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Instanciation on paths

Autograph offers many ways to transform instances including:

  • Globally (default)
  • Relatively, with the Accumulate Transform option
  • In a more structured way with tables assigned to Transform parameters
  • Randomly, by adding a Noise or Random generator on the transformation parameters
  • etc.

You can also use paths.

After defining a Template and setting the Dimension Size to 14: - Add a Follow Path generator to the Position param, in the Instance Transform section - Select the Path Group to specify where you want to add the first path - Switch to the Pen tool in the Viewer - Start drawing a path

All instances will automatically arrive at the position of the path's first point if all Instance Transform params are set to default (see Relative offset along path below in the opposite case).

By changing the Position value of the Follow path generator, all instances are now moving along at the same position.

Let's take a look at how to scatter them along the path:

  • Add an Instance Index to this Position param
  • The first instance will define the value 0.0, the second one 1.0, and so on.

By default, the Loop Mode is set to Clamp, so all instances will be stuck at the end of the path. You just have to divide this value by the Dimension Size to distribute all instances along the path.

  • Add a Math Modifier the Position param
  • Set it to Divide
  • Copy or even better, Link the Dimension Size to the Value param.

After linking, changing the Dimension Size will automatically reorganize all instances evenly along the path.

Relative offset along path

Since the Instance Transform parameters define the starting point on which the Follow Path generator is based, we can consider that they are added to the positions defined by the path. You can therefore add offsets along the curve, even randomly by adding a Math modifier in Add mode, using Random as the Value.

Multiple paths in one Path Group

The Path Group used by the Follow Path generator can contain as many paths as you want, allowing you to split distribution into several spatially-distributed subsegments.

The generator’s Position parameter will consider the beginning of the first path as corresponding to the value 0.0, and the last point of the last path as the value 1.0, allowing you to jump from one path to another during instantiation.


For more information about mastering path drawing, please refer the dedicated section.