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View Full Version : How to easily animate a flapping bandana...?


Irie
02-27-2003, 02:51 AM
Heya guys...

I am working on getting a character to have a constantly flapping bandana.

heres a screenshot of the setup i have so far

http://iatepaste.com/ganymede/Herb_And_Skills/misc/ScreenShot61.jpg


So, what i did so far is add bones into both tails of this headdress and set weight maps for both tails of it. Now, what i want to know is, how can i use these bone chains to animate the tails flapping in the wind constantly... I have attempted to put MoDesigner on them, but for some reason, it takes my computer down to a crawl... and i cant work at that speed :)

so, is there a good way to set this up for easy animation?

thanks
Matt



P.S. If you have any tips for MoDesigner...and how to do it without the slowdown, by all means...

Nonproductive
02-27-2003, 03:16 AM
hrmm...maybe noisy channel on the root bone and then that recently posted plugin that did automatic seconday motion on bones?

Not sure how it would work with a longer chain of bones - since the example used a simple 2 bone chain and I haven't played with it too much yet.

or maybe combine noisy channel and the plugin on various "pairs" of bones?


What the hell do I know - I'm all juiced up on caffeine and Splinegod's bone tools pics :) I think I should test my "theories" before I post...

Triple G
02-27-2003, 04:07 AM
I'm no expert with MD....not by a long shot....but aren't you supposed to animate everything first, then leave the MD calculations for last? In other words, don't do anything to the scarf while you're animating your character. Once you've got the character's motions finalized, then run the MD simulation, save it, and assuming all is well, then render. I could be wrong, but that's the way I always thought it worked.

Short of that, you might try a multi-layered displacement map and use the bones to fine-tune if things get out of control. Or maybe noisy channel or oscillate on the base bones, with slightly different follower settings on down the chain?

Irie
02-27-2003, 04:36 AM
thx for both replies.. I have been playing with motion modifiers etc.

I think you could be right triple g... i might just make a totally different scene file with a seperate bandana and just parent it later.

thx and any more help is greatly appreciated

SplineGod
02-27-2003, 05:34 AM
I would use bones to grossly move the bandana and displacment maps for the rest. Simple, quick and easy. :)

Irie
02-27-2003, 05:37 AM
splinegod,

thx for your reply. so you think that i should maybe get a simple keyframe loop of some crude flapping motion and add a displacement to the surface? what kind of displacement map would get a good wavy look? turbulence?

i appreciate your tip

matt

wok
02-27-2003, 05:49 AM
I'm no MD expert either, and tend to agree with Triple G. I used motion designer just the other day to make a cape on one of my characters, I found that it was taking ages to calculate so i eventually removed the cape and done some seperate tests just on that particular object, so i could get the settings right. Once i was happy with the cape settings i saved them, then went to work on animating my character, once happy with that i added the cape cape into the scene (loaded motion designer settings) and walked away for a while. It really didn't take to long and the results were quite good!! better than i thought!!

Good luck!!!

SplineGod
02-27-2003, 06:14 AM
Originally posted by Irie
splinegod,

thx for your reply. so you think that i should maybe get a simple keyframe loop of some crude flapping motion and add a displacement to the surface? what kind of displacement map would get a good wavy look? turbulence?

i appreciate your tip

matt
That sounds like a plan to me.

wgreenlee1
02-27-2003, 07:15 AM
I vote for .mdd.
I find everytime I use it it gets easier to use.:thumbsup:

wgreenlee1
02-27-2003, 07:19 AM
Screenshot

Facial Deluxe
02-27-2003, 07:41 AM
Motion designer works great, but you have to planify your work a little. It is better to use non SDS object for preview calculation, and turn SDS on when calculation is done. Also a nice trick is to use template objects for colision, this objects only needs to be unseen by both camera and rays :)
Here's a little test I did, it didn't take too long to preview :


MD test (http://mapage.noos.fr/facial2/Comp2.avi)

Irie
02-27-2003, 07:44 AM
cool!

the problem is not with not understanding MoDes.... i already have the bandana flapping correctly, and honestly it was a breeze.. i just gotta figure out how to add it in after the animations without having things look really weird...

thanks for all your inputs! im going to try a few diff things... im testing out the bones and displacements, also testing out some more .mdd stuff :)

wgreenlee1
02-27-2003, 07:50 AM
Oh thats cool!


Yes I used to think MDD was really daunting but anymore I can usually hop in there and get things going pretty fast.

That little cape I made took about 60 seconds to calculate.
I first worked with a tripled object till I got the settings where I was comfortable with then un~did the tripleing,then sub~divided once then sub~patched and then tweaked the wind cycles and such.
It can be frustrating at first but its like everything else Lightwave related~save,save,save.

Arte
02-27-2003, 09:48 AM
Originally posted by Irie
splinegod,

thx for your reply. so you think that i should maybe get a simple keyframe loop of some crude flapping motion and add a displacement to the surface? what kind of displacement map would get a good wavy look? turbulence?

i appreciate your tip

matt

Hi Matt.

A gradient imo.

X

kretin
02-28-2003, 01:29 AM
There was a secondary motion plugin mentioned here not too long ago that would be perfect for what you want to do. It can be used on bones, so you could use your current rig...

Just found it, it's called PG_LD

SplineGod
02-28-2003, 02:24 AM
Originally posted by kretin
There was a secondary motion plugin mentioned here not too long ago that would be perfect for what you want to do. It can be used on bones, so you could use your current rig...

Just found it, it's called PG_LD
I think this and displacement maps will be the best bet.

twidup
02-28-2003, 02:27 AM
Originally posted by SplineGod
I think this and displacement maps will be the best bet.

I am wondering SG, why do you think this, as opposed to using MD would be the best sol for it? with MD, you would get it reacting to his motion more (havent used the plug that Kretin suggest)

kretin
02-28-2003, 02:31 AM
MD would certainly do the best job. The biggest drawbacks to MD is the lack of interactive updating and the inability to tweak the results easily.

If you do deformation like this with bones then you have both of these, which can be more useful when animating...

twidup
02-28-2003, 02:37 AM
hmm, I think it would all depend on what he plans to do with it, if the characters i going to hold it or something, then yeah, bones, if its just suppose to flutter behind, I would probably go with MD, just sim it once the animation is done or do sims thru out just to see the motion. never had a lot of slow sims with MD, so I am not sure the problems others are running into.

kretin
02-28-2003, 02:41 AM
Oh, and also Irie,

If you want to use MD without your machine crawling, then try using MD on a very simplified version of the mesh and then use MD_Scan and MD_Plug to apply the deformation to your higher res final mesh.

SplineGod
02-28-2003, 02:46 AM
Originally posted by twidup
I am wondering SG, why do you think this, as opposed to using MD would be the best sol for it? with MD, you would get it reacting to his motion more (havent used the plug that Kretin suggest) Im not against MD. I dont like that its not interactive and basically you have little control over it. Its like a grenade...you pull the pin, throw it and hopes it does its work. I prefer using methods where I have as much personal control as possible. :)

twidup
02-28-2003, 02:51 AM
understandable. I am still waiting to see the cloth sim that will allow you to easily animate when it is on and when it isnt, blending between it and other deformation systems.

kretin
02-28-2003, 03:01 AM
I am hoping DSTorms upcoming soft body deformation plug will be just that...

Irie
02-28-2003, 03:06 AM
wow! all the replies!

thank you all for taking the time to help me out.

I think I will be using motion designer for some shots and the bone/displacement for others.... it will depend on the motion of the character and the importance of the bandana in the shot.

Hopefully i can get something up and working soon so i can show you all what i mean..


LW community rocks! what a good surprise to have all this help!

matt :scream: :scream: :scream:

SplineGod
02-28-2003, 04:42 AM
Originally posted by twidup
understandable. I am still waiting to see the cloth sim that will allow you to easily animate when it is on and when it isnt, blending between it and other deformation systems. Me too!
I was watching the making of DVD that come with Attack of the Clones. I was amazed how similar their problems with cloth are to things Ive experienced. They, with their cloth team, still had problems. In one part of the DVD they were having Dailies and showing George the shot with Yoda spinning around. Lucas pointed out to the animator that the robe was wrapping around Yoda as he spun. The Animator said something to the effect that the SIMULATION was correct. Lucas said, Its correct physically but its not correct ROMANTICALLY...meaning that he wanted it to look cool, not behave realistically. I think too many people try and do a realistic simulation with MD and its not really designed to do that. I look at it more like a filter in a paint program...it gets me close to the effect I want and now I can tweak it by hand. Ive seen people spend literally hours tweaking MD settings in frustration instead of getting things close and cheating the rest. If the collision object is poking thru the cloth, increase the skin thickness until it works and change the camera angle a bit to hide the gap or find the 5 or 6 frames where the cloth pokes thru and fix them in a paint program or render a pass with the collision object transparent and comp over the bad frames etc etc.
I would prefer something like you said... a bit of simulation and the ability to tweak it into what is romantically correct. :)

Triple G
02-28-2003, 04:51 AM
Originally posted by SplineGod
Me too!
I was watching the making of DVD that come with Attack of the Clones. I was amazed how similar their problems with cloth are to things Ive experienced. They, with their cloth team, still had problems. In one part of the DVD they were having Dailies and showing George the shot with Yoda spinning around. Lucas pointed out to the animator that the robe was wrapping around Yoda as he spun. The Animator said something to the effect that the SIMULATION was correct. Lucas said, Its correct physically but its not correct ROMANTICALLY...meaning that he wanted it to look cool, not behave realistically. I think too many people try and do a realistic simulation with MD and its not really designed to do that. I look at it more like a filter in a paint program...it gets me close to the effect I want and now I can tweak it by hand. Ive seen people spend literally hours tweaking MD settings in frustration instead of getting things close and cheating the rest. If the collision object is poking thru the cloth, increase the skin thickness until it works and change the camera angle a bit to hide the gap or find the 5 or 6 frames where the cloth pokes thru and fix them in a paint program or render a pass with the collision object transparent and comp over the bad frames etc etc.
I would prefer something like you said... a bit of simulation and the ability to tweak it into what is romantically correct. :)

AMEN, BRUTHA! :beer:

Irie
03-02-2003, 03:41 AM
alllllllrighty. i finally got some time to sit down and play with the bandana thing and try and learn how the collisions work by just fiddling around with it.

I have collision enabled and self-collision too as both tails of the bandana are the same surface. perhaps thats my problem... maybe i should have two seperate surfaces and run collsion between the two.... heres why...

Collision Problem (http://iatepaste.com/ganymede/Herb_And_Skills/ishues/CollisionProblem.mov)

if you notice, at the base of the tails, it gets ugly and jumpy from teh collision. I have tried to up the calculate resolution to 40 (from 10) and there was no real difference. I have played with the skin thickness, results get way worse. there are a few options i have played with that dont seem to do anything... like single-sided, bound force, etc... perhaps they might help... i plead ignorance.

if ya dont mind, check it out, its just over a meg in size.

any tips are good tips!

thx
matt

Triple G
03-02-2003, 04:28 AM
Man, it's been a while since I played with MD, and I'm right in the middle of a render right now so I can't check. But I think you want to look for something called Spring or Bound Force....something like that, and lower it. I think that may be what's making it jittery. But then again, I could be wrong....

If that doesn't work, could you maybe start the surface that MD controls farther down the length of the bandana, and control that problem area with bones/weight maps?

Irie
03-02-2003, 04:32 AM
interesting that you suggest that. I was kinda thinking along those lines, i was kinda daydreaming about moDesigner having weightmap interaction. If its there i havent seen it, but woudl be nice to just use a weightmap as a stiffness control and influence control.

then again, i might totally be able to do this with one or two extra steps... hmm?

thanks for the suggestion
matt

Irie
03-02-2003, 04:44 AM
Okay.

Simple as that.... you CAN use a bone with a simple weight map gradient.

its smooth as butter now... though there are some twisting involved, i think i can fix that with the weightmap and maybe some tweaking of fallof settings for that bone.

i'll post progress... still want more tips if you got them.

thx

SplineGod
03-02-2003, 06:39 AM
Hey Irie,
Heres a quick test I put together using displacement maps bones and a couple of IK goals.
http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/examples/scarf.mov

Facial Deluxe
03-02-2003, 02:21 PM
Irie, I've watched your animation and I don't see the default. If it is the "bump" near the node, it doesn't bother me at all (Just wanted to say that).
Very cool result Larry :)

Irie
03-02-2003, 09:48 PM
thanks Larry... Im goign to implement that system on a animation need basis. Most shots will do perfectly with MD.. but i dig the ability to control the swing and such of the bandana using bones.


Thanks facial... heres a better example...

Moobie (http://iatepaste.com/ganymede/Herb_And_Skills/ishues/PonyFinalVariables.mov)

Facial Deluxe
03-02-2003, 09:53 PM
Excellent, what's the technique ? MD + wind ?

Triple G
03-02-2003, 10:20 PM
I think it looks great, man. Nice job. :thumbsup:

Irie
03-02-2003, 10:34 PM
thanks!

and for the help too :)

Im using a simple setup with the silk setting tweaked with self collision and a few other things changed up a bit... like parallel resistence up to 500% to keep it from getting stuck on itself.

just a matter of patience to get it to look right... next thing is going to be animating with it... it should be fine, but i might add collision to the head of my character to ensure no funny business :shame:

:)

SplineGod
03-02-2003, 11:37 PM
The thing I like about the method I used is its all controllable in realtime. I can make changes while its animating and watch it change. :)

Irie
03-03-2003, 07:26 PM
I feel your need for control Spliney... gets wayyy annoying having to run these simulations over and over... but its helping to tone down my impatience.

I have applied it to my character and done a quick pose test with him...

not my model (but i did have to tweak alot of poor geometry before rigging and such)

so, heres a quickie download for all you who contributed, and those of you who are interested.

Pose Test (http://iatepaste.com/ganymede/Herb_And_Skills/ishues/IshuesPoseTest.mov)


thanks!
matt


EDIT: file is 2.5 megs... i know thats pushing it if i wanna keep your interest... :shrug: :wip: :airguitar

Triple G
03-03-2003, 08:19 PM
Looks good Irie, the only crit I have is that it looks a bit odd that the bandana is kinda pointed up the way it is. Unless it's a really stiff wind, you should probably have it droop a bit more.

Overall though, very nice. :thumbsup:

Irie
03-03-2003, 09:21 PM
triple, i should have mentioned that in my first post... that is the only thing i will change.. i added it at last second before render, actually... i took the gravity down a bit... good point :)

wgreenlee1
03-03-2003, 09:36 PM
Originally posted by Irie
I feel your need for control Spliney... gets wayyy annoying having to run these simulations over and over... but its helping to tone down my impatience.

I have applied it to my character and done a quick pose test with him...

not my model (but i did have to tweak alot of poor geometry before rigging and such)

so, heres a quickie download for all you who contributed, and those of you who are interested.

Pose Test (http://iatepaste.com/ganymede/Herb_And_Skills/ishues/IshuesPoseTest.mov)


thanks!
matt


EDIT: file is 2.5 megs... i know thats pushing it if i wanna keep your interest... :shrug: :wip: :airguitar




My gosh Irie thats cool,I agree about the gravity though.

Maybe "you" should author some DVDs and sell them also!:thumbsup:

Irie
03-03-2003, 09:39 PM
heh, flattering green, but i dont think i would do any good... i am but a newb, learning. :)

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