10 days, 10 teachers, 10 tips – day 7- Expressions

Expressions – Crescendos & Arcs

Day 7

As mentioned in previous posts. There is almost always more than one principle to focus on when dissecting these demos. Today arc is in the spotlight. At first, I thought the principle may not apply in this example but with further investigation, I think this is the perfect opportunity to explore the principle of arc’s attributes. Here is a very succinct definition of the arc principle: – “Most natural action tends to follow an arched trajectory, and animation should adhere to this principle by following implied “arcs” for greater realism.” Without consciously thinking about it, when an action occurs, there is an expectation. It is based on what you see and what you don’t.

“An object in motion that moves out of its natural arc for no apparent reason will appear erratic rather than fluid.”
So the “SCHOOL OF MOTION” text animation is a good example of the fluidity that is expected in which an viewer sees what the next position should be based on previous movement. It is why animators draw lightly – to bridge the action for the most dramatic, expressive movements. It helps to fill in those gaps and see the expectation clearly which makes for a more believable and realistic animation.

What is great is learning techniques that simplify animations. I definitely want to include more expressions and sliders along with rigging to be more efficient and projects that render quicker which is always the goal! There were different iterations. The original code was

thisComp.layer("Main Text").transform.position.

which turned into what you see below

thisComp.layer(index-1).transform.position.valueAtTime(time - thisComp.layer("Main Text").effect("Slider Control")("Slider")) //half second slower than the parent

So this is what I did. More can be definitely be done but I really wanted to get the technique done by using the motion track option, slider as a controller and tailor made expressions. I get to test my JS knowledge. It is why I decided to pursue FE development in the first place. It seemed like a natural fit.



My practice example is literally an arc so it is easy to see the principle in motion (see what I did there) but it isn’t a qualifier of the principle. The point is there a moment when there is a sharp change. Any graph editor of an editing program would demonstrate this. It is akin to a crescendo in music. If music was applied to this example. It may a good point to use some obvious change. Arc along with other fundamentals can really add texture and can draw attention to what you want to highlight. This is another project that I can tweak 🙂

Until next time!

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