To prepare for paperless animation with Harmony, you will need to complete the following tasks.

Setting Up Your Workspace
Setting the Scene Resolution and Length
Importing the Layout, Storyboard and Animatic
Importing the Background Elements
Creating the Drawing Elements

Setting Up Your Workspace

To sketch the animation directly in Harmony, you will mostly frequently need the Camera or Drawing view, the Xsheet or Timeline view, and the Tool Properties and Colour views.

While drawing and animating paperless animation, you can use the Workspace Manager to save a frequently used layout and name it Paperless Animation, for example.

For more information on setting up your workspace, refer to Chapter 2: Interface in the Fundmentals Guide.

Setting the Scene Resolution and Length

If the scene resolution was not already set by the digital layout artist or by a Toon Boom Storyboard Pro import, it is the next step to be accomplished. The layout artist, scene planner or animator will often take care of this task prior to the animation when working with paperless and cut-out animation.

It is important to set the resolution before you begin to set positioning and camera moves, as it may affect the ratio and composition.

Once you have set the resolution and frame rate, you must set the scene length by adding the right number of frames to the scene. You can set the scene length from the top menu. If you do not yet know the number of frames that will be needed, simply add some frames so you can draw different poses. However, if you only need to draw a background and one pose, you do not need to add more frames.

You do not need to do this step if you are importing your animatic in the QuickTime movie file format. The QuickTime import feature takes care of the scene length at the same time as the movie import.

Importing the Layout, Storyboard and Animatic

An imported animatic

To animate a scene, you need to import your layout, storyboard or animatic, depending on which technique you are using. The most popular method is the animatic.

If you created a digital layout prior to the scene animation, you will animate directly in that scene. In this case, there is no need to import references since they are already there.

Importing the Animatic

If you have an animatic available, you can import it. The animatic will give you the right timing to expose your animation poses.

There are three ways to import an animatic in a scene.

5. Click OK.

Importing the Background Elements

Imported background elements

Once the layout or animatic is set, you can import the background elements.

There are two types of background elements you can import: bitmap and vector-based.

Creating the Drawing Elements

Before beginning to draw in the Camera view, you must add a drawing element to the Xsheet or Timeline view. You will also need to select the appropriate cell in your drawing element.

To learn more about creating new elements, see Adding New Drawing Elements.

Creating the Drawings

Once your drawing elements have been created and your palettes are loaded, you are ready to create drawings for your animation. But before creating the drawings, you should familiarize yourself with the following operations.

There are two different ways to create drawings. You can create drawings automatically by letting Harmony do it for you or by typing names (Typing mode) in the Xsheet cells.