New Plugin Announcement: Layer Whale

Download here Download Layer Whale for Glyphs

Layer Whale makes it easy to record and playback the entire edit history of a layer. It streamlines and declutters a Glyphs workflow that a lot of us are familiar with.

The Timeline Palette

The interface starts with a simple palette that exposes a few simple but powerful features:


  • Record button: enabling recording on a layer will instruct Layer Whale to record every change that happens to it. By default it is in time-lapse resolution. You can also enable high resolution in preferences which will also record the temporary/preview movements of nodes before they’ve settled into place.
  • Playback button: launches the player which will begin to play everything that’s been recorded. It’s like watching your own ghost design!
  • Checkpoint button (⎇⌘X ): this will create a checkpoint that’s easily identifiable in the player’s progress bar. Use this for layer versioning instead of cluttering your layers palette with so many copies! (You don’t need to enable recording for checkpoints to work)
  • Revert button (⎇⌘Z): this will reset both the layer and timeline’s states to the last checkpoint. Useful for when you wish to explore creative design choices without ruining your progress.
  • Date label: tells you when the layer was last edited.

The Player

The player itself is an extremely useful tool. Some of the things you can do:

  • Replay your progress at multiple speeds
  • Export any position in the timeline as a new or background layer
  • Control what’s shown in the player (e.g. nodes, metrics, guidelines, etc)
  • Export time-lapse (typelapse!) animations in GIF, MP4 or APNG. Whatever is visible in the player will end up in the exported media.

The player is great for showcasing progress, for teachers of type design (especially at the high resolution setting) & students who wish to learn technique, and designers that wish to communicate proof of work.


Layer Whale needs macOs 10.12.2 and Glyphs 2.4.x at the least. It could work with older versions but it has not been tested properly.

Known Limitations

  • kerning changes are not recorded
  • components are tracked by reference, i.e only the latest version will be displayed in the player
  • background layers & images, annotations, marks and hints are not displayed
  • color layers are not colored yet
  • overlap, alignment & snapping indicators, and the grid are not displayed in the player
  • outlines are not editable or selectable in the player
  • reporter plugins have no effect on the player. Layer Whale uses custom-made, highly-performant drawing code to achieve acceptable frame rates.

Free to use for 21 days

Layer Whale is free to use for 21 days. Once the trial expires, playback and revert to checkpoint functionality will be disabled. A license is available at the cost of USD 40 for a limited period of time.

Give it a try and tell me what you think. Will appreciate any feedback, features requests or bug reports!


Great stuff.

1 Like

Just want to say: I love this plug in. Really well made.


Does it work on Glyphs 3?
I had an issue when I installed it… ‘could not load bundle’ error.

Glyphs 2 only I believe