Blender VSE : Proxies and opacity

Hello everybody,

In the VSE, I’m used to put a scene strip over another (one on the channel 1 and the other on the channel 2 for instance), and to enable the “alpha over” blend setting to mix it in the Preview windows and in Renders.
Today, I’m practicing the rebuild proxy fonctionnality in the Sequencer and so far, it’s working well for what it’s supposed to do !..
But I’m asking a question …

As the result of proxies are Jpg files sequence, times I enable the function, the “Alpha over” blend setting becomes useless because it was using opacity information coming from the Scene. Virtually, it’s replaced by a Jpg sequence strip which doesn’t have an alpha channel and so, the preview window setted on Proxy only show plain frames, without opacity.

I’m conscient the opacity will come back during the render, whichfor I will disable the proxies, but what’s the purpose of the proxies if I can’t see a real preview in Sequencer’s window, but only the higher channel ?

Please, how to deal with it ? I suppose I’m not working the way I should …

It seems I’ve found a starting point with meta-strip, but it’s not really optimal…

In fact, grouping strips in metas and put the proxy on it allows to keep the blend relation (my alpha over) between the strips it groups.

Stay to see the way it can be well integrated in the workflow, and I noticed several bad points :

  • a meta strip takes automaticaly the size of the longer strip it includes, so I’m globally contrained to build biggest proxies.

  • If I need to update the content of a strip included in a meta, it seems i’ve no other choice to “unmeta”. Then I have to re-group it and rebuild the meta-strip proxy :confused:

You make really good points. How much keying do you need to do? Perhaps you could try the VSE to nodes script and proxy the node scene instead. You won’t have to render all the media but will have to render full res key.

Hello, thank you to answer ! I’ve learned a lot on your blog ! thanks for it too …

How much keying do you need to do? Perhaps you could try the VSE to nodes script and proxy the node scene instead. You won’t have to render all the media but will have to render full res key.

If by keying you mean mixing sequences with blend parameter, It’s not really defined. I will try too deal with the proposition you’ve made to see what it can bring … it seems to bring a potential solution for smaller proxies but how it’s supposed to keep the opacity settings between strips ? is there a way the “full res render” you’re talking includes alpha channel ?

If you’re interested by the way I’ve gone :

I’m actually working on preparing a blender workflow to realise a motion graphic animation mixing isometric 3d scenes with orthographic 3D/2D scenes (2D SVG characters + texts). No footage.

I’m currently testing the old and new features of blender to achieve that. I’m coming from After Effects, used to think with “composition” imbrication principe that i’m applying to Blender scenes (that’s the point i’m not sure to be on the right way, although I got some results)

As a test, I’ve created a first scene “background”, a second “3d-isometric”, a third “2d-characters” and a fourth “texts”. “texts” has to be over “2D-characters” which has to be over “3d-isometric”, which has to be over “background”, blended by the alpha values of the scenes.

To test the scene imbrication, I’ve intentionally added one more level of imbrication than i needed by creating a new “scene-01” and added in its VSE two overlaped scene strips ( “background” on channel 1 + “3d-isometric” on channel 2). I’ve put the “alpha over” setting on 3d-isometric and the preview windows show me the 2 scene mixed.

I’ve done the same with “scene-02” and 2 other strips (“2d-characters” on channel 1 + “texts” on channel 2). Text appears over 2d characters in the preview window. Ok.

To this point, all is displaying fine without lag.

Finally I’ve created a “Main” scene and I’ve added in its VSE overlaped strips of the scene-01 and the scene-02. Enabling “alpha over” the top scene, I can see the result mix of my 4 initial scenes but there’s a lot of lag and I can’t work anymore. That’s why I’ve begun to deal with Proxies, with wisch I loose the lags but also my opacity settings …

The questions staying are :

  • Am i thinking wrong structuring my project as I’m attempting to do ?

  • Why Blender is displaying so fine the mixed scenes at the first level of imbrication while it’s so laggy at the second (in the “Main” scene) ?

  • Are the proxies really adapted to the type of work I’ve to do ?

Proxies are not designed to accommodate alpha. Are you currently mixing scene strips using glsl rendered preview? Can you scale the resolution down to improve performance?

Ok, proxies are inadapted.
“GLSL rendered preview”, do you mean the “OpenGL preview” option in the VSE preview windows properties ? Visually and efficiently, nothing changes if I enable or disable it.
For the résolution Scale, my final output will be 1080p but all my scenes are now set at 50%, during production.