View Full Version : - Skinning Tips?

04 April 2003, 05:09 AM
Since Maya's Smooth Skin editing tools (Paint Skin Weights, for example) are so limited compared to some of the other programs out there, I was wondering if there are some tips/tricks to speeding up the workflow and good ways to prevent errors that occur? Maybe some helpful scripts or commands or pre-binding tips that will make things go smoother?


04 April 2003, 06:06 PM
instead of the usual 'T' stand try on your character a 45 degree angle on the shoulders joints and a 90 degree on the elbows with the hands and fingers facing you! Hope i<m making some sence!

It helps me out a lot! I think its called the relaxed pose!

later jack

04 April 2003, 07:11 PM
I've never skinned a char in any other program so I don't really know how Maya's smooth skinning compares. Smooth skinning can be a little weird at first but once you get the hang of it I don't think its really that hard. When painting, never remove weight only add it. When you remove it just moves the weight to another joint which you don't have much control over. Also try using influence objects. I just started to utilize them in my skinning process and they make a huge difference. If you have good influence objects you may find that you will have to do very little weight painting or even none at all. Also mirrior skin weights will help you get through the skinning process much quicker.

04 April 2003, 07:30 PM
Mirror weights tool is a nice tool that speeds up the workflow. You may want to avoid, having any weights on your highest joint in your hierarchy. Though do keep in mind that if your character isn't built to flex and bend, any glitch you think is a result of the software could very well be a result of poor model construction. I have found many times where my characters have gone through a period of reconstruction, simply because some areas did not have enough geometry to create the type of flexing I desired. There is not a 100% guarranteed solution to speed up your workflow. Just time and practice.

04 April 2003, 01:49 AM
I always add influence objects to keep the "correctness" of the skin.
Sometimes when you get your characters in extreme poses the polys tend to "break" (if you will).
It happened to me once. A character had to bend the leg forward (almost 180 degrees) and the butt broke apart :eek:

Now that I use the influences the body keeps it's correct proportions and never breaks :thumbsup:

You can even use the mirror weights if you have influences :bounce: :scream:

04 April 2003, 02:20 AM
Originally posted by nemirc

You can even use the mirror weights if you have influences :bounce: :scream:

When I used mirror weights with a bicep influence the weights mirrored, but not properly. It was still weighted to the left bicep and not the right one.. :shrug: Not a big deal, just a one minute fix.

Man if maya's skin weight tools are limited Id love to see some of the other apps in action. Must be crazy cool and fast.

I never used the paint weights tool.
Im a component editor man.
My tools and strategy for weighting are:
weight the left side of the character(when in front view you see his front)
I start with the foot and work my way up to the head.
I select all the vertices that I want to be to the toe, then go into the comp editor and apply 100 percent to the proper bone.
then I do the next bone up till the hips.
Then pose the foot/leg in some position
I then select an edge between two joints, select continuous edges, then convert select to verts.
Then grab the slidey thing in the comp editor and slide it till it looks better. I also write in values too.
I also use the grow selection tool, "shift + < or > in combination with the continuous edges for circular things, like a colar for a neck.
Finish one half, then mirror..
O and view selected to isolote areas that have alot of confusing geo.

O if you know where your influences need to be add them before you do this, makes it easier because when you add an influence it sometimes throws weights all over your model.. Yarrrr

Thats what I do,

04 April 2003, 04:35 AM
I use just the component editor and paint selections (to load components). And use lots of influence objects, much better than bones.

04 April 2003, 08:05 PM
Originally posted by Lyr
I use just the component editor and paint selections (to load components). And use lots of influence objects, much better than bones.

You mean you create a rig without using bones at all?? :eek:

04 April 2003, 09:53 PM
no, just wieght the mesh to the influence objects and avoid weighting to bones. Your mesh has to be smooth bound to a skeleton in order to use influence objects.

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