How to Create a 2D Character Walking | Blender Grease Pencil Tutorial

Welcome to animate a 2d character Walking in blender where we'll learn how To animate this simple cartoon character Hi I'm Jonathan lam a digital artist With touch plus and in this course we'll Take you through step by step on how to Create a looping walk animation using Just a few frames we'll learn how to do This all from scratch but if you're Looking for something that's a little Bit more ready-made go ahead and check Out the envato elements website here you Can get unlimited downloads of video Templates stock video audio tracks Effects and more that's millions of Creative assets all ready to use and With simple commercial licensing plus no Locking contract means that you can Cancel at any time subscribe now with The link in the description Also don't forget to subscribe to the Envato touch plus YouTube channel for Even more free tutorials and courses Now you can see here that we have a set Of four rough sketches to block out the Shape of our character and these Represent the four frames of Animation That we'll be using to create our Walking animation now drawing these Frames for a walking animation is Generally quite simple firstly it Consists of two extreme poses Which is the first one and the third one Now if I go ahead and zoom in to the

First one here so we can go ahead and Analyze it this is where the character Is in midstep with both feet making Contact with the ground here we have the Leg closest to us which is the right leg Stretched out in front of the character With the other leg placed behind the Character the arms are also at the end Point of their swing and usually Swinging opposite to the legs so meaning That the right arm here is swing behind The character whereas the right leg is In front So let's go ahead and look at the second Extreme pose here which is the third Frame of animation and here we have Exactly the same pose as the first Except this time we switch the legs and The arms around so now the right leg is Behind the character and the right arm Is in front of the character Now once you've got these two poses made Up And drawn out all you have to do is draw Out the second and the fourth frames That will go in between these two Extreme poses and if we combine all four Of these together we'll make a whole Walking animation Now let's go ahead and analyze these in Between frames here the second and the Fourth frame so I'm just going to zoom In to our second frame here and here we Have the foot placed firmly on the floor

In the middle of the character so this Is the right foot which will give the Appearance of the leg sliding back from Where it was stretched out in front and Sliding back to the middle of the Character when it's animated the other Leg which is the left leg will also be In the middle of the character but this One will be raised up as a bent leg Giving the appearance of the leg Traveling and swing forwards the arms Are also placed in the middle of the Character by the side and the arm swing Should be following the direction of Travel so be mindful of placing them Either too far in front or behind the Character Now if we go ahead and zoom in to our Other in between frame which is our Fourth frame here you can see that it's Exactly the same but again with the legs And the arms reversed and then once we Put all of these frames together in Order we'll hopefully get a walking Animation now one thing to note is that If I go ahead and draw a straight line That is above our character on our two Extreme poses which is the first frame And the third frame you'll notice that The character is slightly higher on our Two extreme poses which is the second And the fourth frame now in most cases People do not stay the same height as They walk they bob up and down as one

Leg passes the other so we want to Reflect this in our animation as well Once you have your full frame sketches It would be a good idea to preview the Animation before taking it into blender So let's go ahead and do that quickly in Photoshop right now so make sure all Your frames are in order in the same Document as layers so you can see we've Got the first frame here followed by the Second frame the third frame and then The fourth frame then once you've done That we want to go to window And then we want to go ahead and find Timeline in the selection there now from There what we want to do is we want to Hide all of the layers apart from our First frame And then we want to click on the create Frame animation Button which is over here and that will Create our first frame we want to set The time here to 0.2 seconds and then we Want to click on the add frame button at The bottom here And once we've done that Hide our first frame And then unhide our second frame Click on the add frame button again and Then we're going to repeat the process Hide the second frame unhide the third Frame and then we're going to do the Same for our final frame of Animation Which is the fourth frame so hide our

Third frame and unhide our fourth then We can go ahead and click on the play Preview button here to see what our Animation looks like Once you're ready let's go ahead and get Started in blender From here go to file New and we want to select 2D animation To create a new 2D animation project That we can work from this will Automatically generate a new grease Pencil object here that we can use to Create our 2D Strokes so first of all Let's go ahead and zoom out using the Mouse wheel so that we can see the whole Canvas and from there we want to go to Object mode And then we want to click on ADD Image and select reference and then we Just want to navigate to your reference Images and import it into the project One by one so simply navigate to where Your reference images are select them And then click on load reference image And then they should appear in your Collection over here Once they're all in I just like to Rename them to keep things nice and tidy So you can see I've numbered them Reference image one two three and four And then once they're all in I'm going To click and hold the middle Mouse Button or the scroll wheel and then We're going to move it to navigate the

Viewport in 3D space Then what I like to do is I want to Select all of these reference images by Clicking our Mouse button and holding The shift key like so And then using the move tool here I'm Going to go ahead and move all of these Reference images Back slightly Like so And this is so that the grease pencil When we go ahead and draw in 2D mode Doesn't overlap with our reference Images now if you want you can also go Into the object data properties panel Which is located down here And then we can click on the opacity Checkbox And then we can also go ahead and adjust The opacity of these images like so You can go ahead and make it 0.5 so that They're a little bit more faded into the Background and then once you're done Simply go ahead and click onto the Camera icon on the right here to return To our original camera view Now we want to go ahead and hide all of Our reference images here by clicking on The eye icon here apart from the first Reference image And then once we've done that select Your grease pencil tool which is located Down here so it's renamed it's named Stroke so let's go ahead and rename this

Character Like that And then we wanted to go into draw mode So go back to draw mode here and then we Wanted to click on the draw tool which Is this pen icon here now we're just Going to adjust some of the properties Of the pen tool so that our stroke looks And feels a lot nicer to use so the First thing that we're going to do is go Up into this pen icon here and we're Going to go ahead and select the ink pen And this will allow some pen pressure to Vary the line thickness however if You're not using a tablet you can go Ahead and choose something else like the Pen So let's go ahead and use this ink pen Here Still at the top let's go ahead and Navigate over to stroke And when we click on this we want to Increase the smoothness here to two Increase the iterations here to three And then we want to increase the Subdivision steps to three here as well Now once we've done that let's go ahead And create some materials for us to use So go over to the material tab which is Down here and you'll see that we've got Some default materials here to use but We want to create our own so let's go Ahead and click on the add material Button here

And then click on new Now we want to select both the stroke And the fill And this will sort of auto fill any sort Of shape that you create with the pen Tool with the color of your choice And if you don't quite understand that You'll see what I mean when we start Drawing our character and using this Material so let's keep things nice and Simple so we want to use a black stroke So this will be the line and for our Fill we're going to use a white color Like that And you'll see when I start to draw A white fill will appear inside whatever Shape that we create so we'll Automatically fill it up So let's go ahead and rename this Material by double clicking on that and We're going to rename that Character material Like that And then if you have multiple materials You can go ahead at the top here and Select them Quite easily like so Let's go ahead and select our character Material And then we'll use it to trace over our Sketch here now to do that first let's Go ahead and select the layers that We're going to use in our grease pencil Now the default grease pencil comes with

Two layers so one which is called lines And one which is called fills we're just Going to go ahead and rename those so The first one on top here is going to be Called Head And then the second one below that is Going to be called body just double Clicking on those layers so that we can Go ahead and rename them Now with the head layer selected we're Going to go ahead and use this circle Shape tool here making sure that our Character matte is selected and we're Going to use that to go ahead and draw Out the shape of our character now you Can see here that the line of our Material is a little bit too thick for Me so let's go ahead and undo that by Pressing Ctrl Z and we're going to make The radius of our line something more Like let's say 20 and see what that Looks like So let's go ahead and draw that out now And that looks much better cool and then Once you're happy with the shape go Ahead and hit the enter key to confirm That shape And then using the the object mode here I'm going to go ahead and place this Above our head here because it wasn't Quite in the right area and I'm going to Rotate it slightly Like so so let's go ahead and move that Back into position

And you can also scale this up a little Bit as well Cool and then once you're happy with That let's go back in to draw mode I'm Going to click on the jaw tool here and Then I'm going to draw out the eye now The next thing we want to do is we want To trace over the body so going back to Our layers here let's go ahead and Select the body layer and then using our Pen tool or our draw tool let's go ahead And draw out the body Now I'm not quite happy with the Size of our stroke here so let's go Ahead and increase the radius here to Something like 40. And then let's go ahead and draw this Out again And that's much better that go that uh Matches the stroke size of our head now You'll notice here that the body is Automatically placed behind the head and That's because our head layer Is above our body there so make sure That the order of your layers is correct And now before we go ahead and draw out Our arms and our legs let's animate the Body and the head because if you Remember from our sketches the character Needs to bob up and down as they walk so To do this let's go back into object Mode And we want to select the move tool And then down here we want to go ahead

And select the action editor make sure That you have Auto keying selected here And this basically makes it so that Every sort of movement or every action That we make in with our character here We'll create some keyframes like so So let's go ahead and zoom into our Timeline here using the mouse wheel So we can see Some numbers And what we're going to do here is we're Going to go ahead and firstly move the Keyframes here To zero And every fourth keyframe so let's go Ahead and move forwards four keyframes In our timeline we're going to go ahead And create a new frame of Animation so Let's go ahead and hide our first Reference image and unhide our second One And we're going to move our character to Match that image there like so and You'll see straight away that we've Created some keyframes here to match our Movements let's repeat that process so Let's move forward for Frames here like so Hide our second reference image and Unhide our third do the same thing again Bring our character back down to match That and then let's go ahead and move Forwards four frames again Hide our third reference unhide our

Final reference image Move our character to match that And then because we want this to be a Looping animation let's move this Forwards Four frames again one two three four And we want to Loop it back To our first reference image so let's go Ahead and move our character To match that one And we've got 16 Frames of Animation so let's go ahead And change the end frame here for our Timeline to 16 like so and then let's go Ahead and hide our reference image click On the play preview button to see what That looks like And you can see straight away that we've Got this nice little bopping head and Body animation here and it might appear A little bit fast at the moment but we Can adjust the speed at the end next Let's draw out the arms and the legs now For the arms and the legs we want to go Back into draw mode We want to switch from action Editor to Grease pencil And let's bring our timeline all the way Back to zero and you can see here on Zero we've already created some Keyframes as we created our character Here so if they're at one just go ahead And move those keyframes From one to zero like that so that it

Matches our animation that we've created For our body and head next we want to Create some layers for our arms and our Legs so to do that we want to go ahead And click on the add new layer button Here And the first layer here is going to be Arm Front And let's bring that above our head and Our body And then the next layer here is going to Be leg Front And then let's go ahead and bring this Up Create two more layers here and we're Going to rename these Leg Back And arm Back Like so now the back layers the leg back And the arm back we want to bring those Down below our body and our head Like that and now once we've got the Layers the order of our layers ready Here we can go ahead and start drawing Out the limbs so let's Unhide our first reference image And in fact let's go ahead and with our Grease pencil selected we're going to Just hide the head and the body for now So they don't get in the way of our

Creation and we're going to draw out the Front leg so making sure that the front Leg layer is selected just going to draw Out The front look here Like that And then we're going to do the same with The arms here the front arm so let's Draw out the shoulder here And go down to the hand And then bring it back up and then just Draw out a little thumb here so Accidentally created the dot here so Just draw out that thumb And then the back arm let's go ahead and Draw this and I'm just going to start Inside the body here but because the Layer is underneath the body it won't Show up so this Draw that out here like so And just following Our reference image And then same with the back leg now Again because it's behind the body we Should be safe To draw over the top Of our body like that And then once we bring The body back in So once we unhide the Body here you'll see that the arm the Back arm and the back leg are hidden Behind the body Cool Next let's go ahead and go forward four

Frames just as what we did before with Our reference images with our body and Our head and you'll notice as we Go forwards The animation is already playing and That's because These are all connected to the same Grease pencil tool which we had our Animation added to so you can see here That's the animation is already in Effect so let's go back to our grease Pencil Hide our first reference image and Unhide our second one and let's continue Drawing out our limbs so let's go and Hide the body again Starts with the front leg now in fact I'm just going to hide all of the other Layers here So that I can concentrate on the front Leg And let's go ahead and zoom out a little Bit so I can see What I'm doing So let's draw out This front leg here Like so And you'll see as I finish drawing that Out you've got this Cool little system here which is the Onion skinning which can be quite useful When you're creating frame by frame Animation but for now I'm just going to Turn that off so I'm just going to turn

That off for all of our layers here As we're creating the limbs And let's go ahead and do the same for The front arm now you can see that the Front leg is kind of In the way here so I'm just going to Hide that make sure that the front arm Layer is selected Let's go ahead and draw that Out Like so Then add the little thumb Cool Same thing with the back arm So let's unhide the back arm And draw that out And then the back leg here I'm going to draw that Following our reference image Oh and unfortunately I drew that on the Wrong layer so always make sure that You've selected the right layer there So make sure that you've got the leg Back layer selected And you can see as I'm drawing The leg The other one disappears Cool Let's go ahead and move forward four Frames again Hide our second reference image unhide Our third and then just repeat the Process so let's hide all of our layers Here we're going to start with the front

Leg Now the front deck here is going to be This bent one So following The reference image again Tracing over Our character and then just repeating The process making sure that we've got Our front arm layer selected Draw out our front arm Like so And then we want to do the same with our Back arm so select our back arm layer And again because it's behind the body We can afford to Sure Just behind the body like that And then the back leg which is now The one that is outstretched in front of The character Like so Cool Then we want to go forward four frames Again And now finally we'll go to our fourth Reference image So unhide that And again just going through the same Process I'm going to start with the front leg So I'm just going to hide this so I can See where it starts so it starts over Here And this time our front leg

Slightly bent Like that And then we're going to do the front arm Now the front arm is swinging back now So let's go ahead And do that now I can't actually see What I'm drawing this I'm just going to Guess now unfortunately because the Layer order is a little bit incorrect We've got our arm underneath our leg so Let's go ahead and fix that and bring Our arm layer in front of our leg layer Like so And I'm just going to hide our leg and Our arm just to see if my guess was Accurate So I'm happy with that for now and then Let's go ahead and continue our arm back Layer so let's select our arm back layer And let's see where that is so you can See that our arm is actually underneath Our body here so I'm just going to go Ahead and guess where it would be it Doesn't really matter where is and That's because it will be covered by our Body And then let's go ahead and select our Back leg layer And if I go ahead and hide these to see Where it is I can draw it out Like so That's a little bit too thick so let's Draw that out again

Until you're happy with it Cool and that should be the final Reference image now let's go ahead and Loop this round so if we move forwards Four frames again like that So this will be twelve one two three Four so we'll be on the 16th frame and Then I want to copy the first frames of Animation onto this 16th frame so let's Start with the front arm so Ctrl C to Copy and then Ctrl V to paste it And then you'll see as I move it Here it's now replaced the arm that Might take a few seconds for it to Register sometimes you need to click on The keyframe for it to work so let's go Ahead and do the same with the front leg So let's select that keyframe copy that Ctrl C and then control V there to paste That So again just clicking on that keyframe To see that it's worked and then we want To move over to the back arm here so Select that Ctrl C to copy and then Ctrl V to paste it Clicking on that keyframe to see And then the last one Ctrl C to copy the Back leg and then Ctrl V to paste that In and I'm just going to click on that Keyframe to see that it's worked there Now as you scrub back and forward Through the timeline you can sort of see How your animation is working So let's hide our reference image there

Unhide our head and our body and let's Go ahead and click on play To see our walking animation Now if you want to make your animation Appear even smoother we're going to need To add some more keyframes for our arms And our legs so I'm just going to repeat The process and do that so that will be On the second keyframe in between each Of the ones that we've created here Now in order to make this easier what we Can do is we can switch on Onion skinning now you'll see here as I Move forwards in the timeline you'll see These sort of purple images here and This represents the next keyframe so if I go ahead and move to our fourth Keyframe you'll see that that matches Now once I move any more further than That you'll see we've got this green Image here and that represents the Keyframes before which can be a little Bit confusing so let's go ahead and go Into our object data properties panel Here and we're going to change keyframes Before from 1 to 0 like so Now we've just got the purple shape Which represents the keyframes that are Coming ahead okay so let's go to our Second keyframe here and you'll see that The movement of our leg or our front leg If we concentrate on that goes from in Front of the character to the middle so We want to draw something that's in

Between so let's select our front leg Here and with our grease pencil Or our pen tool let's go ahead and draw That out so we're just going to draw Out A foot Like so In between That And then the same with the front arm so You'll see here that our front arm here Is moving from behind the character to The side of the character so we just Wanted to draw in an arm which is in Between those So let's draw that out Oh it's a bit too big so let's draw that Out here Like so With a little thumb And then the same with our back arm here So let's select our back arm And draw out An arm there Like that And the same with our back click so our Back leg is swinging from behind the Character to in front of the character So it's Also In mid swing Bending like that So you can see here Now we've got some in-between frames

To make that animation appear smoother Now we can do the same here so let's Move to in between the Fourth frame and the eighth frame so That's going to be Number six and let's do the same thing Again so let's go to the arm front And you'll see here it's moving further Forwards swinging from the middle of the Character to in front so let's do Something that's in between here Like this Same with the front leg so the front leg Now is starting to swing back So that one is going to be slightly bent So let's Bend Our foot here Like so so And then this back leg Is going to swing in front of our Character so it's just going to be Slightly bent Like that In between And then our back arm is probably going To be swinging Inside or behind our character's body so We can just sort of draw something Inside our character's body like so and Again We've started to add those extra frames Of Animation to make it smoother so We're going to continue with this Process for the last two frames so let's

Move over to the 10th Frame using the Onion skinning to help us so starting With the front arm here you can see it Swinging back So let's go ahead and draw an arm which Is in between Those two Like that And then for our front leg here you can See that our front leg Is going to bend That way so let's go ahead and Make a bent Leg there And then same with our back arm now our Back arm is going to slowly go and hide Behind our character's body so we can Just create something that represents Our back arm there like so And then our back leg Is going to land straight in the middle And make contact with the floor so let's Go ahead And draw Something in between those two legs Like that And now you can see we've got That extra frame of animation and so We'll do the final one here So let's go ahead and look at our front Arm it's swing back So let's make an arm which is in between Those two Like so

Our front leg here Is going to swing In front of our character so what we Want to do is we want to create a little Bend here In between those two legs And then our back arm here is going to Swing in front of our character so you Can see that over there so we can Crates An arm here starting to swing in front And then our back leg Is going to swing behind our character So let's go ahead and make A bent leg In between What we've got here And there And so now you can see we've got More frames of animation and if we click The play button here let's hide the Onion skins now We've got a much smoother Animation for our character And now finally we want to add a floor For our character to work on so let's go Ahead and go into object mode We want to create a new grease pencil Tool for this so let's go to grease Pencil blank And for this grease pencil here let's Call this Floor Go back in to draw mode and you might

Need to recreate the materials here so Let's create a new material we want a Stroke with a slightly lighter base Color so let's make it gray and a fill Which is even lighter like that And then we're just going to use the box Tool here And draw out a floor for our character To stand on In fact that's a little bit Too thick so again changing the radius Back to 20 Draw it out Hit enter once you're happy with that And again you can see that the character Is sitting behind the floor so let's go Back into object mode and hit the middle Mouse button or the mouse wheel here To go into 3D mode and we're going to Use the move tool to move it behind our Character go back to the camera view and You can see straight away that our Character is now in front of the floor And now if we click play You can see our character is walking on The floor now you'll see that the Animation blinks slightly and that's Because our keyframes have been created On the third frame so let's move this to Zero so the floor Is taking up the entire timeline And now if you click on play We've got a nice Simple character animation walking on

The floor now the last thing that we Want to learn before we finish this Course is how to slow down our animation If you think it's too fast so the quick Way to do that is to go over to the Output properties tab here go to time Remapping and then here we want to Increase the number of the new Option Here so if we increase this to let's say 150 And let's go ahead and increase the Number of frames here We can zoom out and sort of work out Where our animation stops so it stops at About the 24th frame so you can see here The blue number represents what the new Frame of Animation is so let's make this End at 24 frames and if we click on the Play preview button here you'll see now That our animation is Slightly slower and you can do the same Thing again the more the higher this Number is the slower your animation will Be and this works the other way as well If you want your animation to appear Faster simply make the number smaller so There you have it how to animate a Looping walking animation in blender so If you liked this video and would like To see more go ahead and hit the like Button and subscribe if you haven't Already and don't forget to hit the Bell Icon to be notified of any new and Inspiring videos

Stay tuned for some future blender Videos and don't forget to check out the Rest of the envato touch plus YouTube Channel to learn more after effects Photoshop and much much more Thank you

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