Animate a Walk Cycle in After Effects with Jenny LeClue

Let's walk the walk! In this lesson Joey is going to break down an character walk cycle from scratch using the Jenny LeClue rig that was generously given to us to use by Joe Russ, the creator of Jenny LeClue, and our very own Morgan Williams who did the rigging. You don't need to know anything at all about character animation to follow along with this tutorial, and this is a great skill for you to have as a Motion Designer. You never know when your next piece is going to need a walking character. 

If you really dig this lesson make sure you check out our Character Animation Bootcamp where we go in-depth with bringing characters to life. If you're interested in how Morgan did the rigging on Jenny LeClue check out Rigging Academy. You can find info on both courses in the resources tab, along with more information on the Jenny LeClue game. 

 If you have any questions, click over to the Q&A tab to post them. Other students can answer you, and we'll put our team on the case to try and get you a solution ASAP. 

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    00:00:00,560(bass music) (footsteps)
    00:00:09,337(upbeat music)
    00:00:17,421- What's up, Joey here at School of Motion,
    00:00:19,399and welcome to day 12 of 30 Days of After Effects.
    00:00:22,238Today's video is something I've been
    00:00:23,711really excited to be able to show you.
    00:00:25,446It's been requested a lot actually.
    00:00:27,691The topic is creating a walk cycle
    00:00:29,923in After Effects with a character.
    00:00:31,725Now, the character rig we'll be using
    00:00:33,455was built by Morgan Williams who is
    00:00:35,619not only an instructor in the Department of Motion Design
    00:00:38,200at the Ringling College of Art & Design,
    00:00:40,729but who also teaches our Character Animation Bootcamp
    00:00:43,623and Rigging Academy courses,
    00:00:45,559and the artwork was done by my good buddy Joe Russ,
    00:00:48,404for his indie video game, Jenny LeClue.
    00:00:51,004I'm really excited to be able to
    00:00:52,212use the artwork in this tutorial,
    00:00:53,722so if you haven't checked out Jenny LeClue,
    00:00:55,745look for the link on this page.
    00:00:57,447Anyway, let's hop into After Effects
    00:00:59,318and talk about making a walk cycle.
    00:01:02,568So, the first thing I want to say is
    00:01:04,051that character animation can really be
    00:01:07,823a completely different career path
    00:01:09,763than a traditional motion design career path,
    00:01:13,184and I have said this a lot to Ringling students
    00:01:16,843that I've taught, that character animation is really fun.
    00:01:22,176It's also very, very hard and to get good at it,
    00:01:25,324you have to practice it a lot, and if you're
    00:01:27,531a motion designer and mostly what you're doing
    00:01:29,840is animating non-character things, you're just
    00:01:32,192not gonna get to a Pixar animator level, right?
    00:01:36,831With that said, it never hurts to have a couple
    00:01:39,701extra tools in your tool belt, and so knowing
    00:01:42,004a little bit about character animation and,
    00:01:43,844at the very least how to make a serviceable walk cycle,
    00:01:49,539that can come in really handy, so what I'm going
    00:01:51,404to show you guys is how I made this walk cycle,
    00:01:54,911and again, I'm not a character animator, so this is--
    00:01:57,916I'm sure a real character animator could pick
    00:02:00,899this thing apart and tell me everything I did wrong,
    00:02:04,341but I'm hoping that what I can teach you guys is
    00:02:07,066at least how to approach this and maybe
    00:02:11,104be able to use this in your own work.
    00:02:13,063So this is the final result, and let me first
    00:02:16,099show you the character rig, okay?
    00:02:18,587Now, like I mentioned in the intro,
    00:02:19,837this is Jenny LeClue, this is the main character
    00:02:23,127in Joe Russ' game that he's making,
    00:02:26,520and it's currently Kickstarting as of today,
    00:02:29,484August 18th, there's three days left.
    00:02:31,679So if you want to follow along there's actually
    00:02:36,458a character rig that Morgan Williams at Ringling
    00:02:39,139has been gracious enough to just give out for free
    00:02:41,935and it's this rig here is based on that one
    00:02:44,764and a lot of the controls are the same
    00:02:46,658and should work the same, and I'm not going
    00:02:48,747to get too much into the actual rigging part,
    00:02:51,244because rigging is a totally different subject,
    00:02:53,849it's a lot more complicated, there's a ton
    00:02:56,134of expressions going on here, and at some point,
    00:02:59,249maybe there will be a video about that.
    00:03:00,586This is strictly about character animation but I just want
    00:03:03,232to show you some of the controls here, right?
    00:03:07,105You can see that there's a whole bunch of nulls,
    00:03:10,063and in this comp here, this rig comp, there's a ton
    00:03:14,454of layers that have been hidden by the shy switch, okay?
    00:03:18,164There's a whole bunch of things that you
    00:03:19,886don't need to see, and when you hide those
    00:03:22,465all you're left with are these nulls, right?
    00:03:24,641So this null controls the eyeballs,
    00:03:27,359this null here controls the hair, and you can
    00:03:29,794kinda get little hair wiggles and stuff.
    00:03:32,488And then you've got the main controls like this foot,
    00:03:35,811this foot,
    00:03:37,431each hand has a control, and if you're noticing
    00:03:42,561there's a lot of automatic stuff happening,
    00:03:44,487if I move the hand the elbow bends correctly,
    00:03:47,183the shoulder rotates all by itself,
    00:03:49,855and this type of a rig is called an inverse kinematic rig.
    00:03:54,087It's a fancy word, it basically means
    00:03:55,745rather than rotating the shoulder, then the elbow,
    00:03:58,363then the wrist, you just move the wrist
    00:04:01,115and After Effects figures out backwards
    00:04:04,726what the previous joints should be doing, okay?
    00:04:09,134And you've got all these controls,
    00:04:10,500and really, rigs like this are super fun to play with,
    00:04:13,166this cog, center of gravity null here,
    00:04:16,225this controls the main part of the body.
    00:04:20,530And you can see that the feet and the hands get
    00:04:22,110locked into place but everything else moves around it,
    00:04:24,924and when you click on a bunch of these layers,
    00:04:27,319there's controls embedded in them, so for example
    00:04:30,931there's a hip roll, there's a belly roll.
    00:04:33,844So there's a whole bunch of controls here,
    00:04:36,345and all of this took a long time to set up,
    00:04:38,703and once it's set up you then have this amazing
    00:04:41,180ability to do really cool character animation.
    00:04:43,694So what we're going to make is a walk cycle,
    00:04:45,454and I'm going to show you how I do it,
    00:04:47,515and there's more than one way to do it,
    00:04:49,904and I'm sure some of the things I do are
    00:04:51,509not the correct way but they work,
    00:04:54,027and honestly, that's all you can ask for sometimes.
    00:04:57,205So we're going to start with the feet, okay?
    00:04:58,881And actually the first thing I want to do is,
    00:05:00,408each of these nulls has keyframes on every single property,
    00:05:05,632it's got a hold keyframe at the beginning of the animation,
    00:05:09,075and the reason it has that is it's just a good idea,
    00:05:12,831to give yourself the initial value on a keyframe somewhere,
    00:05:17,395but it's going to make my life a little bit harder,
    00:05:19,103so the first thing I'm going to do is hit the tilde key,
    00:05:21,481and I'm going to just select every layer and hit U,
    00:05:24,259and I'm going to just get rid of every single
    00:05:27,244stopwatch that's on here, okay?
    00:05:29,081So I'm going to hit U again,
    00:05:31,698and I just want to get rid of everything,
    00:05:33,463so I'm basically starting with a blank slate.
    00:05:36,896And this will make it easier once we start
    00:05:38,565getting a lot of keyframes on here,
    00:05:41,085to only see the keyframes we want, okay?
    00:05:43,685So I'm just going to start by doing that.
    00:05:46,533These time remaps down here,
    00:05:49,544you don't need to mess with those, okay?
    00:05:51,558So really, all I'm concerned with are the nulls,
    00:05:53,806which now have no keyframes on them,
    00:05:55,333so I'll hit tilde again.
    00:05:57,217Right, and let me give us a little more room here.
    00:05:59,868You'll notice I have my screen arranged
    00:06:01,925kind of a weird way this time, and that's because
    00:06:04,508I wanted to have more room for you guys to
    00:06:06,128see what's actually happening with this rig.
    00:06:09,833Alright, so the way I do it is I start with the feet.
    00:06:12,839So, you've got your right foot and your left foot,
    00:06:16,726and rather than try and mimic the complex movement
    00:06:22,166of a foot taking a step, I break each piece
    00:06:25,380of the movement into individual pieces,
    00:06:27,091and that makes it much, much, much, much simpler.
    00:06:30,080So actually, step one is I'm going to make my
    00:06:32,486comp much, much shorter than it is, okay?
    00:06:35,883So all I need it to be is 24 frames, one second, okay?
    00:06:39,878So I'm going to go to one second,
    00:06:43,510I'm gonna hit N to move my outpoint there,
    00:06:45,882and then I'm gonna Control click in this area
    00:06:47,653and say trim comp to work area.
    00:06:50,102The reason I'm doing this is because
    00:06:52,099what I want, and this is actually pretty common,
    00:06:55,214when you make a walk cycle it's a lot easier
    00:06:58,357to do if you've got nice even numbers to work with, right?
    00:07:02,460And a walk cycle should loop, so the first frame
    00:07:06,690should match up with the last frame,
    00:07:09,095and I'm working in 24 frames a second here,
    00:07:13,182so that makes it easy for me to know the
    00:07:15,154mid-point of my walk is frame 12, and the mid-point
    00:07:19,193between that and the beginning is frame six,
    00:07:21,452and so this gives me nice, easy numbers to work with,
    00:07:23,930and it also means there's only 24 frames,
    00:07:26,574so when I RAM preview it doesn't take a long time.
    00:07:29,337So starting with the feet, I'm gonna hit P on both of them,
    00:07:32,148and I'm going to Control click and separate dimensions
    00:07:36,101on the position property for both the feet, okay?
    00:07:38,714And I should mention these are foot controllers,
    00:07:40,733these are not actually the layers for the feet,
    00:07:42,937they're just nulls that control the rig, alright?
    00:07:46,383So, the first part is actually pretty simple,
    00:07:50,320so I'm going to set the initial position of these feet,
    00:07:53,719so I'm just going to drag, and I'm holding Shift so I can
    00:07:56,072drag this null, and one thing that's kinda good to do
    00:08:01,265is kinda move it around a bit, and you'll see why.
    00:08:03,179If I move this up a little bit, there comes a point where
    00:08:09,044there's kind of a snap happening with the layer, right?
    00:08:12,156And so I don't want to move it any further than that,
    00:08:14,545you see how it snaps right about there, okay?
    00:08:18,567So I want to have the initial position happen
    00:08:22,311right before that snap, right?
    00:08:24,488And then I'm gonna put a keyframe on X, then I'll do
    00:08:26,807the same thing on the left foot, and I'll move it, right?
    00:08:30,731And kinda move it up and down and figure out where
    00:08:32,780the snap happens, maybe there, okay so let's try that.
    00:08:38,763Okay?
    00:08:40,162And the reason the snap is happening is because
    00:08:42,665this is an inverse kinematic rig and so this null
    00:08:45,349controls the foot, and then there's some math happening
    00:08:47,755to figure out where the knee should be and where
    00:08:49,414the hip should be, and of course you can't see the hip,
    00:08:51,120it's underneath the clothing, but sometimes that--
    00:08:54,786having that math, it means that there's gonna be
    00:08:58,458a value where all the sudden-- the result jumps
    00:09:01,077really quickly and you want to try and avoid that.
    00:09:03,754There's a lot of controls that can help you adjust that,
    00:09:06,606but initially let's just try to
    00:09:08,299make it easy for ourselves, okay?
    00:09:10,044So now what I'm going to do is I'm going to go
    00:09:11,161to the mid-point of my animation,
    00:09:14,184and I'm going to move the left foot, right?
    00:09:17,699That's this one, I'm going to move this one backwards,
    00:09:19,917until it's more or less where the right foot is,
    00:09:22,793and then I'm going to move the right foot
    00:09:27,273over here, okay?
    00:09:28,850So it's more or less where the left foot was.
    00:09:31,483And if I can't remember where the left foot was,
    00:09:33,849I'll go back to the first frame and I'll just
    00:09:35,348put a little guide here, okay?
    00:09:37,752So then I'll go forward to the next keyframe,
    00:09:39,136and I can see I did a pretty good job
    00:09:40,505of lining those feet up, okay?
    00:09:43,059And then I'm gonna go down,
    00:09:44,860I'm gonna go to the last frame, right?
    00:09:47,424Frame 24, and I'm going to just copy and paste
    00:09:52,001both of these keyframes like this, okay?
    00:09:56,117And what that just did is it created
    00:09:59,100a looping animation, okay?
    00:10:02,110And if I just RAM preview this real quick,
    00:10:04,427you'll see that the legs are just moving back and forth,
    00:10:09,043sort of like someone's walking.
    00:10:10,742There's a little hitch at the end of the animation,
    00:10:13,228and that's because this last frame and this first frame
    00:10:16,623are identical, so it's actually playing that frame twice.
    00:10:19,192So while I want my comp to be 24 frames per second,
    00:10:22,873and I want it to be 24 frames long, I actually only
    00:10:26,066want to play the first 23 frames before the loop happens.
    00:10:31,495So now I can see I've got this seamless
    00:10:33,558loop of the legs moving back and forth,
    00:10:35,509and I'm going to leave these keyframes as linear,
    00:10:40,929and the reason for that is because eventually
    00:10:43,159we're going to have to move this layer at the
    00:10:44,970correct speed so it feels like those feet are
    00:10:47,657stuck to the ground and that is so much easier
    00:10:49,857to do when you have a linear movement with the feet.
    00:10:55,457And in general, if you study, if you look at people walking,
    00:10:59,678their forward momentum can be fairly constant,
    00:11:02,185it's all the other stuff that has variation to it, okay?
    00:11:05,340So that's step one, legs moving back and forth.
    00:11:07,785Step two, now we just move to Y position, okay?
    00:11:10,379So what happens with this back foot, okay?
    00:11:13,544And if think about someone walking,
    00:11:15,408they land on their front foot and then the back leg
    00:11:18,169lifts up and kind of comes over and then sets down, okay?
    00:11:21,976So what I'm going to do is I'm going to
    00:11:23,341start with the right foot, and I'm going to
    00:11:24,974put a keyframe on Y position, okay?
    00:11:27,049So it's on the ground and halfway--
    00:11:30,866basically right here, this frame here, frame six,
    00:11:34,823this is where that foot should be the highest.
    00:11:38,613So what I'm going to do is I'm going to
    00:11:39,846adjust the Y position, so that the foot lifts up, okay?
    00:11:44,415And you can sort of eyeball about how high you want it,
    00:11:47,291and if someone's walking slowly it doesn't lift up as much,
    00:11:50,759and if they're running it lifts way up, okay?
    00:11:52,676But this is just a walk, so let me put that
    00:11:55,695maybe right about where the shin is and then,
    00:11:59,907at this point here, right?
    00:12:02,873This is the mid-point of the walk cycle
    00:12:05,007and now this foot should be down,
    00:12:06,724so I'm just going to copy and paste the Y position and
    00:12:09,785so now you can see that it lifts up and comes down, okay?
    00:12:14,278And now, let's Easy Ease those, and let's go into
    00:12:17,752the curve editor and talk about this for a minute.
    00:12:19,492This, what this is showing me is the speed graph
    00:12:21,880which I hate using so let's go to the value graph.
    00:12:24,622So you can see that the Y position of the foot,
    00:12:27,123it's easing out, right, it's sort of slowly lifting up
    00:12:30,181off the ground and it reaches the apex,
    00:12:34,298and I'm gonna extend these bezier handles out,
    00:12:37,242so as it reaches the apex it hangs there
    00:12:39,841for a second and then it comes down.
    00:12:42,015Now what's happening by default is it's coming down
    00:12:45,018and easing into the ground and that is not how people walk.
    00:12:48,983Walking is controlled falling,
    00:12:51,425and so what's going to happen is
    00:12:53,044Jenny's gonna lean forward and that front foot's
    00:12:55,415gonna land and just stop 'cause it's literally
    00:12:58,482gravity pulling it into the ground,
    00:13:00,194so this is what it should look like,
    00:13:01,649easing off the ground, you know?
    00:13:05,079Getting to its highest position, easing out of that,
    00:13:06,999and then falling to the ground.
    00:13:09,394So this is what that curve needs to look like,
    00:13:11,363and now I need those same keyframes
    00:13:13,630to happen on the other foot, okay?
    00:13:16,008So that's one foot, and now on the left foot
    00:13:19,102I want the same thing to happen,
    00:13:21,902but just now at this point in time.
    00:13:25,064So let me just paste those keyframes and see what we get,
    00:13:27,804and I may need to adjust this Y position a little bit,
    00:13:31,601so with all three of them selected,
    00:13:34,974all three of those keyframes,
    00:13:35,817I can actually adjust all of them as a group
    00:13:37,575and lower them a little bit.
    00:13:39,623Did you guys catch that?
    00:13:40,958After Effects just crashed on me and it
    00:13:43,912actually hasn't done that on me in a while,
    00:13:45,718so I'm guessing it has something to do
    00:13:48,217with all this fancy character animation
    00:13:50,641we're doing, but anyway, either way we're back,
    00:13:53,303and let's take a look at our animation curves
    00:13:56,700for our left foot Y position, and that looks good.
    00:13:59,135So let's just do a quick RAM preview,
    00:14:01,511and let's see what we've got so far.
    00:14:06,433So far all we have is the X back and forth
    00:14:10,721movement of the legs and now we've got
    00:14:12,695each leg picking up and setting down,
    00:14:16,876and already the legs kinda look like
    00:14:18,626they're trudging forward, okay?
    00:14:20,888And so the rest of this is really gonna be
    00:14:25,848adding some overlapping action, some follow-through,
    00:14:28,891and just trying to mimic the dynamics of someone walking,
    00:14:33,135and we're just going to take it piece by piece.
    00:14:34,372Let me switch this to quarter res,
    00:14:36,922so we can get a little bit faster RAM preview.
    00:14:39,710This artwork is very high-res,
    00:14:41,589this is actually a 5000 by 5000 pixel comp,
    00:14:46,255so we're in quarter res and it still looks good.
    00:14:48,634Alright, so now that we've got the feet
    00:14:51,199basically doing what they're supposed to do,
    00:14:52,896and we might tweak them, why don't we now start
    00:14:56,301incorporating the rest of the body?
    00:14:57,471So let's start with the center of gravity, okay?
    00:15:00,396And let's scrub through this and think about this, right?
    00:15:03,579When someone takes a step and their foot lands,
    00:15:06,638that is when all of the weight of their body
    00:15:09,705falls to the ground and they have to catch it,
    00:15:12,864and then when they step up in the air,
    00:15:16,431all of the weight of their body goes up in the air, okay?
    00:15:19,093So when we're in a position like this,
    00:15:21,153the weight of the body should be down,
    00:15:23,339so I'm going to open up the position keyframes,
    00:15:25,980the position property, the center of gravity,
    00:15:27,768and separate dimensions, put a keyframe on Y,
    00:15:30,531and I'm just going to tap Shift and the down arrow,
    00:15:33,339and just lower the body a little bit, okay?
    00:15:36,266And then I'm going to go to the mid-way point
    00:15:38,969of this step which is going to be frame six.
    00:15:41,741Remember frame zero is the beginning,
    00:15:43,247frame 12 is the mid-way point
    00:15:45,015and frame 24 is the loop point,
    00:15:48,895and so frame six, I'm gonna now hold Shift and
    00:15:51,918nudge the body back up a little bit, okay?
    00:15:54,701Not too high, 'cause if you nudge it too high
    00:15:57,483you can actually create some weird
    00:16:02,346popping with the joints of the legs,
    00:16:04,115so you don't want to go too far with it.
    00:16:05,783And then just look what we've got, right?
    00:16:07,815The foot steps up, the body goes up, right?
    00:16:11,256And then on frame 12, I'm just
    00:16:13,747gonna copy and paste this, okay?
    00:16:16,165So this is what the body's doing now, okay?
    00:16:18,110It's going up and down with the step,
    00:16:21,034and now I just want it to repeat that,
    00:16:22,681so I'm just going to copy and paste this, okay?
    00:16:26,075And let's hit Easy Ease on these
    00:16:28,668and do a quick RAM preview,
    00:16:30,734and let's see what we got so far.
    00:16:33,729Cool, alright, so that certainly helps,
    00:16:37,965but here's the thing.
    00:16:39,755You know, all of these motions that we're going to
    00:16:41,949start adding, they don't all happen at the same time.
    00:16:45,270When Jenny takes a step, right, and she goes up in the air,
    00:16:49,266all of her weight is moving up in the air,
    00:16:51,198and then when she lands it's all coming down,
    00:16:53,270but it's gonna continue to come down for a frame or two
    00:16:56,672after the step lands, and it's gonna continue
    00:16:59,374going up for a frame or two after she goes up in the air,
    00:17:02,616so what I really wanna do is nudge these
    00:17:04,574keyframes forward one or two frames, right?
    00:17:07,115And that way we can get some overlap, some follow through.
    00:17:10,519And you're gonna see the problem with that.
    00:17:12,511It looks good on the second part of the animation,
    00:17:15,649but the problem is these first couple of frames,
    00:17:17,455there's no movement at all, so what I need to do
    00:17:20,821is actually go to this last keyframe.
    00:17:25,218I'm just gonna select Y position,
    00:17:26,976I'm gonna click on the properties
    00:17:28,013selecting every single keyframe,
    00:17:30,104and I'm gonna hit copy, paste, okay?
    00:17:33,020And this is what that's done.
    00:17:35,447It's given me, if I now select the Y position,
    00:17:37,630it's given me keyframes that actually extend out
    00:17:40,996way past the timeline's ending point,
    00:17:45,373and so what I can do, I know that this keyframe
    00:17:49,294and this keyframe are identical,
    00:17:51,399so what I like to do is put a little
    00:17:53,071marker on this layer, so with it selected,
    00:17:55,451hit the asterisk key, the one on your number pad,
    00:17:59,221and now go to the first frame,
    00:18:00,672and now I can just shift this layer over,
    00:18:03,415line it up with the marker and extend this,
    00:18:05,487and now if I move this forward a couple of frames,
    00:18:09,206the animation that's happening here
    00:18:11,176is actually happening back here too,
    00:18:13,247so I've still created a seamless loop,
    00:18:16,195but now I can decide where I want that loop to begin,
    00:18:19,303and no matter where I slide this layer,
    00:18:21,010it's going to be a seamless loop, alright?
    00:18:23,582And so now there's a little bit of a delay
    00:18:25,805when she goes up, her body keeps going up,
    00:18:31,038even as she starts to come back down, okay?
    00:18:33,465So it creates a little nice--
    00:18:35,293a little bit of a lag, which is nice.
    00:18:38,271Alright, now at the same time,
    00:18:40,872there's also kind of a shifting of a weight
    00:18:43,095that happens when you're walking, right?
    00:18:44,862You shift from leg to leg,
    00:18:47,158and this is a 2D character rig so we're not literally
    00:18:51,193going to shift her in Z space or anything like that,
    00:18:53,304but we can sort of fake it by adjusting the
    00:18:55,265rotation of the center of gravity, okay?
    00:18:58,516And so let's just do the same thing,
    00:18:59,855now to make this a little bit easier,
    00:19:01,959I'm gonna slide this layer,
    00:19:04,745I'm actually gonna slide it back to the starting point,
    00:19:09,112and then, that way it's just gonna be easier,
    00:19:11,235because now I can line up my rotation with these keyframes,
    00:19:14,213and then I can offset them afterwards,
    00:19:15,743so let's put a rotation keyframe on here.
    00:19:19,475Let's Easy Ease it and let's think about
    00:19:20,978what is actually gonna be happening, okay?
    00:19:24,634As Jenny steps up in the air,
    00:19:28,804she's gonna sort of
    00:19:32,300lean back to get the leg off the ground,
    00:19:35,154but then lean forward when she lands, okay?
    00:19:37,554So when her feet are on the ground she's probably
    00:19:40,571leaning a little bit forward, not very much, okay?
    00:19:44,155Let's try two degrees and see what that looks like.
    00:19:47,438Which means that when her leg is up in the air at frame six,
    00:19:52,634she's gonna be leaning back a little bit, right?
    00:19:54,492Sort of using her momentum to throw that leg up,
    00:19:57,764and it's not literally throwing the leg up,
    00:19:59,664it's just a subtle little shifting of weight, okay?
    00:20:03,065Then on frame 12 we're going to be back forward again.
    00:20:06,613And then we just want to repeat that,
    00:20:08,279so I'm going to select those keyframes and paste them,
    00:20:10,148then I'm going to go to the last keyframe,
    00:20:11,722select all of my rotation keyframes, hit copy paste,
    00:20:14,984and now same thing, I'm gonna move this layer,
    00:20:17,715and then move it a couple of beats forward,
    00:20:20,376a couple of frames forward, and so now you can see--
    00:20:22,948let me do a quick RAM preview--
    00:20:24,775that her center of gravity is moving up and down
    00:20:27,961and rotating a little bit as she's walking, okay?
    00:20:31,907And so it's starting to feel a little bit more natural,
    00:20:35,657but the up and down and the rotation
    00:20:37,088are happening at the same time,
    00:20:38,165and the rotation might actually
    00:20:39,659happen a little bit before, right?
    00:20:43,061It may actually precede the motion,
    00:20:44,922so what I can do is click on the word rotation.
    00:20:48,152Don't select all the visible keyframes here
    00:20:50,030because there's other keyframes here and here
    00:20:52,468that you can't see, but if you click on
    00:20:54,001the word rotation it selects everything.
    00:20:56,307Then I can just slide these back a couple of frames,
    00:20:58,462maybe even slide them back four frames, right?
    00:21:01,685And so now you're going to get this
    00:21:03,273little leading movement with the rotation, right?
    00:21:06,970And it's a little too much so let me pull this back,
    00:21:10,648maybe so it's only one frame preceding the walk, okay?
    00:21:16,125And now it's starting to feel like there's
    00:21:18,958a little bit of weight to Jenny, okay?
    00:21:23,012Okay, cool, so since we're still working on the bottom,
    00:21:26,942we're basically working on the
    00:21:27,785bottom half of this animation, why don't we
    00:21:29,311talk about what the dress should be doing, right?
    00:21:33,293Morgan who made this rig had the brilliant idea
    00:21:35,902of putting little puppet pin controls
    00:21:37,934on the dress itself, right?
    00:21:41,713And so if I grab one of these controls I can
    00:21:43,921actually move the dress and so what I'm going to do
    00:21:46,234is I'm going to open up the position property
    00:21:48,281on all of these, separate the dimensions, and I'm just
    00:21:51,401gonna put keyframe on Y position for all of them,
    00:21:54,875and again, think about what's happening.
    00:21:57,597In this pose, all of the weight has been pushed down
    00:22:01,230towards the ground, so all these puppet pins
    00:22:03,840are going to shift down a little bit, okay?
    00:22:05,912So I can just select them all and nudge them down,
    00:22:10,089and what I probably want is for this--
    00:22:13,694the higher part of the dress to not move as much,
    00:22:17,606so maybe I'll do this in two steps.
    00:22:19,191I'll pick the upper puppet pins and I'll just
    00:22:21,679nudge them down maybe four pixels, right?
    00:22:24,738Just tap four times and then the lower part of the dress
    00:22:28,902can move a little bit more, so maybe do eight times.
    00:22:33,434Okay?
    00:22:34,612And then we're going to go to frame six,
    00:22:37,851and this is where now everything's moving up,
    00:22:40,421so now we'll move these back up,
    00:22:41,935so the upper left will go up four frames,
    00:22:46,791and the lower left and lower right will go up eight frames.
    00:22:51,687Cool, alright, and then we'll go to frame 12,
    00:22:53,709and I'm just gonna, one at a time, copy each of these,
    00:22:58,575and then I'm gonna want that to repeat,
    00:23:00,627so I'm gonna select all the keyframes
    00:23:02,914on each layer and copy paste, okay?
    00:23:06,815And then I'm going to go to the last frame,
    00:23:08,662and I'm gonna click Y position,
    00:23:10,443one layer at a time and copy paste again,
    00:23:13,197so now I can offset this and still
    00:23:15,441have the keyframes looping.
    00:23:17,281I'm gonna grab all of these,
    00:23:20,507I'm holding Command and just clicking each property,
    00:23:23,067and hitting F9 for Easy Ease, and then I'm gonna
    00:23:25,029go to my graph editor and I'm just gonna grab--
    00:23:28,179I'm gonna actually, one at a time, click and hold Shift,
    00:23:32,026and click on each of these positions, here we go.
    00:23:34,741So there's one,
    00:23:38,507two, three, four,
    00:23:40,773and then click on each one,
    00:23:43,701so now I've selected every keyframe in the curve editor,
    00:23:46,891and I can pull the bezier handles like this,
    00:23:50,264so that there's more of a hang to that dress, right?
    00:23:53,961It's gonna ease a lot more strongly into position each time.
    00:23:58,553And then, the top of the dress is probably going
    00:24:02,718to move a little bit sooner than the bottom of the dress,
    00:24:05,834so I'm going to take these bottom keyframes
    00:24:07,249and I'm going to drag them--
    00:24:08,578well, first thing I need to do is
    00:24:10,419go to the last keyframe, put a marker on every layer,
    00:24:14,218and then move that marker to the first frame,
    00:24:16,970so now I can offset things, so now I can take
    00:24:19,440the lower left and lower right nulls and
    00:24:22,740I can just scoot 'em forward a couple of frames,
    00:24:24,507and maybe the upper left and upper right
    00:24:26,104I could scoot forward one frame, right?
    00:24:28,664And so what this should do is give us
    00:24:30,391a little bit of overlap where as the weight
    00:24:32,492comes down you're going to see the dress--
    00:24:35,204sorry, the coat kind of react, okay?
    00:24:39,330And you can decide if you want more or less,
    00:24:41,513the bottom of the coat isn't moving very much
    00:24:43,951and I would like it to move a little bit more,
    00:24:46,299so here's a cool trick where you can do a select--
    00:24:48,888go to your curve editor, select both properties,
    00:24:52,516and then once again you just click on both properties
    00:24:55,970and it will select every keyframe here,
    00:24:58,713and what you want is the transform box,
    00:25:01,111and if you don't see it, just makes sure you
    00:25:02,348click this button here, the transform box.
    00:25:04,736With the transform box on what I can do,
    00:25:06,596is I can click these little white squares,
    00:25:08,819and I can hold Command and I can scale
    00:25:10,669my entire animation curve, and so what that's doing
    00:25:13,647is it's increasing the maximum and decreasing
    00:25:16,509the minimum values for my animation, and so now
    00:25:21,327they're going to have the exact same timing and
    00:25:23,846the same curves but they're just going to move more, okay?
    00:25:28,438And that's kinda cool, that's great, okay.
    00:25:31,607Let's talk a little bit more about some of the
    00:25:33,680great controls here on the center of gravity null.
    00:25:37,943You know, all we've done so far is adjust
    00:25:40,034the Y position of the null and the rotation.
    00:25:44,525There's all these other great controls, okay?
    00:25:47,085And so for example, you've got a belly rotation, right?
    00:25:52,051Which is gonna let the top half of Jenny kind of move,
    00:25:55,679and so we can use the same rules
    00:25:57,759and very quickly animate those,
    00:25:59,406so I'm going to put a keyframe here on belly rotation,
    00:26:02,384and hit U so I can bring it up,
    00:26:04,659and on this frame, let's just look at what
    00:26:08,061the center of gravity null is doing, right?
    00:26:11,109On this frame it's rotated forward a little bit,
    00:26:15,184it's rotated almost two degrees forward,
    00:26:17,439and then when Jenny's up in the air it's
    00:26:19,491rotated backwards a little bit,
    00:26:23,015so let's just do the same thing here.
    00:26:24,425On this frame let's put the belly rotation at
    00:26:27,119a little bit less than two degrees, go to frame six,
    00:26:31,538and just bring it back a little bit, okay?
    00:26:33,307And it doesn't have to go back too far, maybe half a degree.
    00:26:37,165And then we'll go to frame 12,
    00:26:39,321and we're just going to do the exact
    00:26:40,467same work flow we've been doing,
    00:26:41,718we're going to copy and paste these keyframes, okay?
    00:26:46,806Select them all, Easy Ease them,
    00:26:49,640and now I can select all of these keyframes
    00:26:51,739and I can move the keyframes back, right?
    00:26:54,576So that now I have extra keyframes here so I can
    00:26:57,917move them forward and still have a looping animation,
    00:27:00,727and I tried to make it so that there's never
    00:27:05,582really two keyframes on exactly the same frame,
    00:27:08,215it just-- something's always moving and it just
    00:27:12,075kind of creates a more natural, lifelike-looking
    00:27:15,062walk and now you can see that little thing,
    00:27:16,868it's just a little bit of overlapping animation,
    00:27:19,428with the top half of her body as she's walking.
    00:27:23,188Now one thing that is probably starting to
    00:27:24,805bother you guys is this weird jackhammer thing
    00:27:27,641that's happening with the arm.
    00:27:30,819So this is another amazing feature of this rig,
    00:27:33,278and you have the same control on the free rig
    00:27:35,696that Morgan's given everybody.
    00:27:37,719This is the right hand, okay?
    00:27:39,872And right now it's set up with inverse kinematics,
    00:27:42,621which means what I want the arm to do is swing like this,
    00:27:46,575but in order to do that with an inverse kinematic rig
    00:27:49,381it's actually a little trickier, because what I need
    00:27:52,935is to animate this null in a arcing fashion, right?
    00:27:57,920And you can do that but it's a lot trickier.
    00:28:00,869What would be helpful is if instead of animating the arm
    00:28:04,201this way I could just animate it the old-fashioned way,
    00:28:06,567where I just rotate the shoulder,
    00:28:07,957then the elbow, then the wrist, and make it easy.
    00:28:11,547And so there's actually a switch here,
    00:28:13,605there's an effect, and it's an expression check box,
    00:28:18,638and it's labeled IK slash FK, alright?
    00:28:21,094So if I turn this off it's going
    00:28:23,010to deactivate the IK controls for the rig,
    00:28:26,850for that arm anyway, and so now what I can use
    00:28:28,990is I can use this upper FK, lower FK and
    00:28:32,214a couple of other controls here,
    00:28:34,945to just rotate and move this arm,
    00:28:38,023sort of the normal way that you rotate
    00:28:39,883stuff that's parented together in After Effects.
    00:28:42,239So let me start by going to the first frame,
    00:28:44,038and just putting a keyframe on upper FK, lower FK.
    00:28:49,239I also am going to want the end FK, which is the hand,
    00:28:54,704and then there's some extra cool controls here,
    00:28:56,756there's a sleeve angle, which kind of lets you
    00:29:00,198adjust the sleeve of the shirt a little bit,
    00:29:03,754and so why don't I put a keyframe on that too, okay?
    00:29:06,528Alright, so now let's hit U on our hand layer
    00:29:09,167and let's actually animate this thing.
    00:29:11,393So, what we want this hand to do, right?
    00:29:13,782This is the right arm, so it needs to do,
    00:29:17,184basically the opposite of whatever the right foot is doing,
    00:29:20,039so right now, the right foot is in the back and so we want
    00:29:25,422the arm to actually be swung forward at this point.
    00:29:29,142So let me just start messing with the values.
    00:29:32,167So the upper FK is going to rotate forward like this,
    00:29:36,384and then that elbow's gonna be swinging up,
    00:29:39,341and then that hand is gonna be swinging up,
    00:29:41,767and then that sleeve is actually gonna be swinging up too,
    00:29:45,355alright, and so that's one position.
    00:29:47,461Now, when Jenny steps and the next foot lands at frame 12,
    00:29:53,536now this arm should be back, so now I'm just gonna swing--
    00:29:58,168excuse me, I'm just gonna use the upper FK
    00:30:00,423and swing it back this way, and then the lower FK, right?
    00:30:05,758And then the end FK, and then I'll adjust that sleeve angle,
    00:30:09,476the sleeve will kind of swing back too, with the momentum.
    00:30:13,743Alright, and then on the last frame, we just need to
    00:30:16,403copy all of the first keyframes and repeat them, okay?
    00:30:20,801I'm gonna select all of these keyframes and hit F9,
    00:30:24,628and then I'm gonna select all of them and hit
    00:30:26,535Command C, Command V, copy paste, okay?
    00:30:30,418And of course, I did that so I can select all of these,
    00:30:33,339and move them over and have repeating animation.
    00:30:36,858I could put a marker here and move this to the beginning.
    00:30:42,127Okay, because the arm animation is probably
    00:30:45,538gonna be delayed a little bit from everything else, right?
    00:30:49,702So I just moved it forward a few frames,
    00:30:52,398and it should still loop seamlessly,
    00:30:55,487and it should give us a nice little arm swing, okay?
    00:31:00,322Now of course, you don't want every single
    00:31:02,801piece of the arm to move at the same speed,
    00:31:05,004so everything's gonna move from the top down.
    00:31:07,169The shoulder moves first, that's the upper FK,
    00:31:09,689then the elbow will move, so let's delay that by a frame,
    00:31:13,772maybe two frames, then the hand,
    00:31:15,711so let's delay that by two more frames.
    00:31:17,967And the sleeve will be somewhere in the middle,
    00:31:21,194maybe in between the lower FK and the hand, right?
    00:31:25,252And so just by selecting all these keyframes
    00:31:28,083and offsetting them, it gives it
    00:31:30,320a little bit of a looser feel, okay?
    00:31:34,395And that's getting pretty nice, excellent.
    00:31:37,207Alright, let's talk about the other hand now.
    00:31:39,779So this left hand, which you actually can't see right now,
    00:31:43,110but this is still an IK control,
    00:31:45,034and we're gonna keep it that way,
    00:31:46,538because this hand is holding a flashlight, okay?
    00:31:51,949And it's kind of rotated in this funky little position here,
    00:31:56,346so let's rotate the flashlight up a little bit.
    00:32:00,094Okay, and keep that arm out maybe like that,
    00:32:02,481there we go, maybe that's a little bit nicer,
    00:32:05,115and so what I want is I want it to feel like
    00:32:08,393this arm is swinging but this one's kind of hanging there,
    00:32:11,420but maybe bouncing up and down a little bit.
    00:32:14,312So all I need to do is just animate
    00:32:16,633this arm bouncing up and down,
    00:32:18,511and I'll automatically get shoulder and elbow rotation,
    00:32:21,617because this is an IK control,
    00:32:23,521so this just shows you how you can mix and match
    00:32:25,532IK and FK when you're doing character stuff.
    00:32:29,454So let's separate the dimensions on the left hand,
    00:32:32,045put a keyframe on Y, and again, in this pose,
    00:32:35,073all of the weight has come down towards the ground,
    00:32:38,788so let's move that flashlight down a little bit,
    00:32:41,448and let's move it a little closer to her body too.
    00:32:45,129Okay, and then when she steps up, so by frame six,
    00:32:48,616the flashlight's coming up now with the weight of her body.
    00:32:52,579Alright, and then at frame 12, it goes back down,
    00:32:55,749then we just copy and paste these keyframes,
    00:32:57,863go to the end, copy and paste all keyframes,
    00:33:02,556put a marker there, let's select them all and Easy Ease.
    00:33:06,681Right, and let's bring this marker to frame one,
    00:33:09,810and so now of course I can just move this forward,
    00:33:12,572however many frames I want this to be delayed
    00:33:15,731from the main walking, I can just slide this layer around.
    00:33:18,921And also, what I might want to do,
    00:33:21,217is go into my curve editor and stretch some of these
    00:33:24,743bezier handles out, so that it feels like
    00:33:29,360that flashlight's going to have
    00:33:30,489a little bit more weight to it.
    00:33:33,017Alright, so now let's look at that.
    00:33:35,737Okay, that's kinda cool but I wonder what would happen
    00:33:38,823if this was actually inverted, so instead of having--
    00:33:42,493if you look at this animation it's just a cycling animation,
    00:33:46,211which means if I slide this layer so the next keyframe
    00:33:50,052lands on my play head, it's now actually gonna be--
    00:33:54,394it's gonna be playing in reverse, right?
    00:33:56,845And that is too much, and I don't like it,
    00:33:59,427but I didn't love it when it was perfectly in sync
    00:34:03,421with everything, I think it needs to be a little bit offset,
    00:34:06,713so I'm just kinda playing with the timing of it,
    00:34:09,719and I'm digging that a little bit more,
    00:34:11,555and so what I may also do is play with
    00:34:14,320the rotation of this a little bit too,
    00:34:16,262so I'm going to put a keyframe on rotation,
    00:34:18,942and when she lands on the ground with each step,
    00:34:23,474maybe that flashlight dips down a little bit, dips forward,
    00:34:27,334so then on frame six it can sort of
    00:34:29,822come back up a little bit more,
    00:34:31,854and then on frame 12 I can just do the same thing,
    00:34:34,332copy paste, copy paste, come to the end here, copy paste,
    00:34:38,997Easy Ease, let me Easy Ease all of them,
    00:34:43,060and now if I hit U, I can grab all my rotation keyframes
    00:34:46,429and maybe I can-- let me move all of them back like this,
    00:34:52,187and then I'll just nudge 'em forward a couple of frames.
    00:34:54,016So now you're gonna have the weight of
    00:34:57,299the flashlight pulling the arm down and the
    00:35:00,578flashlight's rotating a little bit,
    00:35:02,195and it just start to feel a little bit more natural.
    00:35:04,906And really knowing what to do and which controls to
    00:35:10,294use to create that, that just takes a little practice,
    00:35:12,368but hopefully what you're seeing is every single move
    00:35:15,478I'm building almost identically, almost the same way.
    00:35:19,176Alright, now let's talk about the legs a little bit,
    00:35:22,110'cause now looking at them, I mean the upper body
    00:35:24,499is doing some kind of nice things but a lot of
    00:35:29,144the Easy Eases I still haven't really changed, right?
    00:35:32,949And so I want to mess with the curves a little bit,
    00:35:35,740and actually I think I'm going to start with this shoulder.
    00:35:37,995So let's go back to the right hand,
    00:35:39,528hit U to bring up our key frames,
    00:35:40,962and let's look at the upper FK animation curve,
    00:35:44,285and I'm gonna
    00:35:47,075tap the property with this window open
    00:35:49,696so I can select every keyframe and I am gonna
    00:35:52,317really yank these bezier handles, okay?
    00:35:55,974And what that's going to do is it's going to
    00:35:57,771make each arm swing happen faster, okay?
    00:36:02,638And it's gonna ease more, right?
    00:36:05,300And so it just gives it a totally different character,
    00:36:08,092and now what I want to do is a similar thing with the feet,
    00:36:11,414so when they-- here, let me hit P on both of these feet,
    00:36:14,876for the Y position, right?
    00:36:16,576What I want, I want that foot lift to take longer,
    00:36:21,371so it's faster in the middle and then once it's there,
    00:36:23,951I want it to hang even more,
    00:36:26,734I want this to be even more extreme.
    00:36:29,335And so then I'll do the same thing on this foot, right?
    00:36:34,537And I'm really just making more extreme animation curves,
    00:36:37,738and so what that'll do, is it's going to make
    00:36:40,681the initial foot lift feel slower but then
    00:36:44,657it's gonna pick up speed and
    00:36:45,981hang there for a little bit longer,
    00:36:47,264it's going to give it a little bit more character.
    00:36:49,135And this would be a good place to talk about
    00:36:51,146some of the other foot controls.
    00:36:52,548Now, this particular character, if I deselect something,
    00:36:57,717if you look at the feet, they're very tiny,
    00:37:00,928and they don't really draw your eye, if this was a clown,
    00:37:04,393maybe there'd be bigger shoes or something.
    00:37:06,624But when someone walks, their ankles are also rotating,
    00:37:10,403and there's other things happening with the feet,
    00:37:12,239and this rig does give you controls for that which is great.
    00:37:15,470If I look at the foot, like the right foot,
    00:37:18,875there is a-- let's take a peek here. (clicks tongue)
    00:37:23,712You've got ...
    00:37:26,560the end FK, okay?
    00:37:28,429And what this is going to do, let me zoom in here,
    00:37:30,431so you can actually see what this is doing.
    00:37:32,386End FK is actually rotating the foot, okay?
    00:37:37,708As I adjust it, it's actually rotating the angle
    00:37:43,134that the foot's hitting the ground,
    00:37:45,125and so this would be a great thing to animate also, okay?
    00:37:48,733So on this frame, right,
    00:37:52,073this foot should be rotated a little bit forward, right?
    00:37:55,235Because the toe is kind of on the ground,
    00:37:59,083and it's about to lift up, okay?
    00:38:00,842But it should be pointed forward like this,
    00:38:04,894and so then-- so let me put a keyframe there.
    00:38:07,982As we scrub forward the foot is going to lift up in the air,
    00:38:13,407and as it lifts up, it's gonna actually rotate backwards.
    00:38:18,211Right, and then by the time it lands, when it lands,
    00:38:22,521it's going to flatten out and be zero, okay?
    00:38:26,265And so-- then let's look at the timing of this, right?
    00:38:30,036If I just sort of let this play,
    00:38:33,212you can kind of see that now it looks like that foot
    00:38:35,730is bending and sort of lifting off the ground,
    00:38:40,425and the only problem we're going to have,
    00:38:41,960is that eventually we're going to need this foot,
    00:38:45,204which it's sort of pointing here,
    00:38:47,671we're going to need it to be flat so that it will loop.
    00:38:51,541So what I'm going to do is I'm actually going to
    00:38:53,396move this keyframe a little bit, I'm just going to
    00:38:56,281copy and paste the flat one, okay?
    00:38:59,205So that it actually will look like the toe bends,
    00:39:02,226and it will now be a seamless, loopable thing, okay?
    00:39:06,359And now I can select all these keyframes,
    00:39:08,199I can Easy Ease them, and I can-- of course I can
    00:39:12,222pull the bezier handles out so that the motion
    00:39:14,181happens a little bit quicker and more extreme.
    00:39:17,260And at the end here, 'cause the foot is just gonna
    00:39:19,576hit the floor, I don't need an ease into that movement.
    00:39:24,737Alright, so now just looking at the one foot
    00:39:27,001that has this control on it, you know,
    00:39:29,315it could use some tweaking but it just helps a little bit.
    00:39:32,426And let's take one last look at this frame here,
    00:39:36,855and we may want to pull this value up,
    00:39:40,097so that that foot really swings forward.
    00:39:46,069There we go, just make the keyframes
    00:39:47,563a little bit more extreme, okay?
    00:39:51,159There we go, cool, let me do a quick RAM preview, okay?
    00:39:55,762That's a little much, I went overboard,
    00:39:58,697see how quickly you can take something that
    00:40:01,124looks okay and make it just terrible?
    00:40:03,348Okay, cool, so now we're gonna take those
    00:40:06,702keyframes we just added, the end FK,
    00:40:09,566I'm gonna copy 'em and I want the same thing
    00:40:11,517to happen on the left foot but obviously,
    00:40:14,422in time with that foot's footstep,
    00:40:17,949so I'll just paste them there,
    00:40:19,818and what we could try to do is--
    00:40:22,033let's see what happens if we offset this, you know?
    00:40:24,865If we just delay this a couple of frames
    00:40:28,169and delay this a couple of frames,
    00:40:30,128and what you're gonna run into here,
    00:40:33,846is a problem where now those keyframes
    00:40:35,645don't actually finish, and so what you'd have to do
    00:40:40,875is actually paste keyframes over here
    00:40:43,375to create that loopable thing.
    00:40:47,111So let's first see if we even like
    00:40:49,136having it delayed like that.
    00:40:51,899I mean, it's not even something I really notice,
    00:40:53,687so rather than create a whole bunch more work,
    00:40:55,414why don't we just put these back where they were?
    00:40:59,042Right, now we've got foot roll.
    00:41:02,213Alright, zoom out, take a look at what we've got so far.
    00:41:05,801You're gonna see me saving a lot because
    00:41:07,333After Effects has crashed two or three times
    00:41:08,889while recording this tutorial.
    00:41:11,254Right, so now this is getting there,
    00:41:14,475so what other things feel like they should move?
    00:41:16,975Well her head, for sure.
    00:41:19,495And there is a head null with a whole bunch of
    00:41:22,063controls on it, but in its simplest form you can move
    00:41:25,305the head up and down and you can rotate the head,
    00:41:28,217so I'm going to put keyframes on the Y position of the head,
    00:41:32,640and I'll do rotation at the same time maybe.
    00:41:35,696So Y position the rotation, so for Y position remember,
    00:41:38,918on this frame everything's moving down,
    00:41:41,058so that head is gonna come down a little bit, okay?
    00:41:46,220And we're also leaning, I guess a little bit back,
    00:41:50,342so let me just rotate the head back a couple of degrees,
    00:41:53,228go to frame six, and here's where
    00:41:56,009we're sort of leaning forward, right?
    00:41:58,732And all of the motion is going up in the air like that,
    00:42:05,138so the head's going to move up a little bit.
    00:42:06,847Go to frame 12 and copy and paste these,
    00:42:09,346and then we can just kinda scrub through
    00:42:11,500and see if this makes sense, right?
    00:42:14,153Yeah, it does, it makes sense.
    00:42:17,250Cool, so let's copy and paste these,
    00:42:20,776come to the very last frame and select everything,
    00:42:23,487copy and paste it, select everything again,
    00:42:25,883Easy Ease it and then we'll move all these
    00:42:27,957keyframes to the beginning, and you know
    00:42:30,810sometimes I'm actually moving the layers,
    00:42:32,315sometimes I'm moving the keyframe,
    00:42:33,637it doesn't really matter as long as
    00:42:34,926you can keep track of what's going on,
    00:42:36,786and then I'm gonna delay it a couple of frames,
    00:42:39,579I'm gonna go into my curve editor,
    00:42:41,426I'm gonna select everything and I'm just
    00:42:43,512gonna pull the bezier handles out so we get
    00:42:45,259a little bit more of an extreme ease, okay?
    00:42:51,009And let's see what we've got now.
    00:42:52,643(laughs) Alright, so it's moving way too much,
    00:42:55,650moving way too much, and it's probably rota--
    00:42:57,905it's definitely rotating too much,
    00:42:59,217so I'm going to select just the rotation,
    00:43:00,891I have my transform box on so I can hold
    00:43:02,851Command and just scale that down,
    00:43:05,332and then I'm gonna do the same thing on Y position.
    00:43:08,247Scale that down, so I keep the motion,
    00:43:11,233but I just make it less, okay?
    00:43:16,588Cool.
    00:43:17,889And the other thing I might mess around with too,
    00:43:20,977is if I look at-- if I click on this center of gravity null,
    00:43:24,440there's a neck rotator, okay?
    00:43:27,589And that might actually-- I mean it's probably--
    00:43:30,515I'm guessing it's doing the same thing as the head rotation.
    00:43:34,294So it's interesting, so you actually have
    00:43:35,411multiple controls that can kind of do the same thing,
    00:43:38,274maybe this is just an easier way of doing it,
    00:43:41,030but I've also got a chest rotation,
    00:43:45,091which I haven't used yet, which might actually help,
    00:43:49,442'cause this kind of almost feels like the head
    00:43:52,327is moving too much for the amount the chest is moving,
    00:43:56,193so let's do the same thing real quick for the chest.
    00:43:58,608So we're going to put a keyframe on chest rotation,
    00:44:02,356let's take a look at it, here it is,
    00:44:03,594and it should maybe be leaning back a little bit here,
    00:44:06,277at frame six it should be leaning forward a little bit,
    00:44:10,057and that's probably too much.
    00:44:12,648Then we'll go to frame 12, copy paste,
    00:44:16,253grab all three keyframes, copy paste, go to the end,
    00:44:18,947select all keyframes, copy paste,
    00:44:21,780select all keyframes, Easy Ease.
    00:44:24,494And there you go, and then let's offset that
    00:44:29,439maybe one frame, 'cause I know we offset the head
    00:44:32,560a couple of frames so we can do the chest
    00:44:34,368by maybe one frame, and all these little subtle offsets,
    00:44:38,086they start to make this make sense, okay?
    00:44:42,422So this is starting to work and now it's down
    00:44:44,608to the finishing touches, if we click on the eyes null,
    00:44:50,134first thing I want to do is move the eyes
    00:44:51,931to the right a little bit, so I'm just gonna nudge--
    00:44:54,450I'm gonna nudge this, and I just want Jenny to
    00:44:56,960sort of be looking in the direction she's moving,
    00:44:59,541'cause that makes sense, and then there's controls
    00:45:02,609on the eyes null to animate her glasses,
    00:45:05,634and there's this cool glasses bend controller here,
    00:45:10,724so I'm gonna use that, so I'm just gonna bend them, right?
    00:45:14,353On this position, everything's moving down,
    00:45:16,129so let me bend the glasses down just a little bit,
    00:45:19,306that's probably too much, right?
    00:45:21,348Add a keyframe, and then we will go to frame six,
    00:45:26,273and you guys probably know what's
    00:45:28,733gonna happen next at this point,
    00:45:30,675and hopefully you're starting to see how quickly,
    00:45:33,705once you kind of get a groove going,
    00:45:35,966how quickly you can start building
    00:45:37,987a pretty decent walk cycle, alright?
    00:45:42,032And let's maybe offset that three frames,
    00:45:46,978select all of these and let's really
    00:45:49,560drag those bezier handles out.
    00:45:52,834Right, and so now you're actually going to get
    00:45:54,816a little bit of animation action on the glasses,
    00:45:57,913and it's subtle, and it's probably even still too much,
    00:46:02,038so what I might do is grab that transform box,
    00:46:06,243hold Command and just shrink it down a little bit.
    00:46:09,159'Cause you want subtlety with stuff like this,
    00:46:12,643you don't want it to look like her glasses
    00:46:14,077are not really attached to her face,
    00:46:15,407just a subtle little bounce you're getting.
    00:46:18,129And another great feature of this rig that Morgan added,
    00:46:21,452is you also have hair controls, and so what I can do,
    00:46:25,415is exact same thing, I'm gonna open these up,
    00:46:28,903separate the dimensions on each one,
    00:46:33,147and why don't we just do X and Y at the same time, right?
    00:46:35,667So why don't we start here and on this frame
    00:46:38,716everything should be down, okay?
    00:46:40,524So I'm going to nudge everything down.
    00:46:42,800And I'm gonna nudge 'em, I'm holding Shift, right?
    00:46:46,579And just kind of moving these things randomly, okay?
    00:46:51,557And all the weight's moving down,
    00:46:54,880and it's gonna sort of pull the hair,
    00:46:56,761it's probably gonna pull the hair
    00:46:57,669a little bit closer to her face, right?
    00:47:01,994'Cause as the hair gets pulled down
    00:47:03,073it's gonna wrap around her face a little bit more.
    00:47:05,195Then as we move up in the air, right?
    00:47:08,457The bangs are gonna come up a little bit,
    00:47:11,016the right side of the hair is gonna kind of come out
    00:47:14,126and up a little bit, and then the
    00:47:15,669left side's gonna come out and up, right?
    00:47:19,327So this is gonna kind of happen, and then on frame 12
    00:47:23,492we just copy and paste all of these.
    00:47:28,165And then one at a time, copy and paste,
    00:47:31,628copy-- oops.
    00:47:33,468Copy and paste, copy and paste.
    00:47:37,572There's actually a pretty cool script that I have seen
    00:47:40,579on AE scripts dot com, that lets you paste keyframes
    00:47:43,972from multiple layers back on to the same layers,
    00:47:47,256which would save some time here.
    00:47:48,954Select all these and Easy Ease them,
    00:47:52,191and then move all the keyframes back here,
    00:47:55,624and I want the bangs to be offset maybe two frames,
    00:48:00,248and then everything else can be offset
    00:48:02,596kind of randomly from there, okay?
    00:48:04,659And because I have all those extra keyframes back here
    00:48:07,219I know it's going to loop seamlessly.
    00:48:09,503I also will go into my animation curve editor
    00:48:11,718and just select everything real quick.
    00:48:15,631Like this, and just tweak, pull those bezier handles out,
    00:48:19,633and let's see what that gives us, okay?
    00:48:21,816And so now, that hair--
    00:48:24,591you can sort of see the chain of events, right?
    00:48:26,489The feet are the main thing moving,
    00:48:28,968the center of gravity's slightly delayed,
    00:48:30,746and then you've got the belly, the chest,
    00:48:33,434the neck, the head, the glasses, the hair,
    00:48:35,528and the arms and all of them are kind of offset
    00:48:37,969in time and that's going to give you a nice
    00:48:43,174feeling of weight and that's what you want
    00:48:45,129when you're animating characters.
    00:48:47,233So at this point, I mean you could keep
    00:48:50,005staring at this and nit-picking it,
    00:48:53,530but you should definitely have the tools now
    00:48:56,624to create a pretty serviceable walk cycle
    00:49:00,056and be able to adjust it and understand just
    00:49:03,144some of the basic principles of it.
    00:49:04,539So now let me show you how to
    00:49:05,767actually use this on a background.
    00:49:09,334So I'm going to now take this pre-comp--
    00:49:11,059first let me actually make a new comp here.
    00:49:13,730Let me just make a 1920 by 1080 comp, okay?
    00:49:16,934Six seconds long, and now we can actually
    00:49:19,848go back to a normal...
    00:49:24,232a normal work space here,
    00:49:26,348so we can actually see things a little bit easier, alright?
    00:49:30,023And I'm going to grab that final rig that we made.
    00:49:34,016I'm going to drop it in here, and I'm going to
    00:49:35,520scale it way down, let's go down to half res here.
    00:49:40,123And here is a little trick that I figured out, okay?
    00:49:44,268So now-- first we want to be able to loop this thing, right?
    00:49:48,990We want it to just loop endlessly,
    00:49:51,013and so what you can do, here's a real easy trick,
    00:49:53,715is you can just enable time remapping, okay?
    00:49:57,564And then extend the layer out however long you want,
    00:50:00,266and I'm going to put an expression on the time remap, okay?
    00:50:03,750So if I don't have that expression,
    00:50:06,007and we RAM preview this, you see what happens is
    00:50:08,269it just plays through once and then it's
    00:50:11,014just gonna stop, and so I'm gonna put an
    00:50:13,595expression on it that's gonna automatically
    00:50:16,067loop it over and over again for me.
    00:50:19,370And this is one of the most useful expressions there is,
    00:50:23,088you can use it for a lot of different things,
    00:50:25,167but for walk cycles it's handy.
    00:50:26,949So hold Option, click the stopwatch,
    00:50:29,395type loop out, and you have to do it just like this,
    00:50:33,369lower-case loop, initial caps on out,
    00:50:37,233then in parentheses, you need some quotation marks,
    00:50:41,194and you say cycle, close your quotations,
    00:50:45,067close your parentheses, there you go.
    00:50:46,559Loop out, and then in quotes, cycle.
    00:50:48,947And what cycle does is it plays whatever keyframes
    00:50:52,044you have on that layer, it's gonna play them, right?
    00:50:54,474So it's gonna go from zero up to one second,
    00:50:58,253and then it's going to cycle again.
    00:51:00,059Now you can see we've got a problem here,
    00:51:02,154which is we are actually--
    00:51:05,800we're getting this empty frame here,
    00:51:07,335so what I wanna do is go back one frame from
    00:51:10,200this empty frame, put a keyframe there,
    00:51:12,475and then delete the empty frame,
    00:51:14,304and so now the next frame will be frame one.
    00:51:17,482Now this is something that I don't truly understand,
    00:51:20,419and maybe someone can explain it.
    00:51:22,195This comp starts on frame zero, right?
    00:51:25,954And then it goes to frame 24, which is one second,
    00:51:29,693and when you do the loop out cycle thing,
    00:51:32,558if you go to the next frame,
    00:51:34,201it skips frame zero, it goes right to frame one.
    00:51:36,835Now that actually works fine for what we're doing,
    00:51:39,417because we want to skip either the first frame
    00:51:41,959or the last frame so that we have a seamless loop.
    00:51:45,843And so now if I RAM preview this you see I've got this
    00:51:48,018endless, seamless, walking Jenny, which is great.
    00:51:51,810In order for this to actually be useful,
    00:51:53,322she needs to be moving forward and she needs to be
    00:51:55,323moving forward at the right speed.
    00:51:58,300And that can be tricky if you try to do it manually.
    00:52:00,648If I just say position and I separate the dimensions,
    00:52:03,237and I put a keyframe here on X, and then I go here
    00:52:06,093and I say, "Okay, move to here,"
    00:52:08,145and then I hit RAM preview, right?
    00:52:11,161It's okay, and it's close but look at her feet.
    00:52:14,220They're slipping, they're slipping,
    00:52:16,037it doesn't look like she's gripping the ground,
    00:52:18,284and you can just keep tweaking that and trying to
    00:52:20,364play with it and figure out what the right speed is,
    00:52:23,749but there's a cool little trick
    00:52:25,403and this is what the trick is.
    00:52:27,700You need to add a guide, so hit Command R
    00:52:30,352if you don't have your rulers, drag a guide out, okay?
    00:52:33,921And what you want to do is you want to
    00:52:37,354put that guide where the front foot is, okay?
    00:52:43,989And then you want to scrub through--
    00:52:47,940okay, first let me take off the keyframes here,
    00:52:50,398there we go, okay?
    00:52:51,791The idea is the ground should not be moving,
    00:52:54,502the layers should be moving, so that foot
    00:52:56,311should never look like it's actually leav--
    00:52:59,419it shouldn't look like it's slipping,
    00:53:01,116so if you go forward one cycle, which we know is 24 frames.
    00:53:05,994Sorry, go forward one cycle of the foot,
    00:53:08,682so this foot moves backwards 12 frames,
    00:53:12,508and then it comes forward again.
    00:53:14,217So in that 12 frames I know that Jenny should move,
    00:53:17,846and I'm gonna put a keyframe on X position,
    00:53:19,836go to frame 12, she should now be here, okay?
    00:53:24,875And now if I play that, you can see that,
    00:53:26,631that foot looks like it's stuck to the ground,
    00:53:30,126which is cool, okay, but then it stops.
    00:53:33,145So it sure would be great if I could just--
    00:53:35,583whatever speed this is happening,
    00:53:37,755just continue that forever, okay?
    00:53:41,014And so there's an expression that will do that for you,
    00:53:43,603it's really pretty cool, so hold Option,
    00:53:45,902click on the X position, and it's actually this
    00:53:48,230same loop out expression, so loop out,
    00:53:52,395and then parentheses, quotation marks,
    00:53:54,781and instead of cycle you want to type in continue, okay?
    00:54:00,074And now what this does is whatever speed
    00:54:06,824the keyframe value is changing at on the last keyframe,
    00:54:09,973it continues that forever.
    00:54:12,249And now, let me zoom out, and you can now see
    00:54:16,251that we have a perfectly stuck to the ground,
    00:54:18,954perfectly-timed, walking Jenny here.
    00:54:23,706Pretty cool, and then you can take a background,
    00:54:28,352and Joe was nice enough to give me this background to use.
    00:54:34,232And there you go, you can put this one on
    00:54:35,849whatever background you want, what I did was actually--
    00:54:40,264once you get the character walking at the right speed,
    00:54:45,427pre-comp that whole thing, right?
    00:54:48,516So now I can parent-- I need to actually open up my--
    00:54:53,952I need to open up a different column to be able to do this,
    00:54:56,226let me open up my (clicks tongue) parenting column.
    00:54:59,742You can now parent this to the scene, and if you wanted to
    00:55:02,321put a little camera move on there, you could right?
    00:55:06,269And do something like this, right?
    00:55:09,278And so now you've got a character that walks
    00:55:12,834and looks like they're actually attached to the ground
    00:55:15,565and everything's great, okay?
    00:55:17,954Now I know in the example animation
    00:55:19,588I actually had the character stop,
    00:55:22,451and I'll show you how I did that.
    00:55:24,241I'm not going to walk through every step,
    00:55:25,572because it would just take too long,
    00:55:27,187but I will show you the work flow that I used for that.
    00:55:31,189So if I go to my final comp here
    00:55:33,375and we look at this full walk cycle,
    00:55:35,415what I actually have is two separate animations,
    00:55:38,698I have my walking animation here, right?
    00:55:41,847But then at a certain point I swap that out,
    00:55:45,859and I have a completely separate timeline here,
    00:55:48,471let me zoom out a little bit, and in this timeline,
    00:55:51,811all I animated was one step, and then stop, okay?
    00:55:57,736I animated this separately, and then in my pre-comp,
    00:56:01,909where I sort of worked out the speed that the layer
    00:56:03,808needs to move, at a certain point I just swap out
    00:56:07,166for the new rig that stops walking, there you go.
    00:56:11,163And so now in the final comp,
    00:56:12,992you can see that Jenny walks in, right?
    00:56:17,482Stops, there you go, I also added a little shadow,
    00:56:21,040and a little camera move, a little depth of field,
    00:56:22,798what have you, but the technique I used
    00:56:25,908to make it is the same one we just went through.
    00:56:28,356So that was a lot of information,
    00:56:31,179again, I hope these tutorials are not too jam-packed,
    00:56:34,138I know there is a lot in them, but walk cycles are--
    00:56:38,933I'm pretty sure if you went to a
    00:56:42,887character animation school you might spend
    00:56:45,231your first year on walk cycles and run cycles
    00:56:47,933and really understanding how bodies work
    00:56:51,163and how they move, and as a motion designer
    00:56:54,812you may not have that luxury and frankly,
    00:56:56,965you may not need it, you may never need to
    00:56:59,261animate a character this articulated.
    00:57:02,065But you will probably be asked to animate
    00:57:03,894something walking at some point,
    00:57:06,137and if you know how to do it,
    00:57:07,778and you if know the strategies,
    00:57:09,276you are good to go, so I hope this was useful,
    00:57:12,438thank you guys so much, thank you one more time
    00:57:14,447to Ringling and oh dear Lord, here we go,
    00:57:19,268stay tuned for the next day of 30 Days of After Effects.
    00:57:22,287Thank you guys.
    00:57:23,878Thank you so much for checking out this lesson,
    00:57:26,054I hope it inspires you to start animating
    00:57:28,240your own characters and this lesson is really
    00:57:31,102only the tip of the character animation iceberg.
    00:57:34,010If you loved working on this walk cycle
    00:57:35,899and you wanna get in depth with animating characters,
    00:57:38,520you'll wanna check out our character animation bootcamp.
    00:57:41,568It's a deep dive into the world of character animation,
    00:57:44,846taught by the magnificent Morgan Williams.
    00:57:48,189You'll learn all about using the pose-to-pose
    00:57:50,130method of animation to bring your characters to life
    00:57:53,054in After Effects, and if you wanna learn more
    00:57:55,351about how to make a rigged puppet in After Effects,
    00:57:57,909like the Jenny LeClue rig that we used in this lesson,
    00:58:00,910make sure you check out our rigging academy.
    00:58:03,327It's a self-paced treasure trove of rigging knowledge
    00:58:06,486that will give you all the skills you need,
    00:58:08,416to create rigs both simple and complex,
    00:58:10,677to use in your animations.
    00:58:12,639Thanks again, and I will see you next time.
    00:58:18,186(upbeat music)