Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

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VGmaster9
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Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

Post by VGmaster9 »

https://docs.toonboom.com/help/harmony- ... mport.html

What you can apparently do is after animating in a bitmap program like TVPaint, then cleaning the roughs, you can export the frames to Toon Boom Harmony for vectorization, and go from there. Do you think that's an effective way to clean up animation frames while animating with TVP?
Xavier
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Re: Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

Post by Xavier »

To me it would be a great way to combine both bitmap and vectorial animation !
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Dean
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Re: Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

Post by Dean »

Very handy tool, though depending on the art style, some images might look worse when vectorized because some tiny gaps could get filled, etc...simplifying the overrall look of the image.
Extremely useful if you want an extra crisp look, but if you're going for a crayon-like or hand-painted visual, you will sadly have to use slower methods :lol:
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slowtiger
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Re: Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

Post by slowtiger »

I doubt that we'll see any method doing this reliable and with commercially suitable results any time soon. Of course there's lots of projects in the field trying to solve age-old problems withing the animation workflow: automatic inbetweening, automatic animating (= motion capture), independence of drawing method from rendered result, combinations of 2D and 3D. I'll still recommend to choose the right technique for a certain result, it's no use to force software into directions it's not designed for.

That said, it would be nice if we freelance animators wouldn't be forced to buy certain software just because the job requires it - if the studio can't convert, it's usually not worth it to invest.

To me "vector animation" isn't so much defined by a look but by the possibility to use procedural animation - assets bound to a skeleton, interpolation between keys done by software
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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

Post by D.T. Nethery »

VGmaster9 wrote: 13 Apr 2022, 05:01 https://docs.toonboom.com/help/harmony- ... mport.html

What you can apparently do is after animating in a bitmap program like TVPaint, then cleaning the roughs, you can export the frames to Toon Boom Harmony for vectorization, and go from there. Do you think that's an effective way to clean up animation frames while animating with TVP?
The example given on the link posted above isn't really about cleaning-up drawings. It's about vectorizing drawings that have already been cleaned up, so then you would be able to use Harmony's vectorized coloring system to color the drawings. That is certainly a viable pipeline. I've done it. However, keep in mind that the original clean up drawings (either scanned from pencil on paper drawings or drawings made in another program such as TVPaint) need to be high-resolution and have a very crisp line quality for Harmony's Import & Vectorize system to work well. The system can work to Import & Vectorize rough drawings , but the results may vary in terms of being able to color the drawings easily. Harmony does have a gap closer that can be applied to drawings with gaps.

The illustration of the insect used in the Harmony user manual is an odd choice , because it implies that a low-resolution pixelated image as shown could be magically turned into a clean inked image with tapered thick and thin line quality. That won't happen. If you Import & Vectorize a low-res. drawing as shown in that illustration, the resulting vectorized line quality will look clunky. Harmony can not magically transform the drawing as shown. If the original bitmap drawing doesn't already have good line quality (with thick and thin tapered lines) the vectorized version of the drawing will not have good line quality either.

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Over the years here on the TVPaint forum the proposal has been put forth to include vector layers in TVPaint. I believe that should be added to the Next Gen version of TVPaint so TVPaint can stay competitive with Harmony. Harmony has both bitmap drawing mode and vector drawing mode , so you could animate with a rough pencil brush (bitmap brush) and then clean up with a vector brush on a new layer in Harmony. The bitmap drawing tools (and textured vector drawing tools) in Harmony get better and better. It becomes more difficult to argue for why using TVPaint is better. (at one time the drawing tools in TVPaint were noticeably better in comparison to the vector drawing tools in Harmony, but that gap has closed. ) It would be nice to have the option of vector layers in TVPaint. Even a fairly simple , open source program like Pencil2D has this option , to use both bitmap and vector layers within the same project. I believe Clip Studio Paint has the same option , to use either bitmap layers or vector layers.

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VGmaster9
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Re: Thoughts on this method of cleaning up?

Post by VGmaster9 »

D.T. Nethery wrote: 13 Apr 2022, 14:20 It becomes more difficult to argue for why using TVPaint is better.
From my understanding, it may be better not because of the software itself, but because of the animators who use it. Harmony animators mainly use its vector drawing capabilities for animating, while most animators who draw in bitmap would use TVPaint more. It comes down to the skill of animators, and I'd argue that a huge amount of highly skilled animators are more likely to draw in bitmap, and more animators who draw in bitmap are more likely to use TVPaint over Harmony. I've seen better results from bitmap animations over vector animations as it is. That's not to say there aren't any good vector animations, because there are plenty, it's just that people have more control when drawing in bitmap (as well as traditionally on paper). To me, it's all about maximizing quality. If I were a director, I'd have the project animated in bitmap over vector.
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