Transform Tool remembers Pivot/Anchor point when moved

i mentioned this in an early discussion when TBS3.5 came out, but just to reiterate:

TBS would be so much easier to animate in if the Transform Tool was a little more robust. The developers call it a temporary transform tool, but there is no reason why it doesn’t become the main way to transform and animate in TBS. The only thing that needs to be corrected on the tool, is the fact that currently when you move the pivot/anchor point on the tool ( ie move anchor point to the wrist of a “hand” drawing ), the tool doesn’t “remember” this new pivot point. so when you move to another keyframe further along the timeline, and select the hand layer, and click Transform, the pivot point has reset :frowning:
If this was corrected, it surely would be possible to animate smoothly between keyframes on a layer? Currently, you can animate like this ( the software even adds keyframes on your layer) but because the pivots keep resetting, correct tweening ( using a set pivot point )between keyframes is impossible. You can animated frame by frame, as long as you don’t mind finding and moving the pivot every single frame.

The developers insist that one should use the peg system rather, but Pegs should only really be necessary when you need to animate an object along a curved motion path.
It is cumbersome to have to add a Peg to every object on your timeline.

I will put my money where my mouth is, and say that correction of this feature alone would justify upgrading to a new version of TBS. Or not.

You can set the rotational pivot with the rotation tool or the skew tool and it will remain set for the entire scene. You can set the scale pivot with scale tool and it will remain set for the entire scene. The reason for having the pivot temporary on the transform tool is to allow you to move the pivot if required without changing the fixed position of the pivots that were set for the entire scene by the rotation or scale tools. This is a very important and flexible feature because otherwise if you had to move the rotational pivot point and it reset the fixed original position it would impact all rotations previously set by changing their reference point. So the temporary feature of the transform tool with respect to the pivot point is an important tool and flexible as it currently exists. Set your pivots first with the appropriate tools before you start keyframing and then the transform tool will use those pivot locations except if you need to move one without effecting the rest of the pivot references. -JK

After some reluctance towards using the transform tool, I recently started giving it a shot and have found it to work great for me. As JK says, I first move the pivot point with the Rotation Tool, then go about animating with it.

What I’ve been doing is simply animating a series 60-90 second lip-synch animations–a relatively easy task, but if the character doesn’t move it isn’t just boring, it’s unrealistic. So I’ve been using the Transform Tool to make changes to motion, rotation, and scale with the one tool, which places a keyframe automatically. I’ve found it really speeds up the work I’m doing, provided I remember to place the neutral keyframes at each end of a word or phrase to bring things back to detente. I think that’s the right word.

Give it a try. After trying this, I’m likely to see what other ways I can use it.

you’re right JK, the rotation/scale tool pivots are permanent, which is great. I think I’ve always been reluctant to use them because they only worked from within Pegs ( in TBS 3). this is much better.

now if only TBS could sort out the rotation circle getting bigger and bigger the further you move away from the “center” of the screen:( is that really necessary. I for one prefer to draw directly into the timeline and would be happy to see the drawing table ( and these sorts of idiosyncracies ) removed. ( yip, I’m a Flash guy )
But that’s another thread :slight_smile:

thanks again. I’ll follow Rob Campbell’s lead and give this another try.

last word on the subject of these tools for the developers and TBS 4: please add Set Constant segement/Set Non constant segment into the right click context menu on keyframes in the timeline. It makes sense that you would access and change these directly on the timeline as you work.


Concerning your last word, for the moment you can get the the Constant/Non-Constant keyframe on right click when you have a peg element. I have made the request for it to be available from the drawing element now. In the meantime you can always use the shortcut Cntrl+L to set to Constant and Cntrl+Shift+L to set to Non-Constant.

Best regards,


nice one Ugo. good to see that you guys are following these threads. my faith is renewed!

what are your thoughts on the rotation circle comment?
do you understand what i’m referring to…as you change the center point of you rotation pivot point, the rotation circle grows exponentially from the center of the screen( i presume it’s locking onto the center of the “invisible” drawing table.) Is there a good reason for this? I find myself drawing a small element in the top right of the scene planning layout and then moving the rotation pivot - by the time i get it to the top corner the rotation circle is HUGE. The only way to prevent this would be to draw everything in the center of the drawing table, which isn’t particularly intuitive, if ( like myself ) you find it more intuitive to build drawings/animations directly in scene planning mode.
maybe i should start another thread on this topic?


Concerning the rotation circle I understand the difficulty you are currently encountering. Though it is a little late at the moment to implement this feature for the next release. I will keep this one in note and we will see for future release.

For the moment the way it works is the the handle is always positioned at the middle of the drawing element (the center of the grid). The handle have a minimum size but when it get far enough it centers up in the middle of the grid. I am not quite sure how much time it would take to change this feature so might be somewhat dangerous to implement for the current version developed.

In any case keep posting your feature requests we do look at them and take them in consideration.

Best regards,


i’m surprised no one else has commented on it.
nevertheless, I look forward to seeing what you’ve got up your sleeve for v4.

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