Thursday, 1 September 2011


Working in the video game industry, the name of the game is usually speed. Turnarounds can be very fast and being able to animate quickly is key. Something I find very helpful for animating more quickly is setting up shortcuts. I didn't use many shortcuts when I first started animating, but now I swear by them. If I find myself starting to use a certain function repeatedly, I'll create a shortcut for it. You'd be surprised how much time you can save by not having to navigate through windows & menus.

Here's an image and quick breakdown of the main shortcuts I use. Depending on the shot, I'll sometimes add more specific ones having to do with the rig (selecting controls, hiding body parts, etc)

For those who don't know, you can customize your own shortcuts in Maya by going to
Window/Settings&Preferences/HotKey Editor
Here it lists all of Mayas default commands and you can Assign New Hotkeys to them. Using the bottom portion you can also create custom ones with your own commands.


  1. Great Idea, this article!
    Here are some of my most used ones:
    , and . I use for next/previous key and set the framesteps to , and . + the german altgr key
    alt+s I use for key selected
    shift+w is the default key all translation (and e and r respectively for rotation and scale)
    I put autotangent to F2 and a script for creating ease in/ease out from two identical key to F3
    g is default for repeat last command
    ctrl+shift+s i use to call an Incremental Save script
    and shift+a, shift+s, shift+y, shift+x, shift+c I use for the artisan brush push/pull and the direction y, x and z.



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