Duncan Rudd Shows How he Created a Tentacle Rig Using a Bezier Path for Animation.

Creating a tentacle rig for 2D elements in After Effects? A few solutions may come immediately to mind. You could use Puppet Pins and link those to some controls. You could also use DUIK joints and pose-space deformations. Could you somehow use expressions to create the shape that you need, and control it using a bezier path? Yes, according to Duncan Rudd (3DR Studio). Duncan walks through how he created a tentacle rig for 2D elements in After Effects. It’s a rig where you can animate the points on the path, making it feel more natural for animation, and doesn’t use any plugins to achieve the result.

Rudd used the technique on 3DR Studios’ animation “Buy Any Part — Farmer,” a little story about a farmer and his rooster sidekick who manage to get their day back on track with the help of Buy Any Part.

How it’s Done

The tentacle rig starts with a simple bezier path, that will end up being the control, and uses another path generated by an expression that will be the tentacle. The Expression will sample the point position of the control path and assumes or designates a direction for the Normal at each of the sample points. A satisfying answer to the question of how to create a flexible tentacle rig in After Effects!