Need simple tutorial for animating material RGB/Transparency

I’m looking to animate a red arrow fading into the scene, slowly transition to green, and then fade out. Can’t seem to find a simple tutorial to do this. Any leads?

How long have you been using Blender? If you’re a newbie then you’ll need a lot more information than if you’ve used Blender for a few months. Assuming you’ve used it a bit…

It might be possible to animate just the Alpha value of the arrow’s material. In which case set the material’s Alpha to zero, select the start frame number, hold the mouse over the Material panel, press I (‘eye’), and choose Alpha (or All Color). Move to the end frame number, turn the Alpha up to maximum, hold the mouse over the Material Panel, press I again and choose Alpha (or All Color) again. The same process can be used to alter the RGB values too.

Open up an ‘Ipo Curve Editor’ window, and in the box at the bottom that says Object, select Material instead.You’ll now see graphs of either just the Alpha, or all the color properties inlcuding the RGB values (depending on what you chose to keyframe).

If your material is reflective, or it casts shadows on other objects, things are more complicated, since the shadow and reflection will still be present even when the material is otherwise invisible! And there’s probably much better / more advanced ways of doing it with layers and nodes, which to be honest I’ve never tried. :frowning:

Excellent, this is exactly what I needed. It’s simple and effective. I had no idea that one could insert keyframes over the material panel by pressing I.

I have been using Blender for several months now but only feel like I’m scratching the surface. The crazy thing is that now that I’m almost comfortable with it Blender 2.5 will come out and I’ll have to learn a whole new interface. I’m very much looking forward to the redesign though.

Don’t feel bad, I had no idea the I-Key would work over the Buttons window either. Once I did, I realized I could animate, light, camera and material properties!