Gallery, Cliparts, Shapes & Outlines

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Gallery, Cliparts, Shapes & Outlines

Post by Herbert123 »

I am working on (and with) libraries of components for comic work, GUI work, scrapbooking, and other things, and I am running into a couple of issues in PhotoLine:

[1] The Cliparts panel can be used to add components, which is great. But I am adding so many that the list grows too long and I have various (many) categories of graphic elements.

So I want to create subfolders or subgroups in the Cliparts panel. But that is not supported and not possible.

Loading each library via the load option in the context menu is too slow and with many different libraries it becomes too much of a hassle anyway. And a typical project would require simultaneous use of various component libraries, so the Cliparts panel in its current shape and with its current limited functionality is just not up to the task.

And I run into the same issues when dealing with collections of Patterns, Textures, Gradient, Brushes, or Document Colours.
It's almost impossible to work with when dealing with scores and scores of these things.

Then I thought: wait, we have a Gallery panel! Perfect for this!

[2] The Gallery panel does offer categories, but those categories seem set in stone: it isn't possible to add your own categories and add objects like cliparts.

It does work for actions, which is nice. And with actions I can add a new category in the Gallery.
But it is not possible to add graphic components (like the Cliparts panel ones) into the Gallery. It is also not possible to drag objects out of the Gallery into a document.

it's also impossible to re-arrange things within the Gallery panel. It's all set in stone.

So not an option either. :-(

[3] The Mini-Browser panel I tried next. I have it open at all times for organizing my latest files.

This sort-of works. It is possible to create favourites in the main browser (not in the mini-browser, though, which is really awkward), and the mini-browser will display folders.

It's also possible to drag the files as a placeholder, which is nice.

But the simple browser is entirely file structure based, and not a replacement for a proper Assets/Cliparts panel in my opinion: what if I wanted to categorize one asset/component as a member of more than one category? A "rounded text caption frame" would be part of not only the GUI category, but also the Comic Assets category for me.

And working with the simple browser is rather awkward too: while I can set favourites (in the full Browse panel) I cannot show those favourites as a simple list to quickly browser between them.

All in all, PhotoLine will not allow me to prepare easy-to-use libraries of assets for it. Which is a shame, because we users cannot share these with other PL users either. Well, we sort-of can, but the lack of usability makes this so very hard!

Ideally the "cliparts" panel would be renamed "Libraries", and it would allow the user to:
[1] Drag any object/layer into it
[2] Add a simple label that can be renamed
[3] Group these into categories. Use an accordeon GUI to collapse and open Library Items**
[4] Place these objects into a file either as a link to the original, as a placeholder, or as a copy.
[5] Edit the original library item, and all linked instances will update in the document(s)
[6] Add not only objects, but also layer styles, object styles, fill and stroke styles, outlines, Shapes, Actions, Patterns, Textures, Gradients, colour schemes/palettes, guides...
[7] Easily browse and search for library items and use quick search/filter options

In short: consolidate and combine all the separated functionality of Cliparts, Outlines, Curves, Layer style collections, Paper formats, pattern collections, texture collections, colour schemes, Gallery actions, and so on into one easy-to-use Library panel.

** Ideally allow the user to drag out library item groups as panels! Just imagine: the current Patterns, Textures, Gradients, Document Colours, etc. would still continue to work as they do now, with an option for sub-groups via accordeon GUI behaviour.

So everything can be managed in one Library panel and the user would still have to option to use separated panels for Library Item Groups as well.

Anyway, even if you do not like my proposal for all its ideas, I do hope everyone understands that the current options are not coping well at all for assets management in PhotoLine.

At this point I'd be happy enough with an option to group and categorize Cliparts, patterns, textures, gradients, layer styles, and document colours in their existing panels. Because I would like to be able to work with libraries of assets in PhotoLine, but the only way I found that works okayish is to just open a File Explorer window and drag stuff in. The existing built-in options are just waaay too limited and counter-productive.

For ideas just have a quick look at Illustrator's Library panel. I would DIE for something similar in PhotoLine. Really. But please without all that Cloud nonsense ;-) Just allow us users to share libraries or collections of useful content and allow us to work efficiently and easily with those collections of objects, patterns, etc.

You know? Call them "Collections" with "Items". A "Collection Item". "Sammlungen" oder "Kollektionen". "Sammlungsstück"

Sorry for the long rant. It's something that's been bothering me for a long while now in PhotoLine. I just want to organize my stuff and PhotoLine won't allow me to do it efficiently or easily.
System: Win10 64bit - i7 920@3.6Ghz, p6t Deluxe v1, 48gb (6x8gb RipjawsX), Nvidia GTX1080 8GB, Revodrive X2 240gb, e-mu 1820, 2XSamsung SA850 (2560*1440) and 1XHP2408H 1920*1200 portrait
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Re: Gallery, Cliparts, Shapes & Outlines

Post by Herbert123 »

One more observation related to this:

Every other design application nowadays offers large built-in libraries of pre-made assets. And third-parties offering free and commercial libraries of assets.

Even if we as users wanted to do the same for PhotoLine, it's just not feasible to even attempt, because it is impossible to efficiently and easily organize and access those!

I have assets that I'd like to share with other PL users. But it's A) not possible to organize these properly, nor B) easy for other users to make use of them either. So what's the point in even trying?

It's a missed opportunity! :-) As a design app we want an open and simple to use architecture to enable an ecosystem of users sharing stuff. That that hasn't happened yet with PhotoLine is, in my opinion, mostly hampered by the lacking functionality in PhotoLine to enable us to do so.

Because PhotoLine is otherwise so powerful and flexible, it's really surprising to see that it falls flat on its face in this regard. It's stifling the potential of PhotoLine at this point in my opinion.
System: Win10 64bit - i7 920@3.6Ghz, p6t Deluxe v1, 48gb (6x8gb RipjawsX), Nvidia GTX1080 8GB, Revodrive X2 240gb, e-mu 1820, 2XSamsung SA850 (2560*1440) and 1XHP2408H 1920*1200 portrait