Imagine you were doing cutout animation, clay animation or even hand-drawn animation on paper. To see whether the animation you were doing is right, you will have to somehow create a video; either by taking it into a computer or making a video of it to be sure that it works.
The best part of doing animation on the computer is the immediate feedback that it is able to give you. You can preview what you have done at any time during your animation so as to be sure you are doing it right and modify accordingly.
There are two ways to check this:
• The first is pressing the playback button on the timeline.
• The second is by quickly creating a small preview video (called Playblast in Maya)
But then, you might think:
• Why not just use the playback button on the timeline?
• Why do you sometimes need to make a video preview of your animation?
This is because; sometimes the scene you are animating might be very heavily dependent on the capacity of your computer to handle it. This may be because your scene consists of multiple characters, objects, hair or fur simulation or other modifiers which take time to compute. So the playback may skip frames if you have enabled the real time mode in the animation settings or play very slowly if you have not.
On the other hand, if your scene is not very heavy and real-time mode is not on, the playback may actually play much faster and you may end up setting keyframes with wrong timing based on how the playback looks. So for judging the correct timing of your animation, it is really important to switch the real-time mode ‘ON’ in the animation settings.
For animation settings you can use below options:
(Animation Preferences -> Settings -> Time Slider->Playback speed: Real-time[25fps] )
(Right click on the timeline window and switch on the real-time toggle in the Playback Speed setting in Maya fig 4.)
Check the playback of the animation we have done till now in the video. Does it look right?
You will need to develop a keen sense of observation so as to improve your animation by studying the playback. Try and figure out what the problem with the playback is and in the next part you will find out if you were right and how to go about correcting that.