A little, big update…

Well It’s been awhile since I posted on my blog, so it was time give some attention and a new look to my blog.

So what’s new?

Well the ‘Headless’ project has been getting some attention from 3D people in the our year, which they’re working modelling some asset. The main character, the head and the body, are nearly finished, with only a couple more tweaks before it’s signed off and handed to myself for rigging.

Apart from overseeing the character models for rigging purpose, I’ve been working with Rhys Harvey (Director of Headless) to understand how will the characters move and how flexible the characters going to be but also understanding the technical constrains. The conclusion of our discussion is to have the ability of the stretchy cartoon character alike for the characters and providing physics animation for the small details like hair, paper, etc. This will insure animators will focus on the characters motions and bring the characters to life. Also the short animation film will have no dialog, so the facial expressions on the rig will have top-notch!

So for the past month since the pitches were over and done with, I’ve spent my time on testing and researching facial rigging, physics and rigging tool set.

Facial Rigging

As I’ve never really actually rig a full character with a full facial rig before, I’ve been learning some tutorials online and researching how to implement this system into the ‘Head’ character. From my research and tests, I’ve managed to rig a head with a lot of expressions being available for the animator…. well I didn’t manage to finish of the controls because of how long it was taking to go through each set driven key (SDK) from the left side of the face to the right side….and there was 58 joints from the left side…

This instance made me think of looking into writing a script to copy SDK’s from one side and mirror them onto the other side by using a clean naming conventions. This is still in development but I’ve managed to copy the controls with has SDK’s to a new driver and driven but not mirror the SDK animation. I found this really useful blog post by Chrisevans3D, which Rigging Dojo share on Twitter, helped me understand what was going on behind the curtain of Maya and O my! What a spaghetti mess Maya makes!  Recommend anyone rigging to give this blog post a read!

I’m going to try and get the MEL script working before I come to rigging the head, as this will save a lot of time. Currently the planned joints for the ‘Head’ character will have around 158 joints (104 facial joints). Here’s a preview screenshot of the head and facial joints placements.

1939479_10152550463629247_2526567622543364216_o

Physics

I know physics is a pain in the back side and processing time will take way too long for the production, even tho we have new shining computers in the studio now. 🙂 So the other way of doing this is using hair follicle with a nurbs curve, which will be attached to a serials of joints. Even though this works greats for what the characters need, I’m thinking of adding controls for a safe guard on these joints, that will allow to go in and adjust any keys to tidy up the animation.

Tool sets

As I’ve mention above, I’m currently writing a script to copy SDK’s and a mirroring the animation curve node. So far I’ve manage to copy the animationCurve nodes, rename and plug into the new driver and driven. Just need to work out and add to the script to mirror the animation curves. A friendly UI is non-exist at the moment but will the script will be refined to accommodate this.

In other Mel script development, I’ve nearly finish an auto IK/FK setup script for the legs and arms for a biped rig. Yet again UI has not been made, which will be added to the script…..

and that’s it!

Now I’m going to have a drink for writing a massive blog post.

 

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Deep – Medusa

So been really busy getting this Medusa model done in Maya but I encounter a problem in how we pose Medusa into the scene. Something which wasn’t done during pre. So I decided to put my rigging skills to the test and create my first rig. Now I’ve not made the rig to be animated, just for posing purpose only. So they are some features I’ve left out. Here a test vid, showing the rig working.

 

My New Blog and Introduction

Welcome to my new blog. I’ve decided to ditch blogger and come across to here. Consider this a fresh start in blogging my work. I’m in the middle of transferring my post from blogger to here and cleaning it up, so please excuse the mess.

For any readers who aren’t aware, I’m currently 2nd year student studying Digital Animation (Soon to change to Animation and Visual Effects) at Falmouth University.

I’ll be showcasing most of my work in animation, rigging, modeling and design. My aim for this is not just to promote myself but to share tips and advise to anyone starting out in 3D animation field. Also from time to time, I do post other stuff just to show my personality.

 

Enjoy 🙂

Group Project Update *Adjusting Morpheus rig and testing for a template.*

Adjusting Morpheus rig and testing for a template.

We decided to use Morpheus Rig V1.0 created by Josh Burton because the rig covers our two main objectives.

1) The rig needed to be customisable.

2) Animator friendly, so no glitchness during the animation phrase.

Thanks to our lecture Georg showing us, not only how customisable the form of the rig was but how we can apply our creative touch and look of the rig as well. This is important for us because we have to make sure the theme and look from our concept artwork remains the same.

As technical director on this project, I wanted to test and make sure the rig is setup to become a template for our artist to come along and painting the rig straight off the bat.

In Maya with the Morpheus loaded, it was time to strip down the rig.

I’d started to remove the head and all of the head controls from the outliner, as we won’t be needing them.

I’d removed the following…

headRNfosterParent1
head_mover_Ctrl
facialRig_deforming_grp
constainMetoNeck_grp_ParentConstraint1
EyeRig_grp
eye_MasterIK_worldspace_loc
Facial_grp

After removing this from the outliner, I’d created a simple cube and parented the neck to the cube. Rotating from the neck was fine but not from the cube. Will need to lock the head from being selected, for animation purposes.

Now I wanted to focus on the texture of the body. This needs to be clear canvas for the artist to paint straight on the rig from Mudbox or from Photoshop.

two UV sets in the editor..

map1
uvSet1

uvSet1 is the uv wrap of the body and map1 is Maya default. I’ve copy the uvset1
to map1 and then deleted uvset1. Maya doesn’t like two uv’s of the same object.

Deleted some of the old materials that we won’t be using, like the eyes and hair
colour. Also clear up the shadergroups as some of them are unnecessary.

I created two lambert matreials on two different shading groups

FIXMEJosh_Marcus_Marcus_FixMe_phongE1SG1
Misss_fast_skin_maya1SG

By applying a new lambert shaders to these groups will allows us to attach a UV
texture or by simple going into Mudbox and paint onto the rig.