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AVTPro
08-25-2008, 11:19 PM
Hey Folx,

This techniques demonstrates how to use strength maps to weight character without a lot of hassle. It discusses good cages and exclusion mapping to hone the skin.

I indexed the video. Rigging isn't as exciting as animation :)


1:38 — cages
2:00 — Explain the problem vert.
2:14 — Understanding cages vs hi-res
2;40 — Maya proxy rig for skinning. (Wrap Deformer aka Smart Skin)
3:07 — Comment IDEA AWARD (David Wu, Brian Pohl)
4:00 — Wrap Deformer, Encage, Proxy SDS,


Editing the skin

7:00 — Position Skin for Editing.
8:00 — Isolate Bone effecting stray vertex.
9:00 — Subjective Weighting (Exclusion)
11:00— Create Strength Map on Skin
12:00— Paint off weight
13:00 — Editing
14:00 — Testing, Experimenting
15:00 — Done.
16:00 — click on Encage
16:00 — Joking

Weight Mapping Fingers

17:00 — Evaluating finger Weighting
18:00— Reverted
19:00 — Finger Webbing
20:00— Slight Demo on using Morph to sculpt hand gesture.
(Modeling by AVT, Render by David Wu)
21:00 — (+/-) Plus and Minus Strength Maps.
23:00 — Subtracting Priority.
25:00 — Stretchy Geometry through Skinning.
26:00 — Sculpting/Honing Form with Weight Map
27:00 — Stray Vert.
29:00 — Evaluating Maps for
30:00 — Fix dupe

32:00— Conclusion


28. Skin Fingers (http://homepage.mac.com/avtpro5/.Public/28.%20skin%20fingers.mov.zip)

plsyvjeucxfw
08-26-2008, 03:47 PM
Alonzo,

many thanks for your contributions to the EI community. The work of the Character Animators (and Riggers!) may be beginning to bear fruit.

AVTPro
08-26-2008, 04:32 PM
Thanks Kurt.

The videos I did were a straight through recording where if any mistakes happened I kept them in becuase it showed, how they happened and how I fixed them. I thought that was better than editting it into flawless step by steps. I haven't down any rig flawlessly yet. :)

Basically this shows how I get it done and how I have managed to get around wacky verts in EI, but mainly I do skinning and advanced rigging in Maya now. However, not all character need sophisticated rigging. A few bones, IK or deformers usually does the job.
That's why I like EI. Really some of the high end stuff is not necessary or practical for most jobs.

rtrowbridge
08-26-2008, 05:16 PM
I'd like to add my thanks for this as well (it's downloading right now). I've done mostly motion graphics, but want to begin experimenting with CA. Your videos, along with Brian's and Ian's, have been a great help to understanding how the CA system works.

Ross

ediris
08-26-2008, 06:28 PM
I want to add that motion graphics include some CA work as well. :)
Anc yes i like it too ALonzo. And how Encage helps to maintain the smothness, but the most inportant is you can have your low an high resolution model.
For me FBX and C4D are not good friends. i cant zero out my bones and it doesnt save my wmp.

AVTPro
09-09-2008, 07:50 AM
Youre welcome Guys.

BTW, this is just the weight maps/skin section of my DVD. The rest is available. I never moved it to Cafepress so it's still $85.

ediris
09-09-2008, 02:29 PM
No man thank you for the tips Alonzo,
By the way how did you import a sequence of objects. I dont recall.
Thanks,again.
Edgard

AVTPro
09-09-2008, 07:05 PM
There's no pratical way to do it.

EI use to have a trick button. While importing an object "click control" on import.

A little while back I roasted EITG about being an animation package without a batch model sequence import option.

I managed to get around but as I do with anything EI drops the ball on, I pick up Maya.

My solution involves Maya scripts which are not free.

EITG aught to fix that batch import option.

ediris
09-09-2008, 07:59 PM
I heard you could do it through OBJ2FACT which is not free either.But people has gotten some success with it.

Meanwhile i use Blender/C4D for the liquids simulations. I was just wanting to try rendering in EIAS since it is good at that.

AVTPro
09-09-2008, 08:05 PM
Patrick from Ramjac did write a utility for me so I can do this.

I don't know if O2F can import batch model squences in EI.

I use a Maya scripts and FBX.

I used it for cloth sims (with thickness) from Maya into EI.

ediris
09-09-2008, 08:47 PM
Oh that will be perfect so i can control the smoothness of my surfaces since Blender exports very chunk pieces of surfaces that only Encage can resolve or a Hypernurbs in C4D.. I will ask for a script within Maya so my friend could export the sim to me, thanks Alonzo.

Edgard

dieGolum
02-20-2009, 08:45 PM
Hi Alonso,:)

I have bought, optitracks system with 8 cameras, I have already made a pile of people dancing captures, it works very well, and EIAS import BVH perfecty.

But I have a lot of problem using strength maps to weight human characters. also I have used the technique to add small bones to compensate the deformations but with not a very good results. Many problems in the zone of the hips when people crouch themselves.

Please could you say to me if your you have been able to solve this?:bowdown:

would I like to buy the DVD in which you explain it, please where I can find it?

Cheers Diego

AVTPro
02-21-2009, 11:08 AM
You have the 8 cam? You have 2 more than I do. Oh Noooo. You beat me. :)

Just kidding of course. I'm very happy to hear it. Can I see a pic of people where the suit or motion? How much did it cost?


Yes, I have had a number of solution.

First, is wait for the upgrade.
Two, paint weights in Maya
three, buy DVD.
four, hire me.

To buy the DVD, just send me $85 on paypal. athreet@adelphia.net

Also, if you have any problem "after" watching the DVD, I will help you.
If you have emergency, then I can look at files or support you.

The weight work, it's just they technic to do it is different since FBX.
Some people say it work fine in version 6.5 r1.

dieGolum
02-21-2009, 01:11 PM
Hi, thank you for your help:)

We are making a small film that is going to be released in DVD like music animation.

Here you can see some of the works that we did when we did not have optitraks system.

www.imago-d.org (http://www.imago-d.org)

and here some test with Optitraks, as you can see are much problems in the hips.

www.imago-d.org/cgtalk/AVTtest.mov (http://www.imago-d.org/cgtalk/AVTtest.mov)

here an other with the help of littles bones to avoid bad deformations, it is better but still the hips and wrists problems.

www.imago-d.org/cgtalk/AVTtes2.mov

just for funny
www.imago-d.org/cgtalk/BraiderMan.mov (http://www.imago-d.org/cgtalk/BraiderMan.mov)

The 8 cameras Optitracks setup with the tripods and the suit with markers, clabes etc.. around 7500 dollars in Madrid. it is very stable and you can capture hours with out problems, but is veery importad to have a big room. 9x9 meters here.

I think the best solution will be a mix of the
First: wait for the upgrade.
three: buy DVD.
four:to abuse your patience ;)


sorry for my bad english,

Please, it tell me if you think that it is possible to put bones in the models without bad deformations. we are finishing the models and we will begin with the animation within 15 days.

"Some people say it work fine in version 6.5 r1."

yes in the 6,5 you can see in real time as is become deformed the meshes when painting, and you can open 7.0 projects but even so I did not good results…:sad: need your help.

cheers
Diego

plsyvjeucxfw
02-21-2009, 04:35 PM
Wow! The videos you posted and those from your web site are amazing. This is the kind of work people say "you can't do" with EIAS. And there you are doing it!

Fantastic.

Vizfizz
02-21-2009, 04:58 PM
Diego,

Great work! I love your Braider man. ;)

dieGolum
02-21-2009, 04:59 PM
Wow! The videos you posted and those from your web site are amazing. This is the kind of work people say "you can't do" with EIAS. And there you are doing it!

Fantastic.

Thank you very much, for your comment.:)

The reality is that this type of work, with a small study as mine it is only possible to be done in EIAS.:wip:

cheers
Diego

Vizfizz
02-21-2009, 04:59 PM
Diego,

v8 has supposedly improved the weight mapping solution for Animator. Hopefully it will help you resolve your hip problem. More bones can help, but a good weight map is better. The more bones you add to any solution, the more "overhead" you'll have in trying to solve your skinning issue. Hopefully EITG added a blur paint tool for weight mapping.

Vizfizz
02-21-2009, 05:15 PM
Wow! The videos you posted and those from your web site are amazing. This is the kind of work people say "you can't do" with EIAS. And there you are doing it!

Fantastic.

Oh it can be done... we just want to see it done easier and more efficiently. lol

dieGolum
02-21-2009, 05:22 PM
Diego,

v8 has supposedly improved the weight mapping solution for Animator. Hopefully it will help you resolve your hip problem. More bones can help, but a good weight map is better. The more bones you add to any solution, the more "overhead" you'll have in trying to solve your skinning issue. Hopefully EITG added a blur paint tool for weight mapping.

Yeah! I cant Wait.

blur paint tool for weight mapping + AVT Exclusion map methodology:lightbulb...mmm... I hope that will solves our skinnig problems.

Vizfizz
02-21-2009, 05:26 PM
We'll find a way to make it work.

AVTPro
02-21-2009, 09:08 PM
four:to abuse your patience ;)

LOL that gave me a good laugh. Thank you.
Your english is wonderful.
Your work is amazing.

I don't know if it's a good idea to leave the finished work up there long. Lots of Music Video Director copy. Maybe you should take it down?

I was more interested in seeing the reflector suit. Whether or not you bought the official suit. I didn't so I wanted to see if you had a makeshift. I'm just using long johns.

I will advice in next post.

MagicEgger
02-21-2009, 09:20 PM
Ola,

Wonderfull JOB!
I used lots of motion captures on my music video clips!
using BVH always.
Btw:
To have improved viewport answer with tons of motion capture data, I turned all data in keyframes and Hidded the Characters paths, then I used proxys to stage my characters and High-rez only in the final render.

http://www.ottostudios.com/OTTOSTUDIOS/Music_Video_Clips/Music_Video_Clips.html

Thanks

Tomas

AVTPro
02-21-2009, 09:47 PM
OK. You don't have time to wait.
And you need to get this work right now.
You should buy my DVD.
And I will upload just the Strength Map sections for you
until the DVD arrives.

The jest of problem is other bones are pulling on the area. You must make a map and darken out the bones effecting that area (excluding). Then go to the bones which should be influencing that area only and additively paint the maps inclusively. One map per bone.

It's going to be hard to know what bone influences what area because EI doesn't show the influence when it binds and EI doesn't reaverage maps automatically when other maps are painted in.

Paypal the money and email your address and I will send the DVD. I will upload any areas that specifically pertains to weights in the interim.

AVTPro
02-21-2009, 09:56 PM
I was talking about Rihanna, Beyonce, and Ciara's Directors Tomas. Not you. :)

They don't help us EI users. They just take and run, and call all the credit/money. :(

They go to Brazil beach. :)

They love my YouTube style.


Question: I everyone using Encage? Is that what you mean by proxy?

DieGollum can you show your mesh at the problem frame, just a very close detail?

AVTPro
02-21-2009, 10:01 PM
Yeah! I cant Wait.

blur paint tool for weight mapping + AVT Exclusion map methodology:lightbulb...mmm... I hope that will solves our skinnig problems.


When v8 is out you won't need this "boolean/subtractive" way of excluding weight. It will just work normally. I will find EI Cupriton and test today.

AVTPro
02-21-2009, 10:04 PM
BTW, your motion is VERY SMOOTH and Sharp.

Looks great.

dieGolum
02-21-2009, 10:26 PM
four:to abuse your patience ;)

LOL that gave me a good laugh. Thank you.
Your english is wonderful.
Your work is amazing. ;)

I don't know if it's a good idea to leave the finished work up there long. Lots of Music Video Director copy. Maybe you should take it down?

I was more interested in seeing the reflector suit. Whether or not you bought the official suit. I didn't so I wanted to see if you had a makeshift. I'm just using long johns.

I will advice in next post.

oh, yeah ill will take down, but it is just a play. Your Cupitron caracter... yes that is a great temptation.

I using de official reflecting markers and suit. they are very solid and they do not fall by the ground, sometimes the dancers come a little drunk, is better a solid system:beer:

dieGolum
02-21-2009, 10:40 PM
Ola,

Wonderfull JOB!
I used lots of motion captures on my music video clips!
using BVH always.
Btw:
To have improved viewport answer with tons of motion capture data, I turned all data in keyframes and Hidded the Characters paths, then I used proxys to stage my characters and High-rez only in the final render.

http://www.ottostudios.com/OTTOSTUDIOS/Music_Video_Clips/Music_Video_Clips.html

Thanks

Tomas


Wow! Tomas, now I turned all data in keyframes, I had never done it, this opens a pile of possibilities to improve and to personalize the captures in EIAS! Until now I made all adjustments in Arena (our motion capture software), now we can correct far better in EIAS,

Thank you Magic!:bowdown:

dieGolum
02-21-2009, 11:06 PM
BTW, your motion is VERY SMOOTH and Sharp.

Looks great.

Hi Alonzo, yes the motion is good, I use the "smoth" funtion adjusted to 4 in Arena software, now Tomas opened my mind when suggesting to me that it turned BVH dates in Key frames. now the bad keys frames can be erased and EIAS interpolates the movement, good!

"When v8 is out you won't need this "boolean/subtractive" way of excluding weight. It will just work normally. I will find EI Cupriton and test today."

I do not know if I understand to you correctly, you say that with version 8 it will be no longer necessary the "AVT Exclusion map methodology" ?

there is some way to download your DVD? after paypal of course:)

cheers
Diego

AVTPro
02-22-2009, 01:49 AM
Hi Alonzo, yes the motion is good, I use the "smoth" funtion adjusted to 4 in Arena software, now Tomas opened my mind when suggesting to me that it turned BVH dates in Key frames. now the bad keys frames can be erased and EIAS interpolates the movement, good!

"When v8 is out you won't need this "boolean/subtractive" way of excluding weight. It will just work normally. I will find EI Cupriton and test today."

I do not know if I understand to you correctly, you say that with version 8 it will be no longer necessary the "AVT Exclusion map methodology" ?

there is some way to download your DVD? after paypal of course:)

cheers
Diego

Arena Software the big cost, $2K. The whole system would be much less expensive if they could bring the cost of the software do, but it is very good. Too bad Mobu can't open the cameras. I may upgrade and get two more cams. Your calibration came out nicely as well.

If you have a picture of you guys in the suit it would be great. I didn't buy the suit.


I tested the weight maps a while back. Sorry to day I hadn't done many tests, I was studying Maya various forms of deformation tools. Then I burn out for a while. I agree with you 100%. EIAS has a distinct advantage to doing a lot of this kind of work very quickly. There's just so many different ways to skin a character in Maya it can be overwhelming. I still have another form of skinning to study before I get into muscles. It's very good if want to be very precise but it's a bit much is you just need great looking artwork.

AFAIK, the whole DVD isn't online for download. I don't suggest you watch the whole DVD at first. (you are not new to CA) Just study the vids that deal with strengths maps then come back and watch the others later. The whole DVD shows how all parts of character design works together to improve wmp painting results including modeling. If you need Weight Parts parts now, then I can upload them and send you the DVD later. It will show you the process of fixing stray points or the methodology/approach for how to use EI weighting in a minimal amount of time.

EIAS does work. It's just that the workflow was changed during FBX implementation, and if you were not using Mocap/FBX and aware of the changes in workflow it will seem broken.
However, the workflow was so counter intuitive, you might as well say it is broken. In the DVD, I demonstrate a workflow that does work without adding a bunch of bones. Adding more bones makes he harder to fix. Ironically, the less bones you have, the more control you have.

As far as testing, I tested bones on a cone, the difference was so dramatic, I knew it was fix. The smoothing and weight falloff was SO responsive, I felt the heart of the main problem that cause all the EIAS CA people to go to other apps was RESOLVED.

The weight map fallout on the cylinder that Brian and I did "Extensive, and excruitating vids, test and after test...felt like Maya. It was very SOFT. Almost like the geometry turned into a spider web. Touch one part all the whole area responded.

I understand my testing or communication has not been "Rigorous" enough to be 100% certain, but I am certain the weight fall off problem has been directly addressed. All the verts were responsive in a gradual dampening of influence. I don't know how it would handle a full rig, but I will give it .


I don't know why I have lost my spark for testing EI at this pivotal time, but I'm sure it's EIAS fault, and not mine :)
:banghead: :arteest: :argh:

dieGolum
02-22-2009, 08:27 AM
Hola!

I have read, that is people doing motion capture with ShyntEyes. it is a cheaper solution than Arena Software.

Also an important point is that the cameras must be synchronous via cable.

here some photos with the suit...
you can see one of the 4 tripods with the two cameras


http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w6/diegolum33/DSC_0251.jpg

http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w6/diegolum33/DSC_0260.jpg

http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w6/diegolum33/DSC_0267.jpg

cheers

AVTPro
02-22-2009, 08:53 AM
oh, yeah ill will take down, but it is just a play. Your Cupitron caracter... yes that is a great temptation.


I kid you not. Tell if that's not the Cupitron space suit. :)

http://i47.photobucket.com/albums/f190/AVTPro/Picture8-3.png

http://i47.photobucket.com/albums/f190/AVTPro/beyonce_baby.jpg

Of course it looks much more tempting on her :)

Beyonce and others love my youtube styles so much, I would be jealous if they copied someone else. LOL

It's been happening for many years. Since I was a 20. Just wish i could make some money too... that industry is rich.

AVTPro
02-22-2009, 09:02 AM
Hola!

I have read, that is people doing motion capture with ShyntEyes. it is a cheaper solution than Arena Software.

Also an important point is that the cameras must be synchronous via cable.


http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w6/diegolum33/DSC_0267.jpg

cheers


I think the beer helps with the dancing, but I would fall down a lot more if I drank :)

She looks great in the suit. I think if I get it I would have to lose weight :)

I like how you have two cameras on four tripods. I have 6 tripod. I see I would have to change the configuration if I go with two cameras.

Syntheye will work with the cameras or just the markers?



Should I burn a disk for you?

dieGolum
02-22-2009, 09:04 AM
Thanks to take the time to test those weight maps, it seems that you have good news! weight map fallout and bone fallof problems are fixed. yeah!:cool:


"If you need Weight Parts parts now, then I can upload them and send you the DVD later."

yes please! I have sent a message to you for the Paypal.

cheers
Diego

dieGolum
02-22-2009, 10:18 AM
I kid you not. Tell if that's not the Cupitron space suit. :)

http://i47.photobucket.com/albums/f190/AVTPro/Picture8-3.png



.

Yeah! good mesh to deform!;)

here some information in facial and motion capture with syntheyes.
http://www.ssontech.com/press/press072505.htm

please two questions:

1.- What you think about superposed mesh , for example the legs underneath the pants.it can be a problem painting the weight maps methodology?

2.- is it a problem for weight maps if the model comes in separated pieces, in order to have better uv's?


cheers
Diego

MagicEgger
02-23-2009, 11:40 PM
Ola,

Diego? btw: when you convert the data to keyframes, use a value like 0.001, it will force EIAS to have a closer value (path) to original data.
If you use values like 1, it will generate less keyframes.

Thanks

Tomas

AVTPro
02-24-2009, 03:09 AM
Good tips Tomas. :bowdown:

I wrote Brad and Matt about codes for my beta so I can do a sample. They haven't got back to me yet. Please talk them. It's frustrating to always have slow responses. :banghead:

I posted a tutorial I did a year or so ago how to import Mobu into EIAS, but the sound didn't work on YouTube. I'll take this down shortly and resubmit it. :arteest:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AqG0z3NZObo

Diego thanks for your purchase, I'm uploading the parts you need tonite. Please send me your email address.

Thanks.

AVTPro
02-24-2009, 03:37 AM
Yeah! good mesh to deform!;)

here some information in facial and motion capture with syntheyes.
http://www.ssontech.com/press/press072505.htm

please two questions:

1.- What you think about superposed mesh , for example the legs underneath the pants.it can be a problem painting the weight maps methodology?

2.- is it a problem for weight maps if the model comes in separated pieces, in order to have better uv's?






cheers
Diego


When I first finished the modeling I showed Keith Lango. He said he wouldn't want to deform and he is very experienced with Maya. It was far more sophisticated to deform than I thought because of the shoulders. But it was a very good character to learn many different types of deforms, which is something that wouldn't have happen with a simpler character. I learned a lot. I did lattice deforms and influence objects (muscles). The amount of precision and skin deformation techniques in Maya is endless.


1. What do you mean by superposed mesh? Super-imposed? Two meshes? Pants and legs? There's no difference. You should be able to paint both the same and if you get any parts that intersect adjust the weights map for each part accordingly.

However, if you have pants that are covering the legs, it would be more thrifty to cut the legs that isn't visible. Then you only need to weight the pants and only the portion of the legs that shows like the feet or torso. This way, intersecting parts are no longer a concern and it's less calculation in EI.

2. UVs have no effect on the weights. They are two different coordinate spaces on the polymeshes. Personally, I feel UVs should not influence your decision whether to use separate geometry or one mesh since a model with separate UV parts can be grouped as one mesh. However separate UVs is better for more texture space :)

Hope that helps

AVT

AVTPro
02-24-2009, 03:39 AM
BTW, I know Natural Point has a new facial software but it's like 5k? I think facial tracking can be done in AfterEffects as well. Thanks for the link. :)

dieGolum
02-25-2009, 04:10 PM
Ola,

Diego? btw: when you convert the data to keyframes, use a value like 0.001, it will force EIAS to have a closer value (path) to original data.
If you use values like 1, it will generate less keyframes.

Thanks

Tomas

Hi Tomas,

yes values like 1 or 2 in some cases it can help to smooth out some movements:thumbsup:

convert the data to keyframes has been a great aid,

thank you!

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