PDA

View Full Version : Unable to make shape animations


Sarford
06-25-2008, 09:47 PM
Hi,

Another newbie question from me :D
I've made two deformation keys with 'Link with orientation...', all done in secondary shape modeling mode. Yet the cluster shape combiner apears in the shape modeling mode in the stack.

Not a real problem, until I want to make shape keys. The defomation keys show up in the shape manager, and when I make a new shape key and want to animate it I get this warning.

What is the solution to this problem, and why does the cluster shape combiner (holding my deformation keys) show up in the shape modeling section of the stack when I made everything in the secondary shape modeling mode?

ThE_JacO
06-25-2008, 11:03 PM
The shape combiner op is supposed to always end up in the shape entry point of the stack.
The secondary shape entry point is meant to do one thing, host deformations that are supposed to affect geometry after the animation entrypoint.

These deformations will basically take into account everything between the shape combiner and the end of your stack, when it's time to save these in a shape, just disable whatever you don't want saved (like envelopes and such) to avoid accumulating deformations twice, and save the shape.

The resulting shape will be used in the shape combiner but account for everything the way you built it in the secondary shape stack.
It's a matter of very simple linear algebra basics, affecting point positions is ultimately reduced to displacement vectors, and changing the order of addition (adding such displacement before or after the animation entry point) changes absolutely nothing.

It's pretty logical and convenient, you just need to understand what you're doing :)

Sarford
06-26-2008, 12:19 PM
Hi ThE_JacO, thanks for your reply. I do understand what you are saying though I have to disagree with the logic. If I model in the modeling construction mode it ends up in the modeling construction mode, if I envelop a mesh in the animation construction mode it ends up in the animation construction mode but when I make deformation keys in the secondary construction mode they end up in the shape construction mode, I fail to see the logic there. :)

Anyhow, the real problem is that my deformation keys end up in the shape manager and any new shape I make I can't test because of the warning in the screenshot above. Now, I propably did something stupid, but I'm too stupid to solve this one :D What should i do to get this working again?

pooby
06-26-2008, 02:27 PM
Any modelling you do in secondary shape mode IS held there. That is until you make it into a shape when it is blasted out of that part of the stack -the enveloping is reverse calculated, and the resulting shape is ready to be applied in shape mode -ie before the envelope.
I think i'm right in saying that it is only envelopes, not other deformers such as smooth etc, that can be reverse calculated.

So, your logic is correct in that you CAN have operators hanging around in secondary shape mode if you want but its missing the point of the mode and isn't advisable.

Its not a place where shapes can be applied a second time. It's a mode for making shapes on objects that are posed with an envelope.

tc
06-26-2008, 06:47 PM
Now, I propably did something stupid, but I'm too stupid to solve this one :D What should i do to get this working again?


did you try to do what the thing says? remove from the mixer and try it again :)

Sarford
06-26-2008, 08:35 PM
did you try to do what the thing says? remove from the mixer and try it again :)

Hi TC, thanks for your post! Until now I asumed this warning meant the mixer node in the explorer, but when I delete my deform keys there they are gone. It never occured to me that it could be the mixer itself. :blush:

@pooby: Thanks for the explanation Pooby. I do understand it a bit better now (also thanks to ThE_JacO), but I still don't find it logical. Just to get it through my thick skull, if I use the secondary construction mode to make deform keys which get shoved to the shape mode when finished, for what do I use the shape mode then? Only to make shape keys? Then why not make deform keys in the shape mode since during animation they both behave the same on the envelop.

Not trying to pick a fight here, I just don't understand the logic yet.

tc
06-26-2008, 09:03 PM
It's very simple, you are probably getting confused bc of the secondary mode.

Shapes created in the Shape Mode (under the envelop which is by default in the animation stack), will pick the point deformation BEFORE the envelope deformation, this mode will obviously do not care with anything on top of it.
This is a standard blend shape like the one in Maya or LW.

Shapes created in Secondary Shape mode, will inverse the envelope (or any other deformation that is in the animation stack).

So a pratical example is an arm, it bends and deforms with an envelope.
lets say you you need to fix the elbow. So if do a shape key before the envelope (in shape mode), it will be hard to guess how your shape key is supposed to be to get your elbow fixed. Because this points will behave over the Modeling stack. You can't model something guessng how it's gonna look with envelop.

And this is when the Secondary Shape Mode will get into the game.
This case you fix your elbow in secondary shape mode (you will sculpt your points with the arms bended). So now when you save this as a deform key (one way to save secondary shapes), XSI will evaluate those points as they are where modeled in Shape mode. But for this XSI will need to inverse the weight that the envelope applied to the shape, pretending it was done in the shape stack.

What happen here is that you didn't understand the secondary shape, and that's whats causing this confusion.
The shape mode is just like shape animation in any other 3d softwares.
The secondary mode is where you'll be able to sculpt a deformed object, and XSI will put that as a shape key under the envelope. So the Secondary shape is the real representation of the shape how it's gonna be with the envelope deforming it.

heres the ABC of the construction modes...
http://www.vast.ws/resources/xsi/tutorials/Modeling_Texuring/movies/3_1.html

CiaranM
06-26-2008, 09:12 PM
Does this help?
http://community.softimage.com/showthread.php?t=430

tc
06-26-2008, 09:21 PM
Now about the mixer...

The Cluster Shape Combiner is the mechanism that manage shape animation/creation/storage. This always make a Shape cluster and put the shape keys inside as properties.

How this thing is animated and mixed is using the Animation Mixer, so it creates a source for each one of the shape keys on that cluster. Then this is instantiated as a shape clip in the mixer of the model, where the object is living.

These clips will be added by default to a shape animation compound, lets say "Shape ClustersClip".
Inside of this compound, each shapekey will be represented as a clip, and will be fitting the entire timeline. The animation you apply in the Shape Manager is in fact an animation applied to those clips.

What happen is that some operations that you have made, can conflicting with Shape Manager operations. And this guy don't wanna mess with your work.
So if you didn't do anything really important, just open the mixer of the model delete the Shape compound. Open the Shape manager and when you switch to the animation tab, the manager will re-create the compound that it needs to have, putting all the shape clips inside.

So what you really need to have to do not loose your shapes is to have the Shape cluster with the shape keys inside, and the rest is just operational stuff. It can be all done trough the ShapeManager or directly manipulated in the Animation Mixer.

Everything about clips/mixer/shapes is very transparent. The Shape Manager was introduced on V5 I think and is supposed to be a simple way to do shape animation. It's the way of help users of other softwares that want to have a linear workflow for shape animation.

The Mixer stuff can be confusing if you are not used to.

tc
06-26-2008, 09:22 PM
Does this help?
http://community.softimage.com/showthread.php?t=430

Thanks Ciaran, thats much better then the one at Vast.

Sarford
06-26-2008, 09:29 PM
Hi TC, thanks for taking the time to explain it to me, now I fully understand. Thanks for that.
Still not sure why it can't leave the deform keys inside the secondary mode but that is propably because of the inner workings of XSI. I do now understand the difference between normal shapes and deformation keys.

But I cried victory too early in my earlier post. If i delete the deform key compounds from the mixer, they are gone. But if I leave em in I can't test new shape keys. This is confusing. Did I do things in the wrong order? Should I first make shape keys and only after that make deform keys?

Sarford
06-26-2008, 09:39 PM
Now about the mixer...

The Cluster Shape Combiner is the mechanism that manage shape animation/creation/storage. This always make a Shape cluster and put the shape keys inside as properties.

How this thing is animated and mixed is using the Animation Mixer, so it creates a source for each one of the shape keys on that cluster. Then this is instantiated as a shape clip in the mixer of the model, where the object is living.

These clips will be added by default to a shape animation compound, lets say "Shape ClustersClip".
Inside of this compound, each shapekey will be represented as a clip, and will be fitting the entire timeline. The animation you apply in the Shape Manager is in fact an animation applied to those clips.

This I understand.


What happen is that some operations that you have made, can conflicting with Shape Manager operations. And this guy don't wanna mess with your work.
So if you didn't do anything really important, just open the mixer of the model delete the Shape compound. Open the Shape manager and when you switch to the animation tab, the manager will re-create the compound that it needs to have, putting all the shape clips inside.

Hmmm... not here. When I delete the compounds from the mixer, they are gone and they don't come back when I go to the animation tab in the shape manager.


So what you really need to have to do not loose your shapes is to have the Shape cluster with the shape keys inside, and the rest is just operational stuff. It can be all done trough the ShapeManager or directly manipulated in the Animation Mixer.

Everything about clips/mixer/shapes is very transparent. The Shape Manager was introduced on V5 I think and is supposed to be a simple way to do shape animation. It's the way of help users of other softwares that want to have a linear workflow for shape animation.

The Mixer stuff can be confusing if you are not used to.

I love the shape manager, very usefull. The mixer is a bit more complicated I agree, I still need a lot of experimentation with it.

I apreciate the help you are giving me TC!

tc
06-26-2008, 10:54 PM
So what happen when you go in the shape manager and switch to the animation tab? do you get the animation sliders in there for each clip?

If not, I don't know what you did :P
Send me the scene and I can take alook
thiagocosta3d@gmail.com

Sarford
06-27-2008, 12:33 AM
Hi TC, I've send you a mail with the scene!

Thanks!

ps: better be carefull with posting adresses, bots are never far... ;)

CGTalk Moderation
06-27-2008, 12:33 AM
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.