Issues with motion graph window

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Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:12 pm

Issues with motion graph window

Post by jimbresnahan » Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:47 pm

I feel the designers of the timeline have gone a little too far in protecting the user from complexity, specifically in the
functionality of the motion graph window. I'm coming from the mindset of 3D character animation where you spend
a lot of time in the graph editor polishing spline curves, which would not be possible with the "one curve at a time" approach.

A few thoughts on opening up the flexibility here:

1. Motion graph should have the ability to show and edit curves from two or more objects simultaneously. For example, I'd like
to compare the main body bone's Y translate to the left foot bone's rotate, and be able to select and move keys from
each curve together.

2. Copy and pasting between different attributes should be possible, such as copying the body bone's Y translate onto the torso bone's
Y scale. Copy and pasting the same curve from one part into other parts (while adjusting the scale of the curve up or down, depending)
is a mainstay of many animator's workflow.

3. Uniform zoom in the timeline and motion graph windows, same as the workspace zoom. Its a literal drag to separately zoom in on the value, then
the frames, when in most cases you want a uniform zoom. You should also be able to draw a bounding box and have that area snap zoom to the full
motion graph window. Also, if keys are selected, there average position automatically becomes the pivot or center of the zoom.

4. You should be able to drag frame 0 to any side of the window. I know AS doesn't use negative numbers, but if I'm editing a key on frame 1, I'd like
to have that key be in the center of the screen, not stuck on the left side. Number 3 and 4 on this list allude to the idea that the timeline/motion graph
should be an infinite 2d space that is easily navigable, which it isn't quite right now.

5. To further help with navigation and orientation of the motion graph, you should always show where "0" value is, and always have a
background grid of units.

I know pre-built actions are a way of tying together different animation curves in AS, and I haven't yet wrapped my head around the power of this
approach, but regardless the program would become a faster and more flexible tool to professional animators if you could improve functionality
in the motion graph. If you're worried about complexity, maybe this could be a tiered area between Debut and Pro.

Jim Bresnahan
Bluesky Studios
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Re: Issues with motion graph window

Post by Squeakydave » Tue Nov 06, 2012 4:47 pm

Hi Jim.
I heartily agree. I have often looked enviously at the level of control our 3d cousins have in their software.
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Re: Issues with motion graph window

Post by AnnieMashon » Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:18 pm

I agree. These changes would be most important feature to deliver. I would like to have the curves for the rotates of the write, forearm, upper-arm, etc...
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