Making UiLists in Blender

Hello fellow Pythonistas, in this tutorial we’ll find out how to use UILists in our scripts and add-ons. If your users need to handle large amounts (or variable) amounts of data, this is the widget you want.

While you could just use a loop to draw widgets UILists have several benefits over custom-made solutions, like filtering, searching and managing space correctly (less scrolling). It’s also how it’s done throughout the UI, so you can stay consistent with the rest of Blender.

By the way, I’m assuming you already know your way around the BPY and Python. This is an intermediate tutorial.

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Render+ 0.5

Hello fine folk, there’s a smell of new Render+ in the air.

New features

  • Batch Rendering
  • Automatically move to the next rendering slot
  • Code clean-up

Batch render is probably the largest feature I’ve worked on for R+. It can override scene settings and do custom frames, sizes, renderlayers, cameras and more. All from the comfort of a panel in the render properties.

I’m still not 100% happy about it though, since I couldn’t get past some limitations of the API that make the interface freeze while rendering. I’m trying some ideas to get around it but it will be pretty involved (if possible).

If you’ve already bought version 0.4 you can login into your account and go to the downloads page to get the new version.

Get Render+ in the Blender Market!

Abstract Blob intro

I’ve recently spent some time learning rigging from the Humane Rigging videos in Blender Cloud and started to wonder how they could be used for mograph.

Nathan Vegdahl makes some interesting points about automating as much as possible to avoid counter-animating and keeping a low keyframe count. All the rotation movements in this animation are driven, only scales and the logo glitching are fully keyed. It’s still a little messy, but way easier than keying everything!

Continue reading Abstract Blob intro

TopoType

Here’s a type animation following topography lines. Just experimenting with curves and camera moves in Blender.

This will animate a lot better once 2.71 is released (with the new bevel animation options). Too bad the buildbot build was crashing on me though, I had to render this with 2.70 (at least for now) :P

Continue reading TopoType

Adwaita Neutral Theme

Here’s an alternative version of the Adwaita GTK theme (default in Gnome Shell) I’ve made. I changed the dark theme so it has neutral grey colors, instead of the green hues in the original.

My main reason for making this was using the dark theme with gThumb and MyPaint (hopefully Inkscape and GIMP in the future too!). The green hues of the original can affect the way you percieve hues in the image/video you’re working on, since color is interpreted in context (in this case the UI). For design work it’s always better to use neutral greys, and a brightness that matches the context where your work will be seen as good as possible.

Captura de pantalla de 2014-04-15 18:34:54

gthumb

The light version is not touched and it’s based on 3.10 (but will update soon!).

You can find the theme in Github, or download it directly.

To install extract the files to /home/[user]/.local/share/themes/adwaita-neutral (use CTRL+L in nautilus to input this folder). You’ll need Gnome Tweak Tool installed to change the GTK theme (more about Gnome Tweak Tool).

If you want to know more, read about color theory on Wikipedia

Justifying like a boss in Scribus

I’ve been working on a magazine project for the last couple of months and sadly I found that there aren’t that many tutorials for Scribus, specially on the topic of justifying. So if you’re also wondering how to get good justified text in Scribus 1.4, read on!

Let’s start with setting our text style right. Open up the styles editor and set the paragraph style for your text (usually the default) with these settings:

scribus2

  • Minimum space width: 92%
  • Gylph extension: 95% – 100%
  • Tracking: -2% (this is in the character tab)

Always let your text flushed, unless you’re required to have it fully justified. It can save you a lot of spacing issues and in many cases just looks better.

Make sure you have hyphenation enabled while you type: open the preferences and go into “Hyphenation and Spelling”. If you import text, make sure to hypenate it (Extras > Hyphenate Text).

This should give you a pretty good base. Now comes the fun part: going through all your text to find overly spaced lines, rivers, widows and orphans.
Continue reading Justifying like a boss in Scribus

Support Gooseberry!

I think at this point most people have already heard about Gooseberry, the new Open Movie project by the Blender Foundation. It seems many are still undecisive or have decided not to support it. To those of you, I want to explain what makes Gooseberry so cool.

What you get

  1. The previous 3 open shorts with all the extras: concept art, posters, quad splits, etc.
  2. Access to all the source files for the shorts.
  3. Of course, access to the final movie and all of it’s assets as well. How awesome is that? Image being able to inspect any scene or use any model from an animated movie!
  4. Access to behind the scenes as the movie is being made.
  5. Hours and hours of training material (valued at €170).
  6. Have Blender stress-tested on a large scale production to highlight bugs, pitfalls and performance issues. Not just that, the development team will be working alongside the artists on these issues as they come up.
  7. Fund new features: the tentative roadmap includes asset management tools, improvements on fur, simulations, particles and sharing of internal CPU and GPU. And you can bet Cycles will be getting faster too.
  8. Support the development of Blender Cloud (future collaboration tools, etc.)

A steal for only €45. Hell, just the Painting course from David Revoir is worth it! And if you can swing €175 (the full 18 month cloud subscription) you’ll get your name in the credits. Yup, your name… in a movie, without doing any work!.

Why it matters

You’re also supporting an alternative to the concentration of the industry on a few large studios and their abuses. You may have already heard the example of Rythm and Hues: The company that won an oscar for their VFX work in Life of Pi, and went bankrupt the next week. (if you haven’t check this video)

In the end it’s about supporting Free Culture and Free Software. It’s not only about getting free stuff you know :)

Participate!