Parenting is the process by which you create links between layers, designating a parent and child to respectively control and inherit transformations. It will simplify your workflows, save time, and enhance your animations.
When linking layers, timing is everything–learn the dos and don’ts, plus more about Controllers, Anchor Points, and organization.
Welcome to another episode of Fable Foundations. In this lesson, we'll be talking about parenting. Parenting is the act of creating links between layers that result in transformations being inherited from the parent to the child. Now we're going to take a look at how establishing these relationships between motion assets can simplify your workflow and help create advanced animation rigs.
Parenting is the action of attaching a child object to a parent object. In this relationship, the parent object drives the transformations. For instance, when a parent changes its position, scale or rotation, all the layers that are linked to it will follow. Let's see this in action. In Fable's timeline, choose the layers that you would like to share a connection with.
Then click and drag a link from the dot on the child layer to the parent. When you release the link, the dot will become yellow. This indicates that the child is now attached to a parent and will inherit its transformation. Even if layers are parented together, it is still possible to animate the child independently.
When the child is duplicated, the copy maintains the link to the parent. To free a child from the parent, hover over the yellow dot and click to cancel the link.
It is important to choose the right moment to establish child to parent connections. Child objects are affected individually, even if they have the same properties, depending on when you connect a child to a parent will determine which attributes are passed down to them.
If you need to link multiple objects to the same parent at the same time, select the first child layer, hold shift, and click on the last one. Then drag the connection from any of these layers to the parent.
With Fable, you're able to build animation rigs with complex control chains. One layer can follow a parent, which in turn can then follow its own. Parent. Parent layers can be placed anywhere in the layer stack without affecting their connections here at fable, we'd like to advise good project organization and suggest keeping the layers stacked hierarchically based on their parent child relationship.
For example, we like to keep the master parent at the top of the stack, with its direct children below it and its grandchildren below them.
If you want to animate layers by parenting without adding more objects to your scene, you can use an invisible object called a controller. The controller possesses the same transform properties as normal layers, and can be keyframed.
Controllers are displayed as a handle with an anchor point. The difference between controllers and normal layers is that controllers will not be visible in previews or exports.
As with all other layers the position of the controllers' anchor point defines how movements will behave.
Here are a couple of examples of how a controller can be used in your animation workflow. First, using a controller can help if you have multiple animated objects in the scene and they need to be repositioned all at the same time. Link all of the objects to the controller.
Reposition the controller and then cancel the link. All of the objects will maintain their individual animations.
You can also use a controller to create overlapping motion. In this example, the small elements rotate around their individual anchor points. When they become parented, they also inherit the controllers' rotation properties.
Parenting layers inside of Fable, and not only saves time, it enables easy control of complex animation rigs containing from a few to a few hundred layers.
Behind the scenes of how animations work