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Facebook brings animation tools to its Quill VR painting app

After having declared last year that the app would receive no future updates, Facebook is delivering a big update to its VR painting tool Quill.

The update expands on Quill’s initial promise, expanding it from being a platform for designing static scenes to one that can handle dynamic animated ones. The new updates adds the ability for artists to craft and edit frame-by-frame animations inside VR, as well as the ability to copy and repose models in a way that enables the beautiful creations of Quill to come to life.

Quill has a very unique visual style that doesn’t make it a perfect fit for every use case, but there is something really enchanting about the way the product now takes an old-timey animation style and pairs it with wispy 3D models.

The product was one built internally at Oculus Story Studios simply because they really needed something like it and it didn’t exist yet. When Story Studio shut down last year, the fate of the app was thrown into doubt with Oculus specifically stating that the app wouldn’t be receiving any more updates.

“These tools open the door for a whole new kind of storytelling, with VR characters who move and perform in scenes and environments that are more alive than ever,” a Facebook blog post reads. “Inspired by the early hand-drawn animation of the 1920’s, but powered up with modern technology and native VR workflows, Quill animation brings a new level of freedom to artists in this rapidly emerging medium.”

In addition to today’s update, Facebook has detailed that they are looking to drive further upgrades to the app’s functionality in the future as they look to explore how to get the animations in front of more people in VR through experiences like its Spaces social VR app.

Quill is available for download here.


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