Animating a Character Picking Up an Object

In this tutorial, I illustrate how to append objects to the scene, animate the character “miming” the action of picking up that object, then attaching the object to a new bone by using a “Child Of” constraint; following by animating the constraint influence to correspond with the hand picking it up. The object is then handed off to the other hand, and a second “Child Of” constraint is added, also animating the influence so that it becomes the child of the other hand.

View the Animation Results

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82 Responses to “Animating a Character Picking Up an Object”
  1. Posts: 10
    Maia says:

    More than ever I understand why the movie industry has almost completely abandoned frame by frame traditional animation. You made this 20 minutes, whereas the same animation drawn frame by frame would have taken weeks.

  2. Posts: 14

    Amazing tutorial with a lot of situations where you can implement this knowledge.I have one maybe weird question.In your cases when you made the animation…what usualy went wrong for you?Or to elaborate…..What could go wrong in general?Thank you.

    And I loved your tutorials on armature and rigging.

  3. Posts: 1
    Coalfoot says:

    Wow, I’m soo glad I found this tutorial; I’d been duplicating items with static parenting and hiding the inactive ones on a seperate layer. It was effective, but I suspect this way is _much_ lighter on memory, thank you for showing it to us. x3

  4. Posts: 1
    handri says:

    good job,,!!

  5. Posts: 8
    shazaklar says:

    next I want to see the guy take a bite out of the apple and chew it and see where the bite marks are on the apple and the white inside! :)

  6. Posts: 2

    Hey David,

    Thank you for this great tutorial, you and Jonathan are fantastic instructors, so thanks for everything.
    One question, that animation is really nice, have you ever done a 3d short of your own? would love to see something longer than 3 seconds ^_^

  7. Posts: 1
    Juan Carlitos says:

    This is great, I was struggling in an animation im doing trying to drop the influence of a “child of” constraint while keeping the bone in place and you, dear fellow sir, gave a great solution with that ghost thing. Today I learned something new and the world is happy for me, though me myself can not interpret my own emotions completely well. Thanks a lot!

  8. Posts: 1
    Juha says:

    I guess that apple has been eaten. My Blender 3d-character is struggling with picking up a pen from a table. I’m helping him and do what I can. This tutorial helps us! His (character’s) name is Clive and he does not have a mouth so he can’t eat apples.

  9. Posts: 36

    can someone point me to a tutorial on how to import actions from one model/rig to another model/rig?
    like if i want to use a downloaded action from blendswap on my rig.

  10. Posts: 6
    sai blazingr says:

    hay all,,can you help me??why background in my blender 2.63 can’t set???i don’t see anything,i can’t see my your tutorial is so easy,,but in my blender the background not set n i cant see my background..Help me .please..

  11. Posts: 1
    pickchickmc says:

    I have the bone on my object (axe) selected, but I can’t place a constraint on it, the button is un-clickable for me! Please help!

  12. Posts: 1
    cyborita says:

    Hi, I’ve got a question.
    I am using rigify and I haven’t found the way to parent an object on the go as it’s shown in this video. How can I parent an object as a child of a rigify bone? If this is not possible, can you tell me another way to pick up objects using rigify?

    I have read there is a parent modifier but I am making animations to use them in Unity but I was said that these reparenting modifiers cannot imported properly within Unity.

    Thanks in advance, any suggestion will be appreciated.

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