I am creating an animation with lots of cycles and it would be nice to use the cycles modifier in the graph editor but to only affect some keyframes and not the whole thing because I have different patterns Is there a way to do it?
No, not in the graph editor, you should use NLA editor for this.
in the graph editor you can setup repeating all bunch of keyframes, not part of it.
First, set up cycles in action editor, each cycle in different action:
Then use Push Down in action editor or Shift+A in NLA Editor to add actions in NLA:
Then in NLA editor's N-panel (properties panel) you can set up any count of cycles using repeat property:
2 location constraints on a single object. Image above. Note the Y axis is chosen. So the object can copy the y movement of the torus or cylinder, completely, partially or mix ... with or without offset. The torus and cylinder need not be rendered and can be Blender [empty] objects for more subtle representation.
Showing Keyframes. Image above. Consider switching the interpolation type to [constant]. Above is [bezier] which make viewing easier for this explanation.
- Consider placing two Copy Location constraints on your object. 2 is my present understanding of the question. Of course adjustments can be made for any number of patterns if you are patient enough.
- Constraints have [influence] meaning the blender value in the constraint pane
- [0.0] no influence,
- [0.5] half influence,
- [1.0] full influence.
- If a later constraint [B] in the stack has influence [1.0] then [B] will dominate completely. [.5] half dominant. Being last gives more options for this type of constraint.
If you only have 2 patterns then you can keyframe the [influence] of the 2nd constraint. You may need two non renderable items two use for the two targets of the constraint.
I am mentioning many options at this moment.
Blender always has 33 ways of doing things. This bullet is less likely to be useful today. You can have a custom property with keyframes determine which the strength of pattern you are using. Drivers are can cooperate with these.
NLA Editor has some other options I will not investigate here. I have used NLA recently. I believe constraints will do what you want. I am glad I did not discuss NLA Editor because someone else has taken the trajectory.