Adding Drawings within Groups


sorry if this has been covered but a long session of Googling didn’t yield any answers so I figured I’d try here.

In the process of animating in Harmony, I created a group for my roughs and for my clean lines. It seems to work fine if I want to add to/edit existing drawings within the scenes, but if I try to create a new drawing it won’t let me do anything to the layer. The brush tool shows a no sign on the mouse, and if I try drag the layer out of the group, draw, then drag it back, it turns invisible on that layer within the group.

Is this me misunderstanding how groups work? I essentially just want the groupings to act as folders - is this how they’re meant to work?


What level of Harmony are you using?

I duplicated your experience.

It has to do with Composites (at least I think this is the case so far).

I could draw in the Drawing view but it would not appear in Camera view.

I was eventually able to get the drawing layer to accept art and also be visible in Camera view but I could not repeat the process.

The only thing I could reliably repeat was to remove the group then make sure the layer was connected to a single composite.

Initially the new drawing layer comes in with a different node arrangement within the group. Even if I manually rearranged everything I could not get around the behavior. (I did it once but could not repeat the process when attempting to test whether I had figured it out).

So for the time being I would remove the group and keep track of things using color swatches. Add and work on the new drawing layers then group layers afterwards.

Hopefully someone else will have a solution.

I don’t have enough time today to experiment on this.

Harmony Premium 12

Would you say this is it functioning normally or is it maybe an error?

I think for now I’ll use your workaround but I’d really like to use groupings in the future to be able to turn the roughs off in one click.

I don’t know enough about what is going on to think of it as an error.

I suspect it is a matter of understanding how groups work. Perhaps there is a valid reason for things behaving like they are? Yet the documentation does not supply information that addresses this behavior.

The sections on Groups do not describe anything like this. It could be related to something else so it would be there instead of in the Group area. But you have to know what this is first. If you do not know enough, especially a term that is used in the software, you are lucky if you can search for enlightening information.

Why something does or does not act a certain way is rarely provided in documentation. Understanding “why” would help us fill in other gaps aside from understanding what is in front of us at the moment. Not providing a thorough explanation is common in software however Toon Boom has deliberately neglected to honor rules of consistency. There are instances of conflicting definitions and applications of processes. This makes it extra difficult to figure things out on your own because logic cannot be used.

Observing the Timeline, the new layer goes to a different place when dropped into the existing group. You only see it with the triangle symbol. The other items are within the + symbol of the group.

Observing the node view, the new layer receives its own composite whether you choose to add a composite or not. Manually adjusting this new layer to look identical to the existing content does not solve the problem. Somehow I was able to do it but I did not notice which was the key gesture I made. I could not repeat the process.

If you select a layer within the group and use Edit / Group / Ungroup Selected Layers the layer physically remains within the group. The same function accessed via Right-clicking is grayed out but it is still available through Edit / Group / Ungroup Selected Layers. This does not make sense.

I think I have found a solution. It has to do with the node-view and the composite, new drawings don’t seem to link from the group to the composite, so creating that link seems to solve the issue. I find it to be an odd problem, I’m not entirely sure why groups need to be handled in this way, I really would prefer groups to just be organisational, but I’m a beginner to Toon Boom, so I’ll probably discover its benefits sooner or later.

I’ve been pulling my hair out trying to figure this problem out. The ONLY SOLUTION I figured out was as simple as UNGROUPING it and add what I needed to add then group it back again. It worked, but the nodes are all over the place cause of the effects I’ve already added on the group. But it works. I hope you have a better solution if you do. Please share!

Hi! While exploring some options within Toon Boom, I think I’ve found the solution: instead of grouping the layers in the default way (CTRL + G), we need to group them with composite (CTRL + SHIFT + G). I don’t know what composite means but anyway, let me know how it went for u :slight_smile:
I also made a video showing how it’s done. Here’s the link: