I am trying to build a workflow for painting equirectangular images. (I would pirate photoshop as I know it can do this but I am averse to running proprietary software)
As seen in the image below I have a basic setup that doesn't require any addons. I use a camera, the camera is locked to the world origin. I have to use two viewports both in camera view, one that has the camera locked to the viewport and one where I can zoom in and out of the frame with my drawing pads equivalent of the scroll wheel.
The advice I've gotten from someone on blenderartists has essentially been "this is the best possible solution and you should just get used to it". But this workflow diverges from my muscle memory of 2d image editing software in far too many places to be usable for me.
I need someone familiar enough with the blender api to tell me if its possible to create an addon that can temporarily override blender's 3d viewport controls so that dragging with the mmb pivots the camera around as if you are grabbing on to a point of the sphere and rotating it (like google street view), and so that scrolling changes the focal length of the viewport instead of moving the viewport closer to or further from the orbit point while still being able to use the viewport for texture painting. (I know that the blender api allows one to modify the viewport's matrix—and I presume the viewport focal length is also modifiable—so I guess its more that I'm asking if there's a way to temporarily suspend and override certain input mappings. That or a new creative solution I haven't considered yet.)
I imagine that this would probably be more easily solved in blender's source code, but if there's a way to solve this puzzle without setting up a build environment for blender, or complaining to a dev and waiting for the next major release I'd find that preferable (im not one to run from the testing repos).
Edit. Im also trying to see if I can explain what I need to chat gpt, if I find the information I need before any of you I'll post the solution myself.