Using Other Behaviors with Text

Because text is like all other layers in Motion, you can apply any Basic Motion, Parameter, or Simulation behavior to text layers. Because the characters of text make the object a group, you can create some unique animations using the Simulation behaviors. This section provides a quick overview to working with nontext behaviors applied to text. For more information on using behaviors, see Using Behaviors.

Behaviors are applied to text in the same manner as all other layers—by using the Library or the Add Behavior icon in the Toolbar. As mentioned earlier, the Library allows you to see a preview of the behavior before it is applied to text. The Add Behavior icon allows you to quickly apply a behavior to a single or multiple text layers.

To apply a nontext behavior to text
Do one of the following:
  • In the Library, select the Behaviors category, select a Basic Motion, Parameter, or Simulation subcategory, and then drag the desired behavior from the stack to the text (in the Canvas, Layers tab, or Timeline).

  • Select the text, click the Add Behavior icon, then choose the behavior you want.

    In the following example, an animation is created in which the text moves and collides with the edge of the screen. You can set the text to hit the edge as a single object, or have each text character hit the edge one at a time.

To create a text animation using nontext behaviors
  1. From the Basic Motion subcategory, apply the Throw behavior to the text.

  2. Adjust the Throw so that the text moves across the Canvas.

    Figure. Canvas window showing text, and HUD showing Throw behavior controls.
  3. From the Simulations subcategory, apply the Edge Collision and Vortex behaviors to the text.

  4. In the Inspector, select the Affect Subobjects checkbox for the Edge Collision behavior.

  5. Play the project (press the Space bar).

    The text characters are swept around the screen in a vortex pattern. If the text characters start to move off the screen, they collide with the edge of the screen.

    Figure. Canvas window showing animated text.

    Related Objects is the default setting in the Affect parameter of the Vortex behavior, which means that all objects within the same group are affected. You can change this to Specific Objects to select which layers are affected, or change it to All Objects.

    Note: Remember that behaviors often contain parameters that specify how layers to which the behavior is applied are affected. These controls greatly influence the result of a behavior when it is applied to text. For example, if you have text on a circular path and you apply a Spin behavior to the text, the text layer rotates as a whole around its anchor point. To rotate the individual text characters, select the Affect Subobjects checkbox in the Spin parameters.

    Figure. Canvas window showing effect of Affect Subobjects setting: When the setting is on, individual letters spin; when it is off, the text layer as a whole spins.

    For more information on using behaviors, see Using Behaviors.