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Learn how to control the way sequences, scenes and panels are named by using the Namung tab.
Project Properties - Naming Tab.
So the Naming Tab in the Project Properties panel dictates the way that sequences, scenes, and panels are named within the software. So before we take a look at the tab, I'm just going to quickly create another panel scene and sequence so that we can later compare how they were named in a software before we change any of those options. So to access the Naming Tab, we have to go to the top menu and select Storyboard > Properties. And in the Project Property window that opens, click on the Naming Tab.
So by default, all the options in this tab are disabled. So in order to enable them, we have to click on the Override Naming Preferences for this Project option. So just to give you a heads up, the options in the Scene Naming Rules section and the Sequence Naming Rules section are almost identical except for a single option here, which I'll go over later. So the first option is Automatically Add Leading Zeros to Names.
So I'm going to check this and then change the minimum number of characters to something like five. Then I'm also going to check Increment Name by and I'll lead the default value of 10. And then, in the Resolution Suffix section, I'm just going to lead the default underscore and Auto selected. But just to take in these menus, you can either choose None, Underscore or Period. And in the second drop-down menu, you can select Numerical, Uppercase or Lowercase, and these selections will be a little bit more clear in a minute. And just for now, I'm going to leave Incremental Naming on Copy unchecked. Then I'm going to click OK. And now what I'm going to do is create a new sequence scene and panel. So pretty much the reverse of what I just did.
And then, let's open the Naming Tab one more time so that we can compare what's been created versus what was created before these options were changed. So the first thing that we're going to take a look at is Automatically Add Leading Zeros to Names with a minimum number of characters being five. So if we take a look at these previous scenes that were created, and once again, a scene is delineated by a gray background whether it's dark gray or light gray. And in fact, it's always alternating dark gray, light gray, dark gray, light gray.
So, here is the name of the scenes are 1, 2. And because there's a new sequence here, it resets, so it's 1 again. So, take a look at the scenes that were just recently created. So, now they have a leading zeros so that the total number equals five numbers or five characters. And not only that, they jump up by increments of 10. So, here, these scenes went from 1, scene 1 to scene 2. And here they go up from scene 10 to scene 20. And of course, because these two panels are in the same scene, they have the same scene name but they have different panel names. So this panel name is number 2, which we see right here, and this panel name is number 1.
So we don't see anything to do with the Resolution Suffix yet because we need to make a copy of the scene to see that in action. So I'm just going to say OK here. And then grab scene 10 and use the Cmd+C to copy it, then select the last panel in scene 20 and use Cmd+V to paste it. So the Rename Scene dialog box opens, and I'm not going to go into this right now, but I'm just going to click OK. And as you can see, there's now an _A after the scene name. So the scene that we copied, was scene 00010.
And the scene that we pasted is now 00010_A. To show that it's actually a copy of the scene but to give it a different name so we can differentiate between the two. So that's what that suffix is for. And if we go back to the Naming Tab, you'll see now why there's an underscore. And the Auto option obviously uses uppercase lettering.
The next thing I'm going to check is Incremental Naming on Copy, and then click OK. So this time, if I grab scene 10 and I decided to copy it by using Cmd+C, that's obviously Ctrl+C on Windows, and then I click on the last scene here and I use Cmd+V to paste. This time you'll see the name is different. So, instead of being 00010_A, it's 020_A. And the reason that is is that it's increasing incrementally from the scene name just before it.
So, if we do it one more time, Cmd+V, now it's 030_A, and one more time, 040_A. Next, if we go back to the Naming Tab. Let's take a look at that one option Reset Scene Name on New Sequence. This applies the blue background, so in other words, the Sequence Names. So I'm going to click on OK again. And with the last scene in this last sequence selected, let's create a new sequence by clicking on the Add New Sequence button.
So here we see that the first scene in this new sequence bears the same name, as the first scene in this sequence, and that's because it's been reset. So every time there's a new sequence, we start again with the scene naming. So if I were to go back to the Naming Tab and uncheck that. Now, if I create a new sequence, you'll see that it's going up incrementally. So now, it's 00020. So it's not resetting. So the last section deals more with the naming of the panels.
So the first option is to Allow Custom Panel Names. So I don't know if it's clear here in the Panel View but both sequence and scene have black fields here, and the panel field is actually gray. We're actually try to click into them, I would able to edit the Sequence Name and the Scene Name. However, the Panel Name is actually grayed out so it's inaccessible. By clicking on this option and clicking on OK, this dark gray field now became black and I'm able to enter in a name for this panel.
So let's call it CustomName. And then hit enter to validate my selection, and we can see here that the single panel that was selected has now taken on our CustomName. So the name of this panel is 1 and then name of this panel is CustomName. The next option is Display Total Number of Panels in Panel Name. So, here we see that this panel is 1/2 that exist in the scene. And that this panel is 2/2 that exist in the scene. So, that's what that means. We're ready to uncheck this and click OK.
You could see that that slash has now disappeared. So we don't know how many numbers there are effectively in a scene. So I'm going to re-enable that and let's also Enable Acts, which is the next one, and click OK. And let's scroll to the head of Thumbnail View. And you'll see here in pink, there's now a kind of bracket in the word Act 0. So adding acts is the equivalent of just adding one more level of differentiation. So, it's the next level above sequences. So, we have Panels, Scenes, Sequences, and Acts would be the top of that hierarchy.
What Acts generally define are big changes in themes or moods in an animation or film. So, for example, a film might be divided into three acts. The first act could be where a conflict occurs. The second act could be a journey that occurs to resolve that conflict. And the third act could be the resolution of that conflict. So it would be divided into three acts.
And lastly, we have Panel Auto-Increment Rule. So right now, our panel names are going up by numbers as we see in there, 1, 2, depending on how many are in a scene. And we can change that to make that alphabetical. And there are varying combinations of that. So let me select the first one. And just for the sake of showing you a copy and paste example again, I'm going to add a period, and let's make this lowercase this time so we see the difference. So I'm going to click OK.
So, as you may have noticed, all of the panels have updated. And instead of this panel having the name number 1, it now has the name A. And instead of this panel having the name number 2, it has the name B. And we can once again, see that up here in the Panel View, our panel name is B. Our panel name is A. And of course, where we to add another panel, it would be panel C.
So that's the Increment Rule. Now, let's take a look at the Suffix Rule. And this really only works if there's a custom name for the panel. So I can show you what it looks like on a panel of a custom name. I can copy and paste or go up here and use the Duplicate Panel button. And you don't really see a difference, I mean, the name of the panel is B and the name of the panel here that I copied from is A. However, if you select the panel with a CustomName and do the same thing, so either copy and paste or click on the Duplicate Panel button. You'll notice that this panel now has the name CustomName.a. And that's because if you remember, we selected period and lowercase letter for our Resolution Suffix.