Seperate Mesh (head and body)

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  12 December 2012
Seperate Mesh (head and body)

I am in the process of modeling several characters for animation. I have modeled all of my characters with the head mesh separated from the body mesh. Will this be okay for rigging and animation if the body and head meshes are separate or would it be better to combine the two meshes before rigging?

Thank you in advance for your suggestions and workflows you may have.

I am a rookie at “rigging” so forgive me if this is a “newbie” question.
  12 December 2012
Good to have head separate from body in case your doing blendShapes.
Hope the the end topology of head blends nicely withe the body and don't separate.
Download Vehicle Rig
  12 December 2012
Build your mesh as one piece but separate the head and the body before skinning. As shinyprem said, you may want to add some blendshapes for facial animation. I recommand to keep a copy of your model as one unique piece, so you can paint weights on this one and then use the copy skin tool to paint weights on the 2 separate pieces. This way, the neck border edges will have the same weights
  12 December 2012
I am confused.

I guess what I am asking is... Can you bind a skeleton to Two different meshes (head and body)?
  12 December 2012
Yes, there's no limits, one skeleton can control multiple meshes
  12 December 2012
Thanks you Pahuska. I am assuming that this "main" skeleton will not control the facial controls, only head and body movements, correct?

I will have to build a separate rig for the facial controls, correct?

Also, is it simple to combine the body and facial rigs?

Sorry about asking these "newbie questions" but I just wanted to have a general idea of what I am getting myself into! Ha.
  12 December 2012
There's not one perfect solution but yes, I like to separate body rig and facial rig. Here's what I usually do :

1 main skeleton that control 1 body mesh and 1 face mesh. Then I duplicate the head mesh to sculpt some shapes (like different mouth shapes for lipsync). I duplicate another head to build a joint based facial rig, and sometimes another one to have a stretchy rig (with nonLinear deformers). Then I connect all those duplicated heads to the first skinned head via a blendshape node
  12 December 2012
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