Keyframing Shape Animation

You can also keyframe a shape’s animation parameter to animate adjustments to its individual control points. This opens up powerful animation possibilities, since you can reform an entire shape using keyframe animation.

Figure. Keyframe Editor showing the Shape Animation parameter.
Figure. Canvas window showing a series of corresponding keyframed shape changes.
To keyframe a shape’s control points
  1. Use the Adjust Control Points tool (in the Select/Transform Tool options) to select the shape you want to animate.

    Figure. Adjust Control Points tool.

    The shape’s control points appear in the Canvas. In this example, the selected shape is the lower lip of the mouth illustration.

    Figure. Canvas window showing shape in starting position.
  2. Enable Record (press A).

    Figure. Record button in the Canvas window transport controls.
  3. Move to the frame where you want to change the shape, then make any necessary changes to the shape’s control points.

    Figure. Canvas window showing shape animated into a new position.

    In the Keyframe Editor (and also in the Timeline, if the Show/Hide Keyframes button is turned on), a keyframe appears for each adjustment you make at a new frame.

    Figure. Keyframe Editor showing a new keyframe added at the playhead position.

    Note: Adjusting a shape while the playhead is on an already existing keyframe adjusts the shape at that keyframe.

  4. Continue advancing frames and making changes as needed.

    Every time you make a change to the shape at a new frame, you automatically create a keyframe in that shape’s Shape Animation parameter.

  5. When you are done animating the shape, disable Record.

    The animated shape object interpolates between each keyframed shape. If you don’t like how the interpolation is working, you can add more keyframes to force the control points to follow the path you want.

    Figure. Canvas window showing a shape interpolated between two keyframes.

    You can also create, delete, and edit the timing of Shape Animation keyframes directly in the Keyframe Editor. For simplicity, each change you make to a shape is recorded as a single keyframe, no matter how many control points are edited. The Shape Animation parameter only allows keyframes set to linear interpolation. You cannot use any other form of keyframe interpolation.

    The process used to animate both shapes and masks is identical. To see an example of mask animation, see Keyframing a Mask’s Shape for Animation and Rotoscoping. For more information on keyframing in general, see Keyframes and Curves.