Parenting Tools

As an artist who works at different shops with different workflows, I find parenting objects (and releasing them) quickly is always a pain. I found this tool in Maya to be the most helpful:

Does something like this exist in Blender? I know there are constraints, but nothing seems to have the ability to retain position and orientation of an object when quickly parenting and letting go.

Any thoughts?

Have you tried parenting to a bone rather than an object?

Right on, but what if I had to pick up a flower from a table and hand it from one character to another?

typically you would use child of constraints. one ofr each chracter and switch the influence of the constaints to make the change. but once you set the fost constrain down to 0 and switch the second characters influence up the location of the object gets moved in the scene so you have to re position the object, by using ghost bone display you can match it up pretty acuratly. but the whole process is time consuming and unreliable and basically just a pain in the ass! it would be easier if blender could figure out where the objects origin would be as it move in pose mode so you could tell blender to make the object be at that position at x frame the same as it was at y frame and conetinue from there.
nothihg like that exists and it sucks

Yeah, I just looked back through the half-remembered book I was getting my bone parenting idea from, and it turns out I’m just a bone head. :stuck_out_tongue: There’s a whole thing in here using copy location constraints and editing IPO curves… So here’s a quick and dirty combo of that crap I said and Small Troll’s suggestion of a Child Of constraint. I will note that if you use the Copy Location constraint with a bone as the target, you can choose to copy the location of either the head or tail of the bone, which might give you more control, but the basic principle is the same with either constraint.

This demo is crappy. In particular I probably shouldn’t have put an extra keyframe between the one armature letting go and the other picking up (frames 15 and 16 I think), but whatever. It’ll give you the idea anyway. DumbHandoffDemo.blend (421 KB)