View Full Version : Insect antennae - Rigging?

02 February 2005, 03:50 PM
I'm making a cricket in Maya and its come time to rig the antennae. Though I know I could hand animate them with some sort of technique: Bones (with spline IK?), bend deformers, etc. this seems like an unnecesary lot of work and too prone to looking artificial. I want the antennae to move dynamically with the head/neck.
So far I've experimented with soft bodies but with limited results.

I want to just animate the head/neck chain of the cricket and have the antennae sway back and forth dynamically. Its a sort of realistic cartoony style so I've got a bit of licence. I guess they should be semi-rigid but with a bit of give in them to bend and respond to the head/neck movement.

Anyone else out there ever tried to do this...?
I'm using Maya 5.0.1

02 February 2005, 08:58 PM
I have tried what you are looking for a while back with a tale.
I used This ( for reference. Same idea just kind of catared for my needs.

Good Luck:thumbsup:

02 February 2005, 10:24 PM
Yeahhh, that tut is a classic. Very basic, but gives you the general idea.

Myself, I've gotten it down pretty well so what I'll do in that kind of a case now is to do like the tut says, create your joint chain (it helps to have one joint per line of verts), then control that with a spline IK. Make a simpler joint chain, of say like 3-5 joints long, and use that to control the splin IK's control curve. You can also make this curve into a soft body and control it's attributes as to how "whippy" it is. Once you have your 3-5 joint control chain, and your Spline IK soft body curve, then you simply do a soft bind of the control chain to the soft body spline IK control curve.

Sound complicated??? It kinda is, but once you tweak through each of the processes you should be able to do it without any reference and junk. Hopefully that maybe helps a tiny bit. :)

02 February 2005, 12:17 AM
Thanks guys for your quick replies. That tutorial looks like what I need. A little complex intially but so is most new things you try in Maya.
Hope I can get a good effect happening for my cricket, he's quite a cheeky little character, and the antennae would just add some nice flavour to the scenes as a whole. May require a fair bit tweeking to get it looking right. I wonder if this method is similar to other tentacle/tail like rigs I've seen in movies:
1. - Hellboy - (the big squid thing at the end)
2. - LOTR- (the giant Squid outside the gates of Moria).

02 February 2005, 12:29 PM
If ya had 6 you coulded just make a dinamic curve and attach the bones to it. This would make your life much easy !

02 February 2005, 05:38 PM
IkSpline, and make the spline a softbody (with goalweights). Control the dynamics, by adjusting the goalweights per CV.


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