Image sequence as texture - still won't work?

I’m trying to import traditional animation, as drawn images, onto a surface in Blender, and have Blender animate through them in sequence. This used to be very simple - just assign a group of sequentially numbered images as a sequence, and Blender would do the rest. Not any more, it seems.

I can use the ‘Import images as planes’ add-on, which works fine, for single images, but then I have the headache of replacing those planes on every frame - like a ‘What the Butler Saw’ viewer of olden days.

Does anyone have a fix for applying an animated texture to a plane (and have the alpha map work so that lit 3D shadows will be correct) before i start trying to shuffle hundreds of planes around?

I’ll upload a screenshot of what I’m after as soon as I can - the work is on my other PC (laptop).

I forgot to add - I’m using BI renderer for this project, not Cycles.

You can see in the pic below - there’s a drawn image of a soldier with an alpha map from which the shadows are calculated - I want lights to use the alpha as cut-off for shadows, as seen, and ideally to have this texture as an image sequence applied to a single plane - not as it is now, one image per plane. I can’t animate the scene properly if I have to deal with hundreds of these strips of image planes.

In the Texture panel have you set the texture to be an Image Sequence and enabled Auto Refresh

(and have the alpha map work so that lit 3D shadows will be correct)
Just like any other texture with transparency, enable material transparency, set the alpha to zero and set the texture to influence colour and alpha

Hi Richard, thankyou for your suggestions. I’ve tried what you mentioned, and as you can see above - the alpha shadowing works well for single images.

I get a ‘can’t load image for first frame’ message when I try to apply a sequence, and I see others have had the same issue too.

What I’m doing is similar to what Ian is doing here: except that I want my image textures to animate through a numbered sequence.

I get a ‘can’t load image for first frame’ message when I try to apply a sequence, and I see others have had the same issue too.
I don’t get any error messages. If you’re only getting a single frame the only way I can see this happening is if the image sequence is set to Single Image of if you have set the Frames value to 1 for an Image Sequence

Thanks Richard - Perhaps uploading a blend file for folks to fiddle with tomorrow is the best bet - what’s the best way to do that? Pack a example image sequence into the blend

I haven’t forgotten about this - I’ve just been busy with filming and animation tasks. Blender won’t allow me to pack either an image sequence or movie, so I’ll upload that separately on my own server space.

Should be later today.

I just got it to work whilst preparing a cut-down scene to upload.

All I did differently was delete the texture from the plane it was applied to, and started afresh. It could be that if you get the sequence wrong first time, there’s no changing it afterward - you just have to delete the data (image link) and start again.

Once I get the ‘import-fu’ worked out I’ll post it here to help others.

Okay, it’s sort of working.

The blend file is here:

A shortened low-res image sequence is here:

I can’t see the texture in the 3d viewport, but the sequence will render properly. It doesn’t cycle though, just plays through once. The main issue now is trying to get it to show in the viewport so I can compose and light the scene properly.

Weird - you can scrub through the frames and the texture animates in the viewport, but if you hit the play button - it’ll play once, then disappear. I wonder if there’s a ‘viewport update’ check-box I need to find… ?

Unzipped your image sequence
Open your blend file
Select Plane
In plane texture / image panel opened the image sequence selecting all images
Set the source as Image Sequence
Change the Frames to (1) Frames:13 (13 images)
Alt+A in 3d view and image sequence loop plays as is visible in the 3d view

Thanks Richard. It’s good to know that the import sequence works.

I could only get partial results on my laptop, but the scene seems to work well on my main PC, and scrub properly in the 3d window - as you reported. Looks like the laptop’s graphics card just isn’t up to the task.

Thankyou again very much for your help. I’ll be opening a ‘work in progress’ thread on this project before too long.