Thursday, 2 July 2015

The Snazzies: "Tim" Saggy Skinning Complete

Hey Catherine,

Apologies on the delay of this as I told you on the phone there were extra difficulties due to the nature of the rig. This is not a normal set of principles so I felt my way through this one. BE WARNED this post is going to be a bit technical in nature so please wear your crash helmet and protective cup! The good news is I only have to finish the rigging and get some face shapes and your good to go! Please click any of these to enlarge.

The image above shows the original Saggy diagram I knocked up after my initial attempt (which resulted in failure). This surprisingly wasn't far from the mark the main issue was the arms because the belt is a little twisted. There were also unnecessary joints which I removed as I went along. We also added a joint in where the left side arms connect just to give a little extra twist in the rotations of the left hand belt.

The close up animated gifs above show you the functionality of the rig rotations (which essentially create your characters movement). When we get down the line we will probably think about adding FK functionality but for now this should suffice. I created a series of animations to test how the skin weight reacted between their joints. Having an effective rig means having decent skinning so the joints know how to move between each other.

The animated gifs above this show the legs, head top and head bottom joints being rotated. The joints are skin-weighted between each other to create a realistic crease/fold or any surface deformation. One of the other factors for this process taking longer is also because this is higher poly then we had originally planned. Higher poly means there are more points to accurately weight and of course we have to trouble shoot their influence.

The animated gif series above shows the rotations on his left and right forearms, wrist & arms. There is also an arm span test which creates a kind of clapping animation but its to test his arm reach. Last but not least there is a test to show his shoulder rotations from where the belt connects to his base. I think you will agree it is nicely divided. I will also note that these were rendered out "unsmoothed" just to save time on the rendering.

The single animated gif image above is just to show you how the his right belt arm coils (it does this better then the side with the buckle). We believed that it makes more sense that the side with the buckle is more rigid because he actually has a metal hand with a single metallic digit. Originally the belt buckle had multiple joints but I removed them because it was more believable that metal wouldn't bend (the exception being his finger).

Last but not least we have my diagram of the final result through feeling my way through this character rig. Obviously we still have the eye-blink and tongue influence to add but that will be much easier. The core elements were the trickiest as you can see throughout this post. I'm expecting things to go more smooth now then they have been. I just thought id update you just sorry I wasn't able to sooner.

Please let me know when you have had a chance to look!

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