Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

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Lukas
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Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Lukas » Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:41 am

All my animation files usually have a small storyboard video or image sequence in the corner that is set to "don't render this layer".

The problem with this is that when you work zoomed in, the storyboard if often out of sight. Of course you can manually drag it back in the viewport, but that's a bit of a hassle sometimes.

Is it possible to somehow keep a storyboard always in sight?

I was trying to create a modeless window that keeps track of the current frame number and displays the correct image. But I can't seem to show images (on buttons) outside of the "ScriptResources" folder and also can't seem to update it because the moho module isn't available from a modeless window trough lua.

Does anyone have an idea?

Maybe a layerscript that keeps the storyboard-layer attached to the viewport? Kind of how 'immune to camera' works, but for the viewport. Would that be possible at all?

Any help on how to approach this is very welcome.
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synthsin75
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by synthsin75 » Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:53 am

Easiest way would be to split the workspace, so one view could always have the storyboard centered. No scripting required.
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Lukas
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Lukas » Wed Jun 13, 2018 8:15 am

Yeah that's a good idea! But it's a bit of a waste of valuable screenspace on my cintiq because it only splits horizontally or vertically. If only there was an option to have a separate undocked viewport...
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synthsin75
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by synthsin75 » Wed Jun 13, 2018 10:02 pm

Does dragging the split bar not help recover screenspace?

But yes, there should be a way to lock a layer to the viewport. But I'm not sure if I have the time to figure out how right now.
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Lukas » Thu Jun 14, 2018 8:09 am

Dragging the split bar only helps so much. The fact that the storyboard is 16:9 doesn't help either.

A layerscript seems like the way to go then, I'm going to have a look and see if I can get anything to work :shock:
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Greenlaw
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Greenlaw » Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:39 pm

Yeah, the viewports really should be undockable. For that matter, everything in Moho should be.

As a workaround, put your storyboard frames in a directory and use an image viewer like Xnview. You can set Xnview to Always Be On Top, set it so the frames scale to fit the window, and place the window wherever you want. Then minimize the controls and set it to flip frames with arrow keys. The viewer won't be in sync with your timeline of course, but its still useful if you just need a visual reference that's always on-screen. I don't normally do this for storyboards but I find it handy for other visual references like character sheets.
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by chucky » Sat Jun 16, 2018 2:15 pm

What about immune to camera and reduced in size? Reduced opacity even?
I sometimes push mine to a top corner and do that.
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Greenlaw
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Greenlaw » Sat Jun 16, 2018 5:02 pm

chucky wrote:What about immune to camera and reduced in size? Reduced opacity even?
I sometimes push mine to a top corner and do that.
I think the idea is to just have it fixed in place regardless of navigation. When you use immune to camera, it doesn't make it immune to navigation panning and zooming. A second workspace view works but that consumes too much desktop space. A separate floating window would do the trick but Moho doesn't allow you to undock a viewport. That's why I use XnView when I need this.

BTW, I normally do exactly what you do for animatics. I just sometimes use the 'always on top' XnView window for other reference material that I want to keep visible in place and never scrolling off. A character's face expressions chart or mouth chart, for example. Of course, the XnView window is not very useful if this reference needs to be synced to the timeline, like an animatic.

Sigh! It's always something, isn't it?. :)
Last edited by Greenlaw on Sun Jun 17, 2018 7:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Lukas
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Lukas » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:21 am

I've been looking into getting a layerscript to make a layer immune to the viewport but I don't think it's possible to access anything from the LM.GUI module trough a layerscript. :/
Greenlaw wrote:Sigh! It's always something, isn't it?. :)
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by hayasidist » Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:57 am

Lukas wrote:I've been looking into getting a layerscript to make a layer immune to the viewport ...
what about modifying the viewport pan/zoom/rotate tools to keep a designated layer in a given position (e.g. top left corner), scale (e.g. 20% of screen width) and orientation (e.g. aligned with viewport axes)?
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Lukas » Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:10 pm

hayasidist wrote:
Lukas wrote:I've been looking into getting a layerscript to make a layer immune to the viewport ...
what about modifying the viewport pan/zoom/rotate tools to keep a designated layer in a given position (e.g. top left corner), scale (e.g. 20% of screen width) and orientation (e.g. aligned with viewport axes)?
Clever! I hadn't thought of that. But it probably won't work when dragging the viewport with right-click instead of panning with the actual pan-tool?
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by hayasidist » Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:19 pm

Lukas wrote:...probably won't work when dragging the viewport with right-click instead of panning with the actual pan-tool
good point -- depends on how that works .. if the right-click handler calls (e.g.) View:ZoomMoved(location) no it won't -- but if it calls LM_ZoomW:OnMouseMoved(moho, mouseEvent) then it should.

(obviously I haven't tried this - so I've no idea how the various mouse rather than tool workspace transforms work -- but maybe worth an experiment or 3 if you have time?!)
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by synthsin75 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 8:03 pm

Yeah, layerscripts apparently can't access moho.view, which is necessary to access Graphics() to do any conversions between screen pixels and document coordinates.
Just tested, and the right-click workspace pan/zoom do not invoke the tools, so changes to those won't help.

I'm working on an idea that seems to be working. It's a button script, so you have to hit the assigned shortcut to reanchor the layer to the workspace. I've worked out the basics...just need to make it more customizable and robust.
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synthsin75
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by synthsin75 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 7:22 am

Okay, give this a try:
https://sites.google.com/site/synthsin/ ... ects=0&d=1

Directions:
1. At frame zero, position and scale one or more layers where you want them docked to the workspace. If you're doing one at a time, you can position/scale it with either layer transforms or workspace navigation.
2. At frame zero, hit the button and select "Add" to dock all selected layers.
3. At any frame other than zero, hit the button to restore all docked layers...like after navigation.

Tips:
Assign this button a shortcut. I used zero.
Frame zero to add or remove docked layers. You can just hit the first letter of a button, so adding with my shortcut is zero then "a", and removing would be zero then "r".


If there are enough people on Windows who find this useful, I might be able to write a AutoHotkey script to trigger it automatically after a right-click or scroll.
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Lukas
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Re: Looking for a way to keep a storyboard file in view

Post by Lukas » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:57 am

You nailed it again Wes! Great stuff!

Thanks a bunch, I'm definately using this for storyboards from now on!

I've never used AutoHotKey before and work on both Windows and OS X machines, but am definitely interested.

For now, I'll be mashing that shortcut! :D
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