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Animating a tremor

From: Animation Tips and Tricks with Flash Professional

Video: Animating a tremor

There is another really cool effect that I use to wonder, how the heck do people do it? And that's a little shake or a stagger; the very tiny little tremors that people do sometimes, like very old people, or if you are leaning into the wind. So let's have a look at what this is. You may remember this little walking magic carpet, dollar bill fellow from a previous section of the course. This could either be he's very old and he is shaking, or there is a gale force wind blowing right at him. So let's see how this was done again. And as you can imagine if you have done the previous section, we animated a very simple walk; normally I have many more poses in this walk, but to keep things really easy for us I removed the squish and the highpoint poses.

Animating a tremor

There is another really cool effect that I use to wonder, how the heck do people do it? And that's a little shake or a stagger; the very tiny little tremors that people do sometimes, like very old people, or if you are leaning into the wind. So let's have a look at what this is. You may remember this little walking magic carpet, dollar bill fellow from a previous section of the course. This could either be he's very old and he is shaking, or there is a gale force wind blowing right at him. So let's see how this was done again. And as you can imagine if you have done the previous section, we animated a very simple walk; normally I have many more poses in this walk, but to keep things really easy for us I removed the squish and the highpoint poses.

So what we have is just the contact positions where his feet are touching the ground, and then the passing position, and then the contact, and that's it. It's a passable walk. I made a second one, so there is two of these, and this is the second one. And all I did was I went into the shoulders; I just pulled slightly out of position from the first one. And then on the outer Timeline, if you have seen the animation of the plank, we just go back and forth between one and the other.

So what I am going to do is just simply hide and guide out the original Exercise file, and let's see if you can put one of these things together in not too much time. So what I am going to do is throw down, first, a couple of guides just for the feet. It's going to be walking along a line, like that. Parallel lines, let's say, and let's just padlock that, and make that a guide layer, because I don't want to be exporting it. And with a green color for the fill, and the black for the outline, I am going to use the Rectangle tool, and let's make a little pose.

So the first things first; let's hit F8, and we will call this walk 1, and I am going to put the pivot down closer to there. So we'll do a full walk first in this one. So I'm going to hit F5 to stretch this Timeline out, select these frames, hold down Alt key, and just copy over. And I will get rid of the surplus frames. So this makes it clear that exactly the right number of frames to make that cycle. So I am going to hit F6 here, so that we have our contact position at the Frame 1, and our contact position at Frame 29 are exactly the same. And on this frame in the middle, Frame 15, I am going to hit F6 to make new keyframe, and let's just push this into the other contact position.

So now he goes from here to here, and we probably want to put a bit of a twist on the shoulders as well. Okay, so I now I am going to activate shape tweening. The big problem we have here right now is that the feet are stuck on the ground. So we need to put in a passing position, and making F7 here as a little note for the correct position, and I often do this so that I can line up my frames properly on each side of the walk.

I am selecting these frames, holding down the Alt or Option key, and dragging. So I am going to the first passing position, hitting F6 on this one; the leg that's moving forward, well that should be off the ground. There we go, and same with this one; hit F6, and the leg moving forward would be this one. Lift it off the ground, and I have been lucky here; I am not having to use any shape hints. If you find you do, I'll say it again, don't forget to back up your scene before you start applying shape hints.

Now we have our first walk, and, simple process now, we duplicate it. And I probably don't need to see this guide layer anymore. So we will call this walk 1; it's always nice to label everything when you start doing the stuff, because you can get lost very easily. So I am going to hold down the Alt, Option key, and drag to here, and I will put the walk 2 on the bottom. So let's name that, hide the top one, click this walk, which is walk 1, right-click, and duplicate, and we'll call it walk 2. So we have Layer 1, walk 1 containing symbol walk 1; we have Layer 2, walk 2 containing symbol walk 2.

So let's go into walk 2, and what I am going to do is just pull these points a little bit. And like I said before, we don't want to change the feet too much. We can actually change the foot of the passing position, becaus it pushes off the ground, so that could give us a little bit of extra shimmying. And I think we can pull these shoulders a little bit. And you don't want to go crazy with this. Just keep it pretty subtle, because we are trying to have a little tiny, very minor effect here. It could be wild if you want it to be, of course, but the kind of effect that we are looking for is a little lighter than that. And don't forget, our end should be the same.

So rather than making changes to this, I am going to go Control+X, Control+C, Control+Shift+V to paste that in place. So now we have two walks, and they should be slightly different. Let's test that by looking at them in outline. And that green is hard to see, so let's make that red. And let's make that purple a dark green. I like to have these play once, but this is a walk cycle, so looping is good. So they both loop, and they're both set to loop from Frame 1 onwards.

So let's just hit all these layers, and hit F6, and we will make a little checkerboard pattern by hitting Control+X, and deleting every alternate frame. That's it. That's how you do it. You could also make walk 3, and pull that into a slightly different position, and you can go 1, 2, 3; 1, 2, 3, instead of as I have done here: 1, 2; 1, 2; 1, 2. You could have four of them if you are afraid that this looks a little mechanical, and you have seen how easy it is to make more of these states if your character is reasonably simple.

Even with a slightly more complex character I could do this. I don't think it would that difficult to duplicate a walk cycle, and just pull every alternate position slightly out of place, and then toggle between them. Just don't start doing it to all your characters.

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This video is part of

Image for Animation Tips and Tricks with Flash Professional
Animation Tips and Tricks with Flash Professional

46 video lessons · 13309 viewers

Dermot O' Connor
Author

 
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  1. 6m 35s
    1. Welcome
      1m 4s
    2. Using the exercise files
      51s
    3. Common keystrokes and shortcuts used in this course
      4m 40s
  2. 1h 24m
    1. Understanding video versus SWF
      2m 30s
    2. Overview of shortcuts, extensions, and setup
      6m 27s
    3. Understanding linear and radial gradients
      2m 39s
    4. Overlapping and animating the colors
      3m 53s
    5. Lighting a scene
      10m 24s
    6. Creating lens flares
      10m 40s
    7. Animating ripples
      7m 2s
    8. Creating a gradient globe
      11m 41s
    9. Creating a gradient bottle
      10m 26s
    10. Applying gradients to a character's eye
      10m 2s
    11. Applying gradients to a character's skull
      8m 49s
  3. 56m 53s
    1. Tweening a circle to a square
      10m 9s
    2. Using thumbnails
      4m 39s
    3. Animating a magic carpet jump
      10m 12s
    4. Setting up a magic carpet walk cycle
      7m 41s
    5. Animating a magic carpet walk cycle
      9m 33s
    6. Shape tweening hair
      3m 50s
    7. Intro to overlapping hair
      1m 57s
    8. Animating overlapping hair
      8m 52s
  4. 1h 8m
    1. Animating waves
      8m 7s
    2. Animating clouds
      7m 48s
    3. Animating a flame
      11m 38s
    4. Animating an explosion
      9m 1s
    5. Adding in-betweens to the explosion
      4m 36s
    6. Adding explosion clusters
      6m 43s
    7. Optimizing the explosion
      7m 30s
    8. Animating smoke with particles
      12m 45s
  5. 32m 18s
    1. Introduction to staggers
      1m 5s
    2. Animating a simple stagger
      5m 8s
    3. Animating a diving board
      6m 15s
    4. Animating a tremor
      5m 56s
    5. Animating a scream
      7m 12s
    6. Refining the scream
      6m 42s
  6. 47m 49s
    1. Introduction to Virtual Camera
      5m 4s
    2. Animating parallax
      6m 9s
    3. Animating a crane shot
      6m 26s
    4. Animating a zoom and rotate shot
      9m 30s
    5. Animating a track shot
      11m 0s
    6. Lighting a 3D shot
      9m 40s
  7. 19m 48s
    1. Animating a cross dissolve
      6m 10s
    2. Animating a wipe
      3m 34s
    3. Animating a fadeout
      10m 4s
  8. 20s
    1. Goodbye
      20s

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