Switch out head with transition

Community Beginner ,
Aug 06, 2017 Aug 06, 2017

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Switching out a head is normal business in CH. But how do I do this while having a transition leading up to the change?
If I put the cycle layers and the "new head folder" in the same folder and call them by a key, then CH will cycle through the layers and ignore the head folder.
If I put the cycle layers and the new head in separate folders, triggered by the same key, the head is there before the cycle through the layers is complete.
Am I'm missing something obvious?

Here my concrete example. Meet Zac:

zac.gif

Zac is picking up a book so he can read from it. This is done by a cycle layer of body and head, triggered by a key. Works like a charm. There is a pause in the sequence before he puts down the book (not shown here). But the face you are seeing from the second frame onwards is drawn on. It is part of the image cycle. So it is static and does not move.

What I would like to do: have the character be able to use voice input least when it reaches the last frame (when the book is open). Now if there was a way to have the actual interactive face follow the whole head motion, even better. In that case I just would heave to make the faces in the animation cycle blank.

Right now the only ways I can think of to make this "work" are the following. Please read through them and tell me if I'm missing an awsome CH feature, that would resolve the problem.

1) Solve in AE (not an option for a live stream)

basically this means creating two scenes in CH.

The first scene is the full puppet, which will lack mouth shapes whenever the book is open (as the "normal head" is hidden in favor of the "open book head" cycle's last frame).

The second scene is just the face with mouth and eyes

Both scenes are brought into AE either as dynamic links or as exported videos

Then motion track the head whenever it lacks a face (one could actually use the nose as a tracking point because it is there regardless)

Then use the tracking data to add the second scene ("the face" only scene).

2) "solve" in CH with a little help from a friend (AE)

trigger the book picking by a key, let's say "B"

create a mouthgroup activated by a separate key trigger, let's say "M"

So when recording I hit "B" to go through the layer cycle and when it has finished (or thereabouts) I press "M" to make the mouth appear in the proper spot.

Before hitting "B" again I hit "M" thus ending the mouth shape. Then I hit "B" to return to the basic position of the character and the normal mouth takes over.

What I'm left with are gaps for the duration of the layer cycle which then I need to patch in AE manually or like in the example above.

3) solved in a future update of CH because its developers are awesome:

We get the option to determine a behavior delay as part of the keyboard trigger options.

In this case I could assign "B" to the cycle and to the mouth, but in the case of the mouth I specify to delay it by say 19 frames (duration of the animation)

The result would reproduce #2. So still a little work in post necessary to fill the gaps.

4) ANY other way, that is already there, but that I fail to see. Help much appreciated.

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Adobe Employee ,
Aug 07, 2017 Aug 07, 2017

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Looking great as usual!

If I'm understanding correctly, for now, I'd do a blank timed group. So just have a group with a bunch of blank layers to match the other animation timing. See what Moose did with the sword animation here: Character Animator Tips & Tricks (March 2017) - YouTube. Basically it's a bait and switch.

I guess you could say Evans from http://okaysamurai.com/puppets/ does something somewhat similar, where his head cycles into a different head. The cycle happens and the last frame is a fully rigged new head.

Hope that helps...?

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