Join Dermot O' Connor for an in-depth discussion in this video Fine-tuning, part of Toon Boom Animate and Harmony Essential Training.
- Now let's a quick look at how you fine tune the scene, add a little bit of extra animation to it just to make it look a little stronger. So, I've kept his head kinda simple where it's just looking out straight throughout this entire action, but let's, instead of doing that, let's add some keyframes and put some dimensions to it. So, you see where we have the main vertical stacks where the primary action is happening. So, on these vertical columns, select those and just hit F6, again, and again, and again. We'll do it here, and also here.
Now, you'll notice that we have tweening happening here. I don't want tweening to happen there because we're gonna have a hold between these two frames like he pauses there for a second. So let's just switch that off, and that's easy enough just select this column, right click, and Set Stop Motion Keyframe. That's the way of saying, you don't have any digital animation happening in there, it's all held. So, let's now start. I'm gonna go in close on the head, and from here to here, let's zoom out a bit so we can see. From there to there he's tilting back slightly, just a little bit.
So let's move the eye and the mouth back up in the head, and make sure Animate Mode is on, and you're using the Transform tool. So I'm gonna select that eye and this eye area here, and just using the Skew tools, just very quickly do that and pull the mouth up, and we have a nice illusion of motion there, and now on this frame, he's coming down. So this will be the opposite.
Select the pupil, and, hard to select the eye at that scale so we'll zoom in a bit, and just pull this down, grab the mouth, move that down, maybe even skew the mouth if you think it's getting a little bit too weird looking, and then on this frame, let's make a bit of room here, so on this frame, I think we'll see if we can skew him the other direction. Let's move the eye over here.
And probably would help too if we had this pupil just staring off in that direction also. So he's gonna go down, up, and look over here. But then, on this frame, you'll see he'll pop back to here, so this is easy enough. All we have to do is delete these keyframes. Actually, we don't even have to delete them, we can just go to this one, Control C, to the next one, Control V, and just repeat that process. Control C, Control V, select the mouth, Control C, Control V.
And I think something similar down here. Okay. Now, the other thing to watch out for are the antennae. They're kinda giving the game away, so, I'm just gonna move them in, change their position slightly. I'm not worrying about this area here right now.
I'll show you why in a moment. So here we have the antennae, and here, I think also, we could probably skew them backwards. They're gonna be disappearing behind his head so let's click on this. I like their position there. Here, I think we can also tilt them back a little bit. And also Control C on this one to copy it to here. Okay, and now we're going to use the Zed nudging, and this is one of my favorite features of this program because if I dislike doing anything it's moving layers around and having to create duplicate layers.
So let's see how this works. At some point, let's say about here, I'm going to want these antennae to go behind his head. So with Transform Mode on, and selecting them inside the Camera view, not here, but inside the Camera view, hold down Alt and hold up the numeric key that's facing away from you until that thing disappears. And again, if you want to see what's happening here, open the Data view, open this flyer, and what we're doing is nudging this in Zed depth, that's here.
So now at .002, .001, .000. At the point at which is pops away, it'll just appear to be disappearing into the background, and you can make it go even further back, and this one. And that means because this value is tweening so the further back it goes, the quicker it'll pop off. So again, let me close that. Normally, I just eyeball this. We don't need to have that view open, I just wanted you to see where to find the numbers, and now here, you see, we have to set more keyframes for this, so I'm just selecting it there.
Push it back. Same here. Push it back. You'll never have to re-arrange a layer again. And at some point here, it'll pop forward. So, you might want to push it back a little further here. One, two, three, and the up arrow, the one that's facing away from you is pushing it further away in the depth. And as you can see, now that changes the time, the frame at which they pop onto the top layer, and again, very quickly now, they want to, you need to push this one into the background.
There we go. That was three clicks. I think I could give it three more. One, two, three. Lovely. And the same thing here. Actually, I can just Control C, Control V, and we should have an animation happen here, and none is happening, so, that's because I was copying these keyframe values onto here. So let's just select these, right click, and go Set Motion Keyframe, and then we have this happening again. Great.
And, I think we want to keep this antennae on the lower level, so I'm just using that same Zed nudging again, and there we have it. So as you can see, that's a fairly sophisticated effect, and the relative complexity of the learning curve of Toon Boom now begins to pay off because that is so much easier than having to transfer layers all over the place, and in fact, we can do the same thing with this hand here. This entire arm area can go behind. One, two, three, just on that frame.
So, I might even want to set a keyframe on this one. Let's just nudge the whole thing back. And we can probably nudge it again a little bit here. I have to select that in the field. There we go. So we can reach the hand behind his back, and then pop it back out. You can have this pop out happen at any point you like just by changing that Zed depth value, and there we have it.
So, such a simple, little process to add such a extra amount of vitality and dimension to the scene.
Note: Dermot uses Toon Boom Animate to demonstrate these techniques, but Toon Boom Harmony and Toon Boom Animate Pro users will also benefit from the training.
- Creating scenes
- Drawing and transforming objects
- Applying color and ink
- Drawing keys and breakdowns
- Easing in and out
- Nudging in 3D space
- Rigging a character
- Animating with forward and inverse kinematics
- Morph-tweening characters
- Animating cameras
- Performing automatic lip syncs
- Exporting movies and images