Reference > Menus > Main > Layer

Layer Menu

The Layer menu lets you manipulate layers, create new layers, change the resolution, and reset the transformation and pivot.

Command Description

New

Vector Layer

Adds a vector drawing layer to the current panel, in which you can draw with the whole suite of vector drawing tools available in Storyboard Pro. Most of the artwork in vector layers is made of vector shape information, which is lightweight and scalable.

Bitmap Layer

Adds a bitmap drawing layer to the current panel, in which you can draw using the bitmap drawings tools available in Storyboard Pro. Artwork in bitmap layers is saved as a grid of pixels, each of which storing their colour information. It is not scalable and is more heavyweight, but may be better suited for textured artwork.

Group Layer

Adds a group layer to the current panel. Groups can contain one or several layers, and even other groups. If you manipulate or animate a group, all of its elements will be subjected to the same transformations as the group itself.

Copy Layers

Copies the currently selected layers to the clipboard, so that you can paste the copies in the same panel or into a different panels.

Paste Layers

Pastes the layers copied with the Copy Layers command into the current panel.

Duplicate Layers

Instantly creates a copy of the selected layer and puts it in the current panel.

Rename Layers

Allows you to rename the selected layer.

Delete Layers

Deletes the selected layer.

Change Layer Opacity

Allows you to set the opacity level of the selected layer.

Change Bitmap Layer Resolution

Allows you to set the canvas size and pixel density of the selected bitmap layer. It may be required to expand a layer's canvas if you intend to move, shrink or zoom out on the layer. It may also be necessary to increase a bitmap layer's pixel density before you draw in it if you intend to scale it up or to zoom in on it. Otherwise, the artwork is liable to appear pixelated.

Merge Selected Layers

Merges the selected layers into a single layer.

NOTE: If all the selected layers are vector layers, the merged layer will be a vector layer. If at least one of the selected layer is a bitmap layer, the merged layer will be a bitmap layer.

Merge Layers

Opens the Merge Layers dialog box, which allows you to merge the selected layers into a single layer and gives you more options than the Merge Selected Layers command.

Group Selected Layers

Puts the selected layers inside a new group layer.

Ungroup Selected Layers

Breaks the selected group layer. All its layers will be outside the group, and the group will be deleted.

Convert to Vector Layer

Convert a bitmap layer to a vector layer. If any artwork is in the bitmap layer, it will be converted to a vector object with a bitmap texture inside it.

Convert to Bitmap Layer

Converts a vector layer to a bitmap layer. If any artwork is in the vector layer, it will be flattened and rasterized into a single bitmap canvas.

Convert to Drawing

If you have imported an animated template or a template containing multiple elements, for example, a template created in Harmony, or a template made from importing a Flash Movie (.swf) file, you might not be able to edit it with the drawing tools. This is because the template is not a simple drawing layer. This option will convert the layer containing a template to a flat drawing layer that can be edited freely. It can also be used to convert a group of layers into a single drawing.

NOTES
  • In Storyboard Pro, a drawing layer can only contain one drawing for the whole panel, whereas a template may be animated and contain several frames with different drawings in each frame. If you convert an animated template to a drawing, the appearance of the template at current frame will be used to generate a static drawing layer.
  • Converting a template or a group to a drawing will discard any 3D object they contain.

Share Drawing

Adds the selected drawing to the library of shared drawings, which can be opened, navigated and edited in the Library view. You can then import the drawing into other panels. Since the drawing is shared, making changes to that drawing in one panel will apply the same changes to that drawing in all the other panels it was added to.

Unlink from Shared Drawing

If you have a shared drawing in a panel, and you want to make changes to that drawing without affecting it in other panels where it is shared, this option will convert the shared drawing into its own independent drawing in the current panel only. The drawing will remain shared in other panels where it was added.

Apply Effect on Bitmap Layer

Blur

Applies a simple blurring effect to the selected bitmap layer.

Radial Zoom Blur

Applies a blur that follows one of several preset movement patterns to the selected bitmap layer.

Directional Blur

Applies a blur that follows a specific direction, in a straight line, to the selected bitmap layer.
Generate Auto-Matte Opens the Auto-Matte dialog box, enabling you to fill in sketch objects, hiding anything that is behind the object. You can create new layers by generating auto-matte of selected vector layers. This menu option is grayed-out if no layers are selected, or if none of the selected layers are non-empty vector layers.

Arrange

Bring Layer to Front

Moves the selected layer in front of all other layers in the current panel.

Bring Layer Forward

Moves the selected layer up one level in the current panel.

Send Layer Backward

Moves the selected layer down one level in the current panel.

Send Layer Back

Moves the selected behind all other layers in the current panel.

Select Next Layer

Selects the next layer in the layer list.

Select Previous Layer

Selects the previous layer in the layer list.

Lock/Unlock Layers

Locks or unlocks the selected layer. When a layer is locked, it is protected from changes to its artwork and from transformations.

Show/Hide Layers

Shows or hides the selected layer. A hidden layer does not appear in the storyboard and cannot be changed or transformed.

Toggle Background Layers

Sets the selected layer as a background layer. Background layers are not taken in account when Onion Skin is enabled.

Align Layer to Camera

When working in 3D, if the camera has been rotated on the x-axis or y-axis, drawing layers will no longer be facing the camera. This instantly rotates the layer so that it faces the camera.

Copy End Layer Position to Start

Uses the position of the last frame from the current layer and pastes it over the position of the first frame.

Copy Start Layer Position to Start

Uses the position of the first frame from the current layer and paste it over the last frame.

Spread Layer Motion

You can spread the current layer motion across all panels in the same shot or a specified number of adjacent panels after the current panel in the same shot.

A new layer will be added and the drawing will be duplicated for those panels that do not have the same name in the defined range.

Reset Transform

Resets the selected layer to its default position, size and angle.

Reset Selected 3D Sub-Objects

Resets the selected sub-objects of a 3D model to their default position, size and angle.

Pivot

Reset Pivot

Places the pivot back at its default position at the centre of the camera frame.

Center Pivot on Selection

Places the pivot at the centre of a selection.

Set Layer Layout as Default

Once you set up a layer layout in a panel, you can select that panel and save this layout as the default layout to use whenever a new panel is added.