Adobe CH-Scene changed motion after exporting to AE

Community Beginner ,
Sep 02, 2018 Sep 02, 2018

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Hello together,

Adobe AE changes the motion of my puppet after
importing from Character Animator.

I've tried it several times: could you please help me?

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1hSy24jmAMNXLX77wgPln7CDK8DZWk4mv

I would be glad for help.

Kind regards

Dennis

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 02, 2018 Sep 02, 2018

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This question appears better suited to the AE forum, since that's where it appears the problem lies. Moving it there.

S_Gans
Adobe Community Professional / Adobe Certified Instructor

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 03, 2018 Sep 03, 2018

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Hello S_Gans,

I exportet it from character animator to media encoder. After this step the issue with the wrong movement happened as well.

Therefore it is an "character animator" - issue.

Kind regards

Dennis

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 05, 2018 Sep 05, 2018

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Okay - that wasn't explained in the original post. Will move it back.

S_Gans
Adobe Community Professional / Adobe Certified Instructor

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LEGEND ,
Sep 05, 2018 Sep 05, 2018

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Are the two videos exactly the same clip? A common problem people are facing is the during Character Animator playback the arms (elbows) go one way, but in the final encode they go the other way. Its very annoying. Sometimes putting sticks on the arms helps. Sometimes putting a dragger on the elbow helps start it off on the right spot.

But looking at the two videos, the hands do not start/end at the same place. I am wondering if you are hitting a slightly different problem. In Character Animator dragger positions are absolute positions in the scene window. If you add a Transform scale or change position X/Y afterwards it does not change the drag positions (so the hands stay still but the rest of the body moves away). I am wondering if you are doing scaling or similar in AE and hitting this problem - the drags are not being transposed or scaled so the hands end up in the wrong place. Does that sound like what you are hitting?

(Looking at the video again, it looks like a combination of both of the above. You recorded drags then changed the Postion X/Y (or Absolute X/Y or Scale) so the puppet body moved, but the drags did not move because they are not relative to the body. The path of the drag is exactly the same in both vidoes, but it is exactly offset relative to the body, like the body was moved. Then with the hands being in a different position relative to the body, the arms start flexing in strange wrong angles.)

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 13, 2018 Sep 13, 2018

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yes - the two videos are exactly the same clip.

In AE I just took the scene into it. Not more....

Ithink it is a issue in CH - I try some thinks out with the rigging tool.. Maybe the issue will dissapear.

Thank you for your answer.

Kind regards

Dennis

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LEGEND ,
Sep 13, 2018 Sep 13, 2018

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Have you tried the playback with recording disabled on the puppet? The playback has quite a few red lights on. If you disable the arm button (turn the red dot off), does it behave differently To what you are seeing now? Having the record button enabled masks the old values (at least during recordings) with the idea that it is going to record a new value over the top. But it can be confusing at times... It might be worth turning off the red dot (at the puppet level is find, on the left side of the screen) just to see if it makes a difference.

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New Here ,
Sep 18, 2018 Sep 18, 2018

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I'm having the same issue. Tried everything listed here and nothing. Been dead in the water 3 days over this. I even wiped out my scene and started from scratch, same results.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2018 Sep 18, 2018

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My theory (which may be wrong!) is its to do with draggers being relative to the scene, not the puppet. So moving the puppet in AE causes problems. Are you moving the puppet? Eg changing scale factor, moving it, different frame dimensions? I can try to repeat at home tonight. If you can share details about what you did it can help me try to replicate.

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New Here ,
Sep 18, 2018 Sep 18, 2018

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This particular scene is just the character from the waste up looking straight at the camera. He puts his right hand on his hip and points at the camera. I did pre-recorded audio in Audition and got the visemes set up pretty well. Everything exports perfect until I add the arms.

The first scene I did I had the character walk in from camera right and go to the left side of the panel. He looks around (head turns) and then faces front. He waves at the camera. That one exported perfectly last week but this time around I can't even get it to play back properly within character animator. I made no edits to the puppet core file and the only rigging changes I made were eliminating and adding back in the sticks and draggers trying to sort the arms.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2018 Sep 18, 2018

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So to be clear, the original post was doing a recording in CH, dragging the scene into AE, and the hand positions moved for dragging. Your description however talked about deleting and creating draggers (and sticks). I am pretty sure if you delete a dragger (or make a puppet hierarchy change) the drag take (the recorded data) gets lost (detached from the puppet). If that is the case, I am not sure if its possible to reconnect it or not. But that is different than the previous issue reported, so wanted to make sure I correctly understood the problem you were facing.

That is, did you lose the hand drags, or are they still present but when you include into AE the hand drags are in the wrong position? Any advice may be different depending on what the problem is, so any additional information would be helpful.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2018 Sep 18, 2018

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Okay. So been doing some testing and I think some of what I said above was nonsense. I cannot get it to fail. Scaling all works fine, including scaling of drags. I have seen a similar problem occur, but not sure how to repeat it.

One question going back to your two videos. In the CH video, the character takes up most of the screen. Is the scene window size set to "fit", or did you zoom in a bit? The AME version almost looks like the hand drags are in the same position (relative to size of window) but the artwork has been shrunk? (The artwork does not take up the same percentage height of the AE window as the CH window.)  That difference feels important.

The video is in different proportions.

Could you check the scene properties to check its resolution? The video is 1080p - is the scene the same?

I really don't understand it, and some of my previous thoughts I think are now wrong once I retested. So if you are still having the problem I would be curious to understand what is going wrong. Is it possible to get a ZIP of the project with just this one scene (so the project is not too big). If you don't want to make public, feel free to message me in the forums a private shared link to the project ZIP and I will see if it happens on my machine as well.

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New Here ,
Sep 19, 2018 Sep 19, 2018

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I appreciate the testing for sure!

I tried creating a brand new scene and keeping things simpler. The scene parameters are 1920 x 1080. I use scale and the Transform X and Y parameters to set the character. I turned off most of the recording options and just used a dragger for my character to raise his hand and wave. A single trigger was used to change his hand to open palm.

I exported to Media Encoder with Match Source - High bitrate.

Here's the project folder. It's mostly a playground since this is my first full on attempt. I created the Len puppet 6 times before I got it right haha:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Fex0dEanTHqMi4kA66mgnqZROA47Wj1u

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LEGEND ,
Sep 19, 2018 Sep 19, 2018

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Okay, home from work, downloaded the ZIP file, got an error when loading:

So I held down ALT and clicked the refresh button. That cleared up that problem. I then generated the video for "Scene - Export Test". I then used media encoder to generate a video. https://drive.google.com/open?id=1RFnFexKs_clFfOUgNS2K4P-IHKCBB_Vf   It plays pretty much like in CH (the elbows struggle for some parts, but that is a known problem with CH).

I then dragged the scene from CH into AE and generated the video from there. It came out pretty much the same. The elbows bend a bit strangely, but that is a known issue with the current CH release (hopefully fixed in the upcoming release). But that is different to the previous post in this thread.

If you problem is the elbow bend, then you can do things like put a dragger on the elbow to "help" it go the right way. You can also fiddle with the sticks on the arm, or draw the character with slightly bent arms already so the bends go the right way be default. But that is a different problem than the first video I think.

So could you please expand on the problem you are facing? Is it working on my machine and not yours perhaps? Or am I not following what you are doing?

Thanks!

Alan

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Adobe Employee ,
Sep 19, 2018 Sep 19, 2018

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BTW, the elbow-bending-the-wrong-way problem has been addressed by the newly announced (but not yet released) v2.0 by using a new behavior called Arm IK. It uses shoulder/elbow/wrist tags to keep elbows from bending the wrong way and arms from stretching too far.

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New Here ,
Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018

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Appreciate all the work and time you guys have put in so far.

I opened this project in Character animator and got the same error alank got. I cleared the cache and tried again. Still nothing.

I opened an entirely new project and imported the puppet fresh. I rigged just one arm and set the triggers for his angry face. I did an 8 second video just to have him raise his hand and drop it again. Looked great until I exported. The hand stretched way out of frame.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018

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Very interesting!  Time to start asking some boring questions like what OS are you on. It sounds like you are in CH though dealing with AME (Adobe Media Encoder), not AE (Adobe After Effects), so its different to the start of this thread?  Could you share the AME and CH version numbers? 

To summarize, you created a project, loaded a puppet, dragged the arm up and it plays back okay in CH?  However when you use AME to export to a video file the arm reaches up much higher, beyond what you dragged it to be?  That may be the same problem as the original part of this thread (indicating its not After Effects causing the issue).

But its starting to sound like an Adobe staff problem to look into. Once there is a nice repeatable test case (like the ZIP file above) Adobe folks like DanTull​ and others can have a look. In this case however I have not managed to repeat what you are seeing. It worked fine for me, but it sounds like two people are seeing the same problem now. That is where the version numbers might make a difference - maybe we are running different patch levels of the applications. It should be in an About menu (sorry, not at computer right now to check exactly where).

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Adobe Employee ,
Sep 21, 2018 Sep 21, 2018

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This is on my list to look at in more detail, but it's been busy the last few days. Thanks for the pointer to the thread.

DT

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LEGEND ,
Sep 21, 2018 Sep 21, 2018

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Its almost like a new release is coming up or something...

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New Here ,
Sep 24, 2018 Sep 24, 2018

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Sorry for the lack of response. I got busy as well.

I tried a new project again. Another simple 1 arm movement and tried exporting through media encoder and opening in After Effects. Media Encoder and After Effects both messed up the arms, but not in 100% the same way.

Weirdly, I opened up the project I was originally have troubles with. I had 2 scenes in it. The second scene was the test we've been talking about. The first was more complicated. I played it back in Animator and the arms were all screwed up. When I first made it it played back fine in the program. I did the hard refresh of the scene and then it played fine in Animator but exporting it gave me a weird arm version again. head turning and the walk cycle looked fine though.

On Windows 7, running latest version of everything Adobe though Adobe CC.

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New Here ,
Oct 02, 2018 Oct 02, 2018

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Still no movement on this? I'd like to keep learning/animating but I don't see the point in doing more work if I can't export it.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 02, 2018 Oct 02, 2018

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Have you tried installing the software? I am using Windows 10 but don’t have your problem. Very strange. I don’t mind trying again, but last time it seemed to be fine on my machine. Could you do a screen grab of what you did. And the result? I can then try to repeat directly. Should I start from a newer version of your project? Or even just s export of your puppet.

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New Here ,
Oct 02, 2018 Oct 02, 2018

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I'll try to get it installed on my windows 10 computer and try again. Maybe 7 is just too far out of date.

Thanks!

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Adobe Employee ,
Oct 03, 2018 Oct 03, 2018

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Sorry about the delay, I finally had some time to get back to this. I doubt it is an OS version sensitive issue.

The direction of elbow bends is definitely a pain point for some puppets. The precise angle of sticks and positioning of handles can affect this. Also, artwork where the arm is precisely straight can be more prone to accidental inversion. A slight bend in the arm in the artwork can serve as a hint to get the arms to bend a particular way and angling sticks can also be used for that purpose.

On top of that, recordings in Ch do not fully specify/constrain everything, so it is possible to get different results on playback compared to what was recorded (definitely annoying, but a current reality). Particularly with physics or walk body movement involved, there is some state that can be slightly different from the time it was recorded so for puppets that are close to the tipping point between bends, it can result in inconsistent behavior.

This is why having draggable elbow recordings can help since it constrains the positions more completely (at the expense of more recording effort to position both handles). The Arm IK behavior is also (as noted above) worth a look with the next version. Combined with the replays feature to trigger parameter changes to flip the elbow constraints, it is possible to make a single set of arms bend in either direction as appropriate (and to re-use these carefully controlled gestures).

One other source of inconsistency is playback that is not at full framerate (or starts/stops at arbitrary points like when scrubbing the playhead). If the time points the animation runs at are variable, those variations can cause the results to differ as well. Which is why it is puzzling to me that AME and Ae would get different results with the same project. Usually export and dynamic link should get at least deterministic results (consistent with each other even if not consistent with the original recording).

DT

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New Here ,
Nov 07, 2018 Nov 07, 2018

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Thanks for the reply. Sadly it seems like it boils down to I'm out of luck. I had to take a break from learning the program and am discouraged the new version is windows 10 only since I'm rarely in front of a windows 10 machine. I tried my animation in that program and it screwed it up too.

I tried using my same puppet on windows 10 with a new animation and still no good. Not really sure what to do. I have some projects I'd love to be working on but I'm not sure the point if I'm the only one who can ever see it.

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