Working With Pegs And Animated Elements

This new feature can simplify the entire character rigging process by simply making a hierarchy of elements without additional pegs.

Pegs and Animated Elements

In Toon Boom Studio V3.5, we have implemented the new concept of animated elements, which allows you to easily animate elements without having to attach them to a Peg element. This new feature can simplify the entire character rigging process by simply making a hierarchy of elements without additional pegs.
Click to watch demo

Toon Boom Studio also allows you to instantly manipulate bitmap images using the new Select tool from the sceneplanning tools. Combining this new feature with the peg system will allow you to have more flexibility and simplify your Timeline’s element hierarchy. The example shown employs one of the ways both of these features can simplify your workflow.

This project uses one peg and one animated element. We worked with multiple peg properties to optimize the work. One of these properties is the control point. You can create a control point by using the Motion tool and holding [Shift] while clicking on the motion path of a peg (when you do this, the cursor will assume a diamond shape). A control point is represented by a green dot on the peg’s motion path.


Compared to a keyframe, a motion path is not locked to a specific frame and can be moved anywhere on the motion path. Be aware that control points are not displayed in the Timeline so you will need to select the peg with the Motion tool to see them. You can also access multiple functions in the Motion Point tab that appear in the Properties window when you select a keyframe or a control point. For more information on motion points, refer to the reference section in the online help.

*Note that when you have a keyframe or a control point selected in the Camera View, you can hold down the [Alt] key and drag the point to change its depth in your scene. You can also easily change the timing of existing movement by holding down the [Shift] key and dragging the last keyframe of your peg in the Timeline. This will stretch the duration of the entire peg, repositioning all of its keyframes to keep the same animation properties.

We also used the Rotate tool on both the bat element and the peg’s motion path. By doing this, we were able to set a different speed for the tilting of the bat and the camera tilt. This gives a more natural look to your camera movement. Rather than fit the movement of your element exactly, it traces the bat’s movement as if it was trying to keep up. We specifically chose the Rotate tool instead of the Transform tool so the rotation will not interfere with the motion; if we have to make some adjustments to the motion path, the keyframe that is created will have a fixed rotation but won’t be locked at that position.

There are tons of possibilities available using pegs and animated elements. Simply remember that the animated element is a good way to do some simple animation with a cleaner timeline, and the peg allows for more complex animation due to the addition of the motion path and the ability to group elements without necessarily having a drawing as a parent.

Downloads: Sample Material (ZIP)