InfoCentral wrote: OTOH, Toon Boom does play very nicely with outside graphic programs...
I don't know about that. Most of the work I've been doing in Harmony uses artwork created in Photoshop, and it seems like it should be simple enough to import. To me, you should just be able to import a layered PSD directly into wherever you need it, layered out the way you want it but for Harmony there are actually many steps involved. Here's what I've been running into: first, you need to you need to place every layer in your PSD into its own Group, and you can't nest anything deeper--if you don't follow this exactly, Harmony will collapse everything regardless of the import option you choose. Oh, and the Harmony drawing layers do not get their names from the imported Photoshop layers, the names come instead from the Groups so you need to rename all your Photoshop Groups to correspond with their single content, otherwise you need to rename all your layers in Harmony. If you've separated your outlines from your fills to take advantage of the multi-layer drawing feature in Harmony, you can't simply import the multi-layer art directly into a drawing--instead you need to import the outline and fill as separate images and then assemble them in each drawing by cut and paste to the drawing layers. If you have different stages of the drawing art, you need to manually cut and paste the artwork to each drawing substition layer. Also, there is no cropping tool--this means if you import the artwork untrimmed from PSD, you wind up with full bounding boxes; if you import the artwork trimmed, then you lose precise placement of the art. I've accepted that that's just how it works in Harmony but it seems overly complicated to me compared to other programs I've used.
BTW, I didn't have nearly the difficultly with importing and cropping multi-layer Photoshop art to ASP on the production we finished a few months ago. ASP simply doesn't care how the layers are grouped or nested--it imports the art the way you set it up in Photoshop, even preserving the hierarchy.
Also, while the drawing tools work very well for elements created directly in Harmony, I'm finding they're not ideal for editing bitmaps created in other programs like Photoshop. That said, ASP doesn't support editing bitmaps at all, so at least Harmony has bit map brushes.
I hate to sound like I'm bashing Harmony--to be fair, I've been critical enough about ASP in other threads--but so far I have not found Harmony to "play very nicely"' with other drawing/paint programs (well, Photoshop anyway.) The program has many strengths and cool features but, in my experience, that hasn't been one of them.
Edit: I need to take back what I said about layered Photoshop art not being trimmed on import in Harmony. Up until a few minutes ago, all my layered artwork was coming in at full frame, which could make the character a little unwieldy after assembly but I just imported layered art for a new character and the elements came in with proper positions and
it's optimally trimmed. This is contrary to the other character files I've been importing but I have to confess, I don't what's different about this one. Anyway, I just wanted to amend part of what I wrote above. All the other stuff about grouping, nesting, etc., still stands though.