Tuesday, 30 October 2012


For the past few days I've been rigging our little boy character, and I'm almost finished with his body rig. A few problems have popped up today, which I will hopefully fix by tomorrow, and I'm sure more problems will appear as I add my final controls.

Anyway, where's where he is-

Controls in the rig so far are-

IK arm and leg controls, with pole vector elbows/knees.
FK spine rig, with individual joint controls custom attributes
Simple head and neck controls
Shoulder controls

To be added-

Foot roll
Finger controls with individual joint controls and custom attributes
Hip control
Global Control

I've gone for an FK spine (rather than an IK, or a combination of both) purely based on the positions I will need the character to be in when we start animating. As both child characters are mainly sitting in various slouched positions, I thought an FK would be easiest to manipulate in this way. Why over-complicate things?

Here's a wee look at the FK spine!- 

Individual joint controls are coloured pink and have a handle at the back for easy selection.
Each control is parented to the control below for convincing FK movement.
"Torso Control" is green and is a distinguishable spikey shape, again for easy selection. This control contains the custom attributes- Spine Bend, Spine Side and Spine Twist. 

Spine Bend, Spine Side and Spine Twist are attributes that control rotation of the individual spine controls. Spine Bend makes the spine curl forwards, Spine Side makes the spine curl sideways, and Spine Twist twists the spine to either side.

Each attribute can be given a value of between -10 and 10, with 0 being the default. A value of 10 will add a rotation of 30 degrees to each control, thus creating a convincing curl. -10 will add a rotation of -30 degrees. Values in between will be somewhere along this scale. 

Spine Bend at extreme value 10.

Spine Bend at extreme value -10

Spine Side at extreme of 10

Spine Side at extreme of -10

Spine Twist at extreme of 10

Spine Twist at extreme of -10

These attributes can be altered in various combinations to achieve desired movement, and if they don't quite get the movement you're after, individual controls can still be used to further rotate joints on top of these results.

Depending on how my hip control works out, I may add similar attributes for the hip bone.

So that's all for now, any questions you know where I am! Off to work out why my elbows and knees have suddenly stopped working, and sort out some hip controls. Hands and feet tomorrow, then it's on to the face! (wish me luck haha!) Oh and I'll be adding a global control at some point.

Thanks guys!

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