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View Full Version : Rigging the body so you can easily change direction of walk


Tom N.
04-18-2003, 09:21 PM
This may sound like a new person question but I've been using Maya for a year and I've always had trouble rigging a character so I can easily just turn them around and rotate their ENTIRE body (not just the upper half).

For example... someone is walking down a street... then they turn around a corner and go left... thats all! How do you do it?

I've tried grouping the rig to itself and making pivot points on the left and right heel but then the pivot points stay behind once I animate.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

-Tom N.

kmp3d
04-18-2003, 09:57 PM
well I usually just have one control object that is like the uber control. Everything is parented or constrained under it. With this control you should be able to translate and rotate in any direction. You want to place all of your rigging controls underneath it. Thats it in a nutshell without getting too specific.

Zappa
04-19-2003, 12:09 AM
Hey!Tom,

I guess you could actually animate the pivot point if you hit insert and then key it...and turn your rig as per your wishes.....im not sure if this is the right way or if there is a better way to do this...but i guess this works.

Zappa

dwalden74
04-19-2003, 01:06 PM
...always had trouble rigging a character so I can easily just turn them around and rotate their ENTIRE body [/QUOTE
]

Whatīs the problem exactly? Are you frustrated that you have to animate the characterīs direction along more than one axis?

[QUOTE]someone is walking down a street... then they turn around a corner and go left... thats all

OK, so take your hips control and 2 feet controls and rotate them... Whatīs so hard about that? Maybe if you explain where *specifically* the problem is, I could offer more help, but right now I donīt understand if your problem is that your rig is falling apart as soon as you rotate it or what...


I usually just have one control object that is like the uber control.

Yes, kmp3d, but this will just give you the initial position/orientation of the character, and wonīt help much once your character has walked ten units in the Z-axis (away from this control).

I guess you could actually animate the pivot point if you hit insert and then key it

This sounds like a very bad idea (sorry Zappa). Tomīs problem is most likely resolved in a much easier way, but again, because he hasnīt said what exactly the problem is, people donīt really know what solutions to offer...

:beer:
David

kmp3d
04-19-2003, 02:51 PM
Sorry dwalden74 I don't understand what you mean. Your character never walks away from the control object. The object determines the position of your character. Look at Mark Behm's autorig

http://www.markbehm.com/

He has one big control object on the ground that controls the rig's translation and its rotation. You can walk 10 units or 1,000,000 units away and the control object is still at your feet.

Tom N.
04-19-2003, 05:21 PM
Dwalden74, you said

" OK, so take your hips control and 2 feet controls and rotate them... Whatīs so hard about that? Maybe if you explain where *specifically* the problem is, I could offer more help, but right now I donīt understand if your problem is that your rig is falling apart as soon as you rotate it or what... "

Dont take this the wrong way, I'm not being lazy and im not mad that I have to *sigh* turn my character. I like animating and I'm not annoyed that I have to turn a character. You're right about the second part, that as soon as I turn it, my rig sorta gets busted. See, I have two IK handles on each foot, and then the top half of the body all has one pivot point, so its like taking 5 different pivot points and rotating them all, so the character goes into this weird funky position. This happens even if I try to rotate them all separately and put them in the right spots. I'm looking for a way like what kmp3d was saying where you have a heirarchy where it just rotates the WHOLE body at once. The only problem is that I've tried that - ( I grouped my rig twice, one pivot for left foot, and one for right foot) but then when I animate the character, those two new pivot points stay behind where the character started. You even said it yourself -

" Yes, kmp3d, but this will just give you the initial position/orientation of the character, and wonīt help much once your character has walked ten units in the Z-axis (away from this control). "

Sooo yeah, I'm looking for a way to do it like what kmp3d said... but where it actually works and doesn't move away from its pivot point.

Thanks everyone for the replies, does this explain my problem any better?

-Tom N.

kmp3d
04-19-2003, 06:19 PM
ok when you try to translate your char and those pivots stay behind its because your not making them part of the hiearchy. If you grab and move your UBER control and certain controls don't move with it is because they are not under or constrained to the UBER control object. If you have one pivot that controls the entire upper body and Ik for the legs group them all together and place them under the Uber control. Now translate or rotate your char, what is not moving correctly, what ever is not maintaining its position is not constrained correctly, look at your outliner and see whats not under the main control. See with my rigs I constrain everything I want to control to control objects. And then group and place them under my main translate and rotate control object. Now I can translate and rotate my main control in any direction I want and all of my controls will maintain their correct position and orientation to my character. Your character will never leave this main control because the characters controls are below it in your hiearchy.
Understand?????

If you want email me your rig and I'll look at it.
kmp3d@yahoo.com

Gremlin
04-19-2003, 07:01 PM
wait, what... you can ANIMATE pivot points? :surprised

Tom N.
04-19-2003, 08:00 PM
ok kmp3d, I think I see what you're saying, I guess I just didn't think you could do all that and have it work right so I never tried. I'll try that with my next rig and see how it goes, and if its still not working I'll email you. Thanks for offering to look at it and thank you for your replies!

-Tom N.

Zappa
04-21-2003, 05:02 AM
Hey!dwalden74,

=========================================
This sounds like a very bad idea (sorry Zappa). Tomīs problem is most likely resolved in a much easier way, but again, because he hasnīt said what exactly the problem is, people donīt really know what solutions to offer...
=========================================

Whats easier than hitting enter and keying the pivot of your manip?

Tom,i donno if you tried this but if you did...lemme know if it works or if it was very complicated...Im setting up my own rigs for animation and feedback would certainly be helpful.

Cheers

jadamburke
04-21-2003, 07:09 AM
The UBER control in AutoRig is really only meant to allow the animator to position, scale, and rotate the rig for the start of a shot or scene and if the character walks forward in the shot then he should leave the UBER control behind.

What I think kmp3d is suggesting is "treadmilling" the feet and the sliding the UBER control around for actual movement. This isn't the best way to animate unless your doing video games. It becomes a little akward to plant the feet and the walk can feel floaty and repetetive if you cycle the walk.

Tom N.
04-21-2003, 04:01 PM
I've tried changing the pivot point during animation before.. it ONLY works if you haven't yet rotated the character. If you already rotated it once, then you change the pivot point, it will actually change your previous animation and it will make your last rotation rotate around the NEW pivot point. Its a pain in the ass!

-Tom N.

kmp3d
04-21-2003, 05:43 PM
yeah I agree jadamburke you can get a pretty repetitive if you cycle the walk. But it all comes down to the way you animate. The way I said with the Uber should work just fine. If you're just blocking your shot out using the Uber control it makes easy to place your character if you're a pose to pose animator. Sure you can create a walk cycle and then move the control around for placement. But this type of setup doesn't limit the way you can animate. Since the controls are children of the Uber control you don't even have to animate the Uber control, you can just plant your feet controls and move the center of gravity controls. And a lot of the floaty movement can be easily fixed after you block out your actions. But there is always 10,000,000 ways to rig a character it just comes down to what you need the character to do.

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