Moving character position workflow?

New Here ,
Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018

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Hello

I have a scene with 4 puppets in. One is a bird. I want it to fly in from the side and land on a puppets shoulder. All 4 characters speak, even the bird. How do I animate this? If I dynamic link to AE, it doesn't let me keyframe a single puppets position. Do I need to export multiple takes of the scene with different visibility for each character and then composite them in AE? Or could this be done in CA?

Bets Regards

Mikkel

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

LEGEND , Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018
I do it all in CH myself, because on my hardware AE is very slow. CH is faster, but not as precise. If the movements are a linear path (e.g. Bird flys straight across), then you can use blends to achieve that with precision. It’s sort of doing what Jerry described, but inside CH. If you want a graceful arc, then using a dragger is the best bet (like what Sharon described). It also depends on whether you want the other characters to move around (e.g. have the bird on the shoulder move with the ch...

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Contributor ,
Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018

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I only know CA well. I know enough to know this is possible. This is how I would do it:

1. Set all scaling and X and Y anchor points. Set these to where you want the character to start. Record each of these separately.

2. In terms of the bird flying, record it slowly at .75 or .5. This will probably be the hardest thing, but it will only happen after you set each characters' X Y and Scaling.

3. Personally, I animate songs, so I have a ready made track. My suggestion would be to create the audio track first. I do the sync from the track. I actually don't mess with this until the end-maybe because I don't know visemes well, but also I find this tedious.

4. In general, recording each character separately for each behavior I find is the most effective. In other words, if a character moves arms, I actually do each separately. I record walking behaviors separately until I get it right.

5. Your bird behavior can probably be done with just the X and Y points-either the starting anchor points after you have the other character set, or the position X and Y points.

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Guru ,
Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018

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Without having more details about your puppets and rigging, my first reaction would be to animate each of the puppets in its own scene and then bring those scenes into AE via DL. There are some things that are just easier to do in AE, and key framing position between puppets is one of them, but not if the puppets are all in the same scene.

You might be able to do something like this in CA if each of the puppets has its own transform behavior assigned.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 20, 2018 Sep 20, 2018

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I do it all in CH myself, because on my hardware AE is very slow. CH is faster, but not as precise. If the movements are a linear path (e.g. Bird flys straight across), then you can use blends to achieve that with precision. It’s sort of doing what Jerry described, but inside CH. If you want a graceful arc, then using a dragger is the best bet (like what Sharon described). It also depends on whether you want the other characters to move around (e.g. have the bird on the shoulder move with the character).

https://extra-ordinary.tv/2018/02/04/butterflies-and-poppies/ Shows an example of a butterfly created using draggers to flutter around and then land on a flower. The trick was the flower was swaying in the wind. What I did in that case was copy the butterfly artwork into the character puppet and hid it with a trigger. So when the butterfly got close, I hid the flying butterfly and revealed the butterfly-on-the-flower, so it automatically moved with the swaying flower. Its more work, but the result looked good. (I also put legs on the standing butterfly.)

Normally what I do for precise movements between two points is to use blends. Using Blends in Adobe Character Animator - YouTube was an early video I created If any help. Simulated Camera Panning in Adobe Character Animator - YouTube  Talks about camera panning, but its the same concept. https://extra-ordinary.tv/2018/08/30/music-videos-in-character-animator-part-3/ talks about syncing to music (Precise timing required). To use a blend you basically set the puppets starting position, arm the recording, set the X/Y to the destination, record a take, then extend out the recording. There is a little handle in the top left and right of the take you can use to drag sideways. It will then move blend the X/Y values from the starting coordinate to the destination. Its like a poor mans keyframing (AE has more precise controls). I tend to use this because I find it faster to stay in CH than AE.

But as you can see, there is not a single solution here!

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New Here ,
Sep 27, 2018 Sep 27, 2018

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I figured it out. Position blend was the magic trick. Thanks for being awesome and helpful. Good karma your way.

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