So, I have two eyebrows on my character, both are controlled by bones. In pose mode, when I rotate the left eyebrow counterclockwise, the rotation goes into the negative (the values are negative). That's fine, but I want the right eyebrow to also go into the negative but when rotating clockwise. So that way, when I want to rotate both eyebrows at the same time, they will move in a mirrored way and make an angry look or a sad look. But right now, if I move them at the same time, they will rotate in a parallel way instead of a mirrored way. So how do I get the right eyebrow to move in the negative when being rotated clockwise?

You may recommend to just turn the bone 180 degrees but then in pose mode, this will make the forward and backward rotation opposite to the other eyebrow. I want all rotations in pose mode to be the same between both eyebrows except on the axis that let's you rotate the eyebrows in a normal way (in this case, on the X axis). Anyways, so how do I do this? There's a picture below that shows you what I mean.The blue shows the negative direction to rotate the eyebrows and the pink shows the positive

  • $\begingroup$ I think this is a good question. How to you expect to work with this? Select both controllers and rotate with individual pivot points? The rotate tool seems to work in view space even if you use local as you space. The Graphs can probably be made to look the same but I see a fairly limited usage for this setup... at least for now. $\endgroup$
    – Jackdaw
    Aug 31 '19 at 10:45
  • $\begingroup$ Maybe it could be solved with a unified controller bone for both eyebrows that acts on both with drivers? $\endgroup$
    – Jackdaw
    Aug 31 '19 at 10:47
  • $\begingroup$ Or simply use X-Axis mirror in the Pose Option (N-menu) $\endgroup$
    – Jackdaw
    Aug 31 '19 at 11:25
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for the help! I will try this. $\endgroup$
    – Sebastian
    Sep 1 '19 at 21:14

You have a few options. For all methods, orientate the bones as such, that the most important rotation is mirrored by default. In my case I made the X rotation control the in-out-movement.

1. Don't change anything

Blender features a mirrored copy-paste functionality. Select the left bone and press ⎈ CtrlC, then press ⎈ Ctrl⇧ ShiftV. The copied pose will be pasted mirrored. These functions are also available as small buttons on the right of the header in pose mode.

mirrored paste

When creating good/solid shapes for animation, a symmetrical pose is seldom desired anyway. The animator will have to manipulate both brows anyways.

2. Add a parent control bone

Add an additional bone in the center, with which the animator can manipulate both brows at once. If he wants to manipulate either bone individually, this is also possible by selecting them directly.

center bone

This has no drawbacks from the first method, since both brows are transformable individually. To set this up, add a parent bone to each brow and a Brows bone in the center. (Hide the parent bones at the end.) Then add Constraints, transfering the transformation of the centered Brows bone to parent bones. I used a copy rotation constraint for one Axis (Z) and a Transformation constraint for the other axes, transfering the translation to rotation.

The transfer has to be inversed (mirrored) for two axes.

center bone constraints

3. Scale the parent bone

This method achieves mirrored behaviour of two axes. Add a parent bone to both brows and a child bone. The child bone will be the deforming bone for this method. Since the X axis already mirrores, we can now add a second axis to be mirrored; I choose Z. To mirror Z, scale the Parent and the new Child (Deform) bone to -1 on Z.

two mirrored axes

X and Z will be mirrored. Add a driver to the scaled bones and hide them, just to make sure the inverse scale is never cleared.

4. Use inversed constraints for the deforming bones.

Add a deforming bone to each side, which is located at the same location and orientation as the brow. For one side, transfer the rotation from Brow control bone to deform bone with a copy rotation constraint. On the other side, do the same, but inverse the desired axes (in my case Y and Z). For the inversing side, select the Brow control bone and set its Custom Shape to display At the deforming bone.


Manipulating this bone will now display the Widget in a mirrored rotation, it may feel unnatural though.

mirrored behaviour

Methods 2 - 4 are distributed on the first layers of this blend.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you so much for the help!! I will try one or multiple of these methods! $\endgroup$
    – Sebastian
    Sep 1 '19 at 21:15

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