[Bf-committers] Blender Grant for sponsored development

Duarte Ramos duarte_ramos at sapo.pt
Tue Sep 22 19:48:40 CEST 2015

Sorry for the double email, the previous one bounced back, this is the 
actual address I use for the committers mailing list

Bezier Curve tools revamp

Hello to all members of the Blender Developers mailing list, especially 
Ton Roosendaal and all blender developers and contributors, my name is 
Duarte Ramos, and I am seeking a way to sponsor Blender development of a 
specific set of features regarding Bezier curve tools  by making a 
monetary donation for a development grant. I wish to inquire about it's 
feasibility and whole way to go about accomplishing it.


  - Do you (Blender Foundation) accept/manage sponsored development of 
this nature?
  - To whom and how should these matters be addressed?
  - Does improving bezier curves and tools fit in the whole development 
process and global vision for the future roadmap?
  - Are the features asked for feasible (from both technical and 
ideological point of view)?
  - Are there any available developers willing/motivated/capable of 
working on such features?

The long version

I have been a Blender user for about seven years now, closely following 
development and lurking around the mailing lists and commits logs. What 
started out as an experiment mostly just for fun and curiosity, ended up 
becoming my main source of income for my freelance work. I am an 
architect working mostly in arch viz and rendering of architecture and 
interior design (you can see some of my early work here 
http://www.duarteramos.pt/home.html#ArchViz); for a long time I used it 
simply as a hobby, but lately I find myself relying more and more on 
Blender for my commercial work.
Bezier curve editing clearly is not on the same level of refinement as 
other areas of modeling, which is totally understandable given Blender's 
main target audience for whom what we currently have is probably more 
than enough. I however would love nothing more than to see them 
improved, and to such end I am willing to make a monetary donation to 
help in the development of new functionality, so I would like to know if 
the Blender Foundation would be willing hire/mentor a developer to work 
on such features; also since I am led to believe that you maintain a 
relatively open policy about who works on what based at least partially 
on personal interest, I guess it's also relevant to ask if there are any 
available developers or programmers, knowledgeable enough and motivated 
to work in such areas.

While modeling for architecture I find myself often using bezier curves 
as an actual modeling tool and final rendering geometry (lots of 
extrusion or path based geometries), my main aim here would thus be 
improving workflow by reducing the need for destructive operations like 
converting bezier curve objects to meshes. For now what I would 
initially like to propose would be:

  - The ability to assign material slots to curve segments,
  - The ability for the 'derived mesh generator' to use said material 
slots directly from curve object or from a bevel object in the generated 
  - Material slots for built-in bevels and rims, perhaps a system akin 
to the one used with the solidify modifier, with material index offsets(?)

 From the user interface point of view this would likely 'just' require 
making curve segments selectable (like mesh vertex, edge, face selection 
modes), and the ability to store material slot data to those segments. 
The 'derived mesh generator' would then have to be able to read these 
and apply them to the created mesh geometry (with bevels, extrusions and 

I have prepared a more detailed and complete list of improvements all 
related to Bezier Curves that I'd like to share. Most are probably too 
extensive or out of scope for this limited funding, and would likely 
break backwards compatibility, yet the time seems right for these topics 
seem to fit well into the 2.8 Workflow Sprint ( 
http://code.blender.org/2015/07/blender-2-8-the-workflow-release/ ) and 
the upcoming 2015 conference discussions, with more time to plan and 
less urge to keep backwards compatibility, allowing for deeper more 
radical changes. Depending on your opinion about the feasibility of this 
project and the developer time this limited funding could 'hire' maybe 
more topics can be tackled, or perhaps instead make some groundwork and 
set some solid foundations as basis for further improvements in this 
area if time/funding allows.

I was hoping this e-mail would also serve as publicity to get the 
attention of any additional potentially interested users or companies 
who may want to contributing with additional funding that can grant more 
development time.
I regard these changes as general improvements that will benefit every 
user, or at the very least not disrupt whoever doesn't need them. 
Hopefully they'll be valuable for numerous more artists outside 
architecture or construction industry, like professionals in the Motion 
Graphics industry like television, publicity, 2D graphic animation (for 
), especially if these improvements also affect text objects, or perhaps 
people in industrial design ( 
http://plus.google.com/101076135528517730950/posts/DHGBFYHoBcA )or 
precision modeling.

Only additional request/condition I would set is that all this gets made 
in a manner conducive to it's inclusion in Blender main development 
trunk, preferably within the time-frame for the 2.8 release if feasible. 
I just want to avoid seeing these features buried in some lost 
development branch, or have to use some outdated obscure custom build to 
take advantage of new features.

I apologize for the wall of text, I am very enthusiastic about this and 
eagerly awaiting to hear your opinions on these matters. Looking forward 
to your reply

Best regards
Duarte Ramos

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