I’ve been looking through the newer builds of 2.5 quite a lot recently, and it’s amazing the amount of stuff that has been refined and added to our humble Blender. It really is a big leap forward.
However, one thing that I’ve noticed (and I’ve heard other people mention it, so I know I’m not the only one) is how the interface still looks cluttered. The buttons are strewn pretty much everywhere in all different sizes and shapes, and sometimes we’ve got one column, sometimes two, sometimes three. All this (and more) adds up to quite a confusing UI and makes the app look less “professional”. I know that the devs are hard at work doing wonderful things behind the scenes, so rather than just complain and state my opinion, I decided to get off my backside and try and help out.
This is the first of a few mockups I’ll be doing, to try and establish a better and more usable layout for 2.5. I’m not saying I’m taking over or anything like that, just merely trying to help out, and maybe some of these ideas will help the devs out. You never know.
Anyway, here’s my first proposal for the buttons window:
You’ll probably notice quite a few differences straight away:
- I have redesigned the buttons window header. Now it just has the icons for the different window modes. To switch to a fifferent window type (3D view, NLA editor etc) you simply right click on the header and select a window type
- Each panel now has a subtle header to break things up a little. I also removed the grab handles on the right edges of the panels, as I didn’t feel that they were needed
- The context panel now has a different design to better represent the hierarchy of the selected object / material. It also lists the blend file the object is in, and so works well with linked objects
- The transform panel has been redesigned, now each axis is in its own column to help users easily find it. I felt that this was an easier way to present things and also it removed some of the clutter from the panel
- For the display properties checkboxes, I redesigned them into a checkable list box. This saves space and also groups the options together very nicely
- Each panel has only one coulmn, which helps to organize the information and makes it easier to find options and buttons
Once again, I’m not trying to say that I know better than the devs or anything. I’m just posting a design suggestion to give ideas and see what people think. I fully respect the devs for all their hard work and commitment!
So what do you think of this layout guys? Do you feel it would work better? Any comments or crits would be awesome.
Thanks and happy blendering!