Whats the best outline for toon/anime, freestyle vs inverted hull method vs another method in 2.9?

I’m doing anime style animations, but I’m having trouble figuring out what’s the best outline method to use. Keep in mind this is full animations, not an image. I’ll also be using 2d plane assets for effects and stuff. I like the detailed look of freestyle, and able to make it look hand drawn, but making it not affect 2d planes and having it outline things behind them is too much of a pain, unless I’m missing something, and I like the inverted hull method for its real time view, but I don’t like that I can’t be as detailed with it, like with machine like meshes, and I can’t make it look hand drawn, unless there’s a trick I don’t know.

For freestyle, I know I can put it all in collections but do to the sheer amount of assets ill have, that will get messy real quick. You would think liking to a collection that has other collections within it would work, but it doesn’t, which makes zero sense. Also, there’s the fact ill have to put transparent planes/materials on another layer, which could make things difficult when animating. If its freestyle what’s the best way to render/compose it. I know there’s different methods like just rendering it and having it separate then combine it in compositing.

So does anyone know which is better, a trick I’m not thinking of or an outline method that I don’t know?

I’m using blender 2.9 and the eevee render engine.

You can improve the inverted hull with some tweaks in the material, watch this:

1 Like

I’ll have to do some testing, but it might be good as an accent darker color for darker shadows.

Check out these methods:

  • BEER renderer.
  • LANPR (aka LineArt NPR)
    Both are meant to be real-time.
    But both are still under development afaik so be careful if you wanna use it for production.
    And I’m guessing they’ll be more user friendly once they’re finished.
    For LANPR, you might have to dig around or google translate stuff.

----BEER Renderer----
Here’s a detailed-looking example of the lines it can do:


BEER can have both colour and lines afaik, so don’t worry.

There’s other examples on YouTube.

Their website:


.
.
.
.
.
----LANPR aka LineArt Non-Photo-Realistic----
Here’s a cool real-time example (Go to 0:20)

.
.
This next example has both lines and colour at 1:44:

…Their development page…?


.
.
This vid talks about LANPR at 4:55 (about a year ago).
It also talks about other toonline methods.

The vid says there’s not much on documentation on LANPR, just lots of people showing what they’ve done with it. This was a year ago, tho.

PS I’m thinking of building a PC to make cartoons with 3D models, so feel free to let me know how real-time and reliable these methods are and what your pc specs are, please!

1 Like

Thanks and will do. I’ve also heard of https://gumroad.com/lightningboystudio#aYbiH, which gives a tone of stuff, even giving inverted hull method more of a hand drawn look. I’m glad there’s so many choices but now the hard part is picking one.