Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Animating blinks

From: Creating Animated Characters in After Effects

Video: Animating blinks

Now, let's go ahead and finish up this animation by adding a few blinks and changes in eye direction. So let's see where we are at right now. I have gone ahead and finished the dialog. (Character: Oh boy! I've been waiting for this all week!) So the dialog is animated. Now, the next thing we want to do is basically just do some eye direction and blinks. Now blinks are, again, replacement animation, so you want to make sure that we highlight this first key and make sure that our Keyframe Interpolation is set to Hold, and that we will be sure that we can swap out the blinks very easily.

Animating blinks

Now, let's go ahead and finish up this animation by adding a few blinks and changes in eye direction. So let's see where we are at right now. I have gone ahead and finished the dialog. (Character: Oh boy! I've been waiting for this all week!) So the dialog is animated. Now, the next thing we want to do is basically just do some eye direction and blinks. Now blinks are, again, replacement animation, so you want to make sure that we highlight this first key and make sure that our Keyframe Interpolation is set to Hold, and that we will be sure that we can swap out the blinks very easily.

Now the first thing I want to do is add in a blink as he turns his head. So the first thing I want to do is, okay, so I have got about 12 frames to add in this blink, so I am going to start right around at frame 4. So at frame 4 I am going to move this slider to that first position there, just to start the blink, move 2 frames in, and then I am going to go to second one and then just close it.

And then go 2 frames out, and then I am just going to set that back to 0 to open the eyes. So now we've got--okay. Now one thing I want to do is also change the eye direction. So this blink can cover a change in eye direction very easily. So I am going to go ahead and select this pupil and Shift+Select this pupil. In fact, we can go down here to Left_Pupil_CTL and R_Pupil_CTL, and let's go ahead and set a Positions key for both of those.

Then when the eyes pop open, I am going to go ahead and move those over into the position that I want, which is looking straight forward. So now we've got the blink as covering that change in eye direction. So we've got--okay, so now another blink we want to add as he comes down into this squash, now one thing we can do is we can just copy and paste these keys. So I have got a pretty good blink here on my Blink slider.

So if I just select those keys, hit Ctrl+C or Command+C and then Ctrl+V or Command+V, I can blink. But I want to keep his eyes closed until he pops up, so I am going to go ahead and drag this keyframe out to about frame 40. So there we've got, oh boy, boy! I think another blink would help right in here; so again, I am just going to do this manually here.

So I am going to go ahead and put that there, 2 frames there, 2 frames, close it. Now you can decide whether you want to pop open the eyes or you want to open them a little bit more slowly. So if you want to open them a little bit more slowly, I am going to go ahead and just copy and paste this one and then open it completely. So I am actually opening this eye faster than I close it. That gives him a little bit more alertness.

So then another good place would be when he turns his head here. Again, one of the things I like to do is once I have a blink sequence, I can just select that in the timeline, copy, and paste. So now we've got--in fact, I want to move that back a little bit. Again, I am just trying to get this aligned well.

And once he opens his eyes, again, I think I want to do another change in eye direction. So again, I am just going to select both the left and right pupil control, select position, and make sure I have keyframe for position--that just locks down that original position--and then when he opens his eyes, I kind of want to do this sort of. And then again, I want to do another blink here. So again, I am going to just copy and paste this Blink slider. And then when he comes back up, I want to go back to that original eye position.

So one of the things I can do is I can just copy this eye position to the last place where his eyes are closed. So I can go here to these eye positions and just copy them, or, because it's in the same place, I am just going to hit the Position key, which basically does the same thing for both the left and right pupil. And then as he comes up, I am going to get that centered pupil key and make sure that I copy and paste it there. So now, there we go! So now let's take a look at this and see how this works.

(Character: Oh boy! I've been waiting for this all week!) So there we go! Okay, so you can see the process for animating blinks. Typically, when you do an eye-direction change, you want to cover that with a blink. And remember also, it's much faster to animate one blink and then just copy and paste it on the timeline; it saves a lot of time.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Creating Animated Characters in After Effects
Creating Animated Characters in After Effects

46 video lessons · 15578 viewers

George Maestri
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 49s
    1. Welcome
      1m 17s
    2. Using the exercise files
      32s
  2. 27m 15s
    1. Creating characters in Illustrator
      5m 51s
    2. Creating characters in Photoshop
      7m 9s
    3. Designing joints
      3m 40s
    4. Drawing mouths
      2m 12s
    5. Drawing hands and eyelids
      2m 48s
    6. Importing Illustrator files into After Effects
      3m 26s
    7. Importing Photoshop files into After Effects
      2m 9s
  3. 7m 51s
    1. Drawing in After Effects
      3m 57s
    2. Copying paths from Illustrator
      2m 19s
    3. Animating shapes
      1m 35s
  4. 21m 9s
    1. Understanding how layer hierarchies work
      3m 58s
    2. Understanding the importance of the pivot point
      5m 42s
    3. Assembling the upper body
      4m 47s
    4. Creating leg hierarchies for efficient walks
      4m 27s
    5. Organizing scenes with null layers
      2m 15s
  5. 22m 26s
    1. Adding puppet pins to a character
      6m 51s
    2. Controlling mesh density
      2m 15s
    3. Creating overlap pins
      4m 43s
    4. Creating starch pins
      3m 1s
    5. Using the Puppet tool with hierarchies
      5m 36s
  6. 19m 7s
    1. Replacement animation using time remapping
      6m 47s
    2. Mouth replacement
      6m 6s
    3. Creating blinks
      6m 14s
  7. 27m 23s
    1. Creating a head turn: Head shape
      6m 45s
    2. Creating a head turn: Ears
      8m 7s
    3. Creating a head turn: Facial features
      6m 41s
    4. Creating a head turn: Hair shape
      5m 50s
  8. 1h 3m
    1. The basics of expressions: Controlling the wrist
      5m 20s
    2. Moving hands from front to back with expressions
      9m 2s
    3. Using expressions to control pupils
      7m 44s
    4. Creating a master control node with Expression Controls
      6m 30s
    5. Creating blinks that move with a head turn
      9m 28s
    6. Controlling blinks using opacity
      6m 34s
    7. Attaching mouth shapes to a slider
      3m 39s
    8. Creating mouths that move with a head turn
      8m 31s
    9. Working with absolute values
      6m 12s
  9. 14m 28s
    1. Setting up null objects as bones
      5m 39s
    2. Attaching puppet pins to bones
      4m 57s
    3. Strategies for parenting legs and feet
      3m 52s
  10. 28m 32s
    1. Setting up a scene for animation
      6m 3s
    2. Blocking out the shot
      11m 0s
    3. Animating dialogue
      5m 39s
    4. Animating blinks
      5m 50s
  11. 18s
    1. Goodbye
      18s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now "Already a member? Log in

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Creating Animated Characters in After Effects.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Your file was successfully uploaded.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.