Space switching in Blender?

I haven’t had active element working like described, but you can always make a custom orientation. Ctrl alt space.

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CTRL+Alt+Spaces gives me full screen mode

Operation is “create orientation” if you want to search for it in your keybinds or via search menu.

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“Create orientation” doesn’t make an object pivot from another’s object origin, it just uses the orientation space of another object.

That’s a cool feature though.

Oh, pardon, I misunderstood what you were going for.

You can combine that with rotation about a cursor if you want, and you can snap a cursor to anything you feel like.

Although note that rotation about pivot points, regardless of whether they’re active element or cursors or anything else besides an object’s natural origin, are going to create some bad interpolation. They’re not true rotations, but combinations of rotation and translation.

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I found it!

I know it translates too but thats fine.
With this i guess you can manipulate an IK arm like an FK one!
Of course it wont react like a FK but still, that is pretty nice.


ca marche

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Thanks, that’s a pretty cool trick. But I don’t think it really solves the space-switching thing. Very often you want to switch between bone space and the local space of an external object. I don’t see how you could select the bone in pose mode and then select the external object. Unless I’m missing something.

By constraining the object to a inner free bone. by inner i mean in the armature.

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Yeah this got side tracked a little!

Theres a great tool in Maya called EBLabs Worldspace Tool. It’s like a macro as it creates a bunch of commands for the user automatically, operations like the one in the monkey helmet animation you posted:

From what i understand, space switches in Maya are just different parent constraints but being able to switch them on/off in one easy operation from an easily created custom attribute channel is very nice.

There is this addon i want to try as also need to find an efficient workflow to manage constraints.
The addon seems more like a straight forward approach, creating a bunch of constraints instead of just few commonly used ones.

I’ve made a free addon called Snap Constraints. Besides support FK/IK snapping, it supports space switching. There’s no official video tutorial, but the workflow matches that of normal space switching where you have to pair off keys when you switch spaces.

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Thanks. Both those add-ons look promising. Have to find some down time later this week to try them out.

So I’m going to say that this issue is still open. The Snap Constraints add-on above doesn’t work properly in more complex set-ups. And the Dynamic Parent add-on doesn’t seem to be available anymore (at least I can’t find it at the link above, Blender Market, or anywhere else).

The Active Element thing that @skuax suggested above works in absence of anything else, but I’m not crazy about it. I still think someone needs to figure out a way to implement space switching in a way that’s relatively consistent with the way it’s handled in every other 3D package I’ve worked in.

Hopefully the rumor above about @fin.eskimo working on something are true.

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What’s the situation in which Snap Constraints doesn’t work well? How’s space switching handled in other 3D packages? I thought even in Maya it’s normally built into the rig.

About this topic, I hope you are all aware of this little X button at the bottom of the Copy Transform constraint.

You can apply a Copy Transform constraint between any two objects or bones, and once you are done you can press the X button at it will remove the constraint but keeping the constrained object in the new location (contrary to just removing the constraint normally or setting its influence to 0, since this will just reset the contrained object to its original location).

It can be useful sometimes. Just my 2 cents on this topic.

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I might have spoke too soon, Wayde. I was having problems with a part of the rig that had two active constraints on it, but I think I can get around it. I’ll try to find some time tomorrow to play with it.

Have you tried the add-on in 2.82? That’s what I have at the office. I can download 2.81 to test if not.

Hey @GuiltyGhost. Had time to go back and look again and got everything working. Thanks for putting together that add-on. It does save a little time once all the constraints are set up and you are in animation.

But I still think there is room for someone to improve on this. I think Maya currently has the best space switching system. Take a look at the video in my first post. Basically you set up various spaces for parts of your rig and the add-on sets all the constraints and drivers automatically. Then you just select your space and like your add-on it sets all the attributes and keyframes accordlingly. I still think the set up could be simplified.

Thanks to everyone for all their suggestions.

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Your active element trick is brilliant :). So simple and so efficient. Similar to what Jim Kroovy offers in his "Mr Mannequin tools " addon.

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I found this simple space-switcher addon, doesn’t have too much versatility but I think it can get the job done!