Keyframe shape control points

You can keyframe the control points of a shape. When you do so, the changes are recorded to the Shape Animation parameter, visible in the Keyframe Editor. Keyframes added to the animation parameter affect all the shape’s control points simultaneously.

Keyframe Editor showing Shape Animation parameter
Canvas showing series of corresponding keyframed shape changes

The process used to animate both masks and shapes is identical. To see an example of mask animation, see Rotoscope a mask’s shape. For more information on keyframing in general, see Keyframing overview.

Keyframe a shape’s control points

  1. In the Layers list, Canvas, or Timeline, select a shape.

  2. Click and hold the 2D transform tools pop-up menu in the toolbar, then choose the Edit Points tool.

    Selecting the Edit Points tool from the 2D transform tools pop-up menu

    The selected shape’s control points appear in the Canvas.

    Canvas showing shape in starting position
  3. Click the Record button in the transport controls under the Canvas (or press A) to turn on keyframe recording.

    Record button in Canvas window transport controls
  4. Move the playhead to the frame where you want to change the shape, then make any necessary changes to the shape’s control points by dragging them in the Canvas or by adjusting the Control Points controls in the Geometry pane of the Shape Inspector.

    Canvas showing shape animated into new position

    In the Keyframe Editor (press Command-8 to open it), a keyframe appears for each adjustment you make at a new frame.

    Keyframe Editor showing new keyframe added at playhead position

    Note: Adjusting a shape while the playhead is on an existing keyframe adjusts the shape at that keyframe.

  5. Continue advancing frames and making changes.

    Every time you make a change to the shape at a new frame, you create a keyframe in that shape’s animation channel.

  6. When you’re done animating the shape, click the Record button in the transport controls to turn off keyframe recording.

    The animated shape object interpolates between each keyframed shape. If you don’t like how the interpolation is working, you can add more keyframes to force the control points to follow the path you want.

    Canvas showing shape interpolated between two keyframes

In the Keyframe Editor, you can also create, delete, and edit the timing of keyframes in the shape’s animation parameter. For simplicity, each change you make to a shape is recorded as a single keyframe, no matter how many control points are edited. The shape’s animation parameter allows only keyframes set to linear interpolation. You cannot use any other form of keyframe interpolation.