bhAnimTools


The animation tools, perhaps the set with mostly a lot of small features that speed up animating. From custom playblasting and quick camera selections to simple constraining and selection buttons.

In the "general" tab there are quick buttons for general purpose. Sofar only the playblast button has a function. What is special about this functions is that it is one-click and that it uses ffmpeg to encode the final playblast. This means that I have so much more freedom to choose the encoding that fits best within a production.
Another handy feature in this tab is a camera selection drop-down menu. Quickly select a camera and if user-attributes have been set on that camera for start and end frame, also adjusts the timeline to match that range.

Motion paths are a simple way to check the arcs that certain parts of the rig make. You can track multiple parts at the same time, or keep adding to it. The refresh button recalculates the paths that are already in place.
Setting the incr(ement) wil draw a second editable curve. This curve can be used as a guide for the desired arcs. This is purely for visual reference.

The export section is for exporting and importing animation curves. The implementation is kept as general as possible so it is not tied to character sets or specific rigs. It exports to a readable ASCI-file. Aside from the animation curves, it also exports the current state (pose) of the selection. So that attributes that are relevant to the final pose/animation but aren`t keyed will still be set correctly.



The constraint is both simple and I also believe very powerfull at the same time. You fill the fields with the source and the goal objects, select which translations you wish to constrain and calculate a number of frames. It works really simple by going over the frames and making sure the offset between source and goal remain the same. It sets keys on the appropriate attributes. The advantage is that there are no adjustments being made to the rig and there are no hidden attributes that are responsible for constraining. It is just as easy to constrain an object to one hand, then some frames later set the other hand as source and continue on constraining. Then it will be attached to the other hand, without hassle. It is possible to calculate the constraining both forward and backward in time.

Poses and selections work very similar. In both cases you select one or more objects (can be controllers, but thats not a prerequisite), fill in a name in the text-field and hit the "new" button. This simply creates button with that name below. Clicking that button wil respectively restore the pose you had saved under that button or select the object(s).
Right-clicking the buttons reveal some more functions. Like changing the button color or deleting it. For poses there is also the option to store the pose to disk (usually they are stored within the file). Also by right-clicking on the "new" button for the poses you can import the poses you exported.