Ripple edit in Rotoscoping

How Roto leads to Ripple…edit

Proper Roto starts with a shot analysis, running tracks, breaking down objects or people into several shapes and selecting keyframes wisely….all while rushing to get it done fast.

In an ideal world, you speed through your shapes, master your feathers, and finally render mattes or export your keyframes and animation to your comp software. But, inevitably you have to tweak and adjust and touch up your shapes after you’ve finished your keyframes.

What happens, then, if you want to apply the tweak over multiple keyframes at once?

Well you used to be s.o.l. (shit outta luck)…until Ripple Edit aka Uber Key aka MultiFrame came along.

Ripple edit is used to affect changes on all keyframes. It is used on a single point, multiple points. The major benefit is not having to correct the shape in each keyframe, or worse — creating the animation from scratch.

Ripple edit has the potential of being a massive time saver. However, traditionally ripple edit has only been effective in small changes, small shifts in translation.

What happens when you need to shift a point, or a set of points on a shape that has rotation, or worse translation and rotation. Here’s what you might end up with:


In most Roto tools and Roto software, Ripple edit only works effectively on translation, so you may be forced to re-do your shape. Let the swearing begin. How much time did you lose? Why is it so? Well, handling rotation in ripple edit is actually quite a challenge. The software has to simultaneously interpret translational movement and rotational movement based on the collective movement of individual points. The more points and the more movement, the more challenging the scenario.

Flowbox has taken a new approach to Ripple edit. Intelligent Ripple edit pulls in several algorithms in the background to process the motion, analyzing translation and rotation, finding axes of rotation and adjusting points accordingly…

The results are clear:



How much time can this save you? Well that depends on how many keyframes you have, and the complexity of the motion—sometimes minutes—sometimes hours.

How many shapes did you have on your most recent Roto?

To learn more on how Flowbox can speed up your Roto, contact us for a demo: or sign up.


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Mikołaj Valencia
CEO Flowbox