Well last attempt was more than a learning curve and more of a steep fall but it is done and dusted. I definitley won't be using it to animate but its sparked the creative fire in me and i'm still gonna keep on trying.
So the next part of the project will be Doodlezilla before returning to King Konglish once again. Fingers crossed i've learnt enough to make an animatable model this time :)
Monday, 3 March 2014
Sunday, 2 March 2014
I created my blend shapes but then hit a brick wall. 2011 Maya has a bug that doesn’t allow you to go into the input > input all settings. On the mesh so I haven’t been able to change the topology. When you make blends they need to be below the skin cluster otherwise you will have your model jumping back to the bind pose every time you push a slider.
I found a way around this by deleting all of my layers, resaving my file and opening it. It worked a charm. I also entered the blend shapes by choosing the advanced settings when setting up the blends and changed the option to ‘front of chain’ which should set it under the skin cluster. This all sounds very complicated and should be very simple but the bug in 2011 made it awkward. The answer is probably getting a newer Maya (Santa?)
So now his is rigged, skinned, textured and have expressions.
Basically he is finished. How has the end result ended up? Well as you can see it’s not perfect but it’s functional.I won't be using this as anything else but a learning tool as there is no way this guy will be in my short (sorry fella) but he was a good start.
I have learnt so much over the last 9 days and I am really happy to have gotten back into this. I’m going to build the next character in my short and then probably revisit King Konglish and do it again.
I realise my babblings probably not very insightful for anyone building a rig but I have written it to keep my sanity and to remember the little problems I ran into for when I try again.
|King Konglish v.1|
Thursday, 27 February 2014
|Obviously this is in the middle of skinning..look at those horrible arms|
I have finished my skinning, hazzah! Once again I can see all of the mistakes I made with the rigging more clearly but surprisingly there aren’t as many as I expected. Its just great to see him move. Only one more stage and I can get him animated.
The blend shapes is the next thing to conquer but I’m at a loss at how to separate the mesh from the bones to make them. I fear I forgot to separate them at an earlier stage but I need to do a little more research. Its frustrating as I just want to get to it but since he will be a character in a short that teaches kids English I fear blend shapes will be very important.
Time to research!
These two days have blurred into each other. I realised as soon as I started skinning that I’ve made a mistake and put the arm bones the wrong way up so I needed to go back and re-rig but it was very satisfying to have learnt enough over the last few days that I could just fix it myself.
The skinning process is normally something I do in the paint tool but I’ve really started to enjoy skinning purely in the component editor. I think it’s the way forward for me as I understand where I’m headed with it. I can clearly grab a very that’s bugging me and read what’s influencing it. It’s a little bit of trial and error but it makes more sense to me the more I am doing.
I have almost finished skinning now. I just have arms and feet to go (which is still a lot in hindsight)
I have unfortunately had a bout of food poisoning from some live squids I was forced to eat at a work function (yuck!) but I have dragged myself onto the computer to get as much done as I possibly can but its been a slow two days.
Let’s hope the rest of the week is more productive and I can start animating soon.
I think I’ll do a quick walk or run test with him to see how everything is working and then start building my next character.
It is so satisfying to be this far into the process. I think its very easy to have big ideas but never do anything about them. Now that I’ve forced myself to do this I think it will be a lot easier in the future to keep pushing forward. Well that’s the general idea anyway.
Today I finished off the rig. I followed a fantastic tutorial here** and at the end felt confident enough to even go a little further and add my own additions to the rig (such as eyebrow bones and ear bones.) This is something I just wouldn’t have done at uni so I already feel more confident in the process. Obviously a project like this is a kind of ‘time will tell’ situation as its only once you start animating and skinning that you see all those faults come to life.
This of course leads us to skinning. Skinning goes hand in hand with rigging for me so when I let out a groan at the idea of rigging I am in fact imagining all of those tiny verts just waiting to be weighted. I also have to apologise as I am writing this as if the people reading this will know what these processes are. In case you aren’t familiar, skinning is the process of adding the model to the bones. This is the process that tells the computer how it is meant to move. In theory it sounds fun, you get a paint brush and you paint on the weights you want using a nice colour graded system but realistically there are thousands of verts all reacting off every bone and it’s a fiddly pain. The advantage of this type of work (in my opinion anyway) is that its one of the rare jobs in Maya that you can bung on a podcast or some music and just listen away while you work.
This is normally the part of the process where all the little mistakes you’ve made along the way start to show. I am prepared for a long graft but I am already excited to see how he’s moving. He is currently block weighted which means I grab each section and give all the verts a value of 1 for the main bone that controls them in the component editor. Now that’s finished I’ll be able to go into the intricate process of painting a middle ground onto other verts. The tricky part of skinning, like animation is that no one notices when its right but every person sees when its wrong. If you were to move your wrist up and down its amazing how much skin moves, it’s this tricky balancing act that makes skinning so hard but ultimately so satisfying. Unfortunately I will have to leave it at the block stage today as my travel blog (so that I don’t bug you lovely people with my Korean and Asian travels at www.doodlezilla.blogspot.com) has a header that I am not happy with and its in need of changing. Did I mention how much I love desk warming?