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In Flash Professional CS5: Character Animation, Dermot O' Connor explains the process of character animation in Flash, using nested symbols and motion and shape tweening to create believable characters. The course covers the process from start to finish, from rigging a character to creating a walk cycle animation. Along the way, Dermot demonstrates techniques such as animating eye blinks, head turns, and mouth movements during dialogue. Exercise files accompany the course.
So, one last demonstration remains on the walk cycle and that consists of how we position it and it's amazingly simple thing. So, let's just open our file, number 19 in your Exercise Folder, and I'll zoom out for a bit. So, at this point, we can clean it up a little bit. I don't think we need to have the sample image floating around anymore and let's just take one more look at it. So, as I promised in the preceding clip, I've just nested the right hand inside the upper hand symbol.
So we have what looks like a little weird magical gesture when you look at it contained by itself, but when you see it properly moving with the character, that's pretty nice. Okay, so here is how we would create a longer walk out of what we've already got here. So, I'm going to Free Transform, make this guy a little smaller. I'm going to give him more space to move across and we should also extend our Timeline much longer than the Timeline contained inside the walk.
I'm going to make sure he's set just to play once, make him a graphic in the Properties panel, and Option, Play Once, and also make sure he's set to the first frame. That's nice. Great! We're set. So, this is what would happen if we play him once. What we want to do is to play them over and over and over again. So this is one way to do it. So, let's say the walk cycle is this long. So I'm just going to Ctrl+Alt+C to copy those frames, paste this in here, and actually let's just clear these frames.
So this'll serve us as a little sign I like to use to copy these frames and that will show me how long my cycle is. So again, holding down the Alt, Option key, drag that to here, and so we see what we're doing. We have our original walk cycle from here to here. I've copied that again onto this layer back in this position. So what I'm going to do is grab the upper layer and simply move it over.
Let's go in a bit tighter, make sure it lines up properly, and then where they overlap, I'll just put the lower level to a F7 to a blank image. Now, when we zoom out, you can see the process. So we would simply repeat this over and over again, and a couple of ways of maybe simplifying it is finding out just how many pixels you move from left to right and simply duplicating that. But this will be a more basic way of doing a repositioned walk and as long as you don't have to do this too many times, this is one way of doing it.
Not the optimal way of doing it, but it certainly is functional. Zoom out again. Now, let's go to color. There we go. So those are two repositioned cycles further along from the first. Now of course, the ideal way will be instead of having to do this, we can just animate him walking in place around an imaginary vertical axis and then we just have to create two tweens.
We can make him walk, enter the screen, and we have complete control at that point. It's a little trickier with this. So, we will now move on to the next chapter where I will show you how to animate a walk cycle in place. If you've already worked through this chapter, you'll find it a lot easier and it'll also be good to do a second one in a slightly format, and many of the principles and the poses will all be the same. But I think you'll enjoy the freedom of not having to worry about your arcs and other factors. I'm going to save this project file as number 20 if you want to see the sample of the repositioning.
And let's move on.
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