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Understanding the Timeline

From: Blender 2.6 Essential Training

Video: Understanding the Timeline

Animation is probably one of the more important features of Blender, so let's take a look at animation, and we're going to start with the Timeline which is the core of the animation process in Blender. Now I have a simple scene here, and you may have seen the scene before. It's billiard balls on a pool table. And we have our Timeline at the bottom of the screen. It's this window, from here down, and it's basically where we can scrub our animation as well as set keyframes and step through our animation.

Understanding the Timeline

Animation is probably one of the more important features of Blender, so let's take a look at animation, and we're going to start with the Timeline which is the core of the animation process in Blender. Now I have a simple scene here, and you may have seen the scene before. It's billiard balls on a pool table. And we have our Timeline at the bottom of the screen. It's this window, from here down, and it's basically where we can scrub our animation as well as set keyframes and step through our animation.

Now the easiest way to use the Timeline is to simply left-click in this window and we can scrub through the animation. So as you see, the frames are numbered along the bottom, and we basically just jump from frame to frame as we move from left to right. Now we also can go from frame to frame here, using this box, where we can just step through the frame number. Or if we want, we can type in a frame number if we want to jump to a specific frame.

Now if you want to play back your animation, we have animation controls here. The forward-facing triangle plays forward. And when you activate that, notice how it turns into a pause button. If I hit the pause button, I can then reselect the backwards-facing triangle to play backwards. Now we have a couple of other options here. This goes to the very end or the very beginning, and this steps forward and back a keyframe at a time.

So you have to have keyframes enabled in your scene. Now when you're playing back, do you want to sync--and that's this option here-- do you want to sync, do you want to sync to AV? If we're using audio, that's what we might need. Or do you want to drop frames to maintain sync? So if we have this at 24 frames a second, do we want to play it at 24 frames a second? If it can't make that frame rate, it will drop frames. No Sync means it will play as fast as it can up to the maximum rate.

So if it's at 24 frames a second, it will never go over, but it might play slower. Now, we also have start and end frames here, and this basically shows you how much time we have for animation. So our start frame can be at 1, it can be at 0, we can certainly just bring these up and down by clicking the arrows, or we can type in a number. So if I want this to be a longer animation, I could type in, say, 60, and you could see how when I do that, it goes beyond the end of the window here.

But we have the ability to zoom in and out in our window, and this operates just like any other viewport. All I have to do is either roll the middle mouse button or hit Ctrl and the middle mouse button and I can zoom in and out. Now if I hit Shift and the middle mouse button, I can pan this left or right. Now another thing you'll notice is that along the bottom we have our frame numbers, but if you notice on each side of these, we have a little dot.

So if you click on that dot, you can also zoom. So if I click on this dot and then move it right or left, you can also zoom your Timeline. Now we also have options for keyframing, which we'll get into in the next lesson. And we also have some View options here. Do we want to view the selected channels, in other words, the object that we have selected? Do we want to view all the keyframes? And then also, do we want to see this in frames or in seconds? So if I change this, you can see how it's actually showing me seconds plus frames or just frames by themselves.

So those are some of the basics of Blender's Timeline, and we're going to get into animation in the next lesson.

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This video is part of

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Blender 2.6 Essential Training

90 video lessons · 21967 viewers

George Maestri
Author

 
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  1. 3m 42s
    1. Welcome
      1m 22s
    2. Using the exercise files
      28s
    3. Downloading Blender
      34s
    4. Using Blender on a Mac
      42s
    5. Using Blender on a laptop
      36s
  2. 30m 32s
    1. Overview of the Blender interface
      6m 6s
    2. Understanding 3D view windows
      5m 23s
    3. Navigating in 3D space
      6m 35s
    4. Configuring user preferences
      6m 24s
    5. Creating custom layouts
      6m 4s
  3. 32m 29s
    1. Selecting objects
      6m 12s
    2. Moving objects
      4m 35s
    3. Rotating objects
      2m 48s
    4. Scaling objects
      2m 16s
    5. Understanding transform orientation
      3m 53s
    6. Changing an object's origin
      5m 27s
    7. Selecting pivot points
      3m 22s
    8. Using Snap to move objects precisely
      3m 56s
  4. 44m 15s
    1. Creating mesh primitives
      6m 36s
    2. Selecting vertices, edges, and faces
      4m 48s
    3. Editing mesh objects
      7m 39s
    4. Proportional editing
      3m 52s
    5. Sculpt mode
      4m 45s
    6. Working with edges and edge loops
      3m 42s
    7. Extrusions
      5m 18s
    8. Smooth shading objects
      2m 23s
    9. Subdividing meshes
      5m 12s
  5. 50m 31s
    1. Working with modifiers
      5m 52s
    2. Working with subdivision surfaces
      3m 48s
    3. Creating a simple creature
      7m 54s
    4. Symmetrical modeling with the Mirror modifier
      8m 21s
    5. Joining mesh objects
      3m 37s
    6. Stitching vertices
      4m 52s
    7. Finalizing a simple creature
      4m 48s
    8. Creating text
      3m 29s
    9. Boolean tools
      2m 59s
    10. Vertex groups
      4m 51s
  6. 22m 36s
    1. Using the Outliner
      8m 22s
    2. Using layers
      4m 30s
    3. Creating groups
      2m 48s
    4. Working with scenes
      4m 2s
    5. Creating hierarchies
      2m 54s
  7. 54m 26s
    1. Assigning materials to objects
      8m 4s
    2. Diffuse shaders
      6m 47s
    3. Working with specularity
      5m 56s
    4. Using the Ramp Shader options
      9m 45s
    5. Additional shading options
      2m 37s
    6. Creating reflections
      8m 29s
    7. Adding transparency and refractions
      6m 49s
    8. Subsurface scattering
      5m 59s
  8. 51m 48s
    1. Adding a simple texture
      6m 11s
    2. Using bitmaps
      6m 53s
    3. Mapping textures in the UV Editor
      8m 28s
    4. Using UV projections
      5m 56s
    5. UV mapping a character
      6m 11s
    6. Fine-tuning UV mapping
      6m 7s
    7. Creating Bump and Normal maps
      3m 15s
    8. Displacement mapping
      3m 48s
    9. Using the Node Editor
      4m 59s
  9. 53m 9s
    1. Adding lamps to a scene
      8m 44s
    2. Fine-tuning ray-trace shadows
      4m 32s
    3. Using spot lamps
      4m 20s
    4. Fine-tuning buffer shadows
      6m 19s
    5. Using Hemi lamps
      2m 32s
    6. Working with Area lamps
      5m 17s
    7. Creating sky and ambient light
      4m 49s
    8. Adding background images
      3m 19s
    9. Creating sunlight
      6m 6s
    10. Ambient occlusion
      7m 11s
  10. 30m 8s
    1. Working with cameras
      4m 47s
    2. Creating camera targets with constraints
      3m 43s
    3. Render properties
      5m 7s
    4. Rendering animation
      5m 13s
    5. Adding motion blur
      4m 10s
    6. Creating depth of field
      7m 8s
  11. 32m 30s
    1. Understanding the Timeline
      4m 3s
    2. Animating objects
      6m 26s
    3. Animating properties
      4m 0s
    4. Editing animation in the Graph Editor
      8m 36s
    5. Using the Dope Sheet
      4m 53s
    6. Path animation
      4m 32s
  12. 39m 59s
    1. Facial animation using shape keys
      4m 40s
    2. Understanding armatures
      6m 2s
    3. Fitting an armature to a creature
      7m 23s
    4. Deforming a character with an armature
      3m 49s
    5. Setting up inverse kinematics
      3m 53s
    6. Controlling the hips and body
      2m 1s
    7. Animating in Pose mode
      2m 47s
    8. Creating a test animation
      9m 24s
  13. 15s
    1. Goodbye
      15s

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