View Full Version : rotating head & character

12 December 2003, 02:42 PM
1. I am working with Maya 5.01. I have my head seperate from my body, I parented the first head joint to the last body joint, but when I go to twist the shoulders the head follows, becasue it is parented in to the joint chain. What is the best way to attach the head so I can avoid this unwanted rotation?

2. I have seen character rigs that have a simple nurbs circle at the bottom of the character that when selected lets you rotate your entire character ect.. How is this achieved? Do you do some type of constrait with the circle to the mesh, or is this parented?

Thanks for you time,

Matt Leishman
12 December 2003, 05:07 PM
what i like to do in a situation like this is use constraints.

first I'll create some kind of control object that you can use to rotate the head, and place it appropriately somewhere near the joint that is rotating (it could be a locator, it could be some type of nurbs curve in a shape that will work for you). Freeze its transforms. Make sure you call this node NeckCtrl or something. appropriate naming is so important.

then I duplicate the neck joint that is needing to be isolated. then take that duplicated joint and pull it out of the skeletal hierarchy so its all on its on, not parented to anything. then delete everything below that joint in its own little hierarcy. so now all you've got is a single joint that is an exact duplicate of the original neck joint. this is important because using this technique you get something to orient constrain the original neck joint to and it already has all the same rotation orders and orientation of the original neck joint.

now I parent the new single joint (I'll call it something like OrientNeckJnt) to the control object you created earlier and placed at the neck. Now orient constrain the original neck joint to the duplicated OrientNeckJnt. the original neck joint is now being controlled by the control object at the neck.

now the final step is to make it so the control object stays with the neck when you rotate the torso in different directions. This could be via a point constraint. you could point constraint - with offset maintained - the control object to the joint one step higher than the original neck joint in the skeletal hierarchy, or you could just try parenting the neck control to the joint one step higher than the original neck joint in the skeletal hierarchy, or maybe even try a parent contsraint if you'd like. the possibilities are endless!

as for the circle at the bottom of the character that controls the translation and rotation of the whole character - its a topmost node in the rig hierarchy. everything involved in the rig is parented under this node.

hope some of this helps. good luck.

12 December 2003, 06:53 AM
sorri for the late reply, thanks sithwarlord for the help :)


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