Hello everyone! In this video I’ll show you how to animate a walk in CACANi. First, let’s define the ground line in a separate Cel. This will help us to animate the legs so they wouldn’t be sliding and stood firmly on the ground. Now we need to create a draft animation of the walk. We’ll do it on a raster layer. I’ll draw a detailed character, however, a simplified one would be sufficient as well. We just need it for defining the poses and the timing. Make sure the legs have an equal length. If they are not, fix the difference. Do the same for the arms as well. The first pose is the contact. It’s the moment when the character’s foot touches the ground. The leg is straightened, the second leg is slightly bent, and the body is leaned forward a little bit. The arms are opposed to the legs. That means when the right leg is ahead, the right arm is behind, and vice versa. Let’s add a horizontal line above the character’s head. It will help us to control his vertical movement. Next, let’s go to frame 17 and duplicate the keyframe. Let’s turn on the onion skin and move the character forward, aligning his toe with the previous keyframe. Now let’s adjust our sketch in this frame so the left and right limbs would be switched. Now let’s go to frame 33 and copy the first one into it. Then again align the character by his toe’s position. So far so good! Now we need to create a breakdown at frame 9. It’s the middle position between the extremes that is very important and affects the style of the walk. The animation’s terminology has key frames, extremes, breakdowns, and inbetweens, and CACANi has just 2 types of frames – Keyframes and Inbetweens. So, to avoid any confusion, let’s assume that in the future when I say anything about keyframes, I’ll mean the CACANi keyframe type. Let’s get back to the middle position. You can create an empty keyframe and re-draw it from scratch, however, I prefer to reuse whatever possible. So, I’ll be copy-pasting everything I can, at least the body and the head. You can straighten the body up a little bit in this keyframe. Since in this pose the right leg is not fully straightened, the character’s head and body are lifted up. The arm here is more straightened as well, and the hand is moving down a bit because of that. Let’s duplicate the middle position in frame 25, align the toes and switch the limbs. Let’s play what we have now. You may think that we just need to add the inbetweens now, so the character would go up and down swinging his arms. But no. It’s not that simple. At frame 5 the character’s body needs to lower down. The walk is a controlled falling. The character must take his weight with the leg bent, that’s how we show the body weight. It is called the lower position. We’re holding the toe in place and making the arms go even wider. This is the moment where the arms and the body will change their direction, not in the contact pose. Let’s duplicate the pose to frame 21 and edit it. The only thing left is to add the last pose in frame 13. This time the body needs to lift up even more, because the character pushes himself up at this moment. This is the top position. Now let’s duplicate! Let’s see what we have. The character got a wave-like trajectory. Let’s double-check the trajectory of the arms and legs and make sure they follow the arches. Make sure the feets are standing firmly on the ground without slipping. Make corrections, if needed. Congratulations! This is enough to take it from the draft to final. Let’s make the raster layer transparent. This way it would be easier to see the final animation. Usually it is enough to have two layers to represent a character’s structure. A layer for the head and the body. However, if the body parts overlap each other often, you can divide the characters into three layers. So, the setup is: first layer is the head, the second one is the body and the limbs that are in front of the body. And the third layer is the limbs that are behind the body. It is needed only to have an ability to isolate them from each other. Let’s start with the head. Try to draw the character with simple shapes, or even separate strokes. Also, don’t create the lines sporadically, try to keep them in a logical sequence. For example, create the head’s shape first, then everything related to the eyes, then ears, then hairs. That will make your work much easier. In CACANi every stroke has its own index, so the actual order of the strokes is very important for the automatic inbetweening. After a part of the body is done, make it a group. We’ll draw the body with separate lines. Here the arm overlaps the body a little, don’t pay attention to that. Draw every body part individually. Split the arms and legs at the joints, it will come handy when you’ll be animating and creating arches. Now let’s move to the layer that has the limbs that are behind the body. Turn on the “Lighten Strokes in Inactive Layers” option, to make it easier to concentrate on the layer. When the first keyframe is ready, you can draw the next ones from scratch, however, as I said before, I prefer to reuse everything I can. So, I’ll copy all the strokes to the second keyframe and adapt them to the sketch. Besides saving the time, it also helps to keep the character’s mass and proportions the same. Let’s do the same for the rest of the keyframes. Now we can hide our draft and do the tweening. First we need to set up the arches at the first keyframe. All you need to do is to join the object in the same place on the neighboring keyframes and set the trajectory arch. Make sure that the “Maintain Bone Length” option is turned on. After that, join the object in another place, preferably from the opposite side, and the second arch will automatically be set up so the object wouldn’t lose its proportions during the interpolation. To display the other groups’ arches, press down the Ctrl key. If you click such an arch, it’ll be inherited for the selected group. That will allow you to quickly build the hierarchy across the groups. Now let’s convert the third frame into an inbetween… …and make sure that the timing is set up as linear… …and generate our first tween by double-clicking the frame. Hooray! Let’s just move the toe down to make it flap. Now let’s do the same for other inbetweens. If you need to make any adjustments – do it! Auto-inbetweening is a helper but not a replacement for a live animator! When all the inbetweens are done, it is necessary to verify that our animation. Make sure the movements are okay and fix the spacing if needed. Now let’s add a slight head shaking. Because the auto-generated strokes are being generated without groups, we need to select the frame where they are… …and propagate those groups to other frames using the Transfer Group Info command. Now it is much more convenient to select different body parts and transform them. Let’s also add an overlap to the hair. Adjust the hair’s ends so they would be closer to the previous frame. It needs to be done for the entire animation. Also, we can add a little bit of asynchronization to the hair movement, which will make it look more alive. Now let’s do some clean-up and colorization. Let’s highlight the main layer in order to avoid any confusion identifying which limbs are in front and which are behind. Let’s turn on the display of the color regions. All we need to do is to close the gaps using the Clean Up Tool… …and hide the unwanted segments using the Segment Tool. The clean-up will take some time, but it’s not really a complicated process. Almost done! Let’s paint our animation to give it the final look. After the first frame is done, we can paint the next one automatically. However, auto-painting will still need some manual adjustments if some of the regions were not painted. Let’s turn on the Show Stroke Widths option and adjust the Size parameter for all strokes in the multi-frame mode. Also, let’s use the Apply Stroke Tapering command for the character’s ear. Hooray, congratulations! The walk is done! For this occasion I drew a background so everything looked complete. This is a very basic walk. In fact, there’s a whole bunch of walks that ignore all these rules, but you have to know the rules in order to be able to break them. I hope this lesson was useful to you. That’s all, thanks for watching! Bye everyone!