PDA

View Full Version : Character Update 3


DickM
05-01-2006, 05:48 PM
Hey Guys
Been a while since I shared my progress with my "Hero" character. So here's the facial rig almost complete. Just a few remaining fixes. This is just a test animation for some of the sliders. All the sliders in this clip work correctly except for the eyebrow sliders.

They control the eyebrows ok but I'm having trouble getting them to control the eyeball deformations. When I slide the control I want the eyeball to stretch with the upward movement of the eyebrow. Currently I have to do this part by hand. I don't want to. I want this face rig to be very simple to control. The problem I currently face is getting the starting value of the eye deformer to stay at the correct amount. When I enable this script the stretch deformers value changes squashing the eye. I'm currently trying to fix this. Once it's fixed, I move on to rigging the body. I'll keep you up to date with my progress.

http://www.morleyarts.com/post/hero-facerig01.mov

AVTPro
05-01-2006, 06:18 PM
That's pretty funny!! It's good to see EI's treasures being unlocked.

one small crit: One control for the lower eyelids.

I like the icons on the antennae controls.

DickM
05-01-2006, 06:43 PM
Thx Alonzo!
There actually is a control for the lower lids. It's the control called "happy" in the eyelids panel. I named it this because when you smile, your lower lids come up. :)

Yeah, I was kinda pleased myself with the antenna icons ;)

Vizfizz
05-01-2006, 09:39 PM
Very nice Richard.. However, you can see why EI really needs a better method of handling custom channel data. I really wish you could create custom channel attributes on EI nulls and have access to their data in a nice convient location. Massively important. Oh and while we're at it.. a new method of creating sliders inside of EIAS would be great.

DickM
05-01-2006, 10:11 PM
Thx Brian
I totally agree. I've been using A:M recently and I must say, it's sliders setup is really nice and makes sense. No more eyelids cutting into the eyes halfway through the morphing. You set what you want it to look like at 100% then at 0%, then anywhere in the middle of the slider you can set a different one. I WISH ei would get something like this :banghead: !!! I can see myself using A:M a lot more in the future. Just wish it had Camera ;)

cjberg
05-01-2006, 10:32 PM
Brian,

I think we are all in agreement that EIAS can use some CA tools. you mention custom channels in nulls. Dont know what you are referring to, but XP can create custom channels. I tend to use nulls (which can be created on the fly) as I feel they transport better than custom channels.

Cj

Vizfizz
05-01-2006, 10:59 PM
Well.. essentially I'm taking my que from Maya.

Any object, null or not, can have attributes added which appear as animation channels in the Channel Box. Added attributes can have boolean, integer or floating values and a user established "range". Once the channel exists, set driven keys can be generated that tie into that custom channel. For example, a setting of zero, the hand is at rest. A setting of +5 the hand is flexed completely open and a set key is made, a setting of -5 the hand clenches to a fist and another set key is made.

Now, with that custom channel, any value from -5 to +5 will produce animation on those joints which have been set keyed into position. Works great and multiple objects or joints can be controlled by a single attribute.

3DArtZ
05-02-2006, 03:02 PM
DickM, please don't let the secret out about A:M :)

I wish camera would allow the rendering of other applications files..... that would
open up EI to the rest of the world....


Mike Fitz
www.3dartz.com (http://www.3dartz.com)

DickM
05-02-2006, 06:14 PM
I agree, Camera is the one big thing that is stopping me from leaving EIAS :bowdown: . It's so freaking fast and looks so damn good. A:M's render is soooooooo slowwwwwww :cry:

3DArtZ
05-02-2006, 06:25 PM
I agree, Camera is the one big thing that is stopping me from leaving EIAS :bowdown: . It's so freaking fast and looks so damn good. A:M's render is soooooooo slowwwwwww :cry:

Well, things can be done to speed up A:M's renderer for sure. But it certainly is not fast like
Camera.

Any programmer types out there have any "hypothesis" on Camera being able to
render scene files from other apps?

Mike Fitz
www.3dartz.com (http://www.3dartz.com)

FelixCat
05-02-2006, 06:32 PM
The DickM experiments are quite impressive, as we can see EiAS is far vehind when we try CA. Im moving to CA too and find some very anoying drawbacks like to have to make a quicktime render just to test the lipsync.
FelixCat

Vizfizz
05-02-2006, 06:46 PM
EIAS was not originally intended for character work.. however, they have made some decent strides. More character tools are unquestionably needed and hopefully after the completion of the Mactel port EITG will decide to work on this. If anything, we as a community really need to come together to influence EITG's direction on future upgrades. Typically in an upgrade we get an array of different things.. which is nice cause its fun to see different areas of the program advance at the same time.. however, perhaps EITG should switch to a more focused upgrade plan and announce a specific area to address with each upgrade. Version 6.5 kinda became the FBX upgrade.

I could see the following upgrades:

1. Character upgrade
2. Modeling upgrade
3. Utilities and workflow upgrade
4. Dynamics upgrade
5. Particle upgrade

Thing is.. EI tends to be a be secretive on what they plan to work on next. I can respect that.. but shouldn't the users have a say in the direction the program goes next?

DickM
05-02-2006, 07:32 PM
Yeah Felix. I recently completed a lip sync test in A:M in less than half the time it takes me in EIAS. Audio scrubbing is an absolute necessity in my opinion.

Well if I recall, 3d Studio wasn't started out aiming at CA either. Apps evolve with what the wants and needs are. EIAS has just been slower evolving in the area of CA. Honestly I don't think they will make huge strides in this area. EI knows what it's good at. I'm guessing it's just going to make that part better with a small CA addition now and then. Don't get me wrong, fbx is a big addition. But as far as ca tools themselves go is what I mean.

If I can figure out an fbx A:M to Camera solution, I''m set. Here's to dreaming :beer:

AVTPro
05-31-2006, 04:39 AM
My hope is that EIAS doesn't lose any ground in what it currently offers [Think: EIM]. I hope they mantain the character animation performance and ease of use we have become accustomed to [Think: Wmps].

I applaud EIAS for efforts over the years (FCE, Morphs, EIM, Bones, skinning, IK, XP and FBX).

Yes, they were always a little behind the times but so was I...so it evened out. Every time they added something, I had no idea what it was, so they raised me, not the other way around. (" What am I suppose to do with this new feature?"). I had to alway go learn what UVs or Edge Loops or kinesiology was about in principle first, then apply it technically in EI.

I didn't know what cage modeling was or Ubers, or morph target. It been as evolutionary as for me as with them. I'm only recently learned box/cage modeling tho I have been modeling for years. I remember when I first saw an Autodesk Mouse character sitting on top of a piano singing a song. I had no clue how they made the mouth move (morph) as a single object ? I just knew I didn't want to be left out... and EI as kept me in the building, and insider to the game.. I have had several practical careers and dreams come true cause of EIAS.

Some people always knew they wanted to do character animation and jumped shipped as soon as Max or Soft came to NT. You couldn't beat me over the head with LW or Max to get me to use it. i have had several opportunities to learn PowerAnimator, but I wasn't ready back then. I'm glad that EI has been a slower maturation process for me. Gave me time to marinate and learn on my own.

I use to call them slow, but really it was me.

AVTPro
05-31-2006, 05:03 AM
Thx Brian
I totally agree. I've been using A:M recently and I must say, it's sliders setup is really nice and makes sense. No more eyelids cutting into the eyes halfway through the morphing. You set what you want it to look like at 100% then at 0%, then anywhere in the middle of the slider you can set a different one. I WISH ei would get something like this :banghead: !!! I can see myself using A:M a lot more in the future. Just wish it had Camera ;)

Considering EIAS CA Tools are consistently the same, this is the only tool I would need to do basic run of the mill CA animation. The basics. Character need seamless eyelids, and not only separate cartoony eyes, like Pupil or Frankie but like my new character QP.

I'm hoping this can be done easily in XP.

With EI, my hope is to do basic CA animations for low cost commercial spots. ...reliably.

chikega
06-15-2006, 04:49 PM
It seems that after the Acquistion of MotionBuilder by Alias and Alias' subsequent acquisition by Autodestk - FBX's goal of being the standard as an animation exchange format has been put into question. I have MotionBuilder Standard but I'm not able to cough up the money for the forced upgrade to the professional version. This has left an incredibly bitter taste in the mouths of many MB Standard users.

It's interesting to note that XSI has added Point Oven (http://www.ef9.com/)or the .mdd format as an additional way of transferring animation between various programs including messiah, LW and Maya. Maybe EIAS should consider the .mdd format as well and they actually wouldn't have to pay any licensing fees which I believe is required if one wants to include FBX in their app. I believe this fee may have prevented even smaller companies like pmG (messiah) from adding the FBX format. Just a thought.

harryb
06-15-2006, 06:43 PM
Hi Richard,

This is GREAT! How in the world did you make this rig? As far as I can tell there's nothing about setting up face rigs like this in any EI manual I've ever read. Could you please tell me how you figured out how to do this? I know how to set up morph targets -- and I agree totally with you about EI getting better slider controls -- but how did you create this interface? This is just what I've been looking for.

Again, this is really cool! You have my total respect! :thumbsup:

DickM
09-04-2006, 07:03 PM
Hey Harry
Wow, sorry for the huge delay. I stopped looking at this thread and never got an email saying you replied :(

Actually I'm writing up something now on the setup of this entire character "Captain Electric". Not so much a tutorial, rather a study.

Also, I will be posting new animations done with this character. I'm pleased with how flexible the rig is but there are limits before massive tearing and pinching ensues. Anyway, I'll post some stuff hopefully a little later this week.

Thanks Harry :)

harryb
09-05-2006, 03:05 PM
Hi Richard,

Don't worry about the late reply. Things have been a bit busy on my end too. I'm looking forward to your tutorial!

Take Care,

Harry

CGTalk Moderation
09-05-2006, 03:05 PM
This thread has been automatically closed as it remained inactive for 12 months. If you wish to continue the discussion, please create a new thread in the appropriate forum.