Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Daddy's got a brand new rig
Well, Tom's father character reached a nice endpoint when he came to me for the rigging. I truly enjoy rigging, but time's pressing in this project. Since the father doesn't do much (sorry for the spoiler!) we would go for a pretty limited rig. Kudoes to Tom for creating such a solid model, I had no problems with it, not even with weightpainting!
So, it's just your basic rig, got a reversed footlock, pole vector constrains at the knees and elbows (no FK-, IKswitch, isn't necessary for this one), we got ye olde blendshapes, and ehh, a soft eyelid movement thingy!
We didn't need a complete facial rig for the father, hence we decided to go for just blendshapes. The girl rig does have a complete curve rigged face as she plays a bigger part. We hope that this will do just fine for him, though. And yes, 'father' in Dutch is actually 'vader'.
For the hand we wanted the ease of just having two attributes for 'fist' and 'grab'. But we also wanted the control to change finger positioning slightly for the extra feel, and so that we don't get stuck with our damned predefined stuff. So I just rigged up controls for all the fingers and used driven keys for them two attributes, easy stuff. I reckon that's where all the 'blendWeighted' nodes come from. I need to do some research on that one...
One thing I hadn't done before though, was the soft eyelid movement. Initially, when I heard of it, I tried scripting it. Just duplicating the eyejoint and have it take over the original joint's rotational values *0.1 (or /10, whatever you find more pleasing in your script). But, my axis seemed all a mess. I tried recreating the joint and freeze transforming, deleting history, bla bla bla. Didn't work, at one point, the newly created eyeLidJoint would just totally flip and go from 0 to -360 and shit like that. I think I spent a few hours trying to fix it with no luck. So, I just did it a little less inconspicuous. I just put another join after the original eyeJoint, and just slightly weightpainted it on the eyelids. Works wonders!
Like I said, the rig itself is quite limited. The character doesn't do an awful lot of stunts, we don't have much time for this project, and what we're planning on having with it in the scene is quite heavy already. Hence we didn't go for corrective blendshapes either. His arms and legs are both thin, so it work out well enough, without using blendshapes or influence objects. For the end of the coat, I tried some dynamics. I had worked with nCloth before on my motion capture short, so I knew my way around it and I had it quickly set up. But still, we wanted to avoid dynamics as it is just another production pass that's just waiting to fuck us over time-wise. Although the nCloth test was a relative success, I had a shot at just weightpainting it, and it's working great for what we need. Proof of concept, bitches.
Overall, a well-done model, and the rig was fun and relatively easy to build, since there weren't too many new gizmos. The robot is a completely different story, I'm working hard on it already, but it's not going as fast as I would like it to go (durr!). BUT THERE WILL BE A ROBOT UPDATE TOMORROW.