View Full Version : Universal Man

04 April 2008, 07:42 AM
Hey everyone,

I've got a really tricky question and I hope someone can help me out. I have to try and cut back on production costs for specific scene with 20-30 characters. What I want to do is create a Universal Man (similar to what Pixar did in The Incredibles) to reduse rigging and skinning time. In order words, I want to create several characters from one mesh without having to re-rig or skin the character. So far the only idea I have is to use blendshapes, but I don't know if that is the best option.

If anyone knows of a way to do this, please let me know!

Thanks in advance,

04 April 2008, 02:56 PM
Remember Blendshapes are additive, so you'll have to do quite a bit of planning, but I think that would be your best way of doing it. I'd like to know how you do it when you're done. keep us updated.

04 April 2008, 02:58 AM
Personally I'd suggest using bones to get the general proportions of the universal face, and then use blendshapes to adjust the quality of shapes. For example, bones would set where the eye-sockets, nose bridge, nose tip, mouth, mouth corners, jaw, chin, forehead, cheeks, ears, etc. all were placed. Then blendshapes would be used for how sharp the jaw is, how round the nose is, how long the ears are, how much brow overhang there is, etc. That way you don't have to have blendshapes fight each other when you are working out large movements, and you have more flexibility in achieving the overall shape you want. But you still have the fine control that blendshapes offer where you need it most.

The trick is to get a good facial rig to move with everything and still work once you've achieved your new look.

Michael Duffy

04 April 2008, 09:05 AM
Using joints sounds like a really cool idea. Thank you! It's going to take some planning to get everything to work together, but I agree that it will give me he most flexibility. I'll keep you updated on how it turns out.

Thanks a million!

04 April 2008, 05:43 PM
Don't forget about the lattice ;)

You can use bones to place objects and then have a lattice over everything that will allow you to create short fat, tall skinny and many variations.

04 April 2008, 09:33 PM
Few times ago i stop to think about how they do it the universal char.
And now im having the same problem then you. Im in a production with a lot of chars and i dont want rigg all many times.
So, first im creating a simply auto-rigg for my controls. like set-driven keys.
i will think more about and i will try to find a solution with you.


CGTalk Moderation
04 April 2008, 09:33 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.