Tips for binding\painting weights

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Old 09 September 2003   #31
yo alesmav: We are using clusters AND blendshapes for facial rigs in our studio, it`s the combination that makes the best out of both methods. Sometimes the directors want that certain expression and than blendshapes are the way to go, but you are right that the linear interpolation of blendshapes is not always the most beautiful animation, so to get a little "noise" or whatever one may call it we use the clusters.
And rigging hiRes characters is something that I wouldn`t wann do, since nice deformation can get really difficult. There are a couple of ways to achieve a hiRes Geometry. We just smoothPoly the whole thing when it comes to rendering.

Anyway, I don`t know if you desparate weight painting imps out there have noticed that with the help of some nice cgTalk folk I have put together a script which will copy the weighting amongst vertices. I actually don`t know if there are already script s that do this. If you wann try it download the attached file rename it to *.mel" source the script, select the vertex from which you wanna copy the weights, then shift select the vertices where you want the weights to be copied and it "should" actually copy them, and it "should" even copy them between different polyMeshes. And maybe it works even on Nurbs ? Who knows..

Good luck
buexe

http://www.cgtalk.com/attachment.php?s=&postid=840531
 
Old 09 September 2003   #32
to those who use clusters

Hi

Do you people use clusters for muscle deformation (bulging biceps etc) or just to tweak the loss of volume when joints bend such as at knees and elbows?

Also, if clusters are all that some people use then how many would a typical? character use?


Thanx in advance
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Old 09 September 2003   #33
Hey Jack!

Clusters are my favourite method for rigging the face, but as far as other body muscles are concerned, I believe influence objects are largely used.

ALES
 
Old 09 September 2003   #34
kpms:

Quote: its completely possible to get away with no weight painting at all


Maybe with a few influence objects here an' there also?

Atwooki
 
Old 09 September 2003   #35
SaucyJack,

I use clusters to do things like muscle bulges as well. It's super easy, with predictable results. I usually put a multiplyDivide node between the rotation of a joint -- say an elbow for the bicep bulge -- and one of the translation values of the cluster. Using the multiplyDivide node in between also allows me to have a script that can be reused on characters of differing size with just a minor adjustment to a multiplication value.
Others use driven keys for it, and that works, too. It's just a preference thing.

Again, I choose the clusters over Influence Objects because there is a tiny hit to the interactivity of a character, as opposed to my experience with the Influence Objects, which seem to really slow down characters.

That's it.

Alec
 
Old 09 September 2003   #36
Quote: Originally posted by Atwooki
kpms:



Maybe with a few influence objects here an' there also?

Atwooki


yeah I use influence objects last when skinning. I try to get the best possible deformations with just bone placement and no weight painting. But at the moment I'm working on a character and so far all I have is bones in it and my deformations are almost perfect and I haven't painted any weights on it at all. I am binding to a low rez control cage which makes the process much easier though. I also run a script called smoothflood which goes through and smooths all joints and influence objects at the same time. The only probelm I usually have when binding is the transition of weight between joints is a little rough so I run the smoothflood and it really helps to smooth out deformations. Also connecting certain joints rotations to drive other joints rotations and translations helps greatly by creating more realistic movements (especially in the shoulder area). By using some mult/divide nodes controlling the driven bones you can fake a lot of realistic muscle movement. But again it requires a lot more time in the rigging phase. It may not be worth your time if its easier to paint the weight. For me personally, weight painting is the bane of my existence and I do everthing I can avoid it.
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Old 09 September 2003   #37
Hey

Just discovered this link which contains some pretty interesting stuff regarding charcter set-up and skinning. Covers a lot of the stuff discussed in this thread and then some. My eyes have only just stopped spinning at the complexity of it all.

Link

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Old 09 September 2003   #38
Hey I just discovered a nice flag for smooth skinning. Many mel folks will probably know it but maybe it is helpful to those who just want to add another influence and somehow they don`t manage to reach the bindPose (I know there are ways to do it, anyway).
mel command:
skinCLuster -e -ignoreBindPose putHereYOurSkinClusterName;

From now on Maya will not stop you from adding influences if you are in bindPose or not, just be careful though.

BTW I still didn`t get that cluster orientation issue, I tried to get an oriented cluster, but was only succesful with absolute ones. When I tried the same with relative clusters it didn`t work. If anyone has a good hint I`ll be most thanksful (come on ACFred,pleeaassseee!!!! )

cheers
buexe
 
Old 09 September 2003   #39
-e correct spelling is skinCluster not skinCLuster, sorry!
 
Old 10 October 2003   #40
Hey, nice discussion here....

Sorry bother you since I don't feel capable yet to discuss which method to use: I'm stucked with Paint Weights tool, and I didn't try other else yet.
I think my case is simple. When I try to add influence to a joint with my Paint Weights Tool, it simply don't show up in the scene view. For example: I set the tool to add, and Value to 1. If I would click the flood the button, then my whole character should turn white, right? But it doesn't....it only show up when I cancel the selection and reselect it again. It's like some sort of refreshing problem...

I imagine this could be a problem of limited hardware capability provided by my graphic card (which is a Fire GL2). Is that correct?

Is there anybody out here who have experienced problems like mine?

Thank you all.
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Old 10 October 2003   #41
Two invaluable scripts I use constantly whilst weighting:

select bones, then mesh, then:

newSkinCluster "-toSelectedBones -ibp -mi 3 -dr 10";

I use this when I'm importing weights from other chars or I need to tweak bone positions and rebind
--
and
--
http://www.highend3d.com/maya/mel/?...n=animation#729

the second being "fixWeight.mel" which lets you tweak verts and move, sew, cut UVs and then nuke the history whilst maintaining the weighting.


Is there a quick way to select the bone/influence object in the workspace as opposed to resorting back to hunting through the tiny scroll window in the paint weights dialogue box?:annoyed:

--magilla
 
Old 10 October 2003   #42
Quote: Originally posted by magilla
Is there a quick way to select the bone/influence object in the workspace as opposed to resorting back to hunting through the tiny scroll window in the paint weights dialogue box?:annoyed:

--magilla




You can right click on the joint in the workspace and select it for weight painting....



 
Old 10 October 2003   #43
that doesn't work - this hint is in the dialogue box, but I've never understood it.

if you select the bone via right click - it opens the attribute window for that bone, but the selected bone for painting in the weight paints dialogue box doesn't change.

--magilla
 
Old 10 October 2003   #44
Quote: that doesn't work - this hint is in the dialogue box, but I've never understood it


Sure it works and it´s great. I use that all the time.



David
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Old 10 October 2003   #45
hey, you're right - it works in 5.0, but I don't get the same result in 4.0!! - which is what I use at work.

--magilla
 
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