Hello! Below is an idea for a new feature that I am interested in developing, but I wanted to get some feedback from the community before asking the devs if it would be a good fit. Please let me know what you think!
When working with depth of field, there are situations where it’s hard to tell if you’ve got the focus exactly where you want it, and sometimes you don’t realize that it’s not perfect until you’ve performed a high-sample render. The “display limits” option for the camera can help in some situations by showing you a cross where the center of focus is, but if the objects you want to focus on aren’t near the center of the frame, that cross becomes less helpful. There are other ways as well (like using an empty as the center of focus), but I feel like none of the solutions give us a good way to visualize the wholistic focus in detailed scenes where rendering is expensive, or during animations where focus shifts.
So that’s why I’ve been imagining a 3D Viewport overlay to assist with focusing! My current vision is that all pixels that are in the center of the focus (for the active camera) would be highlighted in white, everything farther would be in blue, and everything closer would be in red. My mockups below also have slight gradients in the blue and red sections, getting more blue/red the farther away they are from the focus center. The width of the white section would probably be based on screen pixels (so you could zoom in if you wanted more detail).
And that’s it! My biggest questions for the community are:
- Would this make setting up complex focus shots easier for you?
- Could the visual style of the overlay be improved? Is there a better style of overlay that could be used here instead of 2 colors separated by a line?
- Would this be better as something other than a 3D viewport overlay? (such as a view transform or a debug pass)
- Does this functionality already exist elsewhere?
- Any other feedback you have!
Overlay Mockup (Camera View)
Overlay Mockup (3D Viewport)