New icons for Blender 2.8

I’m not sure why using the same icon for “add” is confusing there.

These are two separate lists. One is a list of material slots while the other is a list of materials. For each clicking “+” adds a new thing to the associated list.

The confusing part is that we don’t really communicate the difference between a list of materials and a bunch of materials in a list of material slots. LOL


That’s what I mean by the datablock system is what is actually confusing. Most of the time you could tell what the icon meant by context. With datablocks, creating new things, saving things, sharing things, and deleting things is all very confusing.

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Part of the confusion there is that most of the contents of the Materials properties panel are global, but we don’t treat it that way.

When we switch between objects, the only part of the Materials panel that is unique to the selected object is the top Materials Slot list. The list of materials below it are global as are the per-material settings.

So it is a mistake that when you click on a camera that we can no longer see the Material tab. What we should get is everything but the top Material Slots list.

We could fix a lot of these issues if we made the materials list an actual list of the materials in the project, rather than a dropdown. I know we use that particular UI object because it makes it easy to rename materials, but “Name” could be a field below that we can edit.

Hard to explain this stuff in writing…

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Sorry, maybe outdated question, but why greyscale icons were choosen ? I liked color ones, very useful to find faster with eye caption… Is that definitive ? Maybe it was answered but lot of replies in this topic to find easily
Peace and long life to Blender ! ( And great work from devs )

There was no other choice available. :v:

In 2.8 many more icons were necessary, however the previous icon style was very labour intensive to create. Changing it to monochrome means that the icon set can be easily expanded, tweaked and themed if needed. Currently it is still a work in progress, and devs are working on improving readability.

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Just my quick input on how to make the vertical properties tabs more connected to the actual pannel.

In the current build, the tabs seem really disconnected as the properties panel’s background changes based on the nesting hiearchy.

This is probably not the best place for sharing this though.


Calling @William before this post will drown i the topic…

The more I dive into the data blocks related icons, the more it gets murky and messy…
My proposal to fix it (a sort of) without redesigning the UI:

  1. limit use of “X” icon to “close” action

  2. Scene and View Layer should get “Plus” and “Minus” icons instead the “Duplicate” and “Unlink/Close”, since a user creates and deletes those data blocks (no sense to assign the Fake user).

  3. design new internally consistent set of icons for data blocks’ actions - the “no F-user”, the “F-user assigned”, “Create new data block” and “Unlink the data block”. Something like this:
    Icons in the proposal appears in the order presented above the mockup.
    First one says: I may peel off and you can easily lose me.
    Second one depicts the fixed situation - the data block is glued with a piece of sticky tape. It has the Fake user.
    Third one doesn’t have to be explained. Another possibility is to leave the “Plus” icon here, since it’s commonly used for the “Add new” action througout the UI.
    The last one presents the process of removing a block of data by simply unsticking it.
    BTW - the “Unlink data” could be renamed to avoid confusing it with Linking from a library. Let’s say “Unstick data”. Full harmony of name and iconography :wink:

  4. analyze the use of “plus” and “minus” icons throughout the GUI and redesign their misuse - as in the case of Sculpting and the “Add effect of brush” and “Substract effect of brush” functions - by removing or changing the icons used. Add / Substract for instance could look like this:


I just wanted to say thanks for the wonderful work, the monochromatic icons were a wonderful surprise to see in the recent beta builds and they make 2.8 feel even more slick, informative and consistent.


I think I have an idea on this - Please bear with me until I can get to my home PC to mock up…
Just to clarify:

The first icon for datablock linking refers to a STATE: Single | Multiple | (No user) <- Do we represent this last one?
and the second is an ACTION: Make Own Copy | Discard Own Copy

Have I characterised that correctly?

content of the post moved to my previous post.

Thanks @jendrzych. I think what I’m missing here is that there’s a third state in which the datablock is linked to a real user. Is that represented in this space?
If so, we could use a grave / ghost / person icon for the three states?
(I didn’t recognise the above as a sticky note. Sorry. Perhaps if it were peeled off from the bottom?)

No need for third state. App draws the number of users. Let’s not overcomplicate the already complex situation.

Okay. So it’s either alive (At least one user, including Fake) or dead (No users, fake included)

I’m really sorry I don’t have a copy of Blender in front of me (At work!) - Do the icons display in the select lists (When you are selecting for instance, a material)

Just confirming that there’s no distinction between “Linked to Fake User” and “Linked to real user”

Agree - It’s complex. Happy to let it go, but as I said above, you might want to invert your sticky notes as most ones that I have ever used have been stuck along the top and peeled off upwards!

Now it looks like this:

  1. no Fake user but two real users assigned:

  2. two ordinary users and the Fake user assigned:


Thanks for the screen shots.
Yeah - Ouch in terms of making it clear!
If only the number only showed real users it would be easier to follow (But I get that’s out of scope).
Happy to bow to whatever you think on this one (Although - you know… turn the sticky notes upside down !!!)

Also: Don’t be discouraged - You are doing great work!

An icon for the new tab - the Render output:


Do we know yet which panels will be moved here?

That section of that video takes a rather narrow view. Lord forbid anyone has to learn a new complicated concept or system in a complicated 3d package handling large amounts of overlapping data systems…

And yes, frankly the icons already represent what they do. It’s not their job to teach a user how the datablock system works, nor could they really be equipped to handle such a task. The onus is on the user to bother learning that.

I personally find the datablock system easy to understand. You learn how it works very quickly while learning blender, then you know anywhere a name box with a dropdown on the left, and maybe 3-4 buttons on the right appears, that it works the same way. It’s very consistent. The very ui element itself comes to mean ‘global file data list’.

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