Animating Organic Movement


Hey everyone, just through curiosity, how do you guys animate fluid organic movement. When I say fluid/organic, I mean somewhat realistic such as text flapping back and forth, jello-like text, bouncing a ball, etc.

Originally, I would just manually keyframe everything and mess with the Graph Editor to get a non-linear movement but I was wondering if there was an easier way, perhaps some tips from you pros out there that are selling some projects with these :slight_smile: Are there some cool expressions out there that makes it a little easier? Plugins, scripts, etc?



Usually I do like you mentioned, through Graph editor. But sometimes I’m playing with this stuff:


I’d use keyframes… apart from the fact that this is half the fun of motion graphics, I think that to animate things with keyframes also brings your personal stamp to it.

Cool though dynamics and so on is (and it’s a must for lots of objects interacting together), I do get a bit bored of the way that it looks.

The key to getting good at it? Become a movement addict. Observe movement wherever you go. Even film it and analyse it if you want to. Then break it down into keyframes and make your own version.

This is a very important step. Take many of the files on VH, for instance that have a “hand held” camera that looks like the author had never seen hand held footage, or at least never analysed it. A trained eye can spot default digital noise / wiggle a mile off and I suspect most lay-people will notice something’s a bit fishy too.

Study movement. It’s fun.


felt_tips said

I’d use keyframes… apart from the fact that this is half the fun of motion graphics, I think that to animate things with keyframes also brings your personal stamp to it.


Hell yeah! Agree 100%


I think combining keyframing, slider-controled wiggles and Ease&Wizz, particularly if you have restrictions in time and budget, is a good option. I agree with felt that using something like E&W does take away from the satisfaction of producing a nice piece of animation work, but if it’s used sparingly as an extension of, rather than used solely as, you can get some good organic movement. If you can afford the time to dedicate to keyframing only, definitely go for that though. It might also be worth importing footage with animation from say a film you like and trying to mimic it, it does help with understanding physics and movemennt…


I like to use expressions for stuff like bounce effects. You should really take a look at by Dan Ebberts. It has wide variety of cool expressions for dynamic movement and stuff.


^ Check out Ben’s vimeo account, there is tutorial for bounce effect. Its good to check it and understand how things works, and how to make bouce effect without scripts, expressions… only with keyframes.


Also check “The illusion of life” an amazing book by Frank and Ollie Johnston, definitely one of my favourite books on animation


We have great infos in this topic for “Essential Resources for Authors” :slight_smile:

We definitely need one more page in wiki! Please Mark :slight_smile:


Wow, thank you guys so much for all the tips! It’s nice to know I’m not the only one using manual keyframes :wink:

I’m checking out all the links/videos now!


I talked about this

dorde said

I talked about this

Yeah, I know how to do it manually with keyframes and the graph editor, I just wanted to know some extra tips or expressions :wink: Thanks for the link, I watched the video and it’s very informative! Thanks Felt!

By the way, that Ease and Wizz script looks amazing! I’m going to purchase it.


Yea Ease and Wizz is awesome! But if you want organic i think best way is to use expressions… Sit down, break down the physics and turn that into code! I love doing that it is super fun. :slight_smile: