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Lunatique
11-03-2002, 02:20 PM
I'm about to start on the first scene of my animated short, and I have a pretty important question:

How much and which parts of my rigging for a character could be reused by other characters? The bones? Skinning? Deformation? The IK's? The blend shapes?

For example, I have the following main characters:

Man
Woman
Little girl
Little boy
Old man

Now, I understand that if I have characters that are very similar in their physique, I could probably reuse some stuff, but what can I reuse if the physique of the characters are as different as the above listed characters?

Basically, I need to know WHAT data and nodes I SHOULDN'T delete when rigging the first character, so that I can reuse those data again for other characters.

Bennels
11-03-2002, 02:56 PM
I've just completed my first animated short and I have reused my main character rig 3 times. Covering a male adult, an elderly female and a 4-year-old child. Having the same rig for each character makes things a lot simpler as you only have to know one rig.

Bones can be easily re-sized and positioned for new characters, and IK setups should follow. If you have any constraints you may need to adjust them for the new character.


However, the program I use (MAX) does not support reusing skinning and deformations (correct me if I am wrong). It sounds like you are using Maya, so I don't know if it is possible in that program.

I would say reusing character rigs is definitely possible and I would highly recommend nutting it out because it saved me several days work.

I hope that helps

E.T
11-03-2002, 04:58 PM
Bennels, how did you reuse the rig?
Ive been trying to use the IKJoe rig with my own mesh, but some of the bones wont resize properly...

I would hate to miss something obvious, as im now building my own rig. (would hate to have to do that too many times)

E.T

Bennels
11-03-2002, 10:25 PM
ET: Unfortunately I'm using MAX 4.2 and I've not had the chance to pull apart this infamous rig. You may need to break it a little to move some bones, and then try and put it back together. :shrug:

Sorry, i'm not much help on that one. I'll do a bit more research on the IKjoe rig.

Cheers

bentllama
11-04-2002, 12:12 AM
Most of my rigging for bipedal creatures is automatic. The beatuy of MEL is that you can script the usual grunt labour you repeat all the time...

jschleifer
11-04-2002, 12:42 AM
yep, same here.. makes things so much easier. Plus, you can experiment with specific parts of a rig.. say your biped character is 99% the same as another character, but it has pig tails.. you can rig it in seconds with your standard rig, figure out somethign for the pig tails, and then from then on you've got a pig tail setup you can use for any of your other creatures.

super handy.

-jason

Lunatique
11-04-2002, 01:34 AM
Ok, stupid newbie moron question time:

In order to script the mel for rigging, do I just grab all the steps I went through with the first rig from the script editor, and then drag them onto a shelf button? Or am I spewing newbie stupid nonsense?

jschleifer
11-04-2002, 03:05 AM
The best thing to do is approach it in a way that you'd approach writing any modular program.. break it down into the steps that you're going to be taking.

For example, first you need to figure out how you want to build the rig.. do you want it based on the skeleton, or do you want to do it based on locators that define certain regions of the creature? The important thing is that you need a base to start with. So let's take the locator method as an example..

First, you would load in the scene that has the geometry and create locators based on where you want things to be. Because you know that you're going to be building a skeletal structure based on the locators, you want to ensure that the naming is consistent and correct. So what you would do is place locators where you want, for example, the up arm, elbow, and wrist to be.

So you name the locators l_up_arm_loc, l_elbow_loc, l_wrist_loc.

Then, you're going to make a program that does the following:

1) Determine whether or not you're building a right or left sided arm (l_ or r_).
2) Find the appropriate locators (l_up_arm_loc, l_elbow_loc, l_wrist_loc).
3) Build a joint structure that moves through them.
4) Build an ikHandle
5) Create the control structure you want
6) Set the correct attributes keyable/unkeyable/locked
7) Hide things that you don't need to see.

So start breaking this down.. into mel. You know that you're going to be making this a "procedure" or individual program that can be called from a larger program. And you also know that you need to pass it either a left or right side, so it knows what to do. So you would define the procedure and the variables that you're going to pass it:

global proc buildIkArm (string $side)
{
// Take an argument ("l_" or "r_") and build
// an ik arm.
}


This is a simple procedure which that simply will take an argument and does nothign with it at this point.. but it will do something eventually.

Now you want to add the second part.. where it finds the locators that it needs. You can do that using the $side variable, and the fact that we KNOW that the things will be labled up_arm, elbow and wrist:

global proc buildIkArm (string $side)
{
// Take an argument ("l_" or "r_") and build
// an ik arm.

// get the names of the locators
$up_arm = ($side + "up_arm_loc");
$elbow = ($side + "elbow_loc");
$wrist = ($side + "wrist_loc");
}


now that we know those, we're going to start building joints through them. To do that you need the location of those locators in space, and you need to know the joint command. To find the location in space of an object, you can either use the xform command (xform -q -worldSpace -rotatePivot) or use the getAttr command if the locators aren't a child of anything else. I prefer the xform command 'cuz I know it'll work..

global proc buildIkArm (string $side)
{
// Take an argument ("l_" or "r_") and build
// an ik arm.

// get the names of the locators
$up_arm = ($side + "up_arm_loc");
$elbow = ($side + "elbow_loc");
$wrist = ($side + "wrist_loc");

// find the world space of the locators, and
// create joints that are in the right place
$uap = `xform -q -ws -rp $up_arm`;
$ep = `xform -q -ws -rp $elbow`;
$wp = `xform -q -ws -rp $wrist`;

$up_arm_joint = ($side + "up_arm");
$elbow_joint = ($side + "elbow");
$wrist_joint = ($side + "wrist");

// now each of the pos variables are arrays.
// we can use them to create the joints.
select -d;
joint -p $uap[0] $uap[1] $uap[2] -n $up_arm_joint;
joint -p $ep[0] $ep[1] $ep[2] -n $elbow_joint;
joint -p $wp[0] $wp[1] $wp[2] -n $wrist_joint;

// now orient them correctly
joint -e -oj xyz $up_arm_joint;
joint -e -oj xyz $elbow_joint;

}


see how this is progressing? basically, you see what it is you need to do, then search the mel docs for the commands required. The next step was to make the ikHandle. Just guessing you can assume that it requires the ikHandle command.. type help -doc ikHandle and you'll find that there is example code to help you out.

global proc buildIkArm (string $side)
{
// Take an argument ("l_" or "r_") and build
// an ik arm.

// get the names of the locators
$up_arm = ($side + "up_arm_loc");
$elbow = ($side + "elbow_loc");
$wrist = ($side + "wrist_loc");

// find the world space of the locators, and
// create joints that are in the right place
$uap = `xform -q -ws -rp $up_arm`;
$ep = `xform -q -ws -rp $elbow`;
$wp = `xform -q -ws -rp $wrist`;

$up_arm_joint = ($side + "up_arm");
$elbow_joint = ($side + "elbow");
$wrist_joint = ($side + "wrist");

// now each of the pos variables are arrays.
// we can use them to create the joints.
select -d;
joint -p $uap[0] $uap[1] $uap[2] -n $up_arm_joint;
joint -p $ep[0] $ep[1] $ep[2] -n $elbow_joint;
joint -p $wp[0] $wp[1] $wp[2] -n $wrist_joint;

// now orient them correctly
joint -e -oj xyz $up_arm_joint;
joint -e -oj xyz $elbow_joint;

// add an ikHandle
$handleItems = `ikHandle -sj $up_arm_joint -ee $wrist_joint -n ($side + "_arm_ikHandle")`;

}


see how it works?

the best thing to do is look at the script editor as you're trying stuff & see what commands get echoed.. then read the docs on those commands.. and discover how to use them to your advantage.

hope this helps some & gets you going on the right track!

-jason

john_homer
11-04-2002, 03:31 AM
Well I don't know about you guys, but I'm doing that tomorrow.

Thanks for taking the time Jason, I guess you have a bit more of it now though ;^) can't wait to see it on the big screen.

cu
.j

bentllama
11-04-2002, 03:35 AM
Nice response Jason. That should get Lunatique started on the right track...I saw a few things I could do to enhance my scripts too. I get nervous around Xforms...my brother was killed by an Xform...*sigh*

:)

Thanks.!

jschleifer
11-04-2002, 03:42 AM
heh, glad it's going to be helpful.. I'm actually in the process of re-working my whole pipeline at home to keep things more interesting.. should be fun. :)

-jason

Lunatique
11-04-2002, 05:37 AM
Jason- WOW! Thanks for pointing me the right direction!! You've always been one of my favs at cgtalk, since you are a busy bee working at a big studio, but still take the time to help out the cgtalk community, and is totally down to earth and easy going.

I feel like I have a huge mountain in front of me that I have to climb, and the peak it up there in the clouds where my eyes can't even see. Attempting to make an entire animated short as a 3D newbie, while learning each step of the way is VERY daunting. But with great people like the cgtalk guys/gals around to help out when I get stuck, I feel a bit more optimistic. :)

Now for another question:

Aren't locators just part of the skeleton? If the two systems are different, what are the pros and cons of building a system based on skeleton vs. locators? I will not be dealing with any non-human characters, and my characters will all be animated in a realistic manner(not exaggerated cartoony style). There will be a lot of closeups on the face and hands, as they express a lot of emotions. Oh wait, I do have to rig a flock of pigeons too. So, ok, add a pigeon rig to that.

jason-slab
11-04-2002, 07:27 AM
huh, who needs them trianing dvd's
getting alllll the info right here

thx jason

|jason

Twisted-Imperial
11-04-2002, 10:49 AM
yo jason nice! that helps me out and i can see how to almost write the whole thing in mel, but how would i do something like adding a hand rig to that, to place the joins in space do i have to havea locator for each one? or what do u recomend

thx

peace

fortner
11-04-2002, 06:50 PM
awesome response Jason... I love it.

jschleifer
11-04-2002, 08:50 PM
Heya Lunatique,

Aren't locators just part of the skeleton? If the two systems are different, what are the pros and cons of building a system based on skeleton vs. locators?

That's a good question.. it really depends on how you want to work yourself. I usually do things based on the skeleton, because I want to have absolute control over where joints are and what their orientation is. So the first thing I do is build a skeleton to fit a model. Then, my scripts run through that skeleton and build the animation rig based on where the joint locations are. That way, if I have a new model that I want to animate, I can import the skeleton, adjust it as necessary, and run the rigging scripts and it builds the animation rig for me.

If, however, you want to build the skeleton procedurally, you still need to provide information to your scripts as to where the joints should be.. that's where the locators come in. So instead of building the skeleton first and then building the rig.. you're placing locators where you want the skeleton to be built, then letting the rig building script handle BOTH the skeleton and the animation rig.

So you can kinda break it down like this:

o Import Model
o if you want to have the script automatically generate the skeleton, then:
o Create Locators
o Generate Skeleton
o Build rig based on skeleton

hope that helps explain things a bit.. :)

Twisted Imperia,

but how would i do something like adding a hand rig to that, to place the joins in space do i have to havea locator for each one? or what do u recomend

That's usually why I build the skeleton rig myself first.. however, something I've found really "handy" (ahem.. sorry. :), is because hands are so difficult and time consuming to get right, I usually have a "hand file" which is separate.. then I make that part of my "buildHandRig" script.. it imports that file and takes all the animation curves from the joints (usually setDrivenKeys) and re-connects them to the appropriate joints on the skeleton which is going to be my animation rig.

So you have an entire script which looks like this:


global proc buildAnimationRig ( string $character )
{
// the skeleton is already loaded.. begin
// putting the anim rig together

// import the geometry
importRigGeometry $character;

// parent the geometry
// all the geometry is named the same thing as
// the bones that are in the scene.. just with
// a _geo at the end. So the geometry for the
// "root" joint is named "root_geo". This
// makes it easy to automatically parent the
// geometry.
parentRigGeometry;

// build the arm controls
buildIkArm "l_";
buildIkArm "r_";

// build the leg controls
buildIkLeg "l_";
buildIkLeg "r_";

// build the back controls
buildWickedSpine;

// add facial animation
buildFacialRig $character;

// add hand controls
buildHandRig "l_";
buildHandRig "r_";

// clean everything up
setLayerAttributes;
hideUnneededObjects;
optimizeTheScene;
checkAnimatableAttributes;

// add character sets
addCharacterSets;

print ("Finished creating " + $character + " animation rig.\n");

}


then the procedure for the hand rig might look something like:


global proc buildHandRig (string $side)
{
// this procedure will import the hand rig
// and connect the joints

// find the rig
string $rigEnv = `getenv "CHARACTER_RIG_FILES"`;

string $handRig = ($rigEnv + "/handRig.ma");

// import the hand rig
file -import $handRig;

// now connect things using really tricky mel

// now remove the temporary hand rig
delete topNodeOfTemporaryHandRig;

}


see how that would work?

oh.. and stal3fish..
huh, who needs them trianing dvd's getting alllll the info right here
whatcho talkin 'bout willis! I got 15 childrens ta feed, a mom who's sick with the gout, and a gallstone the size of mt. everest.. buy mah damn dvd! <grin>

hope this was helpful!

cheers,
jason

jschleifer
11-04-2002, 09:42 PM
I get nervous around Xforms...my brother was killed by an Xform...*sigh*

haha. :) I just saw this for some reason.. you crazy bastard! :)

Lunatique
11-05-2002, 12:59 AM
Jason- Thanks for the explaination! At this point, most of it goes right over my head, since mel looks scary to me. But, I'll have to bite the bullet and learn it if I want my production pipeline to flow more freely.

Just so that I can you help feed your 15 children, take care of the mother with the gout, and a gallstone the size of Himalaya--no, wait, Mt. Everest, I went ahead and ordered $2,425 worth of training material from A/W, Gnomon, and Amazon.com. And yes, that's in American dollars.

I figured, if these teaching materials are put together by guys like you and Alex, they definitely pay for themselves in 10 folds when I sponge all that knowledge up. I need to have the quickest and dirtiest way to get my short up and running for production, and I just don't have the time to sit there for a year to fumble through everything by trial an error. I need to know the most effective pipeline and ways of working right off the bat, and guys like you and Alex are my guiding light.

jschleifer
11-05-2002, 01:03 AM
haha :)

glad to be able to help out! and please.. don't hessitate to ask questions and throw out ideas and share concepts and stuff like that. It's a growing industry and we're all learning every day!

I've got my own short I'm trying to figure out as well.. it's a fun but frustrating (at times) process! :)

-jason

Stahlberg
11-05-2002, 03:56 AM
Incredible, I wish I had Jason's brain...
Lunatique, if you fail at mel like me you might want to have a look at the JointFactory, a script that creates the best, most complex and yet most flexible and easily animated human rig I've ever seen, created by a couple norwegian guys working on a feature film. It's free at Highend3d.com

goosh
11-05-2002, 04:45 AM
Who is this Jason character?

Does he think he is working on the Lord of the Ring or something?

Oh wait...... damn!! :p

Jason, do you come up with all this stuff by yourself? or do you have a team of gnomes that stay up 27 hours a day thinking about new ideas?
Maybe the key is having 15 kids to juggle... Hhmm.. I should get myself some of those!! Do they come in different sizes?

:)

G

jason-slab
11-05-2002, 05:05 AM
lol jason & goosh

jason, i got some stale bread in the kitchen cupboard i can post?:D


:wavey:

|jason

Lunatique
11-05-2002, 01:33 PM
Steven- oh yeah, I came upon that months and months ago, except at the time, I thought rigging was still light years ahead of me, so I didn't give it any thought. Well, it looks like lightyears just went by. . ..

Jason- Wow, you're doing a short! I picture it as something very humorous. I think it's because of your laid back personality. BTW, HOW DID you learn all that mel? Did you study it as a hobby, or did you learn it all serious like a techie geek?

goosh- gnomes can program mel? Hot damn, I need to kidnap me a few.

Another question: Alex(gnomon) lives by wrap deformers for his animations. Are you guys using that method too?

jschleifer
11-05-2002, 07:28 PM
Mr. Stahlberg,

If I could model like you, I'd gladly give up half my brain to science, the other half to religion, and the other half to mathematical explorations... oh yeah, and I'd leave a bit over for checking out my girlfriend. :)

Linatique - yeah, working on it.. it's a story my brother wrote when he was 6 about a kid and his dog.. kinda morbid story for a six year old, but it should be fun. The challenge I'm having with it is tryign to use maya to make it look like crayon drawings... figuring out whether or not the paper texture should change every frame, or be static for a shot.. how wiggly the lines should be.. how to make the motion blur look like crayon blur and not smooth standard motion blur.. all that kinda stuff. But it'll be fun. I'll start posting stuff as I get further along. :)

Oh! and I learned mel mainly 'cuz I had to.. I started working at Alias|Wavefront when Maya was in alpha 1 or alpha 2... there was no file format at that point.. so the only way to reproduce what you were doing was to do it all in Mel. as that was about 7 years ago now, I've had quite a bit of time to get used to the language.. :)

Jason -
stale bread.. mmm. .crunchy! :)

goosh -
you kinda get forced to come up with this sorta stuff the more you do it. I HATE doing things over and over again.. if I'm doing something and I know I'm going to have to re-do it at some later point, I try and put it down into a mel script.. it's much easier that way... and I can spend more time watching tv and drinking new zealand wine. :)

Oh, as for skinning and such, I don't use the wrap deformer that often.. I've found it slow and not very accurate for my stuff. I usually end up just dealing with influence objects and joints.. but every new character is a new challenge, so who knows? the next creature I work on I may decide wrap deformers are the way to go! :)

-jason

jschleifer
11-05-2002, 07:29 PM
jeesus.. haha! I just looked at my last message.. I've got a friggin smiley face at the end of each paragraph!

I'm so predictable.









:)

bentllama
11-05-2002, 07:31 PM
Originally posted by jschleifer
jeesus.. haha! I just looked at my last message.. I've got a friggin smiley face at the end of each paragraph!

I'm so predictable.

:)

stop :) it :) Jason, :) right :) now! :)

jschleifer
11-05-2002, 07:45 PM
can't... help.....iiiiittt..... :argh:

Stahlberg
11-06-2002, 12:53 AM
LOL :) thanks :) Jason :)

Hey, I kinda dig wrap deformers, so much in fact I've never bothered very much to explore other possibilities. I did, a little, but who knows maybe I'm missing something by giving up to soon. Can you describe a typical place where you might use influence nodes? Shoulder blade? Kneecap? What shape was your influence node, what did the end result look like? (If you have a little screenshot detail that doesn't give away too much confidential info...) :)

jschleifer
11-06-2002, 03:08 AM
I pretty much use 'em everywhere.. buttocks, bicep.. tricep.. those ligaments on the side of your neck.. etc etc.

Unfortunately, I don't have anything I can post right now.. if ya got a model you want me to rig up, tho, I'd be happy to show you on that! :)

-jas

Lunatique
11-06-2002, 04:23 AM
Holy cow! Do it Steven Do it Steven Do it Steven!

A Stahlberg model with a Jason rig. Hot DAMN. I'm going to pass out.

Stahlberg
11-06-2002, 04:37 AM
:)
Wow, that's very helpful of you Jason, thanks. Hm, I seem to have lost your email when I changed computers so drop me a line and I'll send something.
edit: sorry forgot to give you mine in case you lost it too: stahlber@optidigit.com

CaptainSam
11-06-2002, 07:27 PM
Hi everyone, I just discovered this forum.

A coworker and I did a completely mel script based rig, The Joint Factory, for a feature film thats available for download at http://www.animagicnet.no/maya/jointfactory The current release is kinda old and needs to be updated for Maya 4.5; we got the latest version, which has been used inhouse for quite a while, coming out in a week or two.

Scripted setups is definitively the way to go if youre gonna deal with more than one or two characters. The way we wrote our rig, we also allow the animator to add setup functions locally in the animation file on a shot by shot basis, but we've found that this gets a bit too complicated when other studios we work with are using the rig, so for the next generation we're planning a totally different approach, where the whole rig will be built on the original model, but the animator then has tools to completely turn off or on certain functions (using a LOT of connectAttr/disconnectAttr stuff).

Another thing, if youre not really familiar with mel scripting, you may find it helpful to study some of the Joint Factory scripts, mainly the ones for arms, legs and spine, as theyre very simple with hardly any fancy programming tricks. I really didnt have a clue about scripting when I started on The Joint Factory, so the scripts only use the most basic commands possible (not even strings for node names, that just confused me too much at that time)

Stahlberg
11-07-2002, 01:07 AM
That's the one I was talking about. JF is one of the few free plugins I've tried that worked better than I expected; usually it's the other way around. :) The documentation is also unusually good.

bored alien
11-07-2002, 08:06 AM
Originally posted by jschleifer
Unfortunately, I don't have anything I can post right now.. if ya got a model you want me to rig up, tho, I'd be happy to show you on that! :)

-jas

Wow, very cool! Will the rest of us get to see some results from this collab? :applause:

bentllama
11-07-2002, 08:46 AM
And if you gents want someone to animate it... *cough*cough*

Lunatique
11-07-2002, 09:15 AM
Hehe. This is turning into a heap of fun. I like.

Laa-Yosh
11-07-2002, 01:09 PM
Wow, this thread is amazing, and on top of that it just came at the right time for me. I'm working on a project right now that has some relatively detailed characters to be built, rigged and skinned by yours truly... It's not my first character job in Maya, but this time I'm on my own - that is, I've been until I've found this thread.

Now I'm already helped a lot by the script listings and such, but I'm lame and will ask for more if it's possible. Since we are going to use mocap, most of the rigging will be hands and facial blend shapes (and there's no lyp-sinc involved, phew). The part I really fear is the skinning... On the previous job I resorted to a combination of smooth skin for the body and rigid skinned lattices for the limbs, it was fast to setup but haven't really looked good. A collegue was helping me out with painting the weights for the shoulders and pelvis, who's not here anymore.

So I'm a bit scared of this task and would jump around in the room like a happy monkey if I'd be able to get some help with this form you guys. I'm still doing the modeling for about 2-3 more weeks but I'll watch this place closely meanwhile ;)

jschleifer
11-07-2002, 06:32 PM
Hey everyone!

hopefully this weekend I'll get a few hours to start working with the model stephen sent over. I think what we'll probably end up doing is posting images of how the deformations work on the skin (the model isn't public, so can't be released), and discussing techniques for achieving them.

Instead of handing out a free rig to animate with, I may provide the steps used to build it.. including tips and tricks on how to build it correctly.. which will then provide you guys with the abilities to do it yourselves. I think that would probably be the most educational & help everone get something out of the experience.. don't you agree? :)

-jason

LichiMan
11-07-2002, 06:50 PM
Hey Jason,
Thanks a lot for your help.
I can't wait for that rig and tips.
Thanks again.

goosh
11-07-2002, 09:47 PM
Jason.

Awesome.. that's a perfect idea..
And yeah.. it's always much better to have to do it yourself than just getting something and only reading how it's done.

You learn 10 times more by doing.

I look forward to checking it out

Goosh

Iain McFadzen
11-07-2002, 10:14 PM
(this might be a good time to snag that spare Maya seat at work)

Lunatique
11-08-2002, 10:23 AM
Totally, Jason. You know the saying, "Teach a man to fish..."

:)

I can't wait.

If you didn't look so young, I'd ask you to adopt me. :D

blakboks
11-08-2002, 10:42 PM
I swear...the threads on this forum just keep getting better and better. I wish i would've known about it before, then i wouldn't have had to spend $120,000 on college :cry: . ok, just kidding, college is great. Anyway, Jason, i was just wondering if you were going to keep your tips/tut for the collaboration as software-independent as may be possible? for those of us who don't know maya (yet :p ).

Thanks

goosh
11-08-2002, 10:54 PM
blackboks... :shame:

Just get maya!!

:)

jschleifer
11-08-2002, 11:59 PM
Hurm... I'll do what I can to keep them as open as possible.. but as I don't know any other software as well as I know Maya, it will definitely be a "maya focused" discussion.

Probably most of the discussion will be on animation rigging technique, as I'm working on some more high-end skinning issues with another person.. and we're thinking about putting together a DVD on that sort of thing. As I haven't figured out exactly what that DVD will entail, I will only be able to give a few bits of info about that.. but hopefully the discussion will be useful. :) and hopefully I'll have time to do it soon!

-jason

Lunatique
11-12-2002, 01:03 AM
Steven, I read this in Maya: Secrets of the Pros, and I wanted to run this by you, since you gave me some great advice on Sub'D a while back:

http://www.cgtalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=28313

Do you have a workaround for the problem he mentioned?

Stahlberg
11-12-2002, 05:07 AM
My workflow (using wrap-deformers) permits me to very easily un-bind my Subd's, and do any scaling I need to do, then bind it again.
So my answer would be, I don't have a workaround because to me it's not a problem. :) How often do you need to scale your characters anyway?

sp0rk3d
11-12-2002, 07:57 AM
yeah Lunatique,
it has always been my experience to to avoid scaling chars.... escpecially when they are rigged.... always easier to scale the scene.... and beter still establish a scale for your project before you begin modeling,... i know that that doesn't always happen, but maybe if we all lived in an ideal world.... :)

Lunatique
11-12-2002, 09:54 AM
Speaking of scaling backgrounds, my years in the game industry has got me thinking 1 unit should equal 10 ft in real life(as in, if I were to have a huge floor, they'd be broken up into little 10x10 ft piece grid). Does that sound about right, or is that an idiosycracy associated with game development?

CaptainSam
11-12-2002, 01:43 PM
Originally posted by Stahlberg

So my answer would be, I don't have a workaround because to me it's not a problem. :) How often do you need to scale your characters anyway?

When the goddamn director can't make up his mind about the size of the characters until after animation has started of course

MDuffy
11-12-2002, 07:56 PM
Here at DNA Productions we have to build all our character rigs so that they are scaleable. Of course you build your characters and sets to a certain size to start with, but then you have them able to grow or shrink from there. Also our loaders are set up so that things like the upper arm, lower arm, and hands can each scale differently so that you can cheat perspective and the like (or so melon-headed stubby-armed characters can reach the top of their head!!!!). It takes a little extra care (and connections) in the rigging but it can certainly be done. Plus, when you have a show where a shrink ray is a prominent gadget..... (^_^)

I'd suggest avoiding scaling the sets if you can help it, because that trick won't work when you have multiple characters in a shot and only one of them needs to change scale. Best to create scaleable rigs in the first place.

And of course all this extra scaling is built into the scripts we use to automate our rigging.... just to keep the thread on track (^_^)

Later,
Michael Duffy
Software and Character TD
DNA Productions (Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius & The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron)
mduffy@ionet.net

Stahlberg
11-13-2002, 01:38 AM
CaptainSam - I hear your pain. :)

MDuffy - you reminded me, in my latest cartoony character, a rooster, I have changed the scale of his arms and hand bones after all the rigging was done and the SubD was wrap deformed - this must mean that it works right? Even though I simply lucked out, and never knew the danger... :)

http://www.androidblues.com/rooster.jpg

Lunatique - to me scale has never mattered much, since I did all my environments myself, and rarely worked with others. It only mattered in PowerAnimator I recall, when you were way too big or way too small, I should think it's still the same in Maya but I have no time nowadays to test the limits...

Lunatique
11-13-2002, 02:32 AM
Hahaha Steven, I just noticed you signature!! I guess the Chinese version would be, "..and she just ordered the Full Manchu-Han Banquet" Bwahahahahah!!

Stahlberg
11-13-2002, 04:51 AM
LOL Yeah that's from "Mystery Men", the Shoveler (William Macy) says it, in his most serious voice, when they're off to kick Casanova Frankenstein's butt. I love that movie, it has tons of great quotes...

(edit: changed my sig since then)

nendo
11-14-2002, 08:56 AM
This is my first post to the forum ! and I am a bit late but
I just need to say "a very big thank you " to Jason and
all the others, for sharing your knowledge and idea !

Fred :)

ivo D
11-26-2002, 11:04 AM
k im pretty impressed by al this.. want to know.. how this.. scipts all going im a max user.. dont know this all yet.. maxing for couple of months busy with this character..

http://www.threedy.com/showthread.php?threadid=1127&perpage=15&pagenumber=3


are there some tuts.. or good stuff..about the rigging scripts you all use.. or plugins.. and script lessons for max or however it goes.. caus i want to learn it to :-)

SplineGod
12-02-2002, 04:59 AM
Hey Jason,

Im curious about something.
When rigging a character I would be more interested more in your "philosphy" behind rigging...In other words WHAT are the things that a good rig should be able to do? Things like feet should stay locked, knees, hips, torso, arms , head. hands etc. Im more interested in that as opposed to rigging technically because there are many ways to make feet stick and so forth. When and where do you feel IK and FK are appropriate to use? What functions to you prefer to automate and which do you prefer direct control over? Do you rig based off a standard rig which you then customize or do you prefer to rig from scratch each time?
Thanks! :)

Laa-Yosh
12-08-2002, 04:13 PM
Originally posted by ivo D
k im pretty impressed by al this.. want to know.. how this.. scipts all going im a max user.. dont know this all yet.. maxing for couple of months busy with this character..

http://www.threedy.com/showthread.php?threadid=1127&perpage=15&pagenumber=3


are there some tuts.. or good stuff..about the rigging scripts you all use.. or plugins.. and script lessons for max or however it goes.. caus i want to learn it to :-)

You should try www.maxtd.com for a start about rigging. There's a pretty detailed tutorial for R4 written by Sergio Munico for custom IK setups (there's life beyond Biped :)

Also my pal (the one who wrote Meshtools) tells me that it's possible to build skeletons and rigs from Maxscript as well, but you'll have a bit harder time with the documentation...

Laa-Yosh
01-20-2003, 06:50 PM
Just wanted to thank Jason for his invaluable help here... I'm busy writing my own little rigging Mel scripts and all the advice here has been helping me a lot. Thanks again :)

Now let's get back to orienting joints... it's not fun, seems like I'll have to write different procedures for different parts of the body if I want it to be automated. Or is there some sort of a generic solution?

MDuffy
01-20-2003, 08:35 PM
I automate orientation of joints by using "up vector" objects during setup. For example, let's say you have your joints for Shoulder, Elbow, Wrist, and Hand (joint in middle of hand). In order to orient the joints you need two vectors: one down the chain and another that defines "up". The third vector is taken as the cross product between the two other vectors (inside the software and behind the scenes).

In Maya when you do a "joint -oj xyz" command you are telling it to point the x-axis down the bone (your first vector down the chain), and the z axis perpendicular to the chain (your vector solved behind the scenes). So where does it get the "up vector"? It uses the parent of the joint you are orienting to define "up".

You can control this up vector then by taking an object that represents your up vector, parenting the joint-to-orient to it, making sure the correct child is parented to the joint-to-orient, running your "joint -oj" command, then parenting the joint-to-orient to its correct parent.

I wrote a script that creates oriented joints for me. You pass it an up-vector object, an object which gives the position for the bone, an object which gives the position for its child, and a name for the new joint and the routine will create that joint. The up-vector and two positioning objects are just empty groups with their handles turned on that I use to position my skeleton before running the setup script that actually creates the joints and controls. Then in the routine I create a joint each for up, joint-to-orient, and child. I position each joint at the positions of the positioning objects passed to the routine. Then I orient the joint-to-be-oriented, delete the temp child and parent joints I had created, and I'm done! Since this routine will create and orient the joints in one step, all I have to do is parent them into position with my setup script once they are created.

I hope the above makes sense. I wish I could release the script I wrote that does the above, but it is owned by my employer. Sometime in the near future I hope to write a similar routine for my own home use, and I could release that one.


Later,
Michael Duffy
Character & Software TD, DNA Productions
mduffy@ionet.net

Laa-Yosh
01-20-2003, 09:26 PM
Thanks for the tips; although I think I'm also about to get the problem solved :)

I'm already building the skeleton using a set of locators to define joint positions. I might change that to a stand-in skeleton in the end because it should be easier to visualize and work with.

Now the joint orienting is done using an aim constraint (AFAIK this idea also belongs to Jason here, according to the guys I use as online help here :). I take the joint I want to orient, unparent it's children, define an upvector object (locator), constrain, then copy rotation values to joint orientation values. I then zero rotations and re-parent the children. For a chain, you have to start this at the end joint otherwise it'd corrupt the local rotational axes (at least for me here).

Your approach also sounds interesting and maybe even easier to implement - however I'm already finished with my procedure and all that's left is to include it in the skeleton building script :)

deddy
03-21-2003, 05:39 PM
i really confuse
what is animation rig ? and what to do between the first example that jason gave and the one that he wrote later about animation rig ?

please someone tell me
i think I really have to learn much

I currently working on a projec, a school project but I found that weighting is so hard. but im not sure if skeletal setup can help weighting a lot ?

thanks alot

shashi
03-22-2003, 07:56 AM
JASON FOR PRESIDENT:thumbsup:

jschleifer
03-22-2003, 06:33 PM
Originally posted by deddy
i really confuse
what is animation rig ? and what to do between the first example that jason gave and the one that he wrote later about animation rig ?


An animation rig is basically part of the concept that you should create separate rigs for animation and for skinning. Quite often you will have people start animating while others are still defining the skinning solution that you may be using for a character. By ensuring that the animation rig and the skin rig are two different files and that the animation transfers between them from the joints, you can make sure that the file you animate with is super fast and efficient, and the file that actually does the skinning is a complicated and up-to-date as you need. You can keep updating the skinning file as many times as you want, and you never have to worry about an animator having to pick up your latest changes.. in addition, if you change the animation controls, you don't have to change your skinning solution!

hope that helps!
-jason

Hugh
03-22-2003, 07:07 PM
How do you then connect the animation from the animation file to the skeleton in the skinning file?

jschleifer
03-22-2003, 07:14 PM
you can use the mov file format.. it will export the animation frame by frame for the joints/attributes you specify..

Hugh
03-22-2003, 07:18 PM
Cool - thanks - I'll look into that...

I'm working on a short at the moment that this will be useful for...

deddy
03-22-2003, 07:26 PM
and what about the weighting?
it seems to be super hard ?
we can use the weighting from the skinning file to the animation rig file ?

Scandell
03-28-2003, 03:22 PM
This thread is gold SOLID GOLD!

loked
04-13-2003, 02:27 AM
Hey,

I just discovered this thread & its really awesome. I see that it has'nt been updated for a while & I was just wondering why??

Jason, I was also just wondering if you ever got around to doing the tutorial you mentioned earlier in this thread?

One of the biggest problems I have is the skinning process. All my rigs are cool in terms of the controls and skeletons, but when it comes time to skin, it always seems impossible to get good results. Please if anyone has tips for this, please post them.
Thanks
loked

ilasolomon
04-14-2003, 11:18 PM
Sticky, Sticky!...

loked
04-14-2003, 11:21 PM
ila_solomon Sticky, Sticky!...

Meaning what?? :surprised

loked

ilasolomon
04-14-2003, 11:29 PM
:) I meant "please make this thread Sticky!"

loked
04-14-2003, 11:31 PM
Oh, my bad.:hmm: I dont even know what it means to make a thread sticky. Im assuming it just means that it doesnt move down??

Later!
loked

bentllama
04-16-2003, 07:28 AM
this thread sticky sticky for limited time!!!

...act now and you get all our other threads absolutly free!

SplineGod
04-16-2003, 08:03 AM
One thing I do is have the high rez character and the standin character loaded and attached at the same time to the same bones. When I wish to animate I have a script that temporarily turns off all deformations and makes the hi rez character invisible while at the same time makes the low rez standin visible. The standin character is cut up into parts that are simply parented to various bones.
This allows me to have a "mode" for animating and a "mode" for checking my deformations simply by clicking on a button to switch "modes" Its nice and fast. :)

Laa-Yosh
04-16-2003, 09:31 AM
I dunno... there are a couple of things against having both the high res and low res rigs in one scene.

For a start, high res meshes and lots of deformers, and maybe even muscle setups and such as well, will give you a huge scene file. Thus the animators have to spend a lot of time waiting while they open the scene, save the scene, and have the autosave feature saving the scene (that should happen at least every 15 minutes). If you have more than one character in the scene, these kinds of problems will add up pretty fast and you'll get incredibly large files.
The other thing is that sometimes you want to have more than two rigs, for example an animation, a skinning and a cloth rig; or multiple resolutions of the same character. In such cases, having all the rigs attached to the same skeleton in one scene file wouldn't really work.

However there are obvious advantages in being able to check your high res rig with a mouse click... but I think that for scenes with medium or high complexity, it's better to keep the rigs separate...

SplineGod
04-16-2003, 09:33 AM
Of course that depends entirely on which software youre using. :)

Laa-Yosh
04-16-2003, 09:34 AM
Hm, let me add that Lightwave is definitely a different beast in this case, because of keeping separate model and scene files. So you don't have to save the high res geometry each time :)

Edit: heh, that was quick :)

loked
04-16-2003, 09:57 AM
Hey,

For anyone who has bought Jason's Fast Animation Rigs DVD for Maya, there is a script that he has created that imports and exports between the hi-res and the lo-res geometry.

Now that Im typing this, Im actually forgetting exactly what the script did, so if thats not what it did, please correct me. :surprised

Anyway, the problem I see with that method, is that if you have a really dense character model, it'll take too long to import the character just to view the deformation and then export it again to view animation.

I would just have seperate scenes with different versions, develop a pipeline that lets you import and export animation and then every now and again go and import your animation to the hir-res geometry and check that it deforms nicely. If the character is setup well and tested, you should already have some kind of an idea how its going to deform and where there will be problems.

If Im wrong about what that script does, please forgive me, I saw the DVD once a while back when it first came out!! :bounce:

Laa-Yosh
04-16-2003, 10:26 AM
Well, ideally your high res rig should deform perfectly all the time so you don't need to check it during animation :) The practice is however that things go wrong, but you should fix the rig and not the animation in this cases...
Anyway, we're usually working with mocap here, so there's no option to get the mocap talent to check if he's creating good deformations - it just has to work out somehow in the end :)

jschleifer
04-16-2003, 07:50 PM
Heya!

actually, I like to use the referencing script that I wrote to just reference in different animation resolutions.. and then I have a totally separate skinning file which takes the animation and does all the rendering with that. By having different resolution skinning models I can ensure that I've got a version of the rig for just blocking, one for adding more detail, and one for finalizing. That way I know I'm not getting ahead of myself when animating, as I can't animate stuff that I shouldn't animate yet.

-jason

MDuffy
04-16-2003, 09:59 PM
Our character rigs contain both the skinned "high rez" version as well as the segmented-and-parented-to-bones "proxy" version of the character. We can toggle between the proxy or high rez with a switch, and we have separate switches for the head and body. Since the high rez version just has blendshapes and smooth skinning usually, it isn't all that slow to turn on or too heavy on the scene. All our character rigs are referenced into the scenes so that the scenes themselves don't become all that large. The animators will usually animate in proxy mode, and then switch to high rez if they need to check the deformation closer and for rendering previews. When the high rez geometry is hidden, Maya naturally turns off the deformers so we don't have to manually turn them off ourselves. Since we aren't doing cloth, muscle, skin, or hair simulations we don't have need for a slower "simulation" rig.

For my own personal rigs and for future rigs that might require simulation, I'm going to be exploring an approach similar to what Jason talked about in his Fast Character Rigs DVD (I was at his SIGGraph talk the DVD is based on, but don't have that DVD itself.) Actually I'm going to be exploring an approach where the deform rig (parenting, skinning, or simulation) is separate from the control rig (which holds all the animation). Then the deform rig would be loaded and constrained to control rig, or switched out with another deform rig as needed, while the control rig would always remain in the scene. Dunno how well it will work or if the constrain nodes will slow it down too much and outweigh the benefits.


Later,
Michael Duffy
mduffy@ionet.net

loked
04-16-2003, 10:17 PM
Jason: Aah, thats what the script did, I was close:rolleyes:

Dont you wanna give some tips on how you skin characters. Thats probably the number one problem Im having and there is'nt really alot of resources out there for skinning.


loked

Atwooki
04-17-2003, 01:39 AM
Someone hit the nail on the head earlier....
This thread is PURE GOLD! :)
Can't thank you enough for your generosity and valuable time, Jason...
You're one helluva Guy! :)

Atwooki

Michel Besner
06-18-2003, 11:45 AM
Most animators have a really hard time building re-useable character rigs allowing them to pre-built animation clips.

This is why at Kaydara we have built a re-useable character rig that works with any character sizes and proportions and has automatic features such as hand/feet floor contact.

MOTIONBUILDER works with any 3D app (max, LW, maya, xsi) and is available until July 31st at an amazing promotion of $100 for a one-year license (we will offer to all those who purchased this license to convert to a lifetime permanent license for another $100)

M.

ZeroNeuro
08-06-2003, 07:10 PM
:eek:

I feel like a newborn fish with a pituitary disorder, who was just caught out of the creek by aliens and taken to a vast planet of purple ocean and living silicon based rock lifeforms...

(Ritchie hugs his lightrigs)

Jason, I was wondering. I asked you a while back and I think you touched on it for me... but I have this huge honking beast based from a lovecraft nightmare that has like a whole host of tentacles and weird slimy nodules. It will take me a while to model since I am more of a set modeller, lighting td and rendering kinda guy... but was just wondering, is there an easier way to rig tentacles other than using a ton of joints and doing the stop motion animation joint by joint keying trick? I mean this thing is going to have so many tentacles my computer might die. So to relate this to the topic (lol) is it at all possible to reuse joint rigs within the same character model?

Maybe I should stick to sets and lighting. :blush:

Cheers
Ritchie Roberts
ZeroNeuro Arts Ltd.

jschleifer
08-06-2003, 10:56 PM
you can rig 'em with wire deformers, which might help.. or use a bunch of influence objects that the animator just moves around.. or you can use cloth/syflex.. or spline ik.. it all depends on the type of control you want the animators to have.

For the watcher inthe water (lord of the rings, film 1) we used a combo of spline IK and fk depending on what the animator wanted. it worked really well! :)

-jas

nottoshabi
09-05-2003, 02:04 AM
Well I see this tread is changing towards skinning, wich is a great thing. And speaking of skinning. What would be the most productive and ifficent way of skiining a verry detailed, smoth poly model?

I mean do you attach the smoth rez directly to the joints, or do you have, like a unsmoth version of the smoth rez and skin that to the joints and add all the muscle work and influence object to that perticular unsmoth rez. And then attach that to the smoth version?

If: Yes. What method would you recomend?

If: No. Y not?

Vlad Gabriel
10-06-2003, 12:12 AM
Hello people! :cool:


Jason, u were saying on the "Integrating A Creature Whithin A Production Pipeline" dvd something about a script that keeps the the spline ik curve the same length. Could you tell me where i can find that script or something similar or even a cheap tip will be cool .


Thanks,


-Gabriel

loked
10-06-2003, 12:15 AM
Hey Gabriel,

I'd suggest going to Jason's website and asking this question on his forum. It's got a section just for questions on his DVD. Here is the link:

Jonh and his dog (http://jonhandhisdog.com)

later:wavey:
loked

JA-forreal
12-02-2003, 07:35 PM
Originally posted by bentllama
Most of my rigging for bipedal creatures is automatic. The beatuy of MEL is that you can script the usual grunt labour you repeat all the time...

Do you have to adjust the weights for the joints greatly? Or is the automatic weighting near perfect?

In Blender we have a new auto skinning feature. I have yet to use it. Some folks say it works perfectly but itís a new feature so I have not made use of it. The auto skinning process seems to be the way to go if it works ok in an app. Manual is always more reliable. In 3d reliable methods are often slow.

loked
12-02-2003, 07:54 PM
From what I've experienced the procedural stuff never quite does everything for you to prefection, but it does do a vast majority of work that otherwise would become tedious and boring. There is always a bit of manual tweaking and stuff you need to do in order to get really good results. Anybody that is looking for a one button perfect rig is asking for a bit too much :)

Procedural muscle rigs are a really good starting point to much better deformation though.

later:wavey:
loked

nobrain
12-17-2003, 07:21 PM
hey Jason,

thx for all the postings, even though I use max.

My main problem is getting some of the vertices on the fingers and toes unstuck. I'm guessing this is an amateurs problem, probably nothing any of you get phased by.

cheers man!

JA-forreal
12-24-2003, 08:47 PM
Originally posted by nobrain
hey Jason,


My main problem is getting some of the vertices on the fingers and toes unstuck. I'm guessing this is an amateurs problem, probably nothing any of you get phased by.

cheers man!

I think that it is always best to work in stages and save often. I have ruined many a rig while trying to setup a working rig. Most animators use some method of assigning weight groups often before a rig is applied. At that time you can make sure that every part is assigned. You can use automatic weighting if your app allows this. It is so much easier to adjust weights later on.

Nemises
02-11-2004, 01:21 AM
Speaking of skinning :)

On a "naked" character biped (good examples are Cave troll and Gollum), how were seem problem's overcome between the body and head?

Is it practical to have one single Sub-D mesh (head and body and arms/hand, legs/feet all one mesh) over your rig/deformers ?..or is there clever ways to eliminate seem issues in SubD's.

I guess I worry about having a very large and complex subD mesh, some areas being effected by influence objects or as a Wrap (body/arms/legs) , and some areas effected by Clusters and Blendshapes (Face, neck, hands)...however, is this how it is "done" on the whole?

Be great to know, as It'll point me in the right direction to find a solution for my own Character issue :)

As it is a Naked character, there is no segmenting or clever disguising of seems with bits of clothing/collars etc.

Cheers for any thoughts anyone might have on the topic :) (and yes, think it is related to the topic of Rigs ;) )

PEN
07-16-2004, 03:38 PM
However, the program I use (MAX) does not support reusing skinning and deformations (correct me if I am wrong). It sounds like you are using Maya, so I don't know if it is possible in that program.

I hope that helps
Max does support this actualy and does a great job of it. You can do it in several ways.

if you are using the same rig with similar naming conventions you can save the envelope and weight data out to and file and load it back into the new character. If the vertex count and order has changed and you have weighted the verts with paint weights or weight table then this method will not work.

Another method if every thing is the same is to just copy the Skin modifier off of one character and paste it on another. We do this all the time to update a character mesh in an already animated scene.

Next method is more flexable because the vert count, size and shape of character can change all that you like. In the Tools Panel go to more and open SkinUtilities. Here you can select the original mesh, press bake to mesh, which will create a mesh with all the saved Skin data stored in it. Merge this mesh with the new character. Add Skin to the new character and add the bones to it. Select both the new mesh and the baked mesh and in the SkinUtilities press Import Skin Data From Mesh. Just so you know you can remodel the skin data mesh any way that you want to make it fit the new mesh. the closer that it is the better the result will be. You can also use this tool to extract weights from one side of a character and paste it to the other. You would only need to do this if the character wasn't even close to being a mirror copy. You can just model up the data mesh to fit the other side and then import the data from it.

PEN
07-16-2004, 04:08 PM
Hurm... I'll do what I can to keep them as open as possible.. but as I don't know any other software as well as I know Maya, it will definitely be a "maya focused" discussion.
-jason
I wanted to say thanks for all the information Jason. I do allot of rigging in both Max and Maya and your process is great to hear. I do most of my work in the TV series market and some feature work.

As for the discussion being maya focused that is fine. Max and maya as well as others are very similar in what you can do but getting there is often quite different. If you know other packages you can usualy apply this information with a few changes to reflect different tools.

Once again thanks, and thanks for all your great work.

PEN
07-16-2004, 04:32 PM
Another method for dealing with high and low res rigs like what Jason was talking about is to use constraints instead of copying animation.

So the animators work with the animation rig that is fast and doesn't require all the extras that you need for skinning a character. The TD's work with an FK rig that has all the extras and they skin to that rig. Merge the skin rig into the animation file and constrain the skin rig to the animation rig. This allows the animator to see both at once and even make small changes to the animation while seeing the final character. This isn't something that you would want to do with a character like gullom as he is so complex but I work mostly on TV series in Max and this is a very fast workflow since we can merge and delete the final character at any point in the animation process. I have a full set of Max scripts that run this and make it seamless to the animators and lighters.

A host of scripts for speeding up rigging is also the answer to all your rigging problems.

ionec75
08-24-2004, 04:45 PM
does anyone try to use Houdini for character? I heard that the digital assets does the same thing that you guyz want.

dantea
08-25-2004, 02:41 AM
Yep. Ask around odforce's forum:
http://odforce.net/forum/

mranimator
12-20-2004, 11:11 AM
Hello :thumbsup:

4 all users of max i would like u to try this bones rigging ....which i have linked to move 4 legs

select any circle or the middle point to move the system .... thanks

http://mranimators.siteatnet.com/fo...ators/bones.max (http://mranimators.siteatnet.com/foreign/mranimators/bones.max) (download this file)

MystikGotan
01-14-2005, 08:16 PM
Hi guys,

if I'm posting this in the wrong section, please let me know.

I'm in the process of making of movie called Lord of the Mojo. It's pretty well based on our own storylines but does have some some LotR elements, because we do wanted to get a feel of it, because it's such a great movie.

So we have Gollum, a CG character. Doesn't really show up in our fist part, but will be (far) more significnally in the 2nd/3rd part. So I got myself a modeller already. It's pretty much our first movie, and it's a feature film, so that means I've got a lot to learn, montage, sound, etc. We've got a crew of 4 people and 2 other assistants (camerra and conceptual).

Now for my question... I've got to get him rigged and textured, I've already practised on animation and I think I'll cope with that... But tips for rigging? I don't have that much time to delve into the art of rigging (not to mention texturing). Any tips? Is it hard to find one who would like to rig Gollum for me, or will I have a fair chance of doing it myself?

Getting just a basic feel of Gollum in our first part of LotM is essential, for now we don't have the need or urge to create a great or outstanding result. So would it be reasonable if I would say that if I would got through the Max UR and do some tutorials in the Tutorials index from Max, then I would get a pretty adequete Gollum?

I'm pretty new to the world of 3d, so some detailed feedback would be great...

Thanks in advance for your replies,

Gotan

Burly08
09-29-2006, 03:10 AM
I'm definitely favoriting this thread :).

lostcat
10-12-2006, 03:36 PM
Put your rt_hand_ctr in the air and sine wave like you just dont care!

I wanted to build a reusable rig for a biped for a long time, I bought a few books on the subject such as Inspired 3d, Advanced rigging and deformations and Maya Character animation. In fact, those are very helpful and I recommend them for people who want to learn how to design a character rig. But I'm starting all over again this time and I want to automate the process so I can learn Mel and make myself a puppet rig that is fun to play with.

Some questions:

Is it possible and can you share some tricks on how to improve the pretty cool yet not perfect FBIK? Like is it possible to hack it or to build on top of it and make it a little more custom. Are you guys using it only for mocap animation... is it something that can be expended let say to drive a deformation rig?

lostcat
10-12-2006, 03:37 PM
oops... I did a double post :rolleyes:

seema
10-13-2006, 05:58 PM
Hi jason/or anyone who can help,

I am looking for a solution with which i can switch bet. low>High res rigs without losing any info. Using you rigUI script(fast anim rigs) I am able to transfer animation data as you are using the same animCurves to connect, but my question is ,how to handle constrained animations? Like for eg: if an animator has constrain the low:COG to a locator in the scene , when he switches to high res the constraint is not gonna work.And if i bake animation n then trafer it, i get too many keys and also he losing the capacity to animate the cog with the locator.

So,I personally prefer replacing reference, as it takes animation data as well as constarints and other connections as well .Why have you tranfered link between animNode instead of replacing reference? I am sure its for a good purpose, and I would love to kno y to understand its uses betr. Thanks for your time :-)

shiftmax
03-08-2007, 08:27 AM
I have a snake to rig !
is there any tutorial or idea about rigging the snake?
waiting for your help!

Vlad Gabriel
03-08-2007, 10:51 AM
But, you can rig that snake using the spline ik.:thumbsup:

ashchauhan1981
09-17-2007, 06:12 AM
hi guys i need u r help for some rigging work .i want link spline vertex with dummy or other object in 3ds max , if somebody know how to do this .pls tell me.

adamghering
09-30-2007, 08:57 AM
Hi guys,


Now for my question... I've got to get him rigged and textured, I've already practised on animation and I think I'll cope with that... But tips for rigging? I don't have that much time to delve into the art of rigging (not to mention texturing). Any tips? Is it hard to find one who would like to rig Gollum for me, or will I have a fair chance of doing it myself?

Getting just a basic feel of Gollum in our first part of LotM is essential, for now we don't have the need or urge to create a great or outstanding result. So would it be reasonable if I would say that if I would got through the Max UR and do some tutorials in the Tutorials index from Max, then I would get a pretty adequete Gollum?


Gotan

Ok Check this out,

If you are indeed doing this in max then you're in better shape than if you were doing this in maya. The tutorial section that comes with Max is comprehensive, easy to understand, and liberaly hyper-linked for anything you aren't up to speed on. It is so good that I have yet to find a book on the market for Max that I needed to buy. There are tutorials for beginning rigging all the way to advanced production rigs. It builds it in parts so getting through it will give you the framework for piecing together other non-specific rigs for multiple uses and a good portion was written in part or in whole by fellow master rigger and poster Paule Neale. The characters covered are cartoon based and if you want a more comprehensive Max rigging experience you can purchase Paul's rigging tutorial DVDs from CG Academy. From layered rigs to muscle systems it provides step by step instructions for taking rigging to the next level. Great asset for anyone in a character pipeline.

The best advice is not to get frustrated. There is a reason they call it a black art and I read through the same tutorials about twenty times with twenty failed rigs before I understood everything but it pays off.

Good Luck with your film,

rcarr
02-21-2008, 06:54 PM
ashchauhan1981 (http://forums.cgsociety.org/member.php?u=295356)

you can use spline select then select the vert you want then use linked x form to bind it to another helper or object:thumbsup:
R:)B

kataze
04-05-2009, 10:56 AM
Hi Guys , i have a Question , (I am Maya user)
I want to reuse my rig , after i re-position my bone to the correct place , and the controller may be change the value (i.e , tranlate X from 0 to 7 on my controller )

So i was wonder if there is a way , can let it inherit the offset , than the controller still be value at 0 .

Seems a little hard to explain what i want to say ,Hope someone can understand what i`m saying :)

vvkonline
10-11-2009, 01:13 AM
most of the time you should use an offset group, some people call it hook, where you have group on top of controller, this way you can move your offset group and preserve zeroed out controller.

CinqMars
03-23-2010, 08:07 PM
Hello,
I am quite noob in animation but i've to do a short movie in my work with 3dsMax2010.
The problem is that i have 2 characters, quite similar in the modeling but differents, and i have 2 short movies to do with each of them. Animations, rigging, and all will be the same between the 2 movies, only the character will change.

I have to estimate the length of work i will have, and I wonder if I shall to do again all anims 2 times or if I can only do again the skinning. In the same way, which would be the best method between biped (character studio> can save .bip) and bones/personal rigging (don't know how to re-use my anim work), morph or splines (bones) skinning for facial anim?

I am a bit lost thanks for help me!

JormaSoranen
09-18-2011, 05:20 PM
I just wrote about a similar topic here: http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?f=54&t=1008276