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In 3ds Max 2011 Essential Training, author Aaron F. Ross demonstrates how to use this top-tier application for digital content creation, widely used in diverse industries such as architecture, industrial design, motion pictures, games and virtual worlds. This course covers modeling with polygons, curves, and subdivision surfaces, defining surface properties with materials and maps, setting up cameras and lights, animating objects, and final output rendering. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this exercise, we're going to use a link constraint. The purpose of a link constraint is to enable you to transfer a parent-child link from one object to another over the course of an animation. In other words, if you have a character or, in this case a robot, that needs to pick something up and carry it and then set it down or maybe pass it off to someone else. If you need to do that, then you have to use a link constraint, because you cannot use a standard link to do that. Standard linking up here is permanent.
So, if I linked my cylinder to the robot wrist here, that would be permanent through the entire animation and it would be nearly impossible for me to animate the wrist and the cylinder separately in order to get a realistic motion. So, in any case, when you want to have something pick something up and then throw it or drop it or pass it off, you're going to have to use a link constraint in order to transfer that parent to another parent. Okay, so I'm going to start this off. I'm going to be on frame 0, and what I want to do at first is I want to constrain this cylinder to the room.
Now, I could constrain it to the world as well. That's an option, but that's a little bit more complex workflow. So I want to try to keep things simple and try to keep my sanity by link-constraining to an immobile object, usually, the ground or the room or something that's not animated. So, I'll select the cylinder, go up to my Animation menu, and I'm looking for Constraints > Link Constraint. Select that. As soon as I do that, you'll notice that my Command panel is changed and I'm now looking at the Motion panel.
But in any event, I'm ready to select the object I'm going to constrain to and that of course is going to be the room. So click on that. Now a Link constraint has being created. The first target has been assigned. So, 3ds Max has opened the Motion panel for me automatically. Within that, we will see parameters for the selected object. So, for example, what controller I have assigned and so on. You'll see here now it's constrained to the room currently. So as I play my animation currently, I've done the whole animation in advance, but it's not selecting anything.
So, in my next step here, I want to assign another target, which will be the robot arm wrist.
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