Elephant Dream Tentacles

Almost to the end of Elephant Dream, there is this scene with this wall that moves and these sort of “tentacle” things that start growing out of the corner. How were those tentacle things done/aniamted? I get the idea It might have been something with the array modifier, but I am not sure.

You’ll find it was animated curves, I think that they used a curve object as a bevel object to skin them, then another curve as a taper object to define the shapes/thickness. I tried this a little, and I used hooks applied to the curve points for location, and it works.
The curve panel has the place where you name your bevel object and curve object, just amke sure you remember it’s case sensitive.

I have done some stuff with the curve and bevel/taper thing, still trying to learn how to control the orientation of the bevobj. Haven’t tried anything with hooks, tho, let alone on curves…I thought they were a mesh only thing.

Okay, I experimented with it…looks interesting. Also looks like to have full control, you would need a hook both on the curve you were animating, and on the taper obj too, because as the curve stretches out, it deforms how the taper occurs…

you could just download the ED blend file…it’s open source, you know.

you could just download the ED blend file…it’s open source, you know.

Yes, I know. And there are two reasons why I didn’t take that approach. I have downloaded and looked at some of the stuff. Most of it I didn’t understand. Tho I have learned a few things since then. The other is…which file to download? There are several, or one can download the whole shooting match, but again…which file would have that little bit in it? I apologize if I have wasted anyones time, however Craigomatic’s answer was quite helpful and I do appreciate it.

You culd also try something similiar to theese: http://www.blender.org/features-gallery/features/feature-videos/?video=modifier_stack
It uses curves also and is realy easy to use.

I did a little digging, and I found tht the control points can be assigned to either empty hooks, or armature bones/or other objects instead. Ctrl -H in edit mode gave me two choices, but the trick is to add an armature, select it, then select the curve and tab into edit mode. Then, Ctrl-H allows to use the selected object as a controller (similar to constraints,I think) and I had a better 'handle ’ for manipulating the bevelled curve.

I guess this also means you could make a hand or suction cup, and place it in the end of a curve, and use it like a controller to get the curve/arm to follow. Funny, I’ll have to try it out.

BTW, you’re welcome for the help, and PapaSmurf just tries to make sure the rest of us have thought of the usual suspects first - that’s why I keep following his patient responses to see if something new to me comes up -usually does!

edit: new thought - you could just keyframe the bevel object’s scale at sart and end to compensate…