Character with multiple bodyparts: ugly overlaps in the shadow

Hi, Animate 3 here.

Ok, so what I wanna do:

I have a Character walking.
He consists of multiple Bodyparts (Legs,Upper body, Arms, Head, etc), each in it’s own Peg and those Pegs together in the Character Peg.

Now I want to have a simple shadow on the floor for that character.

So what I do is this:
I duplicate the whole character Peg(with all it’s sub-pegs) and drop it into a shadow effect layer.

Now I have the whole character as a shadow, BUT wherever some bodypart is overlaping another (f.e. an arm overlaps the upper body) this area is darker then the rest, and it looks really ugly.

So how can I create a shadow for a character?

Any help is highly welcome!!

I’m pretty sure you need to add a quadmap to create a shadow in Animate? Duplicating the character peg only works in Animate Pro because you’re able to use the network view to connect your layers to a composite module (which ‘flattens’ the layers into one shape with no overlaps), then you add the shadow effect to the composite module.

For simple floor shadows i find it easier to just create this by hand as it’s own layer and either morph some shapes together as necessary or just stretch, compress and slightly reshape the image to fit any movement. A basic under foot shadow is pretty much a blob at standard eye level.

If you are doing a shadow that needs to be more defined, like stretches out up against a distant wall as a more exaggerated effect, then a different approach is needed for sure.

Sounds like you perhaps have some transparency assigned to the Shadow ? for it to be darker where body parts overlap, or try editing the alpha channel maybe and see if that makes a difference?

I don’t think adjusting the transparency will get the desired effect for a shadow. You want the shadow to be transparent and be able to see the ground underneath, that’s what makes it effective and realistic. The problem here is that the shadow effect is being applied to each layer in the peg individually, not the character as a whole. That’s why you need to flatten all the layers into one and then apply the shadow effect. My understanding is that’s what the quadmap module does, makes the program see the character as a shape rather than individual arms, legs, torso, head. Adding a composite module to a character in Animate Pro has the same effect. Flattens all body parts into one shape so there are no overlapping shadows.