1.X and lower versions: oldish silhouette addon.
2.X and higher versions: new addon (completely remake), meant to replace the old one. Some of its key features are performance and stability under a better design.
Disclaimer: last version of the addon works with 2.93 LTS, Blender 3.0 and greater is not supported due to some Blender API technical limitation, no plans on supporting it at short term.
Silhouettes are an effective principle and method in concept art and design. Using this method helps artists to design character, props or enviroments with interesting and appealing shapes that work well together.
So, my aim with this project was to recreate that in Blender but without needing to create more editors, wasting time configuring them and having to look away from your work continuously. In this way, everything is more integrated in the same scenario, where you have the control.
DOCUMENTATION of 2.X version (last one):
Settings are located in a dropddown panel over the 3d viewport’s header:
You can chage the style of the silhouettes such as the color and background color (or set it to transparent), opacity and decide if you want your silhouette to be shown in front or behind your geometry objects.
‘Navigation Live View’ settings are shown once you ‘Start Live Silhouette’:
Example: using ‘Fixed View’ silhouette from preset (front view) and snap to active object. Note that there are presets for every view:
Example: using ‘Fixed View’ silhouette from preset (front view) and snap to a selected collection of objects (you can also snap to all selected object, active object or to a fixed object):
Example: using ‘Fixed View’ silhouette from camera (like custom view):
Example: using ‘Fixed View’ silhouette from navigation camera: (NOTE: this silhouette type is very similar to ‘Navigation Live View’ (see next image) silhouette but this last one is more recommended as ensures true live view in sculpt mode and gives more precise results).
Example: using ‘Navigation Live View’ (beta) feature. This is really recommended for sculpting. It moves with the navigation view, so you can rotate your view and see the silhouette of your models in the exact same angle and point of view. Very useful!
Video about 1.X version (old addon):
SCULPTING: A limitation that was introduced with Blender 2.82 and now fixed silhouettes are not updated automatically. So we have some solutions to work on sculpt mode:
To enable an option in the settings to auto-update or refresh on sculpt mode (it will have impact in performance for HP meshes).
To tap over the silhouette to manually refresh it when you want it.
RECOMMENDATION: use the beta – but stable – feature of ‘Navigation Live View’ for sculpting as it will bring you a live silhouette *without any performance impact*.
Drop-down panel UI redesign.
Complete support with 2.93.
Fix shader issues. Now the ‘show in front’ style option works fine and live silhouette shader can support custom style again.
Now Live Silhouette has it’s own style that you can change in real time.
Now Fixed Silhouettes have their style properties exposed in the dropdown panel on the header, also there some fixes regarding missing update when changing those properties, making it annoying to use.
Fix: removing all cameras while using navigation view was causing errors.
Other minor and major bugfixes here and there to make it even more stable and close some special corner cases.