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Point Level Control

Some simple, yet precise control using Xpresso By Ko Maruyama
In MAXON's CINEMA 4D, you can animate every point of a mesh, or every point along a spline using PLA (point level animation).  However, this mesh cage animation offers a generic control.  Sometimes you'll want to wield more detailed control over the position of points, this XPresso setup might help.

THIS IS AN ANSWER TO A QUESTION POSTED IN THE DMN FORUM.  Have a question?  Post it in the forum.  If it can't be described, you might find your answer here -> click to enter the DMN FORUM for Cinema 4D.

1. Draw a spline.  For this demonstration, it doesn't matter what the spline looks like initially, because we'll take control of each point.  However, you can also mix and match this XPresso technique with regular point level animation.

(note: screenshots are C4D R10, but the same result can be created with R9.x - icons are a little different.  A file for this XPresso project can be found in the DMNForums for CINEMA 4D).

click images for large versions

2. Take a look at the Structure.  You'll see that there are 6 points to this spline that I've created, but the number range is ordered from "0" to "5".

3. Create a Null Object. (we'll actually need 6, one for each point in the object that these will control).  To rename the object, simply double click the name of the null and type the new name, use the UP/DOWN arrow to navigate to the next object that you need to rename.

4. I add a Null Object to hold generic XPresso tags.  Here I've added and renamed a Null Object (XP Holder).  In the object window, select the null (XP Holder), from the top of the object manager, select TAGS, add a new CINEMA 4D Tag for XPresso.

5. Double clicking the XP tag will bring up the XGroup window.  Drag ALL of the objects, excluding the XP HOLDER into the XGroup window.  Spread these small windows out to allow for some space between each box, allowing more space between the nulls and the spline boxes.


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Related Keywords:maxon cinema 4d, C4D tutorial, R10, ko maruyama, PLA, point level animation, FCurve Splines, Xpresso, training

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