[Bf-animsys] GPencil: Should onion skins be shown when rendering animations?

Joshua Leung aligorith at gmail.com
Mon Oct 24 06:08:06 CEST 2016

Hi guys,

A few weeks ago (or was it already several months ago?) Thomas mentioned on
IRC that it would actually be quite nice to be able to have the onionskins
still show up in the OpenGL renders.

== Rationale/Use Cases ==
1) You can use the onion skins (with animated before/after frame ranges) to
get a "cheap" motion blur effect   (Thomas's example). Thinking about this,
I can imagine how cool this could be to try out...

2) If you've animated a shot with the onionskins turned on, you may have
ended up animating with those in mind. As a result, if you turn off the
onionskins, you'll find that it doesn't look right as something looks
"missing". Then you're stuck with trying to duplicate the frames to a
second layer to try and recreate that effect manually by offsetting the
keys....    (This case I've personally experienced -
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAv9RyvOgCU was animated this way  :)

== Current Situation ==
Onion skins get turned off automatically/temporarily when doing animation
playback or when rendering animations.

Onion skins gettting disabled during animation playback was one of Daniel's
feature requests from a while back. IIRC, it makes sense to do if you're
just using these as a drawing aid (i.e. a "UI feature") as you're creating
breakdowns/tweaking spacing/etc; you don't want those to be visible when
doing animation playback or scrubbing around, as then it makes it harder to
clearly see the poses. For consistency, and since it's kindof a "UI tool"
(much like motion paths) it was disabled for animation renders too.

== What should we do? :) ==
So IMO, it sounds like being able to leave onion skins visible in the
renders (when coupled with animated onion skin ranges) may actually be
quite useful for achieving certain special effects. This leaves us the
question of what to do here:

1) Add an extra option to allow keeping onion skins in the renders? Or,
2) Don't disable onion skins in the renders?


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