Skip to main content
Skip table of contents

Category Hierarchy Tree

The hierarchy view is a visual presentation of the categories hierarchy. It is organized in a tree structure. By unfolding the top tier categories you will see all the child categories and get a better understanding of their relations to each other.

By clicking on an tree item you get further information in the details view on the right side.
It will show the Wikidata ID, a human readable tag of the category, a description text and the different synonyms.

On one hand, the hierarchy tree is structured on the actual order of categories but on the other hand it is optimized for the commonly used vocabulary in the Visual Effects industry. There are many VFX specific terms that got incorporated into this category tree which makes the most sense from an artists perspective.

There are the top tier categories which make the most sense for grouping certain types of elements together, like fire, smoke, explosions. Organizing the elements into top tier categories helps with naming and storing of elements on disk. This way, you can create a sustainable library and avoid that elements need to be moved or renamed if the category of an element changes. Changing the category can be done easily in the database, but the file stays in the same location on disk. This is important if you want to load a project file from a few years ago and want to avoid missing media files.

More and more categories will be added over time, hence the library structure will improve and become overall more detailed.

Category ID

Everybody has a different understanding of what a certain element is supposed to be called. We all have different linguistic backgrounds. That problem often leads to confusion when talking to your colleges.

The focus of das element is to find one common vocabulary for element category names.

Since each category can be linked to one exact Wikidata page, we can unify one common understanding and vocabulary about what a certain category is called. This should avoid the confusion for everybody in our daily conversation with our colleagues.

The ID for each category looks something like this: Q3196
This text is an identifier that can be used to link to a human readable text in the Wikidata database.

License: cc pd CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication

Change the hierarchy tree

Go to settings → Category

The category hierarchy tree can be full customized. Simply drag'n'drop items from the Tree View to change the order and the parent/child categories. Add new categories if need or change the existing ones by clicking on a category and changing the data in the Details View.

The category hierarchy tree will be saved to a file called hierarchy.json

In order for the software to find some custom hierarchy data, the file must be placed in the your resources folder at this specific location:


This hierarchy tree data will be used across all loaded libraries. Using a hierarchy tree for one specific library is not supported at the moment.

Each Category has the ID field (by default the Wikidata ID), the human readable label, some description text and the synonyms.

Both the category ID and the category name can be used in the Path Builder.

The user can add, delete or modify existing synonyms in the details view (right side). Searching for the synonym will always get you this category in e.g. the gallery view or the ingest view.

You can even change the hierarchy tree to work as a VFX project with shots, were the top tier categories are the sequence names (001, 002 …) and the child categories are the shots (001_0010, 001_0020 …)

Default hierarchy file structure

This is the empty data structure for the hierarchy file.
The root item (/ : Q2574811) is required. Any data goes inside the children list.

    "hierarchy": [
            "children": [],
            "id": "Q2574811",
            "name": "/"
    "version": "some version text"

The child item data structure looks like this:

# minimum requirement
    "id": "my-category-id",
    "name": "My Category"

# all options
    "children": [],
    "description": "some description text",
    "id": "my-category-id",
    "name": "My Category",
    "synonyms": [
            "language": "custom",
            "value": "some other category name"

Example: Folder structure to hierarchy file structure

A usecase could be to organize all your final shots and plates into a “project archive” library, to quickly get the shots you did on previous shows. Also a quick way for the editorial department to do some showreel editing or for production to collect showreel shots for freelance artists.

Here is an example Python script that converts a nested folder strucutre on disk to a hierarchy conform file.

JavaScript errors detected

Please note, these errors can depend on your browser setup.

If this problem persists, please contact our support.