An animation looks more engaging and realistic when multiple objects appear on the screen, and the timing of their appearance is accurate. If you are a professional animator with several years of work experience, or even if you are a beginner, you are likely to understand that in the process of creating a simultaneous appearance effect in any program, many times the layers containing the other objects get selected accidentally. This results in many items getting misaligned and/or untimed, thus leaving you with another couple of hours to waste to get things back to as they were before.
The best solution to avoid such mishaps is to lock the layers that are not in use, and then carve your way to position the new elements to your desired location on the screen.
The process of managing the objects’ appearances and locking them is explained below:
Footage Combination (Managing Objects’ Appearance)
Step 1: Position the Playhead (Skimmer)
Once you are done adding the first object to the Doratoon’s Canvas, in the Timeline, position the Playhead on the frame you want the second object to become visible from during the video playback.
Step 2: Add the Second Object
Use the categories on the left to pick the second object to add it to the Canvas (a Common Character is used here for illustration). Notice that the layer of the second object automatically begins from the frame you positioned the Skimmer at in the previous step.
Step 3: Adjust the Alignment and Appearance Timing
Click to select the second object on the Canvas, and drag it to your desired location, i.e., where you want it to appear on the screen. Next, drag the second object’s handle in the Timeline to the left or right to precisely adjust the time of its appearance.
Footage Locking (Locking an Object)
Step 1: Get to the Layer Tab
Click anywhere on the Canvas and make sure that no object is selected. Now, go to the Layer tab from the top of the pane on the right.
Step 2: Lock an Object
From the available list of objects, click the Lock icon next to the one you want to lock. You can unlock a locked object by clicking the Lock icon again.
Note: Although you can select an object on the Canvas and then click the Lock icon from the floating toolbox that appears above it, this approach could be a timesaver only when there are fewer objects on the Scene Page. When the Canvas is populated with several elements, selecting one from the crowd could be a challenging task to do.