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# 1 03-11-2011 , 03:50 PM

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#### Help with bending/flexing a basic model

Hi all,

Can I first say that i'm very new to the world of Maya so please forgive me if I come across stupid as i'm still learning. Ive been struggling for days now on maya 2011 to try and bend a basic model that I constructed in google sketchup. I've even tried bending another basic shape which i built in maya to see if i needed to construct it in that program to see if it would make a difference but that won't seem to work either. The model that i need to bend is simply 2 parrallel girders which are attached by a cross section at both ends - so its basically just 4 rectangles (2 long and two short which joins them up at the ends) - I need to rotate this around and record the animation which i have figured out (pretty much) but when the rotation comes to a stop i need to bend the middle of these girders as if an imaginery weight were hanging off it and is then taken off - basically so it flex's and then returns to its normal position. I've looked into lattices and i have tried to use one with a 5 point division so that one set of lattice points are right in the centre of the girders and i can move these so it looks kind of what i would like it to do but it doesn't seem to move my model at all, the points just move around it. I tried building just a single rectangle in maya and trying it out on this but yet again the lattice points move but the model retains its shape so i can't create the bend i need - i'm sure i'm missing something obvious but i just seem to be going round in circles - can anyone help? Like i say i'm a novice on this program at the moment so please explain in idiot guide mode otherwise my heads likely to explode!!!!
Mark

# 2 03-11-2011 , 03:59 PM

The thin red line
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You need to add more pollys to allow the bend deformer to work...........dave

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# 3 04-11-2011 , 11:07 AM

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You need to add more pollys to allow the bend deformer to work...........dave

Hi there Dave, thanks for taking the time to answer my question - could you explain how to add more polys? Do i need to build the model with more parts or can i just add some into the model? Once thats done is using the lattice tool the best option for me to use to achieve my goal?

# 4 04-11-2011 , 12:18 PM

EduSciVis-er
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I think a bend deformer would do the job well. To add polys, there are a number of ways to do this. Since you probably really only need to increase the resolution in the axis that you are bending, you could select the faces and use the add division tool in the U or V axis, depending on how your model is constructed. Or you could individually add loops using the insert edge loop tool.

# 5 04-11-2011 , 02:58 PM

The thin red line
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As Stwert said to add pollys, could you show use a shot of what you want to bend that should help choose the best tool to use..........dave

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# 6 04-11-2011 , 04:50 PM

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Hi there

Thanks for all your replies - Adding some more divisions seemed to do the trick in allowing me to bend my rectangle using the lattice tool so I'm almost there! (thankyou for your help) - but I couldn't manage to get Maya to animate the change from the original shape (which i tried to put as keyframe 1) to the bent shape which I tried to put as keyframe 2) - The image doesn't animate at all it just stays as the bent shape. Is it possible for maya to create the information for the transformation from what is just essentially a before and after shot so that i can record the animation or is it not possible with the method i'm using?

P.s i tried to use the bend deformer as well but I can't figure out how to make the rectangle just bend in the middle so I may not be able to use that method as it may be too complicated for me

Mark

# 7 04-11-2011 , 05:14 PM

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You can't just animate the geometry, the best way I think would be to animate the lattice itself. Actually, the bend deformer would be the simplest, since you can just key the curvature channel. In order to just bend in the middle, decrease the high and low bounds on the bend deformer.

I'd also recommend doing some basic maya tutorials (in the help files) to get a handle on some of the more common tools and techniques.

# 8 07-11-2011 , 11:00 AM

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As Stwert said to add pollys, could you show use a shot of what you want to bend that should help choose the best tool to use..........dave

Hi again all - thanks again for your help - sorry i've been away for a couple of days so haven't had a chance to thankyou all. As requested heres a couple of links to the model (to show how it looks in 3d) and one image has the bend directions that i'm looking for - hopefully the images will show up in your browsers. for the middle bend I ideally need the end points of the model to stay relatively stationary just so the bend in the middle is flexing and then returning to its original position.

I'm going to try and play around with the bend deformer today to try and wrestle it under control!!!!!
I'll then need to figure out how to build the model in maya as my current import from sketchup doesn't look like it wants to play ball at the moment!!!! One problem after another!!!

Thanks again for helping me out with this - heres the image links
https://i796.photobucket.com/albums/y...5annotated.jpg
https://i796.photobucket.com/albums/y...acrane_127.jpg

Mark

# 9 07-11-2011 , 11:51 AM

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Some advice mate...I use sketchup STRICTLY for accurate geometry in buildings mostly...when you export as a DXF or OBJ it will ask you how many triangles etc per face...I dont know if a zero input will give just the one face. Personally that shape would be easier to make in Maya mate...then use deformers to achieve what you want. I have exported from sketchup to Maya and it gives really crap geometry man....avoid it if you can.

cheers bullet

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"A Darkness at Sethanon", a book I aspire to model some of the charcters and scenes

# 10 07-11-2011 , 01:43 PM

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Some advice mate...I use sketchup STRICTLY for accurate geometry in buildings mostly...when you export as a DXF or OBJ it will ask you how many triangles etc per face...I dont know if a zero input will give just the one face. Personally that shape would be easier to make in Maya mate...then use deformers to achieve what you want. I have exported from sketchup to Maya and it gives really crap geometry man....avoid it if you can.

cheers bullet

Cheers for that - I thought that might be the case so have started looking through more tutorials today to figure out the best way to build it etc in Maya - Through the youtube videos i've looked at i'd be alright if i had to build an icecream or a wineglass!!!!!! Hahaha - The search continues!

Cheers again

# 11 08-11-2011 , 02:46 AM

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Just create a cube....in the option box you will be able to subdivide it....I would try 6 divisions first up...then all you need to do is scale it to the size you require....CTRL D to duplicate etc....then apply a bend deformer...see how that goes. Of course combine the mesh before you applty a deformer

cheers bullet

bullet1968

"A Darkness at Sethanon", a book I aspire to model some of the charcters and scenes

# 12 09-11-2011 , 11:37 AM

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Just create a cube....in the option box you will be able to subdivide it....I would try 6 divisions first up...then all you need to do is scale it to the size you require....CTRL D to duplicate etc....then apply a bend deformer...see how that goes. Of course combine the mesh before you applty a deformer

cheers bullet

Thanks for your post - i've since had a mini breakthrough (or should that be breakdown!) I created the basic model in maya used your tip of combining the objects and managed to figure out the orientation for the bend deformer (which was the biggest hurdle) to make it bend in the direction I need it to - i.e down - but the pivot point is at the middle of the beam so that part stays level and its the two ends that bend upwards so it doesn't look like a weight is being hung off the middle it looks like weight has been taken off the ends and they are curling upwards! Any suggestions of how to make the middle sag and the two ends stay where they are so that I can animate it?

I'm getting closer! bit by bit!!!!! Thankyou for all your patience with me!

# 13 09-11-2011 , 02:16 PM

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Try creating two deformers on it, one at each end, with a high bound of 0 on one and low bound of 0 on the other, so they each only have a half curvature. Then key the curvature on both the same. I haven't tried it, so I don't know for sure if that will work.

# 14 09-11-2011 , 05:49 PM

The thin red line
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Not sure that will work Stwert, one I know will work is use bones, uses the create bone tool say about 5 bones along the beam then skin (smooth bind) then just key frame the bones up and down...........dave

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# 15 21-11-2011 , 10:28 PM

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thanks for all your help once again everyone - apologies for not responding sooner its been hectic at work - i've not had a chance to look at the bones suggestion yet but will hopefully have a look towards the end of the week - i'll let you know how i get on
cheer people

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