July 31, 2012

Daily Crapbook: Lonely Turtle and Life's Frustrations

The past week or so I've really been wearing down.  Inking Monkey Rag is going slowly, but that I could take if we weren't running into so many technical problems with ToonBoom AnimatePro.  The whole reason we invested in the software was for their peghole recognition feature, so one guess as to which feature is simply refusing to work.  There are more problems, but that is the stickiest one.  Without the optical registration, we have no production.  Every night Nate and I struggle to sift through help files, forum discussions, and send probably-sorted-into-spam-folder emails; I just get this sick feeling that this is where it all ends and Monkey Rag will be a perpetual work-in-progress.  So at the end of this day, I chose to draw a lonely turtle to express my frustration.  I bet in makes perfect sense in some culture...


Amanda Stoner said...

Is it because the registration can't see the peg holes, or something else entirely?

If it helps and you don't already have it, a piece of black electrical tape across the scanner area where your peg holes should be might help define them more?

I'm really not sure how it works. I just did everything in Photoshop when I was scanning stuff in. Maybe you could try TVPaint if you have it?

Stephen Culley said...

I agree with Amanda, it may be you need to put black card/tape behind the registration holes so they appear solid during scanning. Also when you scan, click "Custom Vectorization" and check that peg registration is enabled since by default, if I remember correctly in both Animate Pro / Harmony it is not enabled.


Stephen Culley said...

I should also add, that if you tape a registration bar and scan all your drawings in a scene in one go at the same time they will also line up inside of Animate... just another option.

Just rewatched your Pencils (finished) with my now wife :P (Thats going to take some getting used to) and she absolutely loves it, we both can't wait to see it inked and painted!

Joanna Davidovich said...

The peg holes are being picked up in the scans, its just the program won't register them and align them properly.

I would try TV Paint, but we already invested so much money into the ToonBoom suite, and before that it was DigiCel Flipbook. We can't afford to implement a new system again.

And we did tape a peg bar and scan into Photoshop for my previous film, but its takes so much time to scan cels in one at a time, thats why we've been breaking our heads trying to set up a workable professional pipeline in the first place.

Joanna Davidovich said...

I do want to say thanks for piping up with the advice though- I know I sound down in the mouth and I hate to advertise that mood... We've been struggling to come up with a workable pipeline for over a year and so this technical roadblock is incredibly discouraging. I'm looking for help anywhere I can get it, so please forgive me if I seem brusque and unpleasant. I'm just very near my wit's end.

Amanda Stoner said...

It's okay, I'm sure lots of people empathise with your situation. I sure do. Bummer it's not so easy to help out with, I wish I could suggest something else. But apart from setting up actions for batch processing, and aligning it all through Photoshop scene by scene, I'm kind of stumped as to what to suggest :(

Really hope you persevere and win out in the end though. We're all excited for this baby to fly free for you!

Stephen Culley said...

It sucks your having problems. I've got animate pro here and I havn't had a problem with optical registration. Don't know if this may help in anyway but I will post the link all the same.


Hope you solve your problem soon :(

David Nethery said...

Doesn't ToonBoom supply any actual technical support to their users (I don't mean a help menu or "Knowlege Base" but the ability to talk to a real person) ? I've heard from several friends and fellow teachers that have Animate Pro or Harmony that they get charged an annual 'technical support fee' to keep the software upgraded. If ToonBoom is charging you a tech support fee it seems like they should give you some dedicated phone time or Skype time with a technician to try to troubleshoot the problem with the ToonBoom optical registration failing.

I have some of my animation students who have reported the same problems with ToonBoom optical registration not working. (I teach online and I actually recommend and use TVPaint , so I don't have ToonBoom on my computer) From what I can see the Support forums on the ToonBoom website seem to be pretty much run by users helping other users (not much active participation or response from ToonBoom Support staff ) .

It's frustrating that such a fundamentally important function as peg registration doesn't work consistently and easily.

It's cold comfort for me to say to my students : "Well, I wish you have taken my recommendation and used TVPaint" , so I'm kind of stuck with telling them to search the ToonBoom forums for answers and keep trying .

David Nethery said...

I realized after I commented above that you had already made a follow-up post explaining that you had solved the problem with the help of a Toonboom rep.

Glad you got it solved. I look forward to viewing the tutorial you made.

Joanna Davidovich said...

No worries- I was just about to refer you to it. :) Nate did try the VueScan driver, but it didn't resolve any issues. But he got it workin' and at least all the scanning and processing is done now. I hope Nate's tutorial is helpful!