PDA

View Full Version : Beginner asking for advice


thomaskc
09-01-2009, 11:22 AM
Hello everyone!

Im hoping some of you talented people can and will give me some advice on how to move on from where im stuck.

I know the very basics of maya in terms of navigation and tools, but not the tricks and way of thinking since Ive worked with 3dsmax for architechtual stills and industry animations for the last two years, but now its time to try something different... Character animation in maya!

I have ordered "animators survival kit" (havnt got it yet, few days hopefully) and I have started my first serious walkcycle, and this is where Id like your advice.

http://thomaskc.dk/wip/maya/robot_walkcycle004.mov (12mb)

This is where I am now and im a bit out of knowlegde and ideas on how to improve it, because im sure there is a lot work to do still.

Thanks in advance guys!

- Thomas

robcat2075
09-01-2009, 04:41 PM
Hello everyone!


I have ordered "animators survival kit" (havnt got it yet, few days hopefully)

That's a great resource, maybe the best in a single book. Although to look at it it seems to be about drawing, it's really about posing which is as good for 3D as it is for 2D.


and I have started my first serious walkcycle, and this is where Id like your advice.

If character animation is your goal, start way simpler. A walk is actually an advanced topic. Learn to do a great bouncing ball, because almost everything in body mechanics originates from that.

then do a simple character making one broad jump.

and so on...

but i'll make one observation on your walk...

He's dropping into the "compression" pose after the heel strike too fast. That pose happens not because the character intentionally crouches down but only because his weight is trying to continue down (momentum and all that) from having fallen forward into each new foot contact position.

So he's not going to fall faster once his foot hits the ground (and therefore can support him and stop him from falling more) but his mass will actually slow down from that point until he bottoms out and starts back up again.

Since he didn't fall very far from his peak into the foot contact pose, he wont' "follow thru" much farther to his compression pose. If you really want him to squash that much he's got to peak higher.

This is not an uncommon error. It's very similar to the mistake people make in squashing a bouncing ball too much/too fast when it hits the ground. Learn that bouncing ball!

I made some videos on posing walks (http://www.brilliantisland.com/am/amtutorials.htm) for some people I was coaching. They're not a complete guide, but you may find them helpful.


Good looking character!

thomaskc
09-01-2009, 05:44 PM
@robcat2075

Thanks a lot dude! I will look into it! And defernetly try out that ball animation and look into the material you posted.

Edit: And yeah the charater is awesome, not mine though! I got it from www.highend3d.com, very good rig for learning i think.

thomaskc
09-01-2009, 06:39 PM
I just tried to reduce the compression and strech a bit and make the eyebrows rotate a bit too.

http://thomaskc.dk/wip/maya/robot_walkcycle005.mov

thomaskc
09-02-2009, 08:56 PM
Not sure if anyone is following this or is actually interested, heh I hope because im stuck again.

I tweaked a bit here and there, worked on the antennas and such

http://www.thomaskc.dk/wip/maya/robot_walk07.mov

There is a jigg or lag when it lifts the foot still and i can't seem to figure how to fix it, what part is moving wrong :/

Feel free to bid in!

thanks

robcat2075
09-03-2009, 07:11 AM
Well, I still think he's squashing too much for as little as he's falling from. He's definitely doing a hyper-squash after the left foot hits.

One other walk thing... you can loosen the foot up by lagging the toe a bit as the lifted foot is pulled from back to front.

I also think he's leaving his heel on the ground too long at the back of the foot travel. At the back of the foot travel he can show force by pushing off with his toe but that straight rigid foot that is just nicking the ground

thomaskc
09-03-2009, 08:12 AM
Hey, thanks.. hmm I think I see what you mean about the bend foot, it should bend way earlier. I will look into it.

Also realized from your video that my center of timing in terms of changing from one leg to another was off, I think now it happens roughly 50% though the frames, and from your video material it clearly shows it more like 75% of the frame time it takes to get the back foot half the way towards front.

robcat2075
09-03-2009, 07:52 PM
One other thing... it's a pretty slow walk. Not that that's illegal. It could happen. On a giant or an old person.

But when we were doing plain vanilla walks at AnimationMentor they had us doing them on a 1 second cycle. That's a typical pace.

A slow pace exposes all the sins.

thomaskc
09-03-2009, 08:22 PM
So if i understand you right... 12 frames per step ? making the full walkcycle go for the 24 frames?

robcat2075
09-04-2009, 04:59 PM
So if i understand you right... 12 frames per step ? making the full walkcycle go for the 24 frames?

yeah.

In Richard WIlliams' Book he starts off with 8 frames per step. That's because 8 can always be repeatedly subdivided by 2 and 12 can't.

thomaskc
09-04-2009, 05:56 PM
I see, I just got the book today actually I will start reading it and redo the walk with the fewer frames to see how that works :) thanks so far

thomaskc
10-01-2009, 10:27 AM
Hey everyone! hope you got a minute again.

I finally got the time to do this right again, I remade it from scratch and retimed it to 12 frames per step. personally I think it worked out pretty well (but what do I know :P ) but please let me know if there is anyone of you are spotting something which just jumps in your eyes, like "a common beginner mistake" or so :)

here we go:

http://www.thomaskc.dk/wip/maya/12framewalk.mov

thanks a lot.

- Thomas

robcat2075
10-02-2009, 10:12 PM
Here's the first one I notice...

his vertical motion looks like he's hitting a ceiling and stopping as in "a" rather than a nice up and down as in "b"

giordi
10-03-2009, 09:55 PM
hi i saw your animations i don't like the feet ... i think that the back foot detach from the ground to early , personally i don't love the "slap" movement of the feet but should be a particular style of walking !
I thin that there isn't enough weight in your animation
another thing i don't like the fixed position of the eyes

thomaskc
10-05-2009, 09:28 PM
Thanks for the comments everyone!

Im pretty pleased with it now, I have given it more weight during shift between feet and evened out the movement of the steps.

http://www.thomaskc.dk/wip/maya/robot_walk_render.mov

Hope you agree :)

thanks

giordi
10-05-2009, 11:47 PM
oh this is better! one thingh don't keep the eye controller in the same place for all the animation , and try to add a bit of follow through at the tip of the feet

giordi
10-05-2009, 11:50 PM
and also the eye brows in the second down pos are wrong the go down fisrt of the body

CGTalk Moderation
10-05-2009, 11:50 PM
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.