When creating this benchmark pit stop animation sequence, my aim was to ensure props naturally used the characters animation to drive them as much as possible; fighting with prop translation combined with the characters main animations can become messy and frustrating, as well as time consuming, especially for complex hand swapping, spinning and layoff of props during the life of the animation.
I developed foot and prop control systems, accessed via quick nondestructive alignment and constraints to the characters hands and feet positions, allowing editing of prop and foot planting animations on layers very quickly.
In turn maintaining the integrity of the characters hands and feet, via easy on screen handle selectors, this was invaluable when dealing with 16 interacting characters and 16 props within one scene.
In summary, trying to make animation more fun and less of a chore. :)
Hope you like it.