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Blender 3.0 Gets UI Facelift

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Pablo Vazquez has been unleashed! After adding the colored noodles a couple of weeks back, he is back with some more UI changes, this time implementing his long worked-on UI face-lift for the milestone Blender 3.0 release, as well as more node-based visual enhancements.

A la Node

The nodes' design refresh aims to reduce visual noise and increase readability, as well as address multiple other issues. Here's what Pablos' description of the changes:

Issues to solve:

  • The header background is currently drawn using a theme color fully opaque, this limits the colors we can use because the node name/label is drawn on top.
  • Hard-coded transparency makes nodes hard to read. The node backdrop already has alpha so if the user wants it they can set it. This patch uses alpha from the theme.
  • Better muted status indicator, instead of simply making everything transparent and the wires inside red, draw a red outline around the node, darken the header and backdrop.
  • On muted nodes, display wires behind the backdrop to not interfere with text/widgets inside the node.

Nodes:

  • Darken header to improve readability of node label.
  • Draw a line under the header
  • Thicker outline.
  • Do not hard-code transparency on nodes, use the theme's node backdrop alpha component.
  • Use angle icon instead of triangle (to be consistent with the changes to panels)

New-I

Pablo wanted to mark Blender's milestone 3.0 release with a theme refresh, one that wouldn't alienate regular users, but rather enhance and work along the lines of the popular 2.80 theme redesign. Here are the changes according to Pablo:

The theme for Blender 2.8 was well received but presented a few flaws.

  • Transparency on menus and tooltips reduce readability
  • Mismatch on certain colors, especially outlines of connected widgets
  • Active/open menus highlight was not prominent enough
  • Header background mismatch in some editors

At the same time we can make use of new features in 3.0:

  • Make panels look like panels again (like in v2.3!)
  • Make use of roundness in more widgets
  • Since nodes are no longer hard-coded to be transparent, tweak opacity and saturation
  • Tweak colors for the new dot grid

Check out Pablo's latest Blender today to see him walk through these changes:

Download the latest Blender daily build to check out these changes first hand!

About Author

Mario Hawat

Mario Hawat is a Lebanese 3D artist, writer, and musician currently based in Paris. He is a generalist with a special focus on environments, procedural and generative artworks. Open to freelance work.

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