The troubles of a Harmony beginner

Hello everybody. A long while ago I bought Harmony 11, but found it very difficult to grasp. It’s not ideal to explore new software, while working on projects that have to meet their deadlines, so I was forced to keep working in the software I knew before and let Harmony collect digital dust on my harddrive. I have decided to give it another try, but already I’m running into many problems. Instead of trying to figure it out all by myself, I figured it’s better to open a thread here, where I can post questions from time to time and hopefully your help will make my journey into the world of Toom Boom a little less bumpy.

One of the things I’m trying to figure out, is how I can have multiple layers visible in my drawing view. I have several layers, some are reference/sketch layers I need to trace on a top layer for my final animation and I need to see these together, but only the selected layer is visible. I have a camera move in my camera view, so I can’t really draw there anymore.

Another thing I can’t figure out is how to split an exposure into two seperate drawings.

Also, I come from a TvPaint background. In TVP you can draw with a certain color, say a light blue, and draw on top of that with black in the same layer. Next, I can delete the blue with a tool and just have the black lines remain. Is this possible in Harmony?

  1. To see multiple layers, activate Light Table.

  2. I don’t understand the 2nd question. An exposure can be one to multiple frames with one to multiple drawings. Can you add more information describing what you want to do? It is 3:30am here…sorry.

  3. Yes you can select objects by color. With the Select Tool active there should be Select by Colour in the Tool Properties window and once activated you click an item that is the color you want to select everything in that color.

Thanks for the response.

  1. Got it, that works!

  2. No worries. What I mean is, I have 1 drawing that’s exposed for 10 frames. Let’s say I decided to alter the drawing at frame 5, so I end up with 2 seperate drawings. Right now, if I start to draw in the middle of an exposure, it just alters the original at frame 1. So I’m looking for a way to split the exposure. I’m doing frame by frame animation by the way.

  3. I see, that works. Is there a way to automate this? Let’s say I always sketch in the exact same blue color, can I make an action (like Photoshop) or even a button to delete this exact shade of blue?

Also, a new question, is there a way to have my eraser be larger then my drawing tool? The size seems to be linked to each other.

Thanks again for the help.

Is there anybody who can help me out with the questions above?

So, here is a more basic question I can’t quite figure out. What are the reasons I have 4 different Toonboom programs in my Toonboom folder? I have Draw, Play, Sketch and Stage. I thought they would all have their distinct different funtionality, but it turns out there’s a lot of overlap between them. Why is there no rigging available in “Draw”, but I can draw and rig in “Stage” at the same time? Is it because “Stage”, which seems to be the most complete program, is more demanding of your computersystem or something?

Is it possible to have the same shortcuts between these programs? I started of in Draw and made a lot of customized keyboard shortcuts, but went to Stage and I notice the shortcuts are all still the default options.


the light table can get cluttered very quickly using the Light Box like Ampy described, but he is correct. the layers have to hidden/shown or order to control what you see there. also keep in mind that any transformations you may have applied in teh camera view to a layer will be stripped out in the Drawing View so that MAY throw off any registration you may be attempting to build between layers if they are not properly pegged.

“splitting an exposure” is actually quite easy. duplicate the drawing! so if you have a drawing going from frame 1 -10 like you describe. lets say at frame 5 you want to alter it. select the exposure at frame 5, hit Duplicate drawing, and edit away.

for your third question, there’s actually a few ways to deal with this and its up to you what you feel comfortable with. 1) create a new color pot for you light roughs. your light blue sketch. then, create a new color pot for your tie-down. your darker color. you can now easily remove the blue from your sketch by lowering the opactiy of the blue color down to zero. this retains the actual sketch in case you wanted to refer back to it. 2) you could always use the sublayers of each layer for this purpose and show/hide what you need in the node view using the appropriate nodes. so you could do your light blue on the Underlayer and do your tie-down on the Line Art layer so forth. these ways are both nondestructive so you can refer back t your blue sketch if needed.

the third option is to use the Select tool and hit the red arrow in its properties to select by color. you can click on the blue in a drawing and it will grab all of the same blue. you can then delete it if you wish. this way it destructive because you are deleting your work and will only work if you are drawing with vectors.

hope that helps!

Yes, that was extremely helpfull, thank you very much! I come from a tvpaint background, so I am used to being able to make your own tools for specific needs. I was hoping harmony also had similar possibilities but it looks like this isn’t the case.

Another thing I noticed, everytime I reopen the software, every setting I’ve made like the pencil I’ve chosen, tool properties like draw beneath, or even “don’t show again” in certain popup windows seem to have been disregarded. So everytime I draw an invisble stroke in a new session, I have to “ok, don’t show again” the notification that those strokes are only visible in a certain view, etc. Is there a way to have toon boom save the program in the state it was when I closed it down?