View Full Version : Paul's DVD box set - 2 questions

02 February 2006, 01:51 PM
I purchased the Rigging DVD box set from cg-academy and while I wait for the product to be delivered overseas, I was wondering if anyone here has already viewed the complete series and can speak about it's level of detail and instruction to someone with my skills.

How much further will the DVD box set take me from the below summary of skills? Is the box set at a much higher level then the level I outlined below ?

My present skill level at rigging in 3dsmax:
I already know how to make vertices move with bones/IK using the skin modifier along with linking/wiring spline animation controls to bones...I also am very comfortable using the morph modifier and wiring them to attribute holders. that's about all I'm confidently sure of at this moment and I've already completed (a few times) replicating the max files on the tutorial CD that came with 3dsmax. So I guess that amount of knowledge places me at about a beginner/intermediate rigging level.
I don't feel 'comfortable' labling myself at an intermediate level when it comes to creating scripts that will animate what I want. I did purchase the maxscript dvd box set from cg-academy a while ago, I was able to understand the steps that were instructed in those two dvds but not at the level where I've seen some riggers here apply scripting to the problems they've encounted in posts I've read here at this forum.

02 February 2006, 11:59 PM
I'm not going to say anything specific for what you will learn. All I have to say is that you will learn a lot if you are somewhat a newbie and only did the tutorials that came with max. Honestly I didnít know anything about rigging when I brought it (like 0 nothing). It was as expected, extremely hard for me but I wrote down notes and watch them over many times. I got a good idea of how things work over time and learn so much about rigging in the past 4 months than I would do if I learn own my own for the next 4 years.

02 February 2006, 12:25 AM
Come to think of it. All your answers are here at their website:

I really hope you read the info before you buy it....

02 February 2006, 01:00 PM
thank you tbxstudio for your valued feedback. that gives me something (a challenge) to look forward to when I receive the products in the post.

I was only looking for customer feedback on the product I read about and recently purchased. Personally, I am skeptical about ALL merchants and their selective use of "persuasive-copy" to sell their products/services at their web sites. Nothing negative towards the product or the merchant in question; I find forums/BBS very useful tools for asking such questions and reading other user's responses. Gaining understanding of other user's experiences usually humbles my own expectations about the products/services I purchase.

02 February 2006, 02:27 PM
Ryan, I fully understand as I don't believe every thing that I read either and I would never expect any one else to.

I don't think that I have ever had a complaint about the DVD set other then people pointing out that I don't show you how to add an IK solver to the arm. In reading what you know I place you in the beginner level still, no offence intended here but I don't think that people realize the scope of knowledge that one can gain into rigging characters. I see tutorials all the time that claim to be advanced but either have glaring errors in them or cover rigging methods that are no better then what ship with Max. Every thing that ships with Max is great and needed to be learned before moveing on to my DVD set but it is all at the beginner level.

I marked these DVD's as Intermediate, but what I call a true Intermediate level. Intermediate level rigging goes beyond knowing how to use parameter wires and other ways of connecting objects and tracks together. It is an understanding of why you are doing it and how it is really working under the hood. Also an understanding of what an animator might want in a character rig. Some of the worst character riggers I know are also technicaly the best, they have a grand understanding of how to connect stuff up but none of it is what an animator really wants. I try to bring you to some understanding of this in the DVD's. Also an intermediate character rigger needs to start having a understanding about script and how to automate processes or write more complex script controllers. For instance writting an auto rigging script is some thing that I think an intermediate rigger should eventualy be able to to.

Advanced rigging is less about rigging directly and more about how character rigging will impact the production pipeline, how it will be used and reused, how you will get better character deformations and that interact with areas like cloth and hair. Data management of characters and their assets that can all be built into the rigs.

Considering that most riggers that I have ever worked with don't actualy understand how rotations work or why certain things don't work the way that people expect I can't call them advanced. A truely advanced character TD would have the answers to this but they will still call them selves advanced. I guess I'm a little hard on it all as I see alot of people labeling them selves things that they really are not. Just as I dont' call my self an advanced lighting and rendering guy. I use it all the time and I know it very well but I'm not advanced in my eyes. I don't fully understand the suttle issues that affect lighting, I'm not that strong an artist when it comes to colour and I don't know all the possibilities for production pipeline of lighting and rendering, even though I have been doing it for 11 years.

I think that with your current level of knowledge you will get alot out of the DVD's. Once you have viewed them please drop back in and give your honest opinion of them. I would like to hear it all before I start into my Advanced Series.

02 February 2006, 03:38 PM
I'll let you know what chapters on the dvds I've found easy and difficult to grasp. My primary expectation for any rigging tutorial is to understand what methods and tricks can be applied to complete complex animation effects . Sounds like there are plenty of examples on your DVD box set.

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02 February 2006, 03:38 PM
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