Offset an Animation Cycle in Blender

Posted by Lee on January 18th, 2015 | Comments (27)

Recently I was working on animation for a freelance project and had created some walk cycles for the characters where they moved forward in space as they took steps (rather than on the spot and moving the character later). It had been a while since I had needed to repeat this type of cycle and also wanted to have some ability to modify, layer on top of the base animation, and also completely edit any part of the animation if I wanted later.

So in this tutorial I’ll share with you some of the outcomes of fiddling with the NLA and being able to have some nice non-slipping walk cycles, with the ability to add more motion onto it per shot!

Download Blend File for this tutorial.

Character from BlendSwap




Also check out a vlog video made that goes over the general scene creation in more detail!



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  • Sakthi Ganesh

    Great tutorial mate thanks a lot . Do more please

    • Lee Salvemini

      Thanks Sakthi! I’m definitely keen to add more tutorials on various subjects that have been interesting me :D -Lee

  • Michael

    Great tutorial,
    Could you please do a tutorial on making a walk cycle.
    It does not have to be super in depth tutorial but could just give the basics for making a walk cycle.

    • Lee Salvemini

      Thanks! I would be absolutely keen to share walk/run cycle techniques, they are so helpful in projects! I’ll have to grab that from my todo list soon :) -Lee

      • Michael

        thanks so much, I look forward to it

  • Warren D. M. Reed

    very interesting and useful, I’ve been wondering about a nice clean way to achieve this. thanks a lot for sharing!

    • Lee Salvemini

      Great to hear it was helpful Warren! Happy Blending! -Lee

  • David McDermott

    The Listener video was fantastic. How long did the production take. Were you working on your own? Great tutorial too. thanks.

    • Lee Salvemini

      Hi David! I’ve been loving how the listener videos have been coming out, there’s been a few of them now. Since I work full-time at a studio I was fairly much part time freelance for a few weeks. The other two guys on the project this time were Nathan, who is an old Blender community friend in Texas, and an animator he knows out his way. One big upside was taking what we knew from the previous videos, some of the assets, troubleshooting and rendering was already prepared quite a bit, which allowed this production to go very smoothly over about 2 months (though still had its challenging times)! Thanks again and glad you liked this tutorial!! -Lee

  • ShoePie

    Brilliant tutorial! I can’t wait to try it out. Thanks!

  • peter

    I just wonder how to make the cloth animate like that.

    • Lee Salvemini

      I have been working on vlog type short videos to go over extra details or reply to comments on our youtube channel. I hope soon to do one on the scene setup for this tutorial, at which time I will also add it to this tutorial page! Hopefully that can go over a bit of the info on how i did the cloth etc. Cheers! -Lee

  • Rodger Davis

    How about character rotations? An example would be running in circles. It would be difficult but I would like to know how.

    • Lee Salvemini

      That’s an extremely good question! I know in the past I have worked on situations like this (in both Blender and MotionBuilder which I use at work. I will be keen to check the setup in Blender with this type of motion, and possibly could make even a small mini-tutorial to expand on this :) Thanks again and I will be keen to find a solution for you asap! -Lee

      • Rodger Davis

        Thank you for helping! I tried to do something similar but blending was off. I was using the root bone for stepped motion forward while walking. Do you think animating with a stationary run cycle would be best in this case? I could possibly send the file I was working on trying to get the hang of rotations. I’ll also send a link of the video once I am able to. The rig was based on a maya starter rig but was recreated by a guy from blendswap.

      • Rodger Davis

        I tried testing it a couple of weeks ago but this is a dirty way I was able to do it.

  • mohamed aziz ben abd

    i can’t download the final blend file even from youtube (rar file is endomaged) pleeeeaaaaase help me!!!

  • mohamed aziz ben abd

    thank you very much mr lee

    • Lee Salvemini

      Glad it all worked! Many thanks and happy Blending :) -Lee

  • Alex Serban

    How come my character appears as pink when I first open it?

    • Lee Salvemini

      Hi Alex!

      The textures are contained in the zip in a subfolder, so if you open a blend file straight from the zip-program window, it won’t know where to find the textures and show up as pink shading. Try unzipping somewhere and the files should open correctly! Hope you find some useful info at all in the tut and files :) -Lee

  • Ian

    bit of an unrelated question, what is the music?

    • Lee Salvemini

      Hi Ian, yeah the music was really cool and I had fun putting the shots to it :) Song is called ‘Redemption’ by Pater Alan James! -Lee

  • mohamed aziz ben abd

    can someone tell me why i cant download this project final blend. plz mr lee plz can u help me plz . i can download the vlog 1 blend but i cant for the final blend (rar endomaged ) can u reupload the final blend here in cg plz

  • issam laoumri

    Hi texture for sword please…

  • issam laoumri

    thank you, you are the best !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Lee Salvemini

      Thanks so much, glad you liked the tutorial!! -Lee