5 Replies Latest reply on Nov 3, 2011 6:13 PM by chris georgenes

    How Do I Add More Than One Bone to A Symbol?

    Comp. 792 Level 1





      Hi, I am having problems with the bones. I can't seem to add more than one bone to a "Symbol" but I need to. For example I have the "body" symbol and I need to start the bone at the neck and then drag it to the waist/hip area, but when I drag the bone from the neck area to the waist it won't let me attach the boneto the waist hip area of the same symbol. Why is this? I've seen this done in a tutorial but I don't know how to do it.


      How can I rig the character in the image so the legs are attached to a wiast or hip area?


      1st bone - Start a bone at the head, then drag to the neck.

      2nd bone - Drag the bone from the neck to the waist.

      3rd bone - From the waist to the hip.

      4th bone - From the hips to the legs.

        • 1. Re: How Do I Add More Than One Bone to A Symbol?
          chris georgenes Level 2

          To add a bone to an existing armature, create a new layer - draw your new body part and convert it to a symbol. Drag a new bone to it and Flash will automatically add it to the armature and the IK layer.

          If your character is comprised of symbols, then you can't have a bone connect to the same symbol - it must connect to a different symbol. What you saw previously was somebody applying a bone armature to a shape - you can apply an armature to a single shape but not the instance of a symbol.

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          • 2. Re: How Do I Add More Than One Bone to A Symbol?
            Comp. 792 Level 1

            Thanks Chris, So I am confused. I am using bitmap images so I need to convert them to Symbols to add bones. So how can I add a bone near the hip bone in my diagram so the legs aren't rotating around the neck bone?


            So in my diagram the green part is the "body" and the head needs to attach to the top of the body. Then if I eliminate the hip bones and drag a bone from the neck down to the tops of the legs the legs don't pivot properly, but pivot around the neck bone. So how can I fix this?


            Can you please draw a diagram for me and post it so I can see how to do this?

            • 3. Re: How Do I Add More Than One Bone to A Symbol?
              chris georgenes Level 2

              This is a pretty complicated issue. Bones in Flash is cool but for use with an entire character I tend to avoid it and use it selectively: For arms and legs. That said, if you must build a single armature for an entire character, keep in mind the parent bone is pretty much locked to its position on the stage by default. You can enable X and Y translation for this bone but it's very sluggish when moved around, and when you pin a child bone, the X and Y translation gets locked again for no reason. It's either a bug or just something the IK engine didn't account for.


              One thing worth trying is, adding a "dummy" symbol to the end of each limb. I do this by creating a bright red circle (small) and converting it to a symbol. Place it just beyond the hands and feet of each limb. Use the Bone tool to link to this "dummy" symbol. It adds an extra bone to each of your limbs which is required if you want to limit the articulation of the hands and feet.


              As for the entire armature for a single character technique goes, I may have to do a real video tutorial on this one soon.

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              • 4. Re: How Do I Add More Than One Bone to A Symbol?
                Comp. 792 Level 1

                Chris, Hi, thanks for that. I understand what you meant by adding a "dummy" symbol but doesn't the red circle show up in the animation then. What a bout using a transparent .png for that?


                I have a related question. I animated a simple hockey player character, but the character is in a separate flash file and I need to make the character skate around a rink. Question: Can I just save the character as a movie clip and then import the movie clip into the other file and animate the movie clip? I currently have all of my symbols on the stage with the bones. How do I turn the animated character into a "Movie Clip"?

                • 5. Re: How Do I Add More Than One Bone to A Symbol?
                  chris georgenes Level 2

                  Sorry, I forgot to mention how to remove the red circle. Double click the symbol to edit it and then convert the layer to a Guide layer. That way it won't be included in the exported file and when you need it again just convert the layer back to Normal.

                  As for copying your animation to a symbol - select the range of frames and layers by dragging across them - right click over them and select COPY FRAMES. Create a new symbol using the drop down menu in the Library panel. Right-click over frame 1 of the new symbol and select PASTE FRAMES from the context menu.

                  Go back to the main timeline and delete your original layers. On a new layerm drag your new symbol to the stage.

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