable pencils, Mitsu-Bishi 9850, Hi-Uni, Faber-Castell 9000, Tombow Mono 100, Monolith etc, though none glide as smooth as the Blackwing 602.
I'm a pencil aficionado myself ; I'm partial to the Blackwing 602 (old and new) , and also the Mitsubishi Hi-Uni, Tombow Mono. I used to love drawing directly on cels with Koh-i-Noor No.1555 grease pencils. I did not mean to give the impression in my earlier post that I think the quality of the tools is totally unimportant ... the quality of the tools , analog or digital, does matter , but I was reacting to UsaMiko's comment: "A little over a year ago the announcement that the software that Ghibli used to scan and color their movies was going to be released for free. As you could expect everybody lost their minds with excitement, and when the software finally dropped there were tutorials made by fans up within an hour." The extreme enthusiasm for OpenToonz seemed to me to be mostly related to the association with Studio Ghibli.
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Jet
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Jet » 02 Nov 2017, 23:04

D.T. Nethery wrote:
30 Oct 2017, 19:35
I did not mean to give the impression in my earlier post that I think the quality of the tools is totally unimportant [...] I was reacting to UsaMiko's comment [...] The extreme enthusiasm for OpenToonz seemed to me to be mostly related to the association with Studio Ghibli.
Oh I see, my bad, it's a good point. Unfortunately YouTube got plagued quickly with novice users trying to show how OpenToonz works instead of actually using it.
Elodie wrote:
30 Oct 2017, 16:29
We can list them too among our TVPaint users :wink:
Sure, but CSP is a mass market product with varying levels of affordability and pay models, with direct support for OpenToonz, so the point I was making was generally that's what people are picking up as a port of call. They use the subscription rent-to-own model which is quite popular.
Elodie wrote:
30 Oct 2017, 16:29
But in Japan the process is much slower and paper is still the main hardware for animation. Please don't tell me I'm wrong, most features we added in TVPaint for the past few years are for the Japanese industry to make the steps easier from paper to digital.
I know, but it's still fading away as the new generation replaces the old, that's what I'm experiencing. Just like when Fujifilms stopped producing the cels back in 2001, which forced studios to move to digipaint, so too will paper manufacturers, it's already become too expensive for me. Young people seem to prefer to work in video games or something else, learning 3D and rigging because there's usually higher pay, less overtime. So something will need to change to attract people. The govt made it easier for foreign students to take up residency if they take animation jobs this year I think, sticking plaster stuff, it's an industry wide issue.
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Fabrice
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Fabrice » 03 Nov 2017, 08:57

out-of-topic :
@jet : look at the lastest update v11.0.8, there are options for you within it ;)
Fabrice Debarge, Product Manager, TVPaint Team

Jet
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Re: Opentoonz seems to be cleaning itself up.

Post by Jet » 05 Nov 2017, 22:08

Thanks Fabrice, very nice! The multi-color replacer is so good and the freehand shape fill tool was the last missing Retas feature for me.

In anime we usually use a color coding process, so hair shadow is magenta (or something else) and skin shadow cyan (or something else), because the cleanup artist doesn't know what colors are used in the scene, they're laying down a map for the colorist, so this makes it really easy to hot swap all those colors from a palette file (you probably knew that already). :lol:

Thanks again.
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