Author Topic: Layer's Channel Blend and Intensity Options in the Properties Window  (Read 6298 times)

Add layer's channel blend and intensity options in the properties window.

Many times I found myself wishing there were these options for each channel in the properties window. Some times I will even change the blend mode of the base color by mistake, thinking that I am changing it for other channels that I'm playing with in the properties window, only to realize that I haven't changed the channel in the drop down list in the layer window.

It would make sense to me to have these options there since we can play with all the channels of a "live" layer, such as fill, without having to change the channel in the layer window. Plus, changing the channel in the layer window just adds at least 2 more clicks for each change, which I find annoying and unnecessary in most of the cases.

I made an example, in the attach, of what this could look like.

Thanks.

Bump!

Agreed--it's somewhat frustrating to have to switch the channel for minor opacity edits every time I want to change this. Especially with a large document at 4k with a lot of generators, when changing the channel means refreshing the channels as well.

My first reaction is...   +1   :)

I need to think about it some more, but remembering my initial confusion (ignorance) on that functionality, and the people I've helped since then, it seems like this might make it much more intuitive.  Also, the idea of seeing all the values without having to cycle through the channel drop-down list seems like a potential productivity enhancement.

Question in return...  Is this a good use of valuable real estate?  Do people change that often enough to justify it taking up screen space, multiple times, all the time?  I don't use Painter seriously enough to answer that with any conviction.


Several days later...  Answering my own question...

It really doesn't take up any real estate.  It just cuts into the rather large "channel banner" so I support this whole-heartedly.
Last Edit: May 23, 2017, 03:27:57 pm
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Excellent idea! +1

+1 from me as well, this is an excellent idea!

Bump! Another +1 this is a great idea.

I took the initiative and posting the request in User Voice.
https://allegorithmic.uservoice.com/forums/261284-substance-painter/suggestions/19371592-improve-interface-for-channel-blend-and-opacity-in

I included a link back to this thread.

I also took the liberty of editing henriquedw's mock-up.  I didn't really change it, I just added an annotation.  I hope my notes are correct.  If not, let me know.

Last Edit: May 23, 2017, 03:55:30 pm
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The main downside I see to this is that the blending mode and opacity on a layer affects the layer+any effect applied to it (fill, levels, etc.)
Placing the blend mode and opacity on the fill layer option is wrong because it does not control the fill layer content only and can cause some headaches.

For example if you have a fill effect on your fill layer that replaces the roughness channel, you would expect the roughness settings of the fill effect to override the original fill layer's roughness setting. If the global opacity setting is here on the main fill layer, it becomes very hard to figure out what you are doing and what you are affecting when changing this opacity.

I agree that the current UI is far from ideal, but there may be a better way to improve it.

I appreciate the reply.

I'm not sure I understand how moving the Blend/Opacity controls to a different location would affect their behavior though.  What is the difference between selecting the "Height" channel (in the current UI) and adjusting the blend mode, or going to the "Height" channel area (in the mock-up) and adjusting the blend mode?

I'll have to think some more about what you wrote.  (I'm sure you're right.  I just need to ponder it some more before the light bulb turns on.)

THANK YOU for listening to our concerns, even when they're not the most critical ones on the planet.  Any improvement you can think of will be appreciated.
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It's more a question of UI consistency than a change of behavior. Having the layer blending parameters next to the fill options is confusing because they don't necessarily affect the same data, but we'll find a way to make this work a way or another :)

I'm glad that this is getting some discussion.

@justaviking - I appreciate your enthusiasm and taking the time to try to improve the initial idea. However, my intention was not to remove the blend/opacity options from the current place but to add and extra option. I think that removing those options from one place to another could limit the user in a different way and the idea was to expand the options.

@Jeremir Noguer - Hello. It took some time but I think I understand what you are saying. The blend/opacity on the current place controls the data of the layer + layer effects (basic all data of that layer for a specific channel, e.g. baseColor) while the blend/opacity on the suggested place would control only the single/specific input of that fill layer and not other data added to it. I had not realized that. I had the simple fill layer in mind.

Thanks for the feedback on this.


@henriquedw,

Sorry about that.  I misread your intention slightly, but I have no problem being corrected.  Also, your reply here helps me understand better what Jeremie was saying.

It will be interesting to see what the Allegorithmic team can come up with to address the usability while preserving the functionality.  As I said before, it nice to know they're listening, even to "minor" issues like this.


P.S.
@Jeremie, if you ever want to run a prototype (mock-up) past someone via PM, I believe you have a couple volunteers here.  :)
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Um... I have no idea what Jeremie was trying to say, but the proposed solution on the screenshots looks fucken RAD. This HAS to happen. I can't think about any misunderstanding there.

Oh wait I can: folders don't have those menues and folders should be tweakable too. Don't think there is much trouble adding such menues to the folders though.

Hi everyone,

I read all the thread about this blending accessibility issue. And I would like to propose my solution for UI and performance optimization.
My analysis is: today we have 2 big struggle about blending mode in painter:
 - You have to wait painter generating thumbmails when you want to change blending modes.
 - We don't have an overview of all blendings mode in one place.

We cannot put the blending information in fill property as Jeremy point it so what if we have another windows with the layer current blending modes? :)

Feel free to challenge my UI proposition.
P.S. I put highlight color for explanation. But it speak for itself (I hope).

And with a sub-layer like fill layer in a fill layer.

with the orange rectangle in the blending windows.