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oscar 03-09-2002 03:00 PM

Trax Editor Problem! Playing clips...
I am Oscar Sanchez and I'm really new to 3D and Maya. I have created a head and I have made some clips of it for facial animation. Also I have those clips in the Trax Editor and the Visor. Well the problem is that when I play the animation so I can see how is working nothing happens. The animation play but the face doesn't change. It is like if the clips were not key in the Timeline.... Well I hope you understand my problem since my english communication hability is not too good!

Jim 05-09-2002 12:26 PM

re trax problem
Hi there Oscar,

Frustrating isn't it.
I have used Trax editor quite extensively for facial animation.

Could you please give me more information re ' your problem'?

Could you summerize what process you used to create the clips in the Trax editor?

re Jim

oscar 06-09-2002 03:03 PM

Thanks for your interest... Ok, I have a head with some blend shapes for each phonem. I made the clips using those blend shapes. For example: I have the blend shape: "A". So I deformed the head with the blend shape "A" and then I clicked on the menu "Animate" and then on "Creat Clip" with the "Leave Keys in TimeLine" checked. I repeated those steps for each and every blendShape (B,C,D,etc...) After that I opened the Trax Editor and with the middle mouse button I draged the clips from the visor. I pressed play, and nothing happened! Also I tried that same process with poses, instead of clips, but it didn't work neither!

By the way, I'm having a new problem. I refined my head and I don't know what I did, that there are some faces with some black corners, like when you use gradient colors! It goes from the skin color of the face to black. I tried to fix it using "set vertex normals" but when I repair one another face get damage. Please help this ignorant guy!


Jim 06-09-2002 11:04 PM

re trax problems.....
Hi there Oscar,

First off,

I'm assuming you have made your head a 'character' using the create character node. Trax needs this to establish what set of attributes to key for each pose/clip.

This being so,

I would suggest trying to create shelf buttons that hold your facial expressions.
This is achieved (can be a bit boring to setup but helpful) by selecting the blendshape node and highlighting in the channel box the attributes that are within the blendshape node, eg. (eyebrow up, smile, blink, squint,etc....Always ALL of them) then in the 'Script editor' highlight in similar way and drag (using middle mouse button to shelf....Maybe a custom shelf).

This works best if you have all the blendshape targets set to zero (RESET) before creating each facial pose and shelf button so that the shelf button information is always relative to a default (no facial expressions added) pose.

Try doing this and then key the facial expressions into the timeline as normal. The advantage of doing things this way is that your keys in your animation will be (in graph editor) exactly (timewise) where you created them unlike when you create a pose or clip in the trax editor (which records the keys at wherever you first make the pose/clip. Which means when you want to adjust an f curve in the graph editor later you will be able to indeed find the exact key not a reference of the key (which is almost impossible to adjust and see the changes in real time).

You could then make clips from this animation sequence and start to scale, move, blend and chop up the clips.

Also, I often use the 'Subcharacter' node also to separate for more control things on a face like 'Eyes' and mouth'. This gives a more layered approach to animating a face as often not all facial expressions move in unison but ebb and flow more loosely between extremes (Secondary motion).

Hope this makes sense.
Please let me know how you go.

re Jim

oscar 08-09-2002 11:14 AM

Thanks, I will try it!

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