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3. Bezier curves

Bézier curves make it easier to create smooth motion in animations by forming natural transitions between key poses. We can adjust the handles on a curve to shape the graph and produce more fluid movement.

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Video transcript

(light clicks) (jettison pod whooshes) (air ship whines) - You probably noticed that in order to get smooth motion, you ended up having to pose the ball in pretty much every frame. The computer's helping, but it's still a lot of work to get something that looks smooth. Instead of linear interpolation, we can use something called Bézier curves. If you've ever used design or drawing software, you've probably used Bézier curves without even knowing it. This is named after a French engineer, Pierre Bézier, who invented this method to describe the smooth curves needed when designing cars. These kinds of functions made up of Bézier curves are called splines. I also mentioned them in the first video. Bézier curves come with these handles that let us control the shape of the graph between our key poses. We get this nice curve that eases out of the first pose, and ramps down to the second one. If you look at how these values map, you can see something that looks just like our timing chart. Now you try it out. You should be able to get much smoother motion using Bézier curves. (ball smacks rhythmically)