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Parenting Like in After Effects

Contributor ,
Jul 30, 2020 Jul 30, 2020

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Am I not familiar enough with Character Animator or what, but here's my problem:

 

I have a little experience in After Effects before. There is a thing called "parenting"

It means I can parent layer "b" to another layer "a", and hence everytime layer a is moved layer b will follow that layer a movement. However I cannot find such option in Character Animator. A layer can only parent to its own group, and cannot parent to another layer outside its group. For example say a hair in the back of the head group and body group.

 

It looks like this:

- Character/Puppet

-- Head group

-- Body group

-- Hair

 

Won't it be very helpful if we can parent the hair into the head group instead of the entire character?

That way the hair will move everytime the head moves?

 

And this can apply to arms and torso. I have puppets that consist of two set of arm groups. Namely the back and front arm group. The front arm group is used when the hands of the character needs to be in front of the face.

 

It looks like this:

- Character/Puppet

-- Front arm group

-- Head group

-- Back arm group

-- Body group

 

And this are only a scarce of cases. Many things can be achieved if we just have this option.

 

I have thought about the magnet option, but the problem with magnet is the layer needs to be independent to work effectively. Many times I can't make a layer independent for reasons.

 

Thanks for reading!
Hopefully you can understand what I am trying to deliver...

TOPICS
Feature requests, How to, Puppet movement, Rigging

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People's Champ ,
Jul 30, 2020 Jul 30, 2020

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YES YES YES! It would be very useful. Currently you can only "parent" to a mesh above the current layer in the hierarchy, and that causes problems for "rear hair group" - the most common case that this is a restriction.

 

To add to your discussion, parenting at the moment for independent groups depends on "meshes", no layers. Each time you have an independent node, that starts a new mesh. So there is a layer hierarchy and a mesh hierarchy (defined by independent layers).

 

It would be very useful at times to be able to change the parent to something else. The layer order is the only way to control what appears in front of what, the layer nesting is the only way to put a mesh under another mesh. Sometimes, exactly as you say, this causes a problem.

 

There is no solution today for rear hair to solve this that I know of, other than to have the head not independent. That way the head and body are in the same mesh, and the rear hair group mesh is then a child of the root mesh for the puppet. If you want the head independent, it suddenly gets its own mesh which is a sibling of the rear hair mesh and you cannot "parent" the rear hair to the head mesh (today).

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Contributor ,
Jul 30, 2020 Jul 30, 2020

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Thank you for your reply!

 

Has anyone posted this as the feature request?

 

What is the difference between mesh and layer?

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People's Champ ,
Jul 30, 2020 Jul 30, 2020

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if you search through the forums there have been a number of discussions on "rear hair group". I am sure an issue was created, but it did not use the term "parenting". That makes complete sense as the term however. Ah, here it is https://adobe-video.uservoice.com/forums/911317-character-animator/suggestions/33843064-improve-rear...

 

In Ch, artwork is built up from the tree of layers. But layers are merged into meshes. A new mesh is started for every independent node. If not independent then the child artwork is merged into the parent nodes mesh. (Parent here means the node above it.) The yellow outline Ch draws is the mesh outline. Meshes have all the little triangles painted over with the artwork, stretched as appropriate by movements. Starting a new mesh means the new mesh will not distort with the parent mesh (and vice versa). The meshes are independent, but joined. There is an attach to field that is weld (like gluing them together), hinge (like putting a pin though both layers so it swivels cleanly on that point), and free (which i think means don't connect them - i don't use it so don't remember).

 

 

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Contributor ,
Aug 01, 2020 Aug 01, 2020

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Is that you Alan Kent? Thanks for quoting this so people can have discussion here...

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Contributor ,
Aug 01, 2020 Aug 01, 2020

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I made a new discussion for this parenting feature instead in the 2019 post, probably is no longer active.

Help me by voting and commenting it everyone!

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