Character Animator

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Hand Rig – Set Driven Keys and Extra finger controls setup

I set up a file to help a friend out with their rig awhile ago. It shows a relatively simple concept of layering a rig to allow for extra overall control. I thought this was pretty nice when I first learned it, so I wanted to share this with anyone starting out who may not be aware of this technique since it’s not something that seems so simple when you’re first learning how to rig.

The file is seperated in three seperate files, showing the steps of how to setup the fingers of a hand rig with Set Driven Keys, that control custom attributes to pose the hand, and extra finger controls that allow for tweaking of the preset poses or to make completely new poses.

The way it works is like this:

You have your basic joints for your finger. Then you have your control objects, like a nurbs circle, fitted around the joints. They will be orient constrained to control the joints after the control heirarchy is set up.

The control objects are then self grouped twice, one to set the SDK on and one as the null node that doesn’t do anything.

Then the null group of the control object is parented under the next control object (not its SDK or null group).

So the idea of layering can be thought of as having one step above that which controls something, and that one thing above controls something else or is being controlled by something else, like a custom attribute in this case.

The files are pretty easy to understand, but if you have any questions please feel free to contact me for help.

You can download the files here.


Cerebus the Aardvark

I’ve been working a lot on a new rig lately for a project.  It’s been helping me clean up some of my rigging knowledge and techniques that I wasn’t really happy with on my “Kattie” rig (which I plan to revise and release for free later on).

I’m keeping track of everything I’m doing since I’m also working on learning more scripting to automate things.

You can follow the production blog here

The character I’ve been developing the rig for is Baskin, and this is his head with blendshapes.

Baskin model by Ajoy Paul

“Balloon” – short film

I was able to clean up a couple of shots. There’s more I would like to work on, but I wanted to get to working on new projects with what I was able to learn from this one. This was an ambitious and complex project that allowed my team to be challenged in many ways with story  development, character designing, 3D modeling/rigging/animation, and it was our first time attempting anything like this. The project went through many changes, even into the last couple of months where we reworked the story structure and cut out a few things we’d worked on. It was a tough but enjoyable experience.

“A Balloon Story”

by Jose Molina, Andrew Rodriguez, Raul Padilla, Eric Garcia.

I was the Director/Writer responsible for Concept Art/Story Development, Character Rigging, Ncloth and Paint Effects Dynamics, Compositing, and Music.
Along with my team mates, I also did a little bit of Clean Up Animation, part of the Lighting/Texturing, part of the Character Modeling, and part of the Backgrounds.

“Balloon” update

Animation Reel


UPDATED: 02/13/2012

Rigging reel

UPDATED: 02/13/2012


This is from my flatbook I put together for my final. A couple are of the short film I’ll post more about.