Character Rigging

I figured this would be a useful skill to have, and also it seemed pretty fun to do as well.

Things Learnt:

Illustrator

  • hold alt and drag on a layer and it will duplicate it
  • when moving shapes to different layers > select the shape > click and drag the dot in the layer panel up to the new layer

My Character

screen-shot-2016-11-02-at-20-00-42

After Effects

  • Import the illustrator file as a composition
  • Use the pan button to move the anchor points from the centre of the screen to the bending points on the character e.g. for the arm, place the anchor point at the shoulder
  • Pick-whip the various body parts the the appropriate parents, e.g. the head is parented to the body, the hair is parented to the head etc
  • Parent the body (which everything is ultimately what every limb is connected to) to a null object so then you can scale the body via the null. If you don’t use the null to scale, then every limb scales proportionally to itself and not in relation to the character overall
  • Puppet Tool : simply click the pin icon and then click along the centre of the image to add the pins where the character should bend. Recommended expansion is 2 and triangles is 450.
  • Animation wise, have the “puppet” label selected down in the composition tab, and then simply move the pins into the required position and it will automatically key them
  • Parallax : make all layers 3d > create a camera with depth of field enabled > create a null object and parent the camera to it (use the null object to move the camera) > simply play about with the depth of field & aperture settings in the camera until you’re happy with the results
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