Characters popping in different directions

I am animating with toon boom and things are going well. This forum is really helpful!

But I have another question, my cartoon characters keep separating when I preview my animation (when I hit preview movie). What do I need to do to keep my characters together and not have their heads, legs, arms, etc. popping off in different directions?


It sounds like you are assembling your work in camera view but using drawing view tools and not scene planning tools. You can use drawing tools in camera view to do touch ups and drawing adjustments but you need to use scene planning tools to actually set keyframed parameters.

The scene planning select tool (6) is used to position or scale entire elements for camera view and it is how you place things into camera view to set up a scene.

Once you have things initially set up in your scene then you do most of your keyframing using the scene planning transform tool (7) to deform or translate or articulate your elements. This will set keyframes.

Go back and look at your timeline and on your element tracks you should see black shaped indicators on some of the frames to indicate that a keyframe has been set, if you don’t have any of these showing it is a pretty good clue that you aren’t keyframing your work and that tells you that you are using the wrong tools in camera view.

Here is a tip to check if the tool you are using in camera view is a drawing tool and not a scene tool if you are unsure. Press the G key on your keyboard several times and if the grid will appear or disappear then you are using a drawing tool. Also if you will take a minute to check them out you will see that the selection box for the drawing select tool and the scene transform tool look similar but not exactly the same. The grab handles on the transform tool are considerably larger squares. The scene select tool has solid squares for its grab handles. Learn to recognize the tools by appearance and you won’t get too confused. -JK

Thank you for your help.

I tried it but it did not work.

The character I’m drawing is a cat, and when he moves his legs, head, and tail pop away from his body? I used only sceneplanning tools but my character still came apart.

Could using a peg hierarchy glue my character together? My characters are not in peg hierarchies but I am drawing in peg only mode.

If I need to use peg hierarchies, then how do I make them? I tried to make one earlier but all my drawings disappeared.

Lets check a few basics:
If you are building a character you should work in drawing view first and layout the character that way.

Be sure that if you have multiple cells (drawings) in a common element that they are all the same body part, that they are all scaled identically, and in general that they are all positioned and scaled the same in terms of how they are oriented to the other body parts of that same character. Your drawing view of the character with auto light table on should almost look exactly the same as the camera view version with the exception of there is no 3D space in drawing view.

All body parts of a character should be scaled to match all other body parts of that same character and this should be done in drawing view so you don’t have to adjust body parts to body parts scale wise or layout wise in camera view.

Then once you have your body parts laided out you can switch to camera view and create rotational pivot points and a peg hierarchy for animating. But if for example you have different scaled pieces of the same body part in the same element or you have different body parts scaled differently in drawing view, you are going to work yourself to death keyframing to fix that. You want to do most scaling of your character with the scene select tool and if you have multiple scaled body parts you are over complicating your life. You only want to scale your character as a whole unit for their use in a scene. Peg hierarchies are only important if you are wanting to articulate joints.

The only time you should ever draw in camera view is just for touch ups that usually are only visible to see and repair in camera view when trying to articulate joints etc. , TBS lets you draw in camera view, but camera view was not intended to be used that way except for touch ups. -JK


It works!