Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Part two of the Norman Modification Workshop

Norman Mod Workshop Tutorial
Part 2
Tips and Ticks originally taught to the AAU Animation Club by Joshua Slice in a live demonstration on campus, 10-03-2009, is now in a SUPER EASY written tutorial by Vaughan Weigert. Enjoy!

Starting With The Head...

TIP: Have one duplicate (blendshape) head only. UNLESS, you want to make an extra blendshape head(s) for extreme facial animation poses, but that is something you should do LATER, when your basic norman mod is done and you're already making progress on your shot.

0. Have a reference...
1. Work in front and side view primarily. It's best to make BROAD SHAPE ADJUSTMENTS on the head FIRST, with the LATTICE tool (not vert by vert choices).

Recommended Lattice Tool Settings:
Lattice: 8x8x8
Local divisions at 2x2x2
*Make sure you can see the Lattice you created in all windows: under SHOW, make sure DEFORMERS visibility is checked on.
2. Select the blendshape head geo and in the Animation MENU, select CREATE DEFORMERS > LATTICE and move the lattice points to adjust the head shape.
If further modification is desired, and you need more or different points on the head to pull/ push,
then select the blendshape head and EDIT> DELETE BY TYPE> HISTORY on the blendshape head. The current lattice tool will be deleted from it.
The changes in shape you made will remain.

Select the head blendshape geo and in the Animation MENU, select CREATE DEFORMERS > LATTICE.
A NEW lattice will appear on your mesh which you can make further adjustments to, with a clean lattice shape.
While using the LATTICE TOOL: scale tool --> go to Channel Box Settings --> play with Soft select "Fall off" to get more or less global squash & stretch.

- Don't move the eye lid geometry too much - you want it to hug the eyeballs.
- Same with the mouth. So when you use SOFT SELECT, make sure your soft select grabs the WHOLE mouth shape or eye socket, if you move it around.

Image Plane Setup: Setup your reference to model from. 5 steps and some tips.
1. Select Camera View
2. Create image plane.Image Plane Setup:
3. Source file into Image plane.Image Plane Setup:
Check: Cameras must be visible.
Image Plane Setup:
4. Rename Image Plane.
5. Adjust settings and movement options to line up the image with character's head size.
6. (TIP) "X-Ray" mesh view of the character can help you line up the reference to your model.Image Plane Setup:
TIP: Lock your camera view.
The Lattice tool is best for creating basic form/shape. The Sculpt brush for smoothing it out.

FOR MORE DETAILED HEAD SHAPING: use the SCULPT BRUSH -->settings "Reflection". Opacity at 1%.
Next, part three of the Norman Modification Workshop, "The Mouth"...

Part one of the Norman Modification Workshop

Norman Mod Workshop Tutorial
Tips and Ticks originally taught to the AAU Animation Club by Joshua Slice in a live demonstration on campus, 10-03-2009, is now in a SUPER EASY written tutorial by Vaughan Weigert. Enjoy!

FIRST, Prepare the Norman Character for Modding Blendshapes: 10 easy steps

1. Open New Norman file
2. Go to Outliner: Expand the Norman Character Group, under "World Space", select "grWorld_Geometry".
3. Go to Attribute Editor: Under "Display" go to "Drawing Overrides" --> select "Display type": Normal
4. Go to SHOW menu--> polys only.

5. Drag Select with your mouse, all the Norman geo displayed and hit CTRL "D" to duplicate it.
6. Put your cursor over the Outliner and hit "F" to find this new group...

7. Then Hit CTRL "G" to group the selection. With cursor in Outliner, hit "F" to locate the new Group.

8. Double Click this new group and rename it "Blendshapes".

9. Then Middle Mouse click/drag this new group out of the Original Norman hierarchy.

10. With the "Blendshapes" group selected, use the Translate Tool to move this new geometry to the side.

SECOND, Setting up the Blendshapes: 4 Steps
-with a little repetition.

1. Delete any geometry on the Norman Dup that won't be used as a Blendshape...
Typically, this means you can delete the NORMAN DUP's Feet, Hands, Eyeballs, Nose and Ears.
NOTE ON FEET: If you want to SHAPE the feet/shoes geo, you can keep the Feet Geo for your Dup (blendshape) Norman.
NEED to make a character with tiny feet? It's easier to make everything else on the character bigger, than to scale the feet down. It's also easy to WRAP a Shoe Geo shape to the foot as well.

2. BEFORE selecting Norman's head to make a blendshape: go to the Blendshape Editor and check the advanced settings. It should be set to "FRONT OF CHAIN".
3. One part at a time, Select Norman Dup Geometry then select Original Norman mesh geometry and hit "Create Blendshape".

4. Then select the Original Norman mesh and look in the Channel Box. Where it says "blendshape#": make sure it is set
to "1". Do this for all Original Norman parts that have blendshapes.

Now You Can Start Modding!

It's best to have a sketch (or reference photo) of the character you are going to mod Norman into, BEFORE you start modding.
A great reference & source of inspiration for modding Norman into interesting Character shapes is the book "How to Draw Caricatures" byLenn Redman.

Check it out!

Next, part two of the Norman Modification Workshop, "Starting With The Head"...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

EVENTS CALENDAR! New! in the Animation Community Links Section

Listing Local and primarily in-State Events in the Animation Community. We will update it continuously with club meeting times, free museum days, special events, lectures, screenings and film festivals that you can get out to.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Norman Modification Workshop Today!

There is a Norman Mod workshop happening today, taught pro bono by our very own Joshua Slice.

Come learn (more) tips and tricks about modifying the school's Norman Character that will help you mod faster and achieve more creative results.

WHEN: 3:00pm

WHERE: 3rd floor, room 349, at the 180 New Montgomery building.

For those of you can't make it or are off-site, we will be recording the demonstration via Camtasia Studio (or similar) and posting it to the blog in a couple days.

For all attending today's workshop, we suggest bringing a $1 donation, which will go towards the "Putting Food in Josh's Mouth" fund.

Have a great weekend guys!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Inspiration Post: Body Language

Here's a great, funny video to study.

It's a multiple person dialogue, with great subtle acting performance... and zero lipsync/ facial!

NOTE: as with ALL video content posted, some of the views expressed in these videos may... possibly... be considered offensive. The views expressed are not necessarily the views of the AAU Animation Club.