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Activity Forums Adobe After Effects Expressions motion math, elastic expression

  • motion math, elastic expression

    Posted by Derek Dollahite on April 7, 2005 at 4:19 pm

    Hello. I’m fairly new to a.e. (I’m a flash designer/developer). I need to attach one clip’s properties to another’s, but with elastic movement. In the reading I’ve done to try to figure this out, it has seemed that motion math would be the way to do this, but it seems that the version of a.e 6.0 I have at work doesn’t have motion math. Is there anyway I can buy motion math separately from a.e., or is there a way to use expressions similarly. Thanks for any help.

    Derek Dollahite replied 19 years ago 4 Members · 8 Replies
  • 8 Replies
  • Steve Roberts

    April 7, 2005 at 4:34 pm

    Expressions are better than motion math. MM creates keyframes which need to be deleted if you don’t like their effect, whereas expressions are live and can be changed more easily. They’re based on Javascript.

    For basics, read the manual, but for more, go here:


  • Derek Dollahite

    April 7, 2005 at 4:44 pm

    Hey Steve, thanks for the reply and the links. I found an effect that i think is similar to what I need to accomplish in another forum, but that was linked back here…it was Dan Ebbert’s “connect the dots” script. Does anyone know where I may be able to find that and/or read something about it. Thanks.

  • Steve Roberts

    April 7, 2005 at 5:01 pm

    Did you search the 2003 COW archives for “dots” with “Ebberts” as the author?

    Use the “search posts” button at the top left.


  • Dan Ebberts

    April 7, 2005 at 6:11 pm

    If you can provide more info about exactly what you’re trying to do, I can probably dig something up that will help.


  • Derek Dollahite

    April 7, 2005 at 6:54 pm

    Hey Dan, thanks for the offer. I found your connect the dots expressions and have those working…very nice work. I am trying to essentially connect text with lines and have this text move around 3d space with some elasticity…as the leader gets large, the follower follows and then shoots past and then back. I would greatly appreciate any help.

  • Mike Clasby

    April 7, 2005 at 7:06 pm

    Connect the Dots is in the search for 2003, but you need to read them all because they were thrashing through the rectangular pixel problem.

    If I remember that correctly it was the beam effect connecting 2 or more layers no matter where they moved. It was in 3D space. The original (square pixel) solution is here (read whole thread):|5|4

    Then read this for a solution to the rectangular pixel problem, read the whole thread:|5|4

    If you want a 2D sollution, here’s a tutorial that will walk you through it.

    There’s a movie sample available on the page so you can see if it’s what you want. It’s in 2D space. It looks OK in 3D space if you don’t fly a camera too close.

    This project uses D1/DV NTSC(0.9) so it looks like the rectangular thing is taken care of.

  • Dan Ebberts

    April 7, 2005 at 7:29 pm

    It sounds like you need the connect-the-dots stuff as well as this spring expression from George Polevoy:|5|4


  • Derek Dollahite

    April 7, 2005 at 8:08 pm

    Ok. Thanks for the help. I’m having a bit of a problem with the spring expression. I’ve used the expression on the position parameter of the follower object…when I do so the follower jumps right on top of the controller and when the controller’s animation is going the controlled object is very close behind (almost imperceptibly close). Only when the controller stops do I see some semblance of a little elasticity in the follower. Could you point me to the variables I would need to change to make the follower keep a certain amount of distance to the controller and how to make the elasticity look a little smoother. Thanks for all the help.

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