How do You Speed Up Your Filmaking Process?

Do you create short films? How do you spend your time efficiently? Do you have any tips to give us to help us make our short films within a reasonable time frame? I, personally, am talking about 3d short films, but feel free to give advice for live action films as well, as others may be looking for such advice! Besides, your advice may still apply to either field!

This post by sundial was very helpful for me in regards to efficiency and organisation

Thanks! :blush:

I added a few comments to the end of the piece and gave it a slight shoe-shine.

“OpenGL Preview rendering” is no longer called that. And, the EEVEE renderer is now very fast, while producing much better results than were ever obtainable before. Blender also provides a renderer called “Workbench” which is similar to what “OpenGL Preview” used to be only much better – and which might be the renderer of choice, depending on your project. The rest of the workflow is as described.

(Some of the terminology used has also changed again, but the features are still there and the workflow still applies.)

Organization, planning, record-keeping, and (dare I say it?) project management are also very important. Outline your project, including ideas that you haven’t yet “finally” decided upon, so that as you work you are moving toward what you think is your goal.

Don’t forget that loose-leaf notebook and that number-two pencil. (I was going to tell you why that’s important, but I forgot. :wink: )

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When you say ‘short films’ do you mean animated fully CG or you mean with actors and more traditional, or perhaps a hybrid of both?

If you’re looking for useful answers, please refine the question.

You can do viewport animation rendering which simply grabs the viewport. Isn’t that the same as open GL rendering back then?
It is under view -> viewport render animation
and uses the same settings and output path as the ones you set up in the render properties panel.

Thanks guys! Yeah, I redefined the question. I personally am looking at fully 3d short films, but I think that mentioning live action is good for other users as well. That way we all learn! :smiley:
As for OpenGL or whatever it is now called, has that been removed in Blender 2.80 and up? I don’t know where to find it if it is still here.
As for planning, I would like to make storyboards and such using Ipad programs. Do you guys have any suggestions? I want a storyboarding app that is free and opensource.

It is under view -> viewport render animation

would it be considered faster than EVEE rendering?

Hmm… I used it the last time in January 2020 and it was a lot faster back then. Perhaps it is different now, I don’t know.
It probably depends on how heavy your shaders are. I used a lot of procedurals back then and EEVEE is terrible with more complex procedurals.

One thing I think is not mentioned in Sundials link is heavy use of the NLA editor. Knowing how to use the NLA editor is quite useful and can be an extreme time saver.

I think a lot of people don’t even recognize that animations are reusable in general. They are saved as actions and can be copied or linked to other objects just like meshes can be copied. Knowing this and incorporating this into your workflow is another time saver.

Another useful thing is using the compositor and VSE. I mean if you are proficient in some external compositor and want to use that this might not apply to you but for me it has turned out to be a very effieicent workflow to do everything in Blender.

I ususally have all my scenes in a single file with most assets linked from other files as described in sundials post.
For each scene I have a compositor set up which saves the raw render as well as the composited render to a multilayered openEXR and also saves the composited to jpg.
The composited scenes are then directly piped into the VSE so that in theory I could render all my scenes with a single click. This is useful for rendering multiple scenes over night and without having to use a render manager or command line rendering.

Which brings us to the next useful thing. Command line rendering. Learn how to use it. It is not difficult even though it might look a bit strange in the beginning. It saves quite some memory and makes it possible to render scenes which you would not be able to render the “normal” way.

I’m curious: is the rendering time of one scene effected by the amount of scenes you have in your file? Does it affect the speed of the entire workspace?
Thanks a whole lot for your suggestions!

No. Or at least I have never noticed a slow down. I think that when you switch to a different scene the data is unloaded and the data of the new scene is loaded. Unless the data is the same then - I assume - the data is kept in memory and only the data that differs is unloaded/loaded.

Alright thanks for the tips!