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rafanzovin
12-15-2007, 08:43 PM
Hey,

We've finally had a chance to make some new movies for The Face Machine (a tool we're working on to auto-rig faces, similar to the body rigs created by The Setup Machine).

Quick Rigging: (http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/01_quickRig_01.mov)

http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/quickRig.jpg
The first one demonstrates how quickly you can create a fully-functional facial rig with TFM. The demonstrator, Jedidiah Mitchell (who is also the rigging lead working on this project), creates this rig in about eight minutes. This movie is entirely in real-time, and no edits have been made to it at all.

Auto-weighting: (http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/02_autoWeights_02.mov)

http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/autowieghts.jpg
This movie demonstrates the results of TFM's auto-weighting algorithms, which are sophisticated enough to be able to recognize the difference between an upper lip and a lower lip, and weight accordingly, in about 90% of the facial meshes we've thrown at them, including meshes made with no respect for edge-loop modeling. The rig demonstrated is fresh from TFM’s rigging process (as demonstrated in the movie above) and has not been modified with any weight painting at all. It’s light-years ahead of TSM2’s useful but not always accurate auto-weighting.

Interface: (http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/03_interface_01.mov)

http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/interface.jpg
We’ve developed a schematic interface for TFM faces that’s automatically installed into any character rigged with TFM.

Direct Control: (http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/04_directControl_01.mov)

http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/directcontrol.jpg
By riding the surface of internal “skull” objects, TFM rig controls allow you to pose a character’s face directly and easily. Notice how the skin slides across the cheeks as the mouth controls are posed. Also notice how responsive the rig is: this is a big advance over the earlier version of TFM shown on these forums, which had many of the same features but was much less responsive.

Box Controls: (http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/05_boxControl_02.mov)

http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/boxcontrol.jpg
TFM has an interface for creating “box controls” similar to those used by Jason Osipa quickly and easily.

Pose Library: (http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/06_poseLibrary_01.mov)

http://www.thesetupmachine.com/products/movies/poseLibrary.jpg
Pose save and recall features, complete with an automatically-generated thumbnail.

At this point, we’ve tested it on a lot of internal productions and we’re pretty sure that it’s fairly bug-free and production ready. The main thing holding it back from release is actually writing the manual. :shrug: We’ve got a giant production load in January so unfortunately I don’t think that’s likely to happen till February.

Anyway, I hope you like this preview!

--Raf

scroll-lock
12-17-2007, 02:01 PM
Looking really cool! Congrats :)

bumba
12-17-2007, 03:10 PM
Awesome,

hey, I believe it will take me a shorter amount of time to figure out your software without a manual, than making such facial setup system by myself.

I would buy it without manual right now.

varomix
12-17-2007, 03:28 PM
hi guys

a NEW BREAK TROUGH IN animation, you guys are making it a lot more enjoyable every time, more and more like 2d, were you can just go from design to animation right away.

thanks a lot for your great work

kungfudork
12-17-2007, 04:19 PM
Holy Smokes! You did it again! Amazing! Can't wait to get this into my pipeline! Would be nice to see it released before February, but I'll wait if I have to......hehe.

KFD

PolygonGoon
12-17-2007, 04:34 PM
wow that is awesome. id have to say, id just make a online maual for it, sell it to who wants to buy it, and say the maual will be up sometime in Feb. And once its done, just post it up, or e-mail the link to it.

anyways, nice job!

hanger102
12-17-2007, 05:52 PM
Awesome job!! I have a few questions, is there a way to transfer animation from one head to the next? And what is the price going to be for this product? I'm thinking about maybe using this for our current production when it is release ofcourse.

ThomasMahler
12-17-2007, 08:58 PM
I'm so going to buy this one. Great job, guys!

kiko
12-18-2007, 12:41 AM
Good job Anzovin Studio!

All the bells and whistles of FaceRobot at a tiny fraction of FaceRobot's extortionate price!!
And for Maya, you say? And a Mac version too?
Where do I pay?

Wilson-3d
12-18-2007, 05:35 AM
Hi,

I have been lucky enough to be one of the beta testers on The Face Machine and thought I would pop my head in and ramble off a few thoughts for a sec. My initial thought would be - It is nothing short of Amazing. I was totally blown away! I had a finished character rigged with roughly 75 blendshapes for the face. In one night I incorporated The Face Machine into my workflow and it worked in tandem with my own rig. I was just smiling from ear to ear. A few places I was not as happy with on my rig - the face machine took care of (smile lines going down from nose) and I could animate with both.

Anyway, I feel like I just did a commercial but this has been really fun to work with and I would suggest it hands down to everyone.

Cheers,
Chris

NolanSW
12-18-2007, 05:58 AM
Great work Raf.

So can this workflow be adapted into a game studio pipeline if using a joint based setup?
Course now you start coming out with this when I don't use Maya much any more AND not a game studio. (sigh) regradless, I'll still probably buy it cause it looks so damn cool.

-Sean

Mark-J
12-18-2007, 08:24 AM
This looks like great work guys. I'd love to test this out and see what it would take to get this running inside a game engine, if at all

thematt
12-18-2007, 03:31 PM
bring it on without manual.
make a couple of vids like you did for the demo, and let us have that baby..c'mon please..

great work

rafanzovin
12-18-2007, 03:34 PM
Awesome job!! I have a few questions, is there a way to transfer animation from one head to the next? And what is the price going to be for this product? I'm thinking about maybe using this for our current production when it is release ofcourse.

All heads will have essentially the same controls, so pretty much any of the methods you can use to transfer animation in Maya (the Trax editor, various mel scripts, etc) should work. In our pose interface you can transfer poses between characters as well.

We're pricing it at $199. There's going to be a reduced student price too.

And a Mac version too?

Yup, works on a Mac.

So can this workflow be adapted into a game studio pipeline if using a joint based setup?

That, unforunately, isn't something TFM does at the moment. We ended up having to write our own skin cluster to accomodate all the things we needed to do with it, and it uses curves and surfaces as deformation objects, not joints. In theory, it would probably be possible to bake that down to a whole bunch of joints approximating the same deformation, and that's something we might try to develop for version 2. It would be a LOT of joints, though.

We're also looking into the possibility of developing some kind of SDK to allow people to implement our deformations in a game engine....we'd really like to talk to some game developers and get a good idea of what they'd need from such a product.

--Raf

kungfudork
12-18-2007, 04:26 PM
Hey Raf,

I agree with eveyone....if it's stable you should release it now and when the manual is ready just anounce it. I know I have some downtime for the holidays and holiday money.....so let us have it! PLEASE!

I can't wait! hehehehe

Loolarge
12-18-2007, 08:40 PM
Wow, thats looking crazy!

SoulTaker
12-19-2007, 07:43 AM
Man, I would give you my $199 right now if I didn't buy that UMPC I need for my next year's business trips. You should release it now. I'm pretty sure those videos pretty much gave most of us the basic idea of the work flow even though I bet there is tons of extra goodies too.

I'm sure there is plenty of very smart people here that would figure out how some of those tools work in no time. You can have them take notes and accumulate the info needed to whip up a manual in no time!

Does the face machine use standard maya tools and objects to rig the faces? I mean, does it just basically automate most of the rigging and skinning with the standard splines, helpers etc. aside from the auto skinning algorithms?

Just want to know because I used to be a maya man a few years ago and all my work is in max now. Here is what my work flow would be like:

1.model head mesh in max
2.export to maya
3.use face machine to rig head
4.export the results using polytrans for maya
5.import into max with polytrans

Just want to know if it would work. thanks.

btw, does it work with maya 8 and 8.5 or just maya 2008?

alesmav
12-19-2007, 10:12 AM
Hey Raf!

First I'd like to say I am a huge fan of Setup Machine. I just finished animation for my short using it and I must say it never let me down. The rig is flexible as hell.

Been waiting for some news about Face Machine for quite some time now and I must say these videos are really impressive! I just have two questions about the face setup that were not quite obvious in the demos.

1 - Is it possible to get rid of the crease in the corners of the mouth and make it round if we wish so? For example when I do a wide "AAAA" mouth shape I don't want a crease in the corner. All "mouth wide open" poses that I see in the videos seem to have this crease always present.

2 - In the video we see only one control for the eyelids. One for the upper and one for the bottom. Is it possible to get a more custom shape, so we can have some control over the inner and outer part of the eyelid? In facial animation it is often desirable that the eyelid shape somehow mimics the brow shape. Also same question here. Is it possible to make the eyelid corner a bit rounder? If we have a more cartoony character with round eyes it would be nice if the crease could dissapear when the eyes are fully opened.

This looks very promising. I can't wait for it to come out so I can test it on my next short.

Great job!

Ales

rafanzovin
12-19-2007, 05:44 PM
I agree with eveyone....if it's stable you should release it now and when the manual is ready just anounce it. I know I have some downtime for the holidays and holiday money.....so let us have it! PLEASE!

I'm sorry, I know there are lots of people who would be smart enough to figure it out with no problem, but we don't want to release a product without proper support. We really want to maintain a reputation for reliability.

Don't worry, it'll be ready soon, I promise. :)

1 - Is it possible to get rid of the crease in the corners of the mouth and make it round if we wish so? For example when I do a wide "AAAA" mouth shape I don't want a crease in the corner. All "mouth wide open" poses that I see in the videos seem to have this crease always present.

It's possible to minimize the creases if you don't want them by spacing those curves further apart. In addition to which, there's actually a crease control (not shown in these movies) that can be used to manipulate it directly. Also, if you have a more sparse, cartoony mesh that doesn't have geometry placed for the crease (as this mesh does) it should be less evident.

2 - In the video we see only one control for the eyelids. One for the upper and one for the bottom. Is it possible to get a more custom shape, so we can have some control over the inner and outer part of the eyelid? In facial animation it is often desirable that the eyelid shape somehow mimics the brow shape. Also same question here. Is it possible to make the eyelid corner a bit rounder? If we have a more cartoony character with round eyes it would be nice if the crease could dissapear when the eyes are fully opened.

As you may have noticed, there are a lot more surface controls in the face visible in the selection map then are visible in the viewport--they're the ones that are yellow (the main ones are red). These are secondary controls that let you have a lot of low-level access to the face shape and they include controls for eyelid shape.

Just want to know because I used to be a maya man a few years ago and all my work is in max now. Here is what my work flow would be like:

1.model head mesh in max
2.export to maya
3.use face machine to rig head
4.export the results using polytrans for maya
5.import into max with polytrans

Just want to know if it would work. thanks.

If you want to export the animation back to Max, it ought to be possible to do with some kind of point baking solution. However, the rig definitely won't export back, as it relies on rig nodes we wrote internally that have no equivilant in Max.

Incidentally, we'll be releasing a free version of the plug-in so that you don't have to buy a new seat every time you want to animate with a TFM rig. The free version will be crippled so that you can't create rigs with it, but it will let you animate with existing rigs.

--Raf

StanrickKubley
12-20-2007, 05:28 AM
Huge, huge fan of The Setup Machine. The rig is absolutely ideal. I even use the widgets to rig props. It looks like you're carrying the same philosophy over to The Face Machine - an easy, intuitive rig, but with powerful lower level controls - like an proxy skin over the model. Looks perfect. Would love to see the feature that allows the saving of poses added to The Setup Machine 3.

Is it possible to preorder?

NolanSW
12-20-2007, 04:41 PM
Hey Raf,
A little suggestion.....
In the video where you are demonstrating the toolbox sliders and making your own sliders, it would be nice to have a few more options when it comes to box slider types. You have just one square box showing that is being made which is great but there are times you need different types of sliders.

I have a script I've been developing for sometime that may be of interest to you and not sure if you already have something incorporated in your setup.
http://melandstuff.blogspot.com/2006_08_01_archive.htm (http://melandstuff.blogspot.com/2006_08_01_archive.html)l (http://melandstuff.blogspot.com/2006_08_01_archive.html)
So it's a way for a user to be able to edit poses and keys that were made using SDK's. There are functions for mirroring poses and full SDK animations from one side to another. When you setup the system you build a relationship for what controls are on the left and right and be able to create non-linear SDK's to create some interesting poses. It's not fully done yet but most of the functionality is there.

You can bug me offline if you want.

-Sean

markdc
12-20-2007, 06:25 PM
Can the rig be driven by mocap?

splintah
12-20-2007, 08:23 PM
horray !!

so christmas is in february this year !

alesmav
12-20-2007, 10:06 PM
Thanks for the answer Raf. This is going to be awesome! As far as I am concerened you can put aside one more copy....

Ales

AdFont
12-21-2007, 01:14 AM
Wondering how this system might work on a less human looking face. Say, something with a snout? Or something with a flatter face? Also, how customizable is it? Can we add things in like ears, antenna, elephant trunks, etc.? Just curious. So far from what I've seen I'm pretty much sold. Awesome work guys.

rafanzovin
12-21-2007, 02:28 PM
Wondering how this system might work on a less human looking face. Say, something with a snout? Or something with a flatter face? Also, how customizable is it? Can we add things in like ears, antenna, elephant trunks, etc.? Just curious. So far from what I've seen I'm pretty much sold. Awesome work guys.

At the moment, it's for humanoid faces. You could try it on something with a snout, and if the snout is short enough it might work, but we don't garantee it will be useful in that situation. Something with a flatter face should be OK though.

Ears, antenna, elphant trunks, etc, would be more of a Setup Machine type of thing, that's really body rigging as far as these tools are concerned.

Can the rig be driven by mocap?

That's not something we've tested, but it ought to be possible to retarget mocap data to our rig controls. It's not something we have specific features for though.

--Raf

jimme09
12-26-2007, 12:34 PM
looks amazing.... will it be available for linux??

gonzovas
12-26-2007, 07:54 PM
Wow, this plug looks realy cool...

splintah
01-09-2008, 10:59 AM
any news on releasing that puppy early ?

waiting waiting waiting
:-)

kungfudork
01-09-2008, 04:11 PM
hey raf!

we are getting ready to start a new project and we are planning on starting it up in february. face machine would be a great asset! are you still looking at having it available in february?

i've got my fingers crossed the release and our start up will occur around the same time!

wORD!

laterz,
kungfudork

rafanzovin
01-09-2008, 08:46 PM
looks amazing.... will it be available for linux??

Eventually, yes.


we are getting ready to start a new project and we are planning on starting it up in february. face machine would be a great asset! are you still looking at having it available in february?


At the moment, it still looks like the release is on track for February. More then that I can't say. :)

--Raf

kungfudork
02-01-2008, 12:55 PM
raf,

just checking in to see if The Face Machine is still on track to release in Feb? got my fingers crossed, as i'm sure alot of others do too!

rafanzovin
02-01-2008, 04:55 PM
raf,

just checking in to see if The Face Machine is still on track to release in Feb? got my fingers crossed, as i'm sure alot of others do too!

We've just decided on an official release date, which is March 1st. That's almost in February!

--Raf

SoulTaker
02-02-2008, 04:54 AM
March 1st?! AWESOME! Now I just need to find a local maya reseller. The version I was using was a student version so I figure I might as well get maya 2008 along with the face machine in march!" I also gotta go dig up my old models from the external HDD. Can't Wait! :buttrock:

dobermunk
02-05-2008, 01:17 PM
Congratulations Raf!

kap13
02-05-2008, 10:14 PM
Raf

The wait is KILLING me. I can't wait for face machine.

kungfudork
02-06-2008, 04:26 AM
Is it march 1st yet? I'm killing my brain trying to build a solid reliable facial rig for this latest project. Weeks have gone by and everytime I think it's really working something doesn't want to play well with some other part of the setup....aaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhh! Come on, early release!


KFD

kungfudork
02-21-2008, 06:18 PM
" nine more days til face machine, face machine, face machine.....nine more days til face machine, i can't wait!" (tune of london brige is falling down)

johnchuang
02-29-2008, 02:16 PM
Tomorrow?:bounce:

JYoung
02-29-2008, 02:22 PM
The latest email said March 11th.

rafanzovin
03-04-2008, 06:52 PM
Yeah, unforunately production work got in the way again, so we had to postpone it an additional ten days.


--Raf

rafanzovin
03-07-2008, 06:50 PM
So, you may all be wondering, where exactly is the Face Machine? As you may recall, we had planned to release it on March 1st.

Well, that didn't happen. :) We had another tentative release date on the 11th, but the unfortunate realities of production means we may go a few days past that too. We want to make sure not to release TFM in the middle of a production crunch--tech support is always at the most intense during the first few weeks of a product's release, and we want to make sure to be able to provide that support to ensure that you have a great experience with TFM.

The good news is that the deadline we're currently facing will be over shortly, and we've got nothing else comparable to hold us back from releasing TFM and putting up our new web site. So I promise, you'll get it really soon! Really this time! :)

--Raf

AjaBogdanoff
03-07-2008, 07:52 PM
Hey Raf and Jed! This is looking awesome. I just have one question, about the pose library... will it have the ability to blend poses in? So you can apply, say, only 25% of an "ooo" shape to your existing face pose? That'd rock!

Thanks guys, you're doing some really amazing work here. Can't wait to try it! :)

ThomasMahler
03-11-2008, 06:11 PM
Hurry up, dudes, I have some characters waiting just for this! ;)

steveblake
03-15-2008, 09:37 AM
*tumbleweed rolls by*

Specter
03-17-2008, 04:25 PM
well, this looks really promising. i have the strong feeling that this will be the same fun like tsm. there is only one critique point; linux. please, give us a linux version of both, tsm and tfm!

so, would it be possible, to make the rig under windows and use it under linux, or do you have some nodes compiled into dll's?

anyway, thanx for your great work!!!

rafanzovin
03-28-2008, 05:37 PM
The Face Machine has finally been released! Go to http://www.anzovin.com/products/tfm1maya.html (http://www.anzovin.com/products/tfm1maya.html) to order, download the sample rig, or view the online manual. We've also established a forum for it at http://www.anzovin.com/forum

Versions are currently out for Windows 32 and 64 bit and MacOSX. A linux version should be out in a couple of weeks.

Sorry this took so long! I hope it will be worth the wait.

--Raf

johnchuang
03-28-2008, 11:58 PM
Yeah! Great! :applause: I also think you should edit your first post ,so others can easily find the release Info.

steveblake
03-30-2008, 07:42 PM
:beer:

This is great news, looking forward to trying out the demo scene!

Frelp
04-08-2008, 02:39 PM
Just wondered if anyone's used it yet.. Any reviews?

I'm hugely intrigued as I've been using TSM for nearly three years now and have been dreaming about a facial equivolent..

So, anyone wanna be the first..? :)

JYoung
04-10-2008, 05:32 AM
My review would be that it's awesome. :)

We use TSM2 at work which is a huge timesaver, but I've had to rig all the facial stuff. Not anymore! The great thing about TSM is that anyone that knows Maya can rig a character and get really nice results. TFM is exactly the same in that someone that's not rigging savvy can pick it up quickly and get really great results. However, I think it goes far beyond TSM in its functionality, adding the ability to quickly setup and modify osipa style box controls, and a really nice pose saving system. Everything is very intuitive!

The setup of characters is very quick. You start out placing the main widget where the head is, and scaling it to match your character. Then there's 2 levels of widgets that provide finer control over where the influence objects are placed. After you move everything into place, you tell it what objects are your eyes, upper and lower teeth, and tongue. Press the magic button and you've got a rig with really nicely weighted controls. I haven't had to adjust the autoweights at all yet.

Control is super simple as well. You're given the main on face controls that move along constrained arcs. You've also got secondary controls that can move and rotate in any direction so you can stretch past the defined arcs. Works really nicely. There's a new panel called the anzovin panel that includes a selection gui for all the controls(also turns on/off the finer controls), as well as the pose menu.

After setup, you can move controls into place and quickly assign them to box controls. After you've got the box controls moving what you want, you can move the boxes into place and save them as a new pose. It even takes a snapshot so you have a nice little picture showing you what the character looks like when that particular pose is loaded.

Speed-wise, it's near realtime on the 2 characters I've rigged so far, and these characters both have their heads attached. Detaching them would make it even more responsive.

So yeah, I think it's a pretty slick plugin. Lemme know if you have any questions.

Frelp
04-10-2008, 08:59 AM
Nice review youngimoto, I might just have to check it out. Thanks!

kungfudork
04-21-2008, 04:05 PM
the Face Machine is truelly amazing. i modeled the head for this character yesterday and rigged the face this morning. i probably spent 30-40min getting the widgets placed exactly where i wanted them....it really is just trial and error, so always save the file just before you rig. if it doesn't look right, just reopen that file and move some things around.....then hit the rig button again. i probably spent another 20min touching up the weigthts, but the automatic weighting really does get you like 97% of the way there. i highly recommend it, especially if you are like me and just want to animate, not rig...hehe.

i wanted to make a character like the ones in Kung Fu Panda and this is what i came up with:

http://www.kungfudork.com/images/KungFu_Guy_001.png

http://www.kungfudork.com/images/KungFu_Guy_Rig.png

Hans-CC
04-24-2008, 04:35 PM
Hi guys this looks really nice but i was wondering if it could work for a non humanoid character ? for example a dinosaur ?

h.

ThomasMahler
05-05-2008, 08:40 PM
I have to agree with Yungimoto.

I'm not a rigger or an animator per se, but I after reading through the documenation, I think even dedicated modelers could create a very decent facial rig in a matter of minutes. Even the automated weighting works pretty darn fine (you will have to repaint a little here and there, but I got really great initial results).

Haven't yet used it in anything serious, so I can't give a final review, but from what I've seen, this is an absolutely fantastic tool.

Here's a screenie:

http://www.thomasmahler.com/images/Berny_Rig_01.jpg

HighRes WIP of the character:

http://www.thomasmahler.com/portfolio/images/berny_01.jpg

Big thumbs up to everyone at Anzovin, this stuff should _SO_ be natively integrated into Maya. Can't wait to hand this stuff to some of my animator buddies to see what we can come up with :)

AdFont
05-05-2008, 08:57 PM
Hey Thomas,
I saw your model over on the zbrush forums. Awesome stuff man!! Glad to see you are moving it over here to be animated. I'm about to pull the trigger on TFM and its great to see the nice reviews coming in. Keep us posted with some updates on how it goes. Looking forward to seeing more of this guy!!

Font

Frelp
05-10-2008, 10:03 AM
Does anyone know if it's possible to get a roaming-liscense version of TSM2 and TFM, for travelling free-lancers? I couldn't see anythng on the anzovin site. Anyone know..?

TheMiyamotoMusashi
05-11-2008, 04:29 PM
Really cool cool cool cool work :cool:

Just one thing could you tell me , how do you make those thumbs for the poses.

I see you have litle viewport in your GUI but what then, how do you get the snapshot?

Bye bye keep the amazing work :drool:

rafanzovin
05-12-2008, 04:24 PM
Thanks for all your kind words about TFM!

Does anyone know if it's possible to get a roaming-liscense version of TSM2 and TFM, for travelling free-lancers? I couldn't see anythng on the anzovin site. Anyone know..?

You don't really need a roaming license: as long as you only use it on one computer at a time we don't mind if you install it on more then one.


Just one thing could you tell me , how do you make those thumbs for the poses.

It's done using the hardware renderer, which just renders it out to an image file.

TheMiyamotoMusashi
05-12-2008, 08:07 PM
what mel command would be that , to hardware render the specified viewport ?

kungfudork
05-13-2008, 03:19 AM
Another toon character that TFM worked like a charm!

Meet Gork!

http://www.kungfudork.com/images/Gork_WEB.jpg

.....next step finish the body and rig it with TSM2!

laterz,
KFD

kungfudork
05-13-2008, 08:56 PM
Gork got his body today!

http://content.screencast.com/media/b84a28ac-defc-4df8-b4bb-d976995df591_a2652fd9-e6ed-4ece-bba0-c2136b71765c_static_0_0_Gork_run_happy.png

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