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mooshakes 30-12-2006 06:03 PM

Blendshapes with In-Betweens ~ problem solved
Hey, looking for some help with maya and google isn't helping much so I was hoping someone here might know what I'm talking about.

I'm trying to make a character with eyes that can blink seperately. Each eye has it's own set of models that go from open and closed to complete a full blink . The problem is that I don't know how to use the "Add blendshape" option to let me add a blendshape using in-betweens. If I create a new blendshape for each eye (not sure the exact term) it puts each one in it's own 'group' rather than having both sliders in the same group. Because of this when I move one slider to have an eye open, the other eye closes. Basicaly I don't understand half the terms in the "add blendshape" option so I can't figure out how to do it right, and I'm having a hard time finding something that explains how to actualy use it.

If anyone could help I'd really appreciate it, and let me know if I need to clarify anything. Thanks

Edit: Yay I figured it out.

I didn't realize that the add blendshape option only lets you add one blend shape at a time. All I had to do was figure out what weight each shape needed to have by taking the total number of shapes (for me it was 8) and dividing 1 by that number (so I had a value of .125 for the first weight, .25 for the second etc). So I added all my other blendshapes PLUS the last shape in the series of my eye blinks (since the last shape would have a value of 1). Then I selected each head individualy, set it's weight, and put in the target index (for me it was 15 for the left eye and 16 for the right, since that's how far down the blend shape list each one was.

I hope this helps someone, but if it doesn't make sense just ask and I'll try to explain better.

graphiac 30-12-2006 06:29 PM

couldn't tell you about blend shapes but I can give you a very simple way to do that now do you have the eye lids created yet? Split the eyelid into two pieces and rotate them so they are mostly hidden behind the head. For a Basic concept
Create------->Nurbs Primitives-------->Sphere
Imputs------>End Sweep--------->90
Rotate------>Z 90
Edit-----------> Duplicate
Rotate-------->Y 120
Duplicated Sphere
Rotate--------->Y 90
That will kind of give you my overall perspective for a blinking movement hope this helps

mooshakes 31-12-2006 03:19 AM

That's a good idea but it doesn't really help with what I'm trying to do, but thanks.

Here's a link to what it's supposed to look like, but it only has one side of the head and none of the other blendshapes (like smiling and talking).

Blink Test

LauriePriest 31-12-2006 05:06 AM

Inbetweening blendshapes is very usefull for getting arcs in your animatoins, for example instead of having one smile shape which may look very flat and linier you can add inbetweens which will add arcs into your animation and make it a little more exciting.
This is especially true with cartoony work.

Making the inbetweens:
This can of course be done manually with vert tweaking but i find this method gives me a more reliable result:
The method i use is to make a temporary rig inside the face so i can animate my character smiling or squinting easily.
I then do quick, rough animations of the expressions i want to make, far more intuative than doing guess work by vertex tweaking.
I then use the animation snapshot tool to generate my inbetweens meshes for the facial expression.

A method to combine the blendshapes into one slider:
I then create normal blendshapes out of these objects, but to unify them into one slider you can allways do somthing with Set driven key. For example lets say my smile blend shapes has an end shape and two inbetweens, i could make a new attribute on a controller that goes from 0-15 called smile and have this control drive the envelope of the blend shapes.

So when this new value is at 5 my first inbetween would be in full effect while the others would be off, and at the value of 10 the second and on 15 the full blend shape would be in full power.

I hope that makes sense?

graphiac 31-12-2006 07:39 AM

Ah I think I have worked with blendshapes before but I have never created them personally. The real only thing I can think of is to create an actual rig for whatever facial expressions you would want to use before hand.

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