Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now

Character Animation Fundamentals in 3ds Max

with George Maestri

Video: Welcome

Employs the basic principles of animation to bring to life simple 3D characters.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 8m 9s
    1. Welcome
      1m 12s
    2. Using the exercise files
    3. Character rig overview: a simple character
      1m 53s
    4. Character rig overview: a full character
      1m 55s
    5. Using screen drawing tools
      2m 28s
  2. 22m 48s
    1. Creating strong poses
      3m 27s
    2. Using Selection Sets to help pose characters
      2m 43s
    3. Using layers to select characters
      1m 16s
    4. Learning the basics of posing characters
      10m 23s
    5. Creating stock poses
      4m 59s
  3. 25m 45s
    1. Understanding forces and character motion
      1m 59s
    2. Understanding drag
      6m 43s
    3. Working with secondary motion
      5m 35s
    4. Bringing the character to life
      4m 51s
    5. Refining the animation
      6m 37s
  4. 33m 57s
    1. Keyframing initial poses
      6m 12s
    2. Creating the blocking pass
      6m 53s
    3. Moving holds
      4m 38s
    4. Animating weight shift
      3m 13s
    5. Animating pose-to-pose transitions
      7m 8s
    6. Animating a wave
      5m 53s
  5. 45m 51s
    1. Analyzing a walk
      4m 13s
    2. Setting up a character for a basic walk
      1m 46s
    3. Animating a walk: the feet
      9m 5s
    4. Animating a walk: the lower body
      8m 9s
    5. Animating a walk: making the cycle symmetrical
      4m 45s
    6. Animating a walk: working with the spine
      6m 26s
    7. Animating a walk: arm motion
      7m 42s
    8. Animating a walk: the head
      3m 45s
  6. 26m 29s
    1. Changing a walk using poses
      4m 52s
    2. Changing a walk using foot placement
      4m 52s
    3. Exaggerating a walk: the extended position
      6m 23s
    4. Exaggerating a walk: the passing position
      4m 18s
    5. Exaggerating a walk: the cushion position
      6m 4s
  7. 42m 49s
    1. A run in four poses
      2m 22s
    2. Animating a run: the passing pose
      3m 26s
    3. Animating a run: the extended pose
      5m 19s
    4. Animating a run: mirroring the basic poses
      10m 23s
    5. Animating a run: adding weight
      5m 21s
    6. Animating a run: the spine
      6m 5s
    7. Animating a run: left arm motion
      4m 49s
    8. Animating a run: right arm motion
      5m 4s
  8. 1h 39m
    1. Animating blinks
      6m 33s
    2. Animating changes in eye direction
      6m 1s
    3. Animating a head turn
      4m 49s
    4. Working with audio
      3m 33s
    5. Overview of the mouth controls
      1m 58s
    6. Animating vowels: A, E, and I
      13m 16s
    7. Animating vowels: O, U, and Y
      10m 12s
    8. Animating consonants: B, D, and G
      12m 26s
    9. Animating consonants: F, M, and S
      10m 11s
    10. Animating lip sync: assigning phonemes
      10m 9s
    11. Animating lip sync: head motion
      7m 18s
    12. Animating lip sync: the eyes
      7m 31s
    13. Animating lip sync: the body
      5m 46s
  9. 50m 28s
    1. Creating the main poses
      4m 2s
    2. Blocking poses to dialogue
      5m 31s
    3. Animating moving holds
      6m 51s
    4. Creating weight
      7m 33s
    5. Adding secondary motion
      8m 56s
    6. Animating dialogue
      6m 40s
    7. Adjusting head motion
      5m 10s
    8. Adding blinks
      5m 45s
  10. 24s
    1. Goodbye

please wait ...
Character Animation Fundamentals in 3ds Max
Video Duration: 0s5h 56m Intermediate Apr 12, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

View Course Description

Character Animation Fundamentals in 3ds Max demonstrates the basic principles of character animation that help bring simple 3D characters to life. Starting with an overview of the character rig, author George Maestri provides guidelines for creating strong poses and explains how to animate from pose to pose in an organized fashion. The course also covers locomotion—animating realistic gestures, walks, and runs; explores the basics of facial expressions and dialogue; and culminates with an animated scene built entirely from scratch.

Topics include:
  • Posing digital characters
  • Creating stock poses
  • Understanding forces, character motion, and secondary motion
  • Keyframing initial poses
  • Animating weight shifts and pose-to-pose transitions
  • Animating walks and runs
  • Adding personality to a walk
  • Animating facial movement: blinks, head turns, and mouth movement
  • Animating an entire scene
3D + Animation
3ds Max
George Maestri


Hi! I am George Maestri, and welcome to the Character Animation: Fundamentals in the 3ds Max. Character animation is a very deep topic. You can spend a lifetime animating characters, but we're just going to get you started animating your the first characters in this course. We're going to start off by understanding the value of strong poses, and then we are going to animate some characters in motion. We're going to understand how forces affect characters. After that, we're going to do some pose to pose animation.

We're going to animate characters between some strong poses. After that, we'll understand how to walk characters, and make exaggerated walk cycles. Then we'll go ahead and concentrate on runs, and get your character running in place. Finally, we'll work on facial animation, and dialogue. We're going to animate a simple line of dialogue, and then were going to animate the entire character speaking a line of dialogue. So with that, let's go ahead and get started with Character Animation: Fundamentals in 3ds Max.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Character Animation Fundamentals in 3ds Max .

Expand all | Collapse all
please wait ...
Q: Where can I download the Linktivity Presenter drawing tool?
A: Linktivity Presenter is no longer available since the recording of this course. An alternative on-screen drawing tool is VB Doodle, which works with most 3d rendering software. Download VB Doodle here.
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Character Animation Fundamentals in 3ds Max.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


Upgrade to View Courses Offline


With our new Desktop App, Annual Premium Members can download courses for Internet-free viewing.

Upgrade Now

After upgrading, download Desktop App Here.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Start your FREE 10-day trial

Begin learning software, business, and creative skills—anytime,
anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts. provides
Unlimited access to over 4,000 courses—more than 100,000 video tutorials
Expert-led instruction
On-the-go learning. Watch from your computer, tablet, or mobile device. Switch back and forth as you choose.
Start Your FREE Trial Now

A trusted source for knowledge.


We provide training to more than 4 million people, and our members tell us that helps them stay ahead of software updates, pick up brand-new skills, switch careers, land promotions, and explore new hobbies. What can we help you do?

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.