Trouble with Image Elements

Hey there,

Been working on a project where I have 28 scanned drawings that I imported as frames on the same image element. These are just rough sketches that I’m cleaning up in TBS. Lately, TBS has been crashing on me a lot when I am working on this particular project. It only crashes when I am manipulating the image element, such as highlighting all the frames & trying to drag them to a new spot on the timeline, or even putting frames of the image element on & off the static light table.

Typically it starts off fine, but as I work on the project more & more each session the program gradually slows down & eventually crashes when I try to do one of the things mentioned above or even when I try a preview. (It doesn’t always crash on exporting preview & it’s not the QT issue in the sticky thread) Also I occassionally get an error message when exporting preview, can’t recall the exact wording now, but I’ll post it when I get home & see it again. It’s something to the effect of: TBS could not access “filename.tga” & the file name is always one or more of the image elements.

Is there any quick explaination for this behavior? I don’t feel like 28 scans should be bogging down the program & by extention my whole comp. Could it have anything to do with the resolution of the scans? I usually scan at 200 dpi. This is a relatively new problem for me, but it’s been going on for a couple weeks now & I have even tried a new project & bringing the scans in again but with the same results. Any suggestions will be much appreciated.

Just wondering if there are any suggestions or reasons for the things mentioned above. Still having the same problem, although less often now as I am almost done using the image elements, & the crashing seems to be directly related to them. I’m posting again as I had another crash this evening when copy/pasting a cell in the image element.

It’s not a huge deal, but it is an ongoing annoyance, and I just hope I don’t have the same behavior in the future as I do like using bitmaps.

I’m curious now too: When using bitmaps, is there any real reason to use image elements over Import/vectorize w/texture in a drawing element? Does it save file size? If not I can’t think of any reason for image elements anymore as they don’t “do” anything that vectorized w/texture drawings don’t. I know that’s off my initial topic, but I’m really curious now & starting to feel like I’m overlooking something very obvious about image elements ::slight_smile:

Anyway, I’d appreciate insights on either point. Thanks in advance.

Hi kdog,

Looks like nobody really has an answer.

I sometimes import and vectorize bitmap images (one of the really great features in TBS)
and cut them apart for cut out animation, they end up finaly all on their own layer.
(even I rather prefer to draw my own images inside of TBS, more individual…, and I can play around as much as I like with my favorite gradients).

I remember from past experience I had a few crashes with certain bitmaps, I guess either they were corrupt or just to big, so I became fairly careful with bitmaps.

Just a comparison, my hand-drawn santa on about 45 layers including pegs,
and of course with lots of gradients, is about 220KB,
my scanned in santa (import and vectorize with textures) on 6 layers is about 190MB.
(I feel, TBS is working already hard on this file).

I guess, to many bitmaps might overload any vector-drawing-application.


I didn’t respond because I don’t have a good answer for why you are having problems. I have never experienced what you described. I do on the other hand have numerous experiences where I have imported large numbers of images into image elements (300-500) full color pngs as well as hand drawn black & white scanned images. I rarely do a lot of manipulating of them once imported so that may be the source of the corruption issues you are encountering. -JK

Thanks for responding guys. I think you’re probably right, Nolan, I’m most likely making TBS work extra hard, so in the future I’ll try to “handle” my image elements much less & use them sparingly. But I must say that I’m a little dissapointed if all it takes is 28 scans to overload the program, hopefully that is not really the case. I realize TBS is a vector program, but it still seems like it should be able to handle more than 28 images.
My hunch is that either my scans were too big or the files were somehow corrupted & that is playing into it somehow, I have a hard time believing that a handful of scans is too much for TBS to deal with.

The software handles bitmap images just fine. As I said, Pat, I frequently import and use hundreds of pngs in a project, not 28 images but 300 to 500 images. I take video and convert it from quicktime movies to image streams and then import those image streams into TBS so that I can mix live action and animation together. It works like a champ. But I don’t try to edit of manipulate the bitmaps inside TBS. It really wasn’t designed for doing too much of that sort of thing. Photoshop or After Effects are designed for editing bitmap images. So I don’t know what is causing your problem, but don’t assume that TBS can’t handle bitmaps, it just may be how you are trying to manipulate the bitmaps inside the software. It does have issues with that so do those manipulations elsewhere. -JK

I didn’t mean to come off as bashing the program, that’s why I closed with

& since I’ve only had problems when I tinker with them it makes complete sense that that would be the root of the problem & not the # of images.

I guess my connotation was “iffy” in my last post because I really didn’t mean to come off as blaming/knocking tbs for not handling image elements. Even when I said I would be disappointed if that was the case I qualified it with an “if” & follwed it up with the quote above saying I doubted that was the case.

I’m not trying to be pissy here, just want to be clear on what I intended to mean/not mean. The internet can be a tricky beast as we all know, & it’s totally possible that my wording was bad.

Hi Pat,

Sorry for not being able to answer anytime sooner. I would need to give a look to your project to have a good idea of what is going on. There still are some things to do on our side to optimize the bitmap support but 28 images should not be that hard on your machine.

In any case send us an e-mail at and we will provide you an ftp link to upload the file.

Best regards,


Hey Ugo,

No sweat. I’m almost done with the project, & actually am done as far as my need for the image elements go, so it hasn’t been an issue since then.

Just to satisfy morbid curiosity though I’ll shoot you that email anyway. But it’s certainly not pressing.

Thanks much for your reply & assistance.