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Chapter 14. More Animation > Using motion paths

Using motion paths

Do you want to give an object rhythm?Make it dance, fly, swerve, or hop? You can't create this kind of movement in one step. Instead, you have to move the object in increments, creating a Position keyframe each time you want it to change direction. The route the object follows is called its motion path.

To create a motion path for an object:

Select an object.

Make sure View menu > Preview Motion Path is on (has a checkmark)(Command-Shift-H/Ctrl-Shift-H).

On the Timeline editor, expand the object's list and the Transform list.

Move the current time marker to the desired starting time.

Click the Position stopwatch or check the Create/remove keyframe box for Position to set a Position keyframe for the object (Fig. 1).

Figure .

Move the current time marker to another point in time.

Drag the object to a new position. The dotted line that connects the object to its original position as you drag is its motion path (Figs. 23). The farther you drag the object for each keyframe, the faster the object will move.

Figure .

Figure .

The small square at the start and end of the dotted line marks where the object's anchor point was located when that keyframe was created.

Continue to reposition the time marker and move the object to set other position keyframes. A keyframe will be set automatically each time you move the current time marker and then move the object (Figs. 45). The keyframe square that appears on the dotted line for each keyframe will help you visualize where the object changes direction in its motion path.

Figure .

Figure .

Optional:To reshape the motion path, see the following page.



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