How to Organize Big Projects

Hello! I’m a long-time Flash user and I’m currently trying to make the switch over to Toon Boom. There’s a few roadblocks I’m hitting along the way, and I’m wondering if I need to change my workflow or not.

Specifically, it seems the timeline gets very confusing very quickly compared to Flash, due to features like Pegs and effects and whatnot, and it seems pretty daunting to have multiple different complicated shots in one file. In Flash I’m mostly used to breaking big projects up into files of no more than 30 seconds long, with many different shots in each file. Are there organization methods in Harmony that make this a viable approach, or is it designed more for giving each shot its own Scene?

I’ve tried Harmony for the free trial period and loved sketching out some short animations, but I’m hoping to make several-minute-long animations and am a bit overwhelmed at the idea of splitting shots up into a ton of different files. I like having several shots in one file so that I can quickly check how the shots relate to each other, and would love to know if this workflow can be preserved or if I have to drop it and try a new method. Tips are appreciated!

Hi,

you could use symbols for this nearly as you would do in Flash.
Harmony’s symbols also have their own inner timeline and node view level.

The thing that you might feel uncomfortable with is that Harmony’s symbols don’t have the different play modes (Single Frame, Play Once, Play Loop). The only play mode available is ‘Single Frame’.

Here are some other threads dealing with the same topic:
http://forums.toonboom.com/harmony/general-discussion/working-multiple-scenes
http://forums.toonboom.com/harmony/general-discussion/multiple-scenes

Best regards

You should organize your projects in shots the same way that you would do when making a live action film. You don’t normally edit on the camera, that is, shooting the film sequentially as if you would take everything from the camera and there you have your finished film. You get the takes/shots and work on them separately and edit them together on an editing software. Having many shots on a single Harmony file is a bit like “editing on camera”, you’ll end up with very heavy files complicated to navigate. And if you need to apply some complex effect to just one shot you don’t want to have a project with a bunch of shots in it.

There are cases in which you might want to make a single-shot film, but even in those cases, depending on the duration, it should be better to break the film in shots so that you can have a more lighter and organized workflow (copying positions from the end of one shot to the beginning of the other, etc.)

This is, of course, a general process for making films not just Harmony-related.


Luis Canau