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Create controls and process/access all layers via plugin?

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First, let me apologize if this is answered elsewhere, I performed several searches but I think my query is a bit general.

Basically, I'm working on a project where I'd like to make Paint.NET the default editor we use for content creation.

The idea is that I would be able to do the following:

  • [*:1oc5ah52]Pull every layer of a given image and export as an animation in our native animation format.
    [*:1oc5ah52]Export all layers individually (but in one operation), to our native map format.
    [*:1oc5ah52]Create layers and compare data between layers.
    [*:1oc5ah52]the ability to create controls which can be added to the toolbox or create another toolbox with custom operations.

Basically, I'd like to write a plug-in that allows us to use Paint.NET for animation creation, map editing and object creation and tagging. The user would perform these actions with the help of this new toolbox in their GUI. The plug-in would therefore have to be able to perform selections, and even create its own layers.

Come to think of it, I suppose as long as I could export/access multiple layers at the same time, I could hack solutions for some things like having the color #FF00FF on a given layer represent a pathing solution. The plug-in would then have to use that path and compare against any layers where collision maps are defined and determine if the path is valid. It's technically no more complicate then perhaps what you'd have to do for a filter I suppose. Anyway, getting off track here...

I'm just trying to make the simplest interface for our artists/content producers and map editors.

While the plug-in will be used for a commercial project, I would make the plug-in a community open-source project.

Thank you for any and all responses


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While you can create a FileType plugin to open and save images including layer support, most of the rest of what you're talking about isn't possible with the current plugin system (such as creating tools), so you'd be best off either creating separate frames and writing a program to stitch them together or using a dedicated animation program.

What plugins can and can't do: viewtopic.php?f=38&t=29790

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Sorry, but this just isn't possible with the plugin system (nor is the source code available). And to be brutally honest, Paint.NET is not an animation studio, nor a map editor, object creator, or tagger. Nor is it a control you can embed into your application.

The Paint.NET Blog: https://blog.getpaint.net/

Donations are always appreciated! https://www.getpaint.net/donate.html


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