Import Images expands image dimensions

App: Storyboard Standard 8.50, Mac OS X

Import Image brings in images and expands them to the stage size - even a small icon becomes a big pixellated mess, and I’m left to guess the right dimensions in sizing it back down.

This doesn’t seem like behavior that anyone would design. If I have a 64x64 transparent-background PNG of a beach ball, then that’s what I’m after in the storyboard.

Am I missing something? Is there a solution?

(Add that no copy-paste in of images is a pretty glaring omission.)
tks & regards
storyboard newbie

PS Same behavior on 30-day-eval version of SB Pro


The import bitmap feature was mainly done to import full background or references so what you are currently experiencing is normal. If you want to have the element to be small in your scene you might want to center that element in your bitmap and make the rest of the bitmap being alpha and empty so that the image has the same resolution as the scene.

As for the copy paste what exactly do you mean?



Well, it’s not an “import bitmap” feature, it’s an “import images” feature. The product team may have thought that the purpose was background or references, but from my perspective (n00b storyboard guy, very very experienced software guy) the purpose is to let me use existing images.

The user is always right, right? If I want to storyboard “bus crosses the street” why not use an existing bus image if I’ve got it? Asking me to center the bus in a big graphic and alpha the rest is a big pain and costs me WAY too much time…breaks flow…hence it’s a bad thing.

I think the “do everything in this app” paradigm is restrictive.

Copy-paste is the same thing. Why can’t I copy an image (bitmap or otherwise) and paste it into the storyboard? Or copy an image from the storyboard and paste it into (for example) a document. From what I can tell, the clipboard in SB only works within SB.

“do everything in this app” strikes again.

I think you’re restricting the range of possibilities, and I think you’re assuming (incorrectly) that the toolset in the app is adequate to all possible storyboarding needs. What if I like drawing in Freehand, or want to touch up something in Photoshop? What if i want to use Visio objects to storyboard?

Don’t get me wrong, it’s got many great things. Missing something this -basic-, though, is just maddening.

thanks for the response

If the intent is to have a bitmap bus crossing the street then you should import a transparent alpha bus bitmap (transparent where the bus isn’t)
and use the first/last frame transform tools to define the size and position
of the bus within the camera frame for initial and final positions. The initial size that the bitmap comes in at is irrelevant since it may be resized at will.

If the bus is a pixelated mess as the full size imported image, it will look fine once it is scaled to its intended use size within the panel, provided of course that the resolution of the imported image is high enough relative to its use within the project’s movie resolution.

I find this aspect frustrating too.

The example I have is that I have PNGs of each character in the TB library - all carefully scaled to the correct relative sizes so the board artist can drag them to the panel and use as reference. The problem at hand is that once dragged in they all scale to the height of the frame rather than remaining relative.

I’m new to TB - is there a preference somewhere that turns off the scaling to frame size and brings in the elements at their actual size?

I’m have been evaluating Toon Boom Storyboard lately so I’m not an expert, but what I did was too make sure all my images had the correct diminsions and rough composition first, which was easy to do in photoshop using layers. You can also run photoshop batch actions(on multiple files) to resize image or canvas dimensions if you need to.

It’s not a all in one solution, but I had to do use this workflow in the other storyboard application I’m evaulating as well(toonz Story Planner Pro). So you just need a little pre-planning :wink: