Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Maya Tutorials: JPJ Body Rigging 25/04/2017

Setting Up The Base Shapes 
So Rigging JPJ's body was quite a nice experience since the skinning only had a couple issues I was able to work around some of these and rig the body with ease. Thing like, Set Driven Keys and Pose Space Deformers now seem a lot more useful than before and will definitely be applied to further work in the future.

Leg IK's

Foot Controls
 The Connection Editor and Attribute Editor are also not too hard to work out, certain values are selected and are linked up to part of the rig that have been skinned. So for example in order to get the foot to lift from the heel, I would need to select the joint that would make the heel lift, connect a value (Or Multiple Values) to the control and see if the value needed to be inverted in the 'Expression Editor'.

In order to accomplish this, the code for the shin rotation falloff would need to be altered.

Before Code
L_Shin_Jnt.rotateX = L_Leg_GRP.rotateY*0.5;

After Code
L_Shin_Jnt.rotateX = - L_Leg_GRP.rotateY*0.5;

Now because there is now a (-) in front of the second section of code, Maya will then tell the leg to move to opposite way whenever the value is increased by the control. This makes it easier for an animator to see what is going on and make animating easier.

Both Feet Rigged
So Set Driven Key's are a gift from god. It turns out that Maya does this neat little thing, where it takes the idea of the pose space deformer tool and applies it to Rigs. If you created an attribute called Foot Roll (For Example), you would then assign animation poses to that control, change the values in the Channel Editor and Key these motions in the 'Set Driven Key' Menu.

This could be useful for a number of reasons, the main one being creating an animation that loops, for example, frames 1 & 60 could be the same, however, frame 30 could be the middle of an animation. It would be like scrubbing through an animation but the animation would already be done for you.

Pole Vectors
 The Pole Vectors use the aim constraints in order to prevent the knee from either snapping backwards or just not working, the IK's mention link into this, for they are what gets linked. These could be given controls as well but for the sake of following the tutorial, they were not given any extra attributes.

Chest Control Created

Finger Controls Created
 Okay, so this was probably the most tedious part, going into the attribute editor and adding a bunch of attributes. Then once the attribute the correct rotation axis needs to be added and then they all need to be linked up. It's not too difficult but does take a little bit of time.

Shoulder and Clavicle Controls Created

Move Control Created

Limiting Information, Clavicle

Further Limiting Information Values, Chest Rotation
 So once all of the joints were created, the information then had to be limited in order to for a potential animator to animate the rig well. The information limiters are put in place so the rig doesn't breaks as easily, the rig can still break sometimes however it would become much less of a problem if these boundries in place.

Also to note is if someone needed to alter the values of these, chances are they would already know how to alter the rig's settings, so removing limitation or changing them would really be a huge issue.

Body Rigging Complete
Overall rigging the body was a breeze, rigging seems up my street as well as animation so figuring out most of this stuff is not too hard. I only had one instance where I had to ask Alan for help because of a really odd bug, but apart from that, I figured out most of it.

It's nice to see JPJ coming along, and despite there is a lot of work still left to do, I've set myself a reasonable goal and the future is looking bright.
So in the words of Lord Phil 

"Onwards and Upwards!" (P Gomm. 2016)

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