Skin and Bones


Advanced 3D Studio Max Class Page 3

Design in art, is a recognition of the relation between various things, various elements in the creative flux.
You can't invent a design.  You recognise it, in the fourth dimension.
That is, with your blood and your bones, as well as with your eyes.

- D H Lawrence

Project 6: Inverse Kinematics and Bones

Our assignment: To create legs and make them walk using inverse kinematics and slider controls.

Cody's, mine, Wolf's - Click to begin

In class we learned the theory and practice of character motion and the importance of using dummy helpers.  Legs need to be linked six ways to Sunday.  I can see why people can get really possessive of the characters they rig and animate.  Walking looks so simple!  But it isn't.

I learned how hard it is to keep bones in the right proportion.  And also that it can be difficult to make legs walk in time to the music.  Coordination requires attention!  I also learned that manipulators, while useful, are hard to change once they get keyframed.  It takes that curve editor thingy that I don't know quite well enough yet.

Project 7: Skinning

Our assignment: To attach skin to a partially-rigged bones skeleton model, make it move, and then check for breaks or creases in the skin, repairing them with the various skin modifiers.

Cody's, mine, Wolf's - Click to begin

In class we learned how (and when) to use joint, bulge and morph angle deformers and how to apply the skin modifier to a bones skeleton.  We also learned about painter options and the weight tables for modifying skin.

What I learned: how differently Cody, Wolf and I approach the same task.  But we all felt this was our least favourite project.  Skinning and rigging are tedious tasks and really require more knowledge of the curve editor than I feel I've acquired at this point.  It will also be a long while before I reach a point where I am able to efficiently use weight tables for modifying skin (if I ever use them at all).  Since skinning is one of the more important tasks to use Max for, I have a feeling I may get plenty of practice with the various modifiers in the future...

Click here for:

bulletProject 1: Materials
bulletProject 2: Types of Animation
bulletProject 3: Modelling with Meshsmooth

Click here for:

bulletProject 4: Modelling with Surface Modifier
bulletProject 5: Lip Sync

Click here for:

bulletProject 8: Particle Systems
bulletProject 9: Reactor

Click here for:

bulletProject 10: Organics
bulletProject 11: Presentations

Plus, there're the Basic 3D classes pages.  If you're interested in having a any of the files, please contact me.  We used version 3D Studio Max version 6 (this is in 2003, after all).

For more animation, video clips, and shockwave games click the "Up" button below to take you to the index page for this Animation section where you will find all sorts of things.

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