Now were nearly at the finished project things are starting to look interesting. Our final layouts are done, are models are completed now its time to animate! Which not going to lie I actually enjoy animating. But first we had to rig. We used a software called Mixamo which is from Autodesk, you export your character to the site and you place the pain points of the rig on you character and the site does the rest! Magic! However it can be a pain as one of the character I modelled would not for the life of me rig! So due to time constraints we had to leave it.
I picked to animate the watch, the bird and also him looking confused. However, we noticed that the main characters face wasn’t rigged so how could we make him looked confused and show emotion? We decided to look into blend shapes. Maya blend shapes is a way of morphing one shape into another as long as they have to have the same number of points. So I modelled a neutral position for eyebrows the duplicate and move the vertices to a different position for example raised and lowered. But there was a catch, when I followed the video and tried to add them as a blend shape they wouldn’t work. This was due to the mixamo rig as Rhea pointed out. We as a group are going to sit with Alec and ask him to come through blend shapes with a mixamo rig.
Animating the watch was a pain in the backside. For some reason for me it kept glitching and doing weird things and the more I tried to fix it and make it work the more it made it worse if I’m totally honest. When my tutor came up I asked him for help regarding the watch, and he deleted my 4 hours of blood sweat and tears and showed me an other way which in the end made my life 100 easier. I was always scared of using the graph editor and even though I listen in class I was still quite unsure about it and to be honest its scared the living day lights out of me. So Keith sat down with me and explained it in a less scary way and made me understand it which made my animating 1. a lot better (even though its still not great) but 2. easier for me as I was making life difficult for myself.
I was able to smooth out the glitches made in my animations with out adding 1000 key frames and correct the timing easier as well.
But due to the weighting of the rig the mesh sometimes went a little funny, but this can be helped. I can’t only half animate things as it would look funny. This needs to be fixed at a later stage.
Below you can see the glitches of my watch animation.
Above you can also see how stiff and ridged my animation is.
This is the bird scene in which I have to animate. Due to the weighting in the rig with the bird his legs go a bit weird when he moves. Hopefully with a bit more time this can be fixed.
This is a bit jittery, but I wanted to make him feel on edge as he is getting impatient and confused. I feel like his upper body is a bit still and needs a bit more movement. There is also the problem of his arms, Do I have them hanging there like he’s in a sulk or have them lean on the bar. Also it will look better when we get the blend shapes working.
I enjoyed animating this scene. At first I was rotating the arm from the wrong point but after some feed back from the group I realised this as it needed more movement in the top half of the arm. There still a we jilt in the head which I don’t overly mine as I think it would be funny to add in an over reacting facial expression.
As you can see there is a vast improvement on my animation from the first time I started with the watch.