Tracking Behavior Parameters

The following section provides a detailed description of the parameters available in the different tracking behaviors.

Note: Cloned objects cannot be tracked.

Analyze Motion Controls

The Analyze Motion behavior is designed for use with footage (a movie or image sequence). This behavior can be thought of as a “traditional” correlation tracker—you position an onscreen tracker on a reference pattern on a clip. The movement of the clip at the specified reference point is analyzed, and the analyzed data is saved in the behavior. The recorded data can then be applied to other objects in the project.

The Analyze Motion behavior does not transform the input image. It is used only to generate tracks that can be referenced by the Match Move and Stabilize behaviors.

For information on using the Analyze Motion behavior, see General Motion Tracking Workflow.

Note: Analyze Motion cannot reference other tracking behaviors.

Important: The Analyze Motion behavior can only be applied to footage objects (a QuickTime movie or image sequence).

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Movement: The Movement parameters contain the Analyze and Reverse controls.
    • Analyze: Click the Analyze button to begin the motion tracking analysis. Once Analyze is clicked, a status window appears that displays the tracking progress. To stop the analysis, click the Stop button in the status window or press Esc.

      The start of the track is based on the current playhead position, rather than the start of the behavior in the Timeline.

    • Reverse: When the Reverse checkbox is selected, the clip is analyzed from the current playhead position to the first frame of the clip (or the first frame of the tracking behavior).

      Note: You must move the playhead to the frame from which you want to begin the reverse analysis.

  • Tracker: Click the Add button to add trackers to the Analyze Motion behavior. By default, one tracker is available. New trackers are added at the center of the Canvas.
  • Tracker Preview: This preview area provides a magnified view of the tracking reference area for the selected tracker. The preview updates as you adjust the position of the tracker in the Canvas. You can drag in the preview area to adjust the position of the tracker. When dragging in the preview area, the image moves around the red crosshairs that represent the tracker, while the tracker moves in the Canvas. Additionally, you can Option–drag left or right to decrease or increase pattern size. (You can also adjust the Track Size slider to achieve the same result.)
  • Offset Track: If a tracker’s reference point becomes temporarily hidden or goes off the screen, this parameter allows you to select a different reference point that continues the same tracking path as the original reference point. For more information on offset tracking, see Tracking Obscured or Off-Frame Points.
  • Look Ahead Frames: This slider and value slider allow you to specify the number of “future” frames to be analyzed by the tracker. In other words, you can direct the tracker to look in a specific location for its reference point. This is especially useful for footage that contains fast-moving objects, as the reference point can quickly “get away” from the tracker. For more information on using Look Ahead Frames, see Giving Motion a Hint.
  • Track list: Displays the trackers in the behavior. In the Analyze Motion behavior, the trackers in this list are called “Track 1, Track 2,” and so on.

    To disable a tracker, deselect its checkbox. To remove a tracker, click the Remove button. A tracker that is turned off is not analyzed with the track.

    Click the disclosure triangle next to the track name to reveal additional parameters:

    • Position: Displays the X and Y positions of the tracker. The X position is the value slider on the left; the Y position is the value slider on the right. Click the disclosure triangle to display labeled position value sliders.
    • Track Size: Use this slider to adjust (in pixels) the pattern search size for the tracker. As you adjust the track size, the Tracker Preview is updated to show the new track size (there is no visual change in the Canvas tracker).

      To adjust the Track Size without exposing its parameters, Option–drag left in the Tracker Preview area to reduce the track size; Option–drag right to increase the track size.

    • Search Size: Use this slider or value slider to increase or reduce the tracker’s search area size. In Motion, you do not specify the size of a search area when setting up your trackers in the Canvas. To change the default search size, use the slider or value slider. If Search Size is set to 200 percent, the tracker’s search area is twice the default search area size.
    • Fail Tolerance: This parameter defines the amount of tolerance for error, orconfidence value, of the track. In other words, it defines at what “score” the tracker determines it is able to match a reference feature. When above the score, the tracker accepts the match. When below the score, the tracker rejects the match. Once the match is rejected, the Fail Behavior kicks in.
    • Color: Click or Control-click the color well to set a new color for the onscreen tracker. You can also click the eyedropper and select a color in the Canvas. The default tracker color is red. When a tracker is selected, its center point is yellow and the border of its magnified inset is the color set in the color well. To adjust the individual color channels, including the tracker’s opacity, click the disclosure triangle.
HUD Controls

The Analyze Motion HUD contains controls to start the motion track (the Analyze button), reverse the direction of the track (the Reverse checkbox), and to specify an offset track (the Offset Track checkbox). Offset tracking allows you to reposition the tracker at a new reference pattern.

Match Move Controls

The Match Move behavior can be applied to many different object types, including groups, cameras, shapes, particle emitters, and so on.

Important: When applying the Match Move behavior to a group, make sure that the footage being analyzed resides outside of the group being tracked.

In order to use Match Move (and access all of its parameters), your project must contain a foreground and a background object. For information on using the Match Move behavior, see Match Move Workflows.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Source: Drag the source object for the match move to this well. The source object can be another tracking behavior, an animated object, or a footage object. When a Match Move behavior is added to an object, the nearest animated object, recorded track, or footage object beneath the behavior in the Layers tab appears in this well. To clear a Source well, drag the item away from the well and release the mouse button.

    When any non-footage object (such as a shape or mask) is dropped in the Source well, the trackers are no longer available in Match Move.

    Note: When the Match Move behavior is applied to a mask, the masked object is automatically selected as the source.

  • Movement: The Movement parameters contain the Analyze and Reverse parameters.
    • Analyze: Click the Analyze button to begin the motion tracking analysis. Once Analyze is clicked, a status window appears that displays the tracking progress. To stop the analysis, click the Stop button in the status window or press Esc.

      The start of the track is based on the current playhead position, rather than the start of the behavior in the Timeline.

    • Reverse: When the Reverse checkbox is selected, the clip is analyzed from the current playhead position to the first frame of the clip (or the first frame of the tracking behavior).

      Note: You must move the playhead to the frame from which you want to begin the reverse analysis.

  • Adjust: This parameter allows you to choose the type of transformation applied to the destination object.
    • Position: When enabled, the position of the source (or background) object is applied to the destination (or foreground) object. When Position is enabled, the Anchor (position) tracker is turned on.
    • Scale: When enabled, the scale of the source (or background) object is applied to the destination (or foreground) object. The source track must include scale data for this parameter to have any effect. When Scale is enabled, the Rotation-Scale tracker is turned on.
    • Rotation: When enabled, the rotation of the source (or background) object is applied to the destination (or foreground) object. The source track must include rotation data for this parameter to have any effect. When Rotation is enabled, the Rotation-Scale tracker is turned on.
  • Tracker Preview: This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. This preview area provides a magnified view of the tracking reference area for the selected tracker. The preview updates as you adjust the position of the tracker in the Canvas. You can also drag in the preview area to adjust the position of the tracker. When dragging in the preview area, the image moves around the red crosshairs in the preview and the tracker moves in the Canvas.
  • Offset Track: This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. If a tracker’s reference point becomes temporarily hidden or goes off the screen, this parameter allows you to select a different reference point that continues the same tracking path as the original reference point. For more information on offset tracking, see Tracking Obscured or Off-Frame Points.
  • Look Ahead Frames: This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. This slider and value slider allow you to specify the number of “future” frames to be analyzed by the tracker. In other words, you can direct the tracker to look in a specific location for its reference point. This is especially useful for footage that contains fast-moving objects, as the reference point can quickly “get away” from the tracker. For more information on using Look Ahead Frames, see Giving Motion a Hint.
  • Anchor/Rotation-Scale(checkboxes): Available when one-point or two-point tracking is enabled (when Transformation is chosen from the Type pop-up menu), these checkboxes turn the Anchor and Rotation-Scale trackers on or off. The anchor tracker records position data. When Position is enabled in the Adjust parameters, the Anchor tracker is turned on. Rotation and scale data are recorded by using the relationship between the Anchor and Rotation-Scale trackers. When Scale or Rotation is enabled in the Adjust parameters, the Rotation-Scale tracker is turned on.

    When the Match Move behavior references another behavior, such as Analyze Motion, the Anchor tracker becomes the Anchor pop-up menu. Likewise, the Rotation-Scale tracker (if there is one) becomes the Rotation-Scale pop-up menu.

    Click the Anchor or Rotation-Scale disclosure triangles to reveal additional parameters:

    • Position: Displays the X and Y positions of the tracker. The X position is the value slider on the left; the Y position is the value slider on the right. Click the disclosure triangle to display labeled position value sliders.
    • Track Size: Use this slider to adjust (in pixels) the pattern search size for the tracker. As you adjust the track size, the Tracker Preview is updated to show the new track size (there is no visual change in the Canvas tracker).

      To adjust the Track Size without exposing its parameters, Option–drag left in the Tracker Preview area to reduce the track size; Option–drag right to increase the track size.

    • Search Size: Use this slider or value slider to increase or reduce the tracker’s search area size. In Motion, you do not specify the size of a search area when setting up your trackers in the Canvas. To change the default search size, use the slider or value slider. If Search Size is set to 200 percent, the tracker’s search area is twice the default search area size.
    • Fail Tolerance: This parameter defines the amount of tolerance for error, orconfidence value, of the track. In other words, it defines at what “score” the tracker determines it is able to match a reference feature. When above the score, the tracker accepts the match. When below the score, the tracker rejects the match. Once the match is rejected, the Fail Behavior kicks in.
    • Color: Click or Control-click the color well to set a new color for the onscreen tracker. You can also click the eyedropper and select a color in the Canvas. The default tracker color is red. When a tracker is selected, its center point is yellow and the border of its magnified inset is the color set in the color well. To adjust the individual color channels, including the tracker’s opacity, click the disclosure triangle.
HUD Controls

The Match Move HUD contains controls to load an animated object or tracking data from another tracking behavior (via the Source well or the tracking behaviors pop-up menu), to start the motion analysis (the Analyze button), to reverse the direction of the track (the Reverse checkbox), to offset the track (the Offset Track checkbox), to specify whether the destination object is four-corner pinned (the Type pop-up menu), and to choose what transform is applied to the destination object (the Adjust parameter).

Stabilize Controls

The Stabilize behavior uses a different method to analyze movement in a clip than the Match Move and Analyze Motion behaviors. Generally, you do not use trackers to stabilize a clip. The behavior’s sophisticated method of motion estimation automatically tracks every pixel in one frame to the subsequent frame. A motion vector is calculated based on this analysis. The analysis can be performed on the entire clip, or on a region of interest (ROI). An ROI is a user-defined area of a clip that is analyzed.

If the result of the automatic analysis requires additional correction, you can perform manual tracking on noncontiguous time regions of the clip. For example, if there is an additional camera bump affecting frames 350 to 380, you can add a tracker to analyze just that portion of the clip. The data recorded from the additional analysis is added to the data recorded by the automatic tracking to further smooth the clip.

In addition to considering horizontal, vertical, or horizontal and vertical movement in the clip, the Stabilize behavior also looks at position, scale, and rotation.

Note: The Stabilize behavior can only be applied to footage objects (a QuickTime movie or an image sequence).

Important: When a Final Cut Pro clip or sequence that contains a SmoothCam filter is exported to Motion, the filter is converted to a Stabilize behavior in Motion. Smooth is chosen from the Method pop-up menu, rather than the default Stabilize option.

For information on using the Stabilize behavior, see Stabilize Workflow.

Note: When Smooth is chosen from the Method pop-up menu, additional parameters become available in the HUD and Inspector.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Source: To clear a Source well, drag the item away from the well and release the mouse button. Drag a source object for the behavior to this well. The source object can be another Stabilize behavior or a footage object.
  • Movement: Click the Analyze button to begin the motion tracking analysis. Once Analyze is clicked, a status window appears that displays the tracking progress. To stop the analysis, click the Stop button in the status window or press Esc.

    When using the Stabilize behavior (without trackers), the track begins at the start of the clip, rather than the current playhead position.

  • Track Region: When this checkbox is selected, a red box appears in the Canvas that allows you to define a subject or area that you want to be analyzed. The area outside of the region is ignored. The track region’s onscreen controls are similar to a shape’s onscreen controls.

    For more information on using the Track Region, see Adjusting the Stabilize Behavior’s Track Region.

  • Translation Smooth: This parameter appears when Method is set to Smooth. Smoothes motion in both the X and Y dimensions.
  • Rotation Smooth: This parameter appears when Method is set to Smooth. Smoothes image rotation.
  • Scale Smooth: This parameter appears when Method is set to Smooth. Smoothes an uneven zoom.

    Note: Don’t set the Scale Smooth above 0 unless you’re positive that the image is being zoomed.

  • Adjust: This parameter allows you to choose the transformation to which the stabilization is applied.
    • Position: When enabled, stabilize is applied to the position of the analyzed image.
    • Scale: When enabled, stabilize is applied to the scale of the analyzed image.
    • Rotation: When enabled, stabilize is applied to the rotation of the analyzed image.
  • Tracker: Click the Add button to add trackers to the Stabilize behavior. By default, trackers are added at the center of the Canvas. A maximum of two trackers can be added to the Stabilize behavior. When added, Track 1 is used as the anchor (for position) and Track 2 is used for rotation-scale.

    Once a tracker is added to a Stabilize behavior, the following occurs:

    • The Track Region parameter is no longer available.

    • The Reverse checkbox becomes available, allowing you to track a clip backwards.

    • The Tracker Preview, Offset Track, Auto-Zoom, Auto-Zoom Mode, Look Ahead Frames, and track list controls become available. For more information, see Analyze Motion Controls.

      Note: When another behavior is used as the source for the stabilization, you cannot add trackers to the Stabilize behavior.

HUD Controls

The Stabilize HUD contains controls to load another stabilize track into the behavior (via the Source well or the tracking behaviors pop-up menu), to start the motion analysis (the Analyze button), to specify whether the clip is stabilized or smoothed (the Method pop-up menu), to define how the stabilize clip is “sized” (the Borders pop-up menu), and to choose what transform is applied to the analyzed clip (the Adjust parameter).

Unstabilize Controls

The Unstabilize behavior is used to apply movement tracked in another tracking behavior to an object. This behavior does not perform any tracking analysis. The Unstabilize behavior can be applied to many different object types, including groups, cameras, shapes, particle emitters, and so on.

For information on using the Unstabilize behavior, see Unstabilize Workflow.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Source: Drag a Stabilize behavior to this well to load the data into the Unstabilize behavior. To clear a Source well, drag the item away from the well and release the mouse button.

    Note: Dragging other objects (such as footage) to the source well has no effect on the tracker.

    • Tracking behaviors pop-up menu: Choose from a list of tracking data (from other tracking behaviors) within the project.
      Figure. Inspector showing tracking behaviors pop-up menu.

    Note: The Unstabilize behavior can be converted to keyframes. For more information, see Converting Tracks to Keyframes.

HUD Controls

The Unstabilize HUD contains two controls to load another stabilize track into the behavior: the Source well or the tracking behaviors pop-up menu. These controls are identical to the controls in the Inspector.

Track Points Controls

The Track Points behavior allows you to link the control points of a shape or mask (including paint strokes) to reference features on a source clip. This behavior also allows you to apply existing tracking data that was recorded by the Analyze Motion, Match Move, or Stabilize tracking behaviors to the control points of a shape or mask.

The Track Points behavior can be found in the Behaviors’ Shape subcategory in the Library, or by choosing Shape > Track Points from the Add Behavior pop-up menu in the Toolbar.

For information on using the Track Points behavior, see Track Points Workflow.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Source: Drag a source object for the track points to this well. The source object can be another tracking behavior, an animated object, or a footage object. To clear a Source well, drag the item away from the well and release the mouse button.
    • Tracking behaviors pop-up menu: Choose from a list of tracking data (from other tracking behaviors) within the project.
      Figure. Inspector showing tracking behaviors pop-up menu.
  • Align Tangents: When this checkbox is deselected, tangents remain aligned at their original angles. When the checkbox is selected, the tangents match the transformation of the source animation, and the shape changes its form.
  • Movement: The Movement parameters contain the Analyze and Reverse parameters. This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well.
    • Analyze: Click the Analyze button to begin the motion tracking analysis. Once Analyze is clicked, a status window appears that displays the tracking progress. To stop the analysis, click the Stop button in the status window or press Esc.

      The start of the track is based on the current playhead position, rather than the start of the behavior in the Timeline.

    • Reverse: When the Reverse checkbox is selected, the clip is analyzed from the current playhead position to the first frame of the clip (or the first frame of the tracking behavior).

      Note: You must move the playhead to the frame where you want to begin the reverse analysis.

  • Tracker Preview: This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. This preview area provides a magnified view of the tracking reference area for the selected tracker. The preview updates as you adjust the position of the tracker in the Canvas. You can also drag in the preview area to adjust the position of the tracker. When dragging in the preview area, the image moves around the red crosshairs in the preview and the tracker moves in the Canvas.
  • Offset Track: This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. If a tracker’s reference point becomes temporarily hidden or goes off the screen, this parameter allows you to select a different reference point that continues the same tracking path as the original reference point. For more information on offset tracking, see Tracking Obscured or Off-Frame Points.
  • Look Ahead Frames: This parameter appears only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. This slider and value slider allow you to specify the number of “future” frames to be analyzed by the tracker. In other words, you can direct the tracker to look in a specific location for its reference point. This is especially useful for footage that contains fast-moving objects, as the reference point can quickly “get away” from the tracker. For more information on using Look Ahead Frames, see Giving Motion a Hint.
  • Track list: Tracks appear only when there is a tracking source (footage) in the source well. Displays the trackers in the behavior as “Track 1, Track 2,” and so on. The number of trackers is determined by the number of control points on the shape with the applied Track Points behavior. For example, when a Track Points behavior is added to a shape with 12 control points, 12 trackers will appear in the track list.

    When another track is referenced, the track list is replaced with Control Point pop-up menus.

    To disable a tracker, deselect its checkbox. To remove a tracker, click the Remove button. A tracker that is turned off is not analyzed with the track.

    Click the disclosure triangle next to the track name to reveal additional parameters:

    • Position: Displays the X and Y positions of the tracker. The X position is the value slider on the left; the Y position is the value slider on the right. Click the disclosure triangle to display labeled position value sliders.
    • Track Size: Use this slider to adjust (in pixels) the pattern search size for the tracker. As you adjust the track size, the Tracker Preview is updated to show the new track size (there is no visual change in the Canvas tracker).

      To adjust the Track Size without exposing its parameters, Option–drag left in the Tracker Preview area to reduce the track size; Option–drag right to increase the track size.

    • Search Size: Use this slider or value slider to increase or reduce the tracker’s search area size. In Motion, you do not specify the size of a search area when setting up your trackers in the Canvas. To change the default search size, use the slider or value slider. If Search Size is set to 200 percent, the tracker’s search area is twice the default search area size.
    • Fail Tolerance: This parameter defines the amount of tolerance for error, orconfidence value, of the track. In other words, it defines at what “score” the tracker determines it is able to match a reference feature. When above the score, the tracker accepts the match. When below the score, the tracker rejects the match. Once the match is rejected, the Fail Behavior kicks in.
    • Color: Click or Control-click the color well to set a new color for the onscreen tracker. You can also click the eyedropper and select a color in the Canvas. The default tracker color is red. When a tracker is selected, its center point is yellow and the border of its magnified inset is the color set in the color well. To adjust the individual color channels, including the tracker’s opacity, click the disclosure triangle.
HUD Controls

The Track Points HUD contains controls to load an animated object or tracking behavior into the behavior (via the Source well or the tracking behaviors pop-up menu), to specify how the destination object moves, to start the motion analysis (the Analyze button), to reverse the direction of the track (the Reverse checkbox), and to offset the track (the Offset Track checkbox).

Track Parameter Behavior Controls

The Track Parameter behavior allows you to track the position parameter of an object (such as a filter, shape, or particle emitter) to a reference feature of a clip, or to apply existing tracking data to the position parameter of an object.

The Track Parameter behavior can be found in the Behaviors’ Parameter subcategory in the Library, or by choosing Parameter > Track from the Add Behavior pop-up menu in the Toolbar.

For a description of the Tracker Preview, Offset Track, Auto-Zoom, Auto-Zoom Mode, Look Ahead Frames, and track list parameters, as well as the tracker subparameters, see Analyze Motion Controls.

For information on using the Track Parameter behavior, see Track Parameter Workflow.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Source: Drag the source object for the track to this well. The source object can be another tracking behavior or a footage object. Drag a behavior to the Source well to load that track into the Track Parameter behavior. To clear a Source well, drag the item away from the well and release the mouse button.

    Note: An animated object cannot be used as a source for the Track Parameter behavior.

    • Tracking behaviors pop-up menu: Choose from a list of tracking data (from other tracking behaviors) within the project.
      Figure. Inspector showing tracking behaviors pop-up menu.
  • Movement: Click the Analyze button to begin the motion tracking analysis. Once Analyze is clicked, a status window appears that displays the tracking progress. To stop the analysis, click the Stop button in the status window or press Esc.

    The start of the track is based on the current playhead position, rather than the start of the behavior in the Timeline.

  • Reverse: When the Reverse checkbox is selected, the clip is analyzed from the current playhead position to the first frame of the clip (or the first frame of the tracking behavior).

    Note: You must move the playhead to the frame from which you want to begin the reverse analysis.

  • Tracker Preview: This preview area provides a magnified view of the tracking reference area for the selected tracker. The preview updates as you adjust the position of the tracker in the Canvas. You can also drag in the preview area to adjust the position of the tracker. When dragging in the preview area, the image moves around the red crosshairs in the preview and the tracker moves in the Canvas.
  • Offset Track: If a tracker’s reference point becomes temporarily hidden or goes off the screen, this parameter allows you to select a different reference point that continues the same tracking path as the original reference point. For more information on offset tracking, see Tracking Obscured or Off-Frame Points.
  • Look Ahead Frames: This slider and value slider allow you to specify the number of “future” frames to be analyzed by the tracker. In other words, you can direct the tracker to look in a specific location for its reference point. This is especially useful for footage that contains fast-moving objects, as the reference point can quickly “get away” from the tracker. For more information on using Look Ahead Frames, see Giving Motion a Hint.
  • Track list: Displays the trackers in the behavior.

    To disable a tracker, deselect its checkbox. A tracker that is turned off is not analyzed with the track.

    When another track is referenced, the track list is replaced with a Tracker pop-up menu.

    Click the disclosure triangle next to the track name to reveal additional parameters:

  • Position: Displays the X and Y positions of the tracker. The X position is the value slider on the left; the Y position is the value slider on the right. Click the disclosure triangle to display labeled position value sliders.
  • Track Size: Use this slider to adjust (in pixels) the pattern search size for the tracker. As you adjust the track size, the Tracker Preview is updated to show the new track size (there is no visual change in the Canvas tracker).

    To adjust the Track Size without exposing its parameters, Option–drag left in the Tracker Preview area to reduce the track size; Option–drag right to increase the track size.

  • Search Size: Use this slider or value slider to increase or reduce the tracker’s search area size. In Motion, you do not specify the size of a search area when setting up your trackers in the Canvas. To change the default search size, use the slider or value slider. If Search Size is set to 200 percent, the tracker’s search area is twice the default search area size.
  • Fail Tolerance: This parameter defines the amount of tolerance for error, orconfidence value, of the track. In other words, it defines at what “score” the tracker determines it is able to match a reference feature. When above the score, the tracker accepts the match. When below the score, the tracker rejects the match. Once the match is rejected, the Fail Behavior kicks in.
  • Color: Click or Control-click the color well to set a new color for the onscreen tracker. You can also click the eyedropper and select a color in the Canvas. The default tracker color is red. When a tracker is selected, its center point is yellow and the border of its magnified inset is the color set in the color well. To adjust the individual color channels, including the tracker’s opacity, click the disclosure triangle.
HUD Controls

The Track parameter HUD contains controls to load a tracking behavior into the behavior (via the Source Behavior well or the tracking behaviors pop-up menu), to specify how the position parameter moves, to start the motion analysis (the Analyze button), to reverse the direction of the track (the Reverse checkbox), and to offset the track (the Offset Track checkbox).