Parenting problem ?? what's going on ? weird results

Contributor ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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Hi everyone, Did something change in the last updates of After effects? I being using AE for decades... yes decades, since version 3.1 but today I just can't do a simple parenting...

maybe there is a hidden preference somewhere.... this never happened to me.

So layer B is parented to A.

Layer A is in a different position and it has some scale applied, no animation so far. Normal result would be as soon as you parent layer B to layer A any new modification over layer A will be apply also to layer B. Well when I parented the Layer B to layer A it automatically copy the distorsion and position of the layer A instead of remain untouch and move or deform with any new adjustmente over layer A.

??????? what's going on here? Can't believe I'm stucked on something like this

Thanks for your help

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Contributor ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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here is an example project.. it seems that rotation is the problem. what why? 

Dropbox - parent problem.aep

Maybe a bug? or some weird new preference....?

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Community Expert ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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Not sure what version you're using but the behavior is the same in 15.1.2

I've never encountered this before because I've never used solids in this way.

I either use shape layers or masked solids.

This behavior doesn't happen with either of those workflows.

Instead of un-constraining the scaling & changing  the x & y of solid separately, leave the solid scale alone and apply a mask.  You won't encounter this issue.  Or use shapes.  Or create the solids with desired dimensions to begin with.

Once you scale the solid un-proportionally it messes something up.   If you know for sure this has never been an issue before then file a bug report

~Gutterfish

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Contributor ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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Thanks Gutterfish, the solids I sent was just a quick project as an example, the real project has many layers and it's a logo animation where layers from .ai file are following others layers that has rotation and scale applied they are not only solids.

But yes it seems that the bug is when the scale and rotation are applied together before parenting a layer. To be honest I can't tell if this error was there before or not, it's a pretty common operation so I guess it has to be a new bug I guess everyone will notice a major error like this.

file a bug report to adobe didn't work for me in the past, neither sending them features recommendation so I don't feel very optimist about that. anyway, I guess I will need to do a new workflow for this comp.

Cheers,

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LEGEND ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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Did you happen to hold down the Shift key when you parented?  If yes, don't.

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Contributor ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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no Dave, I don't hold shift key for parenting.

I tested and the result brings same error on 15.1.2 and 16.0.1 mac

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LEGEND ,
Dec 26, 2018 Dec 26, 2018

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If you have unconstrained scaling in the parent layer, the child will skew upon rotation. See if this helps:

https://books.google.co.il/books?id=B5T8AgAAQBAJ&pg=PA321&lpg=PA321&dq=skewed+perspective+after+effe...

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Contributor ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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Hi Roei, yes that is the case. unconstrained scale plus rotation. It looks like the error was always there, I think I never realized about that bug before. I will try to find a workaround with nulls or resizing objects on precompose or outside AE

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Community Expert ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/Mariano+Puppo  wrote

here is an example project.. it seems that rotation is the problem. what why? 

Dropbox - parent problem.aep

Maybe a bug? or some weird new preference....?

Not weird. Predictable and expected. There is no change in behavior here. It's a render order thing. The properties of the child are recalculated based on its position, scale, and rotation of the parent. For example, if the child is 200 pixels left of the parent and 100 pixels above the parent the new position for the child is [x parent - 200, y parent - 100]. If the parent is at 10º then the child will be at -10º. If the scale of the parent is [50, 100] then the child's scale will be [200, 100]. When you add rotation to uneven scale the values will be combined with rotation giving you the parallelogram you are seeing in your sample project. Parenting has always worked that way, and if you really think about it it makes sense. The only option I can see would be to somehow change the render order so that rotation was calculated before scale.

The workaround is to add a null to the project, hold down the shift key and parent select the A layer to move the null to the same position scale and rotation as the A layer, release the parenting, reset the null's scale, then parent both the A and B layer to the null.

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Community Expert ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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But Rick.  They said they've been doing it this way for "decades" and it only just started behaving this way.  How can that be?

~Gutterfish

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Contributor ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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Gutterfish​ there are two answer posible to that:

1) I was lying I just downloaded AE for the first time and I don't have a clue of anything in AE like for example, what was reduce interlace flicker when mastering to beta SP tapes

2) we keep learning things every day

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Community Expert ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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LOL...Nice

~Gutterfish

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Guide ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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hehehe nice answers

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Contributor ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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Thanks Rick, I agree that doing the math it make sense but visually it doesn't, is far from being predictable and expected, what I mean is that AE is for making visual results not just math calculations even if everything in a digital image world is an excel in the interior the results has to be visual. So if one layer has an unconstrained scale plus rotation and you parent another layer that doesn't have unconstrained scale the scale shouldn't be deform as soon as you parented. I think we all agree on that.

Thanks I'm doing nulls now for the layers that have unconstrained scale.

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Guide ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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"The workaround is to add a null to the project, hold down the shift key and parent select the A layer to move the null to the same position scale and rotation as the A layer, release the parenting, reset the null's scale, then parent both the A and B layer to the null."

100% on the money

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LEGEND ,
Dec 27, 2018 Dec 27, 2018

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you could also parent the child to the null and the null to the parent and be done with it, as the book suggests. simply make sure rotation is set to 0 degrees in the parent before you do.

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New Here ,
Jan 10, 2022 Jan 10, 2022

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Hi, 
I have been using After Effects for a few years and now, for the first time, I have encountered it too.

Layer A is the parent, Layer B is the child
Untill now, parenting the general whip parenting didn't change absulut values, but it began to behave as if I liked the "Scale of B to the skale of A" with Alt key...
very wierd, never had to use nulls to parent them, since the general pickwhip was like "from this point forward" kind of parenting and now it changes....

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 20, 2022 Jan 20, 2022

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Same thing here! Today it started to do this. But the weird thing is that this only happens every once in a while, and not consistently. I don't know what's going on. Never met this issue before, been using AE for a long time. 

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Explorer ,
Jul 22, 2022 Jul 22, 2022

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I feel you!

No thanks to all the gaslighter responses as usual, acting like this random and inconsistent behavior from AE is infact normal and predictable, and it's actually somehow our fault for not getting it. I'm sick and tired of these condescending remarks from these ancient forum trolls. 

I also have been using AE professionally for over 10 years, am not a total moron, and I'm running into this issue for the first time. I parent layer A to layer B. Layer A scale values should not immediately change from 100% to 2% yet that is what is happening and it is causing all kinds of issues with my scene. That is never ever how general pickwhip parenting has worked. And no I'm not holding the shift key while parenting.

If someone can explain what is actually causing the issue here or perhaps acknowledge it as a bug, please do. If you're going to give some non-answer telling me to calm down or explaining how AE is coded, then don't bother. 

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Explorer ,
Jul 22, 2022 Jul 22, 2022

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I will add - I have never encountered this issue in the past but dragging the pick whip to parent layer A to B preserves the scale of layer A as intended. However if instead of using the pickwhip I select layer B as a parent from layer A's parent dropdown list, I get the immediate scale change of layer A. 

In my experience either method usually gives the same result, sometimes one is just more convenient than the other in terms of screen space. 

Has anyone else noticed this discrepancy? And does anyone know if there is an intentional but subtle difference between using the pickwhip (from layer name to layer name) vs selecting a parent layer from the drop down list?

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Explorer ,
Jul 22, 2022 Jul 22, 2022

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Nevermind. I continued to test this theory and I'm getting totally inconsistent results... I don't know what the hell is going on

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Community Expert ,
Jul 24, 2022 Jul 24, 2022

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Since I saw your post and read the thread, I remember getting very confused a few years back over the differences with null objects and parenting - the anchor being in the corner of a null layer vs a solid.  When I was confused I swear I stumbled across a preference for layer properties to retain global value instead of a relative value.  I've just been looking, but cannot find anything like that.  I wonder if that's what's happening here.

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Explorer ,
Jul 27, 2022 Jul 27, 2022

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oh that really seems like what's going on here but I haven't ever seen that feature pointed out. if you find it, please write back! sounds useful. 

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Community Expert ,
Jul 24, 2022 Jul 24, 2022

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Shift + parent snaps the child layer to the same position as the parent and applies all of the same Layer/Transform properties except opacity.

 

The sample comp is gone, but I cannot reproduce the error.

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Contributor ,
Sep 05, 2022 Sep 05, 2022

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Sometimes though,  you pick whip to parent a layer and the layer moves. I would like to know what would cause this. Parenting to an object that has scaled to 0 goes wrong, but if the parent is scaled to 1% before parenting, it works. So maybe the clue is in the number values.  It would be helpful to have a list of circumstances where pickwhipping to a parent (not holding anything else) will still move the child and make the twenty-five year After Effects Vet scream like a Banshee

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