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Old 10-12-2012, 01:20 AM   #1
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Auto-rig - How to handle skinning

Maybe this is a n00b question (and a really broad one), but I've always wondered: when you make an auto-rigger, how do you handle the skinning/weight painting process? I've seen demos where the skinning seems 99.8% perfect out of the box, then I've seen others... well...

I'd assume there's more involved than "smooth bind and hope for the best". Is there anything specific you do in your script to make sure that the process goes as well as possibly can go?
 
Old 10-23-2012, 11:42 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PozestStar
Maybe this is a n00b question (and a really broad one), but I've always wondered: when you make an auto-rigger, how do you handle the skinning/weight painting process? I've seen demos where the skinning seems 99.8% perfect out of the box, then I've seen others... well...

I'd assume there's more involved than "smooth bind and hope for the best". Is there anything specific you do in your script to make sure that the process goes as well as possibly can go?

I donot kown how to do this, but I have an advice that you make a study of "advanced skeleton",it have an skinning feature.
Hope it can help you.
 
Old 10-29-2012, 03:42 AM   #3
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There's a few solutions.
Autoriggers usually rig already existing joints. The workflow is that an artist makes a file with the skeleton and saves it, then the autorigger imports that file and rigs the joints. It doesn't care that the joints are driving a mesh, so nothing is stopping the artist from bringing the mesh into their skeleton file, skinning it, painting weights, and just leaving it in there. The autorigger won't care, it will just import the file and rig away.

Now if you have an autorigger that is generating joints things get a little trickier. In that scenario you can still keep a copy of that skeleton and your skinned mesh in a file, and then when the autorigger is done you bring it in and connect the rigged skeleton to your 'skin' skeleton.

Alternatively you can use a script to save out the skin weight data to a file. Then you build your rig, load the mesh, skin it with default weights, and load your skin data. This can be nice if, for pipeline reasons, you can't keep your mesh with your skeleton.

Another scenario is writing tools that make the "auto bind" really damn good somehow. This would probably be appropriate for a situation where you were rigging hundreds of characters, but they didn't have to be perfect.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:33 AM   #4
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Maya's skinning sucks.. And even my TD says the 'bindpose' is outdated and should be removed... and he wrote the Maya 4.5 bible.
99.8% out of the box is far from true.
A script.. PM_Heatweight is a great addition.. and from what I've heard, its incorporated into Maya 2013
Auto riggers like Setup Machine use a volume technique based upon its default rigs 'box' bounds. It work fairly well, but its still a plugin. And a lot of workflows do not allow any plugins.

When using maya skinning, I usually skin a good character, and then reference that in for other characters, and use copy weights, and fix the new one manually.
 
Old 11-07-2012, 03:06 AM   #5
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I have seen a reel before with an auto rigger that looks at the topology to determine joint placement. The script was written by someone who modeled his own characters consistently with stars that were always in the same general area. His scripted looked for these stars and worked from there. Then again this was an autorigger for joint placement, but I assume that with this approach you could get a decent result.

I don't mean to discourage you. Just sharing what I've seen. I believe anything is possible within computer science. It's just a matter of figuring out the how.
 
Old 11-07-2012, 09:22 AM   #6
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as said already there are a couple of algorithms like hit weights that might help but some of those has some limitations and in general it helps the skinning it doesn't make it for you , on some meshes works beatifully in others makes a huge mess.
The common things in production after you skin you save the weights out in a file and then you can rebuild the whole rig and import weights ( everything by script ) in a matter of seconds
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:53 AM   #7
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:37 PM   #8
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like already mentioned, any "automatic" weights are nothing but a starting point, better or worse, for a manual work afterwards. If somebody has a "100% working solution" in their reel or product, it's just a selling point, but most probably not 100% true. In reality, depending on the rig, you'll want to invest quite some time to get deformations right.
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:37 PM   #9
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