Match move an object

The Match Move behavior applies the movement data of a source object to a destination object.

To use a Match Move behavior, you need at least two objects in your project: a background or source object and a foreground or destination object. The source object provides movement data based on a tracking analysis of its video or its animation attributes (keyframes or behaviors applied to a shape, for example). The movement from the source object is then applied to the destination object. The destination object can be a shape, text, a particle emitter, and so on.

For a full description of Match Move parameters, see Match Move controls.

Match move a foreground object to a background clip

In this typical workflow, the Match Move behavior tracks an element of a background video clip and then applies the resulting track data to a foreground element. As a result, the foreground element matches the movement of the tracked element in the background clip.

  1. Create a Motion project containing a video clip and a shape or image object.

    The video clip becomes the background element. The shape or image object serves as the foreground element.

  2. Play the background clip several times to determine a good, clearly defined track analysis point.

    Note: The analysis of the Match Move behavior begins at the current playhead position. To define a tracking region, see Define a range of frames for analysis.

  3. Select the foreground object, click the Add Behavior pop-up menu in the toolbar, then choose Motion Tracking > Match Move.

    Important: When applying the Match Move behavior to a group, make sure the footage being analyzed resides outside of the group being tracked.

    A single onscreen tracker (a red crosshair in a circle) is added to the Canvas. Because the default Match Move tracker records position data, it’s known as an anchor tracker. (In the Behaviors Inspector, you can deactivate this tracker by deselecting the Anchor checkbox.)

  4. Determine if you need to activate additional trackers for two-point or four-point tracking.

    • Two-point tracking: Analyzes and records position, rotation, and scale data using two trackers. To turn on two-point tracking, select the Rotation-Scale checkbox in the Behaviors Inspector (under the Anchor checkbox). When you do so, an additional tracker appears in the Canvas. For more information, see About two-point tracking.

    • Four-point tracking: Analyzes and records position rotation, and scale data using four trackers. Use this option to track the corners of a picture frame, television screen, or other rectangular element. To turn on four-point tracking, click the Type pop-up menu in the Behaviors Inspector, choose Four Corners, then proceed to Corner pin a foreground object.

  5. Move the playhead to the frame where you want the track analysis to begin.

    Note: You can specify a portion of a clip to be analyzed. For more information, see Define a range of frames for analysis.

  6. In the Canvas, drag the tracker (or trackers) to the reference area (or areas) you want to track.

    As you drag the tracker in the Canvas, the region around the tracker becomes magnified to help you find a suitable reference pattern.

    Canvas showing magnified area that appears when dragging track point
  7. Click the Analyze button in the HUD or Behaviors Inspector.

    The behavior analyzes the movement of the reference pattern, and then matches the movement of the foreground object to it.

Match move using animation data from keyframes or behaviors

Because objects animated with keyframes or by behaviors already contain motion data, you can instantly apply that data to a destination object via the Match Move behavior (without having to perform a tracking analysis). The following simple example uses a magic wand image (made up of a rectangle shape) animated using the Spin behavior. The animation of the wand is applied to a particle emitter to create the illusion of sparkles flying off the tip of the spinning wand.

  1. With the destination object selected, click the Add Behavior pop-up menu in the toolbar, then choose Motion Tracking > Match Move.

    In this example, a Match Move behavior is applied to a nonanimated particle emitter.

    Layers list showing Match Move behavior applied to particle emitter

    If the animated object is below the Match Move behavior in the Layers list, its animation data is automatically loaded into the Source well in the Inspector and HUD. If you don’t see the animated object in the Source well, drag the animated object from the Layers list into the Source well. In this example, the spinning Magic Wand Shape is the source animation.

    Inspector showing Match Move behavior settings
  2. In the Canvas, drag the destination object (the object to which you applied the Match Move behavior—in this case, the particle emitter) to the location you want.

    In this example, the particle emitter is positioned at the tip of the wand. The motion path inherited from the source object appears in the Canvas, attached to the destination object.

    Canvas showing object at its starting point

    As a result, the particle emitter and the wand now share the same animation path.

  3. Play the project (press the Space bar).

    The particles match the movement of the wand.

    Canvas showing two objects moving together

Reorder Match Move behaviors in the Layers list

When you add a Match Move behavior to a project, the closest active footage or animated object in the Layers list below the behavior is automatically applied as the source animation. This source of animation appears in the Source well in the Behaviors Inspector. When you move Match Move behaviors in the Layers list, that data is reset. To retain the source animation data, rather than dragging to reorder layers, copy the Match Move behavior and paste it to another object.

  1. Select the behavior to copy in the Layers list.

  2. Choose Edit > Copy (Command-C).

  3. Select the layer to apply the copied behavior to.

  4. Choose Edit > Paste (Command-V).

    The copied behavior is applied to another object.

    Note: You can also Option-drag the behavior in the Layers list to copy and paste it to a different object.