Maya animation provides you with the powerful tools you need to bring the characters and objects in your scenes to life. These tools give you the freedom to animate any attribute of an object and the control you need to successfully transform joints and bones, IK handles, and models over time.
Start with the Animation Basics section for information on the various animation techniques in Maya, how to use the different types of animation, and how to preview, playback, and save your animations.
An introduction to the various animation techniques in Maya.
Topics in this section provide information on the various animation techniques in Maya, how to use the different types of animation, and how to preview, playback, and save your animations.
You’ll find sections that focus on the following types of animation:
- Keyframe animationlets you transform objects or skeletons over time by setting keyframes. For example, you can keyframe the joints and IK handles of a character’s arm to create an animation of its arm waving. For more information, see Keyframe Animation.
- Driven key animationlets you link and drive the attributes of one object with those of another object by setting driven keys. For example, you can key a character’s X and Z translations as Driver attributes and a door model’s Y rotation as the Driven attribute to create an animation of a character and a swinging door. For more information, see Driven keys.
- Nonlinear animationlets you split, duplicate, and blend animation clips to achieve the motion effects that you want. For example, you can use nonlinear animation to create a looping walk cycle for one of your characters. For more information, see Nonlinear Animation.
- Path animationlets you set a curve as an animation path for an object. When you attach an object to a motion path, it follows the curve during its animation. For example, when you assign a car model to a motion path that follows a road in your scene, the car follows the road when you play the animation. For more information, see Path Animation.
- Motion capture animationlets you use imported motion capture data to apply realistic motion to the characters in your scene. For example, you can use the captured motion of a horse to animate the skeleton of a quadruped model. For more information, see Motion Capture Animation.
- Layered animationlets you create and blend animation on separate layers. You can modify an animation sequence on layers without permanently altering the original, or simply organize your keyframe animation onto layers.
- Dynamic animationlets you create realistic motion using the rules of physics to simulate natural forces. For example, you can use Maya® Dynamics™ to create effects such as sparks spraying from a welding torch or hail falling from the sky.
- Expressionsare instructions that you can type to animate attributes. For example, you can write an expression formula that animates the flapping of a bird’s wings. For more information,