This transition allows individual visual components to define their own "life-cycle". This means that the final animation will not have any common "state" and "transition" phase as any component can be moving or static at any point in time.

  range = NULL,
  enter_length = NULL,
  exit_length = NULL



The unquoted name of the column holding the time for each state of the components


The range the animation should span. Defaults to the range of time plus enter and exit length

enter_length, exit_length

How long time should be spend on enter and exit transitions. Defaults to 0

Label variables

transition_components makes the following variables available for string literal interpretation, in addition to the general ones provided by animate():

  • frame_time gives the time that the current frame corresponds to

Object permanence

transition_components uses the group aesthetic of each layer to identify which rows in the input data correspond to the same graphic element and will therefore define stages in time that the element will animate through. The group aesthetic, if not set, will be calculated from the interaction of all discrete aesthetics in the layer (excluding label), so it is often better to set it explicitly when animating, to make sure your data is interpreted in the right way. If the group aesthetic is not set, and no discrete aesthetics exists then all rows will have the same group.

Computed Variables

It is possible to use variables calculated by the statistic to define the transition. Simply inclose the variable in stat() in the same way as when using computed variables in aesthetics.


data <- data.frame(
  x = runif(10),
  y = runif(10),
  size = sample(1:3, 10, TRUE),
  time = c(1, 4, 6, 7, 9, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10),
  id = rep(1:2, each = 5)

anim <- ggplot(data, aes(x, y, group = id, size = size)) +
  geom_point() +

# By default the time range is set to the range of the time variable (plus
# any enter and exit length), but this can be overwritten
anim2 <- ggplot(data, aes(x, y, group = id, size = size)) +
  geom_point() +
  transition_components(time, range = c(4, 8))

# If you are using any enter/exit functions you need to give them some time
anim3 <- ggplot(data, aes(x, y, group = id, size = size)) +
  geom_point() +
  transition_components(time, enter_length = 2, exit_length = 2) +
  enter_grow() +