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Making several small shapes "fly off" of a larger shape

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Garret Layman
Making several small shapes "fly off" of a larger shape
on Jan 25, 2018 at 4:13:30 pm

I've got a large square shape with a bunch of smaller square shapes in a grid on top of it. I'm trying to animate it so that the large square spins 180° and in the process throws all of the smaller squares off screen. I've tried parenting things in different ways as well as animating each square individually but I'm not getting that natural motion that I'd like. Is there anything beyond trial and error tweaking that I can do to make this look right?


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Richard Garabedain
Re: Making several small shapes "fly off" of a larger shape
on Jan 25, 2018 at 4:36:51 pm

Parenting in difficult ways....It doesnt sound too difficult. create your array of squares. parent them to another sqaure that will do the spinning, then move each box to the edge of the screen.. The timing is the trickiest thing though. you have lets say 100 squares falling off... The curve that the keyframes make should resemble the curve of a bouncing ball almost...This could probably be done using element 3d animation engine.


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Garret Layman
Re: Making several small shapes "fly off" of a larger shape
on Jan 25, 2018 at 5:45:54 pm

Thanks Richard.

Using some of your advice I was able to come up with a satisfactory solution for the time being. Fortunately I'm only working with 20 squares instead of 100. Directly parenting the small squares to the main one created too much movement and didn't have the right "decay" I was looking for. I ended up duplicating the null I'm using to control the main square and setting it's rotation to 90° and parenting the small squares to that. From there I moved them all off screen based on their original positions (rotation is clockwise) and curved the motion path so they "fell" a little. To sell it a little more I used an expression to parent the rotation of the small squares to the 180° null at half the value so the small square rotate individually in the same direction as the main square albeit at half the amount. In the end I sped up the animation to hide some of the weirdness with motion blur. It's probably 80% of what I was trying to achieve so any other suggestions would be appreciated.

Here's a screenshot of the current motion paths.



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