Colored Wireframe discussion

(pacermike) #41

I’m an artist and I agree with him.

For me and most every artist I’ve ever worked with, wirecolor has been a very simple method of organizing your scene when in wireframe mode, or for objects without materials on them. That’s it. Dead simple. The debate and over-complication of the feature and the fierce opposition to it from some on the Blender side was always totally baffling to me.

(BTolputt) #42

I mentioned the “smart system” in about the same level of detail as was given and in context as to the well documented and Pablo verified reason as to why coloured wireframes were vetoed last time. Once again, the fact you cannot be bothered looking into the in-depth conversations that were held with developers at the time does not make everything you don’t want to hear “conspiracy”.

I’d be surprised if all artists would agree with anyone on what they wanted for any feature. There was, however, enough agreement amongst artists four years ago to accept the functionality offered by Campbell’s patch over “nothing at all”. I’m willing to bet a week’s wages that is still the case. :wink:


What are the use cases for colored wireframes? I had a look at the old thread, well let’s say it is messy and finding something useful in there is kind of time consuming.

(marcatore) #45

I’m one of those who likes a colored wireframe option.

I still hope that it will added in a future…I hope a near future.
As already discussed, it’s an easy and fast way to organize the scene.
the problem with the theme colour against wireframe colors is not a problem: leave the viewport background as grey like now and you’re ok.

In any case, the new random color visualization mode is a good step in that direction, I hope they’ll do the next one :slight_smile:


In which situation exactly would that be useful for you?

Edit: What exactly do you mean by “organizing the scene”? Would you move the objects around while being in wireframe mode?

(FinalBarrage) #47

Moved thread to Blender 2.8.

(JuhaW) #48

Back then 2014 they were good enough. Now every faceless objects on scene share the same (wireframe) color no matter your viewport settings (bounding box, wireframe, solid, texture, material)

(Dimitar) #49

it’s definitey a good step in the right direction, but still, colored wireframes are essential for cad and architectural visualisation.

It seems like there is a perfect place for per object coloured wireframe to live in 2.8:

Here is link to the devtalk discussion:

And also feature suggestion on right click select:

I think the more noise the we make about the importance of coloured wireframes in our workflows, the more we may get a chance to have them.

(FinalBarrage) #50

I have never felt the need for Wireframe colour, but after reading some arguments i think it would definitely be useful to have the option available.

(Lumpengnom) #51

Colored wireframes are immensly useful when objects are surrounded by other objects.

If you are in wireframe mode and have a lot of objects packed tightly together you can not differentiate the objects at all because they are all black. In many cases switching to solid view does not work because the desired part is sourounded by other objects.
Or you switch to solid view hide the surrounding parts and then unhide them again. this takes very long, esspecially because you probably have to look for that specific part multiple times while working on a scene.

Imagine a car enginge. It consists of thousands of objects which are all packed tightly together to make them fit into the front of a car. If you are looking for the piston rod then you can not simply turn on solid mode and click on the piston rod because the piston rod is somewhere inside the motor.
You can also not use the outliner to select it because objects in imported CAD data usually have names not deciphrable by humans. Parts usually have names like: A109__9DF__179_b.

Now, with colored wireframes you only have to open up the whole thing once, note that the piston rod is yellow or give it some sort of color you can later identify it by and there you go. You will never have to unhide anything anymore if you want to find the piston rod. Simply click on the yello wire and there you go.

Looking for all screws in the motor? Great, because in the beginning when you got the data you made them all green.

Got a terrain with a gazillion trees on it and want to distinguish things from the orthogonal front view because you have to organize the piping underground? No problem, the terrain is brown, the trees are green and the piping is blue. Now, if everything is black you are back to hiding everything.
But hiding the terrain you want to lay pipes in is bad because then you dont see where you are putting the pipes. And hiding the trees is also bad because if you can´t see the trees you don´t know where you can go up and put a hydrant. Or you can but you might notice later that you put your hydrant right inside a tree.

In Archviz it is usefull because in Archviz you allmost allways have stuff inside a house. So if you want to select a chair you can either open up the roof, move inside in perspective view (which makes it impossible to preciely place your chair) or you can simply click on the blue wires because you know that chairs are blue.

(marcatore) #52

As “organizing the scene” I mean exactly what @Lumpengnom writes.
Probably I should use “managing and use the scene”…probably should fit better than organizing.
Recapping, when you 3d project grow in complexity, collections (or groups or layers) is obviously needed but often you don’t have so much time enabling/disabling collections and so, have some colors for different meshes, it helps you to select what you’re looking for.

(Lumpengnom) #53

I guess you could say that colored wires are faster to use than collections but less precise and perhaps a bit more temporary.
Sometimes you just quickly change the wire color on the fly while working on something specific and later turn it to something else because you need it in some other context.


+1 for per object wireframe colours.

I’ve been using mostly CAD software for my day job for 21 years and agree that it would be a huge benefit. In fact, when I previously looked at Blender a couple of years ago, the visual appearance of the 3D view was a big turn-off at the time (the purplish-grey faces colour and only black edges colour with no option to change on individual objects) but thankfully I gave it a chance and am growing to love the mesh modelling tools.

Correct me if I am wrong, but I think what you mean by ‘organising the scene’ is giving the user clearer visual differentiation of individual (or groups of similar) objects in relation to other local objects in a scene.

I wouldn’t like a system where geometry is grouped or organised via mesh colour (in the same way that AutoCAD uses ‘ByLevel Object Color’), rather that it was wholly independent and that different meshes could use the same colour if a user wishes.

Just my £0.02

(marcatore) #55

@SmartSolid and @Lumpengnom you add exactly some good explanations for my words.

If it will happen (colored wireframe) it should be with a random assignment when the mesh “born” and if I have specific needs a dedicated wireframe option linked to that mesh.

(Dimitar) #56

just to add to what has already been said here.

Here is what i deal with everyday:

I need wireframe to be able to select component that may not be visible in the current view in solid mode, for example the walls behind the seating, but if everything is the same color, it’s impossible to do.

(Lumpengnom) #57

Here a comparison if you add some color. It´s still a mess but that doesn´t matter because things are clearly identifiable:
The last one is simple scene but even here it would be impossible to identify the mesh within the helmet if there was no color.

(marcatore) #58

exactly…these are the kind of examples that shows clearly the problem.

Ok, you can say “organize the scene better using layers and so on”. Ok…but as explained before, sometime you need to select something “on fly” and some color helps in this way…and consider another thing: when you have colors (in particular for color you choosen) you another option for mass filtering.

(SterlingRoth) #59

Here’s another example:

I also work in CAD, and the importance of being able to distinguish which line belongs to what is critical.

Heck, the users had to push back a lot just to have a fully functioning wireframe mode at all in 2.8. The BF does seem a little out of touch in that regard, to even consider dropping wireframe mode had a lot of heads shaking.

(Tarnyloo73) #60

Coloured wire-frames would benefit me, not just in an organisational sense, just representing how objects are taking up area in the viewport as colours is very helpful to gauge composition.

But from an organisation POV I’d sometimes like to choose hot colours (reds, oranges) for hero objects, mid-spectrum (greens, cyans) for scene objects and cools (blues, purples) for background stuff. That’s just one use but a different type of project could see me using entirely different colour semantics. Making the display appear how I want with no limits just gets things done in ways that are convenient to myself.

Also I do a lot of SDS modelling with interlocking objects and the low density wire-frames you get in optimal display mode are great for checking how they interact with each other, coloured wires would improve that further.

Personally I’m not really bothered about a smart system, it’s the artist’s responsibility if they mess up visibility. If it’s such an issue we could just have a ‘restore wire-frames to default’ button. But if a smart system means getting coloured wires then I’d put up with it.

The human eye just responds well to colour organisation, sure it’s not for everyone but that’s because artists preferences are different. The impression I get from the responses is that they would work well for a lot of folk here and the reasons are somewhat individual too, just like workflows and artistic styles are individual.

(Romanji) #61

Why are we even discussing this? Shouldn’t the usefulness of such a feature be self-evident for everybody that takes the time to think about it?