Even though After Effects wasn’t really built to handle character animation, there are a few choices for third party character rigging tools. From the robust rigging and animation tool that is the free DUIK, to BAO Bones, and of course, Rubber Hose.
The last one mentioned, represents a shift in rigging tools where you are not concerned with the technical bits, but rather using preset objects for limbs. This opens up character work to many more artists, who don’t want to know how character rigging for animation works (although, if you are animating characters you should definitely understand the technical rigging process — it only helps).
As en example as to how Rubber Hose can keep things simple, Animator Ross Plaskow shows how he creates a walk cycle with Rubber Hose. It’s interesting to see the technique here. Ross starts out animating the feet of the character, even before he has any legs. The brilliance is that the entire walk cycle takes around 11 minutes to make, including building the character itself. Everyone has 11 minutes, right?