Week 4 – Animating

124B 2013 Summer

Course 124B
Date 2013/07/10
Learning Objectives In this session we will present animation techniques as a way to explore the phenomenological qualities of architectural space. We will present a survey of animation software and techniques, and an introduction to animation in Rhino. We will introduce the plugin Bongo as a tool to animate objects, time and cameras.

[[Has agenda::*Introduction to Animation

  • Basic Camera Animation
  • Introduction to Bongo
    • Time Controls / Camera
    • Timeline
    • Key Frames
    • Animate Lights
    • Time Animation
    • Animate Objects
Uses Tool(s) Rhinoceros , [[Tool: Bongo|]]

Introduction to Bongo

1.png Plugin for Rhino that allows: -Object motion, rotation, and scaling using keyframing. - Object property keyframing – object color, visibility, gloss. -Constrain objects and views to multiple paths and other objects. - Viewport keyframing. -Light keyframing.

Bongo Timeline

2.png Using the controls on the timeline you can:

  • Animate object movement, rotation, and scaling.
  • Drive the animation using the timeline slider.
  • Move and copy object and view keyframes.
  • Control the animation preview.

Timeline Slider Moving the timeline slider changes the current time in the animation. The text on the slider displays the current tick number.

Timeline Ticks In Bongo, time is measured in ticks. The vertical marks represent each tick in the current animation. The blue current tick indicator points to the current tick. Insert Ticks Delete Ticks Animation Limits

Animation Limits The blue bar and end markers show the animation limits - the tick where the animation starts and stops.


Keyframe Markers The keyframe markers indicate the location in time of recorded keyframes. Keyframe markers are color coded. 4.png

  • Red – Objects
  • Yellow – View
  • Green – Document
  • Dark Blue – Layer
  • Light Blue - Light

Bongo Animation Manager

The Animation Manager lists all animated objects, views, layers, and render content in one place. You can use it to select animated objects in the model, modify the animation properties for those objects and create "Object hierarchies“.


The Animation Manager displays the parent/child relationships between objects on the hierarchy tree. When an object is the child of another object, in addition to its own transformations, the object is also transformed by the transformations applied to its parent.

  • Parent/Child Relationships When a parent/child relationship is in force between two objects, the objects are linked in the Rhinoceros viewports by a dotted line.
    • Add Relationship:
      • Right Click on Timeline
      • Add Keyframe: Selected Objects: Empty
      • Drag into Parent Layer
      • Group and Join


Keyframe Editor

The Keyframe Editor allows setting and changing every possible parameter stored in a keyframe. The settings displayed depend on the type of entity being animated. 8.png

  • Keyframe Editor Properties:
    • Allows setting and changing every possible parameter stored in every frame.
    • Select one or multiple objects.
    • Object transformations: morphing, position, rotate, scale.
    • Weight
    • Tweening: Modifying in-between frames. Only available to certain transformations
    • Curve Editor: Modify Individually In-between transformations.


Bongo Animation

Animate Button – Activates Animation mode.


The Bongo pivot - Objects with animation enabled display a Bongo pivot. The pivot is the location around which animated objects rotate and scale.

  • Move Pivot
  • Rotate Pivot

Four Main Object Transformations, Camera Transformations and Object Properties Transformations are possible

  • Object Transformations:
    • Move
    • Rotate
    • Scale
    • Morph
  • Object Property Transformations:
    • Change Material
    • Change Color
    • Change Visibility
    • Change Layer Visibility
  • Camera Transformations:
    • Zoom
    • Pan
    • Constrain Camera to Path
    • Constrain Camera to Objects

View Animations

Cameras can be animated on a single or multiple viewports.

  • Double click on views to activate view animation.
  • Once activated:
    • Rectangle at center
    • Current tick number
  • Right Click on view: Show animation path / pivots
  • Move animation slider.
  • Zoom or Pan Naturally
  • Use ZS command to zoom in with more control
  • Animating Named Views:
    • Save a Named View
    • Move Around
      • Save a new View
    • Named View Animation Wizard
    • Create a new animation set
    • Move Frames


Bongo Object Constraints: Common uses for constraints include:

  • Moving a car along a path and keeping the car facing in the direction it is moving (a look-along constraint).
  • Forcing a view to look at a specific object in the scene (a look-at constraint).
  • Creating a walk-through animation (a look-along constraint).
  • Animating the view from within an object (constrain camera location to object).


  • Creating Object Constraints:
    • Simple Constraints: Objects constrained to paths or objects.
    • Select Object / Properties / Bongo

Types of Constraints:

  • Look Along Z Up: The object will move along the path curve tangent to the curve, while keeping the object's z-axis pointed up (the world z-direction) as much as possible.
  • Look Along Curve Normal: The object will move along the path curve while keeping the object's constraint heading parallel to the curve tangent.
  • Look At: The object's constraint heading to face another object's pivot. Multiple constraints can be used.
  • To Path: The To Path constraint forces the object along a curve without changing its orientation.
  • Object to Pivot: The object's pivot moves to the pivot of a target object.

* Assignment