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Linking body parts using object hierarchy

From: Up and Running with CINEMA 4D Lite for After Effects

Video: Linking body parts using object hierarchy

So here we are in Chapter 306 C4D and what I want to do now is create some arms for my character. So I'm going to select the chest, and duplicate the chest by holding down the control key, and clicking and dragging it out here. And what we're going to do is just adjust the height of that. So shoulder needs to be above 30 and then we are just going to move across here. And again using little mouse button to jump to my different views just line up with the other layers, so that it sets in the right place.

Linking body parts using object hierarchy

So here we are in Chapter 306 C4D and what I want to do now is create some arms for my character. So I'm going to select the chest, and duplicate the chest by holding down the control key, and clicking and dragging it out here. And what we're going to do is just adjust the height of that. So shoulder needs to be above 30 and then we are just going to move across here. And again using little mouse button to jump to my different views just line up with the other layers, so that it sets in the right place.

Then we are going to create an elbow. And the elbow is created just by holding down the control key and clicking and dragging this shape down. Okay? And if we right mouse click to come out of that view and then go into right view, all we need to do now is just bring down the radius to make the elbow. So the elbow is going to be about almost half the size of the shoulder. So we're going to. Bring it down to a radius of 25 and I'm just going to move it up a little bit, so it's aligned with the hips.

Okay, so we've got a shoulder, we've got an elbow, and we also need to create a hand. So I'm going to duplicate it again, so I'm going to hold down the control key, click and drag it down. To round about there, and we're going to make that about 15 centimeters radius to make a hand. And again, I'm just going to move it up a little bit, so it's aligned with the bottom of the hips. Okay, so we've got the hand, the elbow, and the shoulder, we now need to create pieces to join these together.

So we need an upper arm, and to do that I'm going to create a cube. So, I'm going to create a cube. I'm going to make it a lot smaller. So, let's do it, let's say about 15 would be the width, and then we'll have about 60 for the length. OK. And maybe about 40 for the zed value. And then, we'll move it up Into position. And place it between those two layers. Or two objects, rather.

So there we have our upper arm. Now you made need to, readjust this, you may need to move, some of the layers into position. Again, it's all good practice. All of this repositioning elements is good practice for you. And then we're going to take that cube And we're going to fillet it, so let's give it a very small fillet, maybe about three. And then let's duplicate it, so hold down Ctrl, click and drag it down. Okay. And we're going to adjust the size of it, so let's bring the y value down, to about 50.

There's that value down to about 30 and then we need to look at it from the front to see the rest. So let's look at the front view and as soon as we look at the front view. You can spot a deliberate mistake. You'll see how important it is to look at your object from different views. When we were looking from right view, we thought our arm was over here, and it's actually over here. So if we select these two cubes, we can just move them across and put them into position.

So what we want to do now is adjust the size of these. I want these to get progressively narrower, these disks, here. So the elbow will be narrower, and then the hand will be even narrower. So let's just rename these. Let's call this one Shoulder. So we want the shoulder to be. Quite wide. We want the elbow to be slightly narrower, so what I'm going to do is select that, and just bring the height down to 20, and then this one Which will be the hand we will bring down to maybe 10 or 15.

Let's do 15 I think. In fact, we'll maybe go to about 16. And there we have it. And we'll also rename these so I'll call this upper arm. >> And Load Arm. So, what we want to do now is we want to link these body parts together. I'm going to create another arm and another leg. So, really instead of having to drag all those individual parts over to the other side, it makes sense to link them together if you want them to move as a unit.

One way of doing that is to use what's called parenting. And in order to make the foot the child of the leg, so that wherever the leg moves the foot follows. All I need to do is just drag it up onto the leg layer. And when I see the downward facing arrow that will link it so that wherever the left leg now goes the foot follows. So if I hold down the Control key and drag the left leg now. You'll notice that the left foot follow, so I got the leg and the foot being duplicated up here. Now I need to rename that.

So I'm going to call it right leg, and I should also rename this right foot. Okay. So we've now got right Woops I called that right left. I'll change that to right leg. OK, so we've got right leg and left leg now. The right leg we'll drag down here just so it's underneath the left leg. And when the arrow's pointing from right to left, it means you get to place the accent under, rather than paint into it.

Now, if I was to rotate the hips. let's just go back to our Standard view here. If I was to rotate the hips and let's just middle-click on that. So when I rotate the hips I would maybe want the legs to follow. So let's see how that would work. If I drag the left leg and the right leg Onto the hips, so that the arrow is pointing down. The hips will now control the legs. Now if I rotate the hip (UNKNOWN), you'll see the legs following.

Now the only thing about that is I also want the body to follow, so I then need to Set up a painting structure for the body. So let's link the body to the hips also. So drag that on and we now have when the hips rotate, the body and the legs are following. Now the chest would also move with the body, so I'm going to move the chest so it links to the body. So now when the hips rotate. The chest and the legs follow.

However, I can still move those pieces independently. Now, you'll see if I choose the left leg, rotate that. Notice it rotates separately from the body. So it's like a one-way linking system, if you like. Now we'll continue with that. Now we've got the chest attached to the body. We also need to attach the neck to the chest, so that the neck follows the chest. And we'll have the head attached to the neck so that when the neck rotates.

The head follows, okay. And when the chest rotates, the neck and the head follow. So we're starting to see how we're setting up this parenting structure so we can animate this character. Now I'm also going to attach the shoulders. To the axle. And I want the axle to be kind of separate from the chest, to be able to move separately but also be grouped with the chest. So I'm going to drag the axle onto the chest, so that wherever the chest, the axle follows.

And then, I'm going to attach the shoulder To the axle but before I do that, what I'm goign to do is attach all these different body parts to the shoulder. Now I'm going to drag the upper arm onto the shoulder so that wherever the shoulder rotates, the upper arm follows and we can just check that. OK, that's working fine. And then the elbow goes to the upper arm The lower arm to the elbow and the hand to the lower arm. And now when I rotate the shoulder, you'll see that all those body parts follow when I rotate the elbow.

You can see I'm starting to get a nice little sense of my animation. Now if I now attach the shoulder to the axel. The great thing about the axle is I can move the chest. So let's rotate the chest a little bit, as if he's looking down. But then the axle allows me to move the arm separately. And the good thing about the axle is if I now duplicate that arm, so let's go back to front view, which is this one. So if I take that arm from the shoulder And I duplicate it.

So let's select the Move tool again. Let's hold down Control to duplicate. Move it across to the other side. I'm just going to roughly position it at the moment. Okay, so we've now got another shoulder here. If we go back to our standard view. Middle mouse-click. Middle mouse-click again. When I move the axle and rotate it, you'll see that both arms follow. So I've got a way of animating both arms, but I can still go in there and animate the shoulders individually.

So there we go. That's how to set up a hierarchy so you can start to animate body parts in a way that makes since in Cinema 4D.

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This video is part of

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Up and Running with CINEMA 4D Lite for After Effects

104 video lessons · 8044 viewers

Angie Taylor
Author

 
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  1. 2m 22s
    1. Welcome
      2m 22s
  2. 38m 14s
    1. What is CINEMA 4D Lite?
      4m 23s
    2. What CINEMA 4D Lite can't do
      6m 54s
    3. Opening CINEMA 4D Lite in After Effects
      2m 38s
    4. Quick interface tour
      8m 46s
    5. Navigation tips for CINEMA 4D Lite
      8m 5s
    6. CINEMA 4D Lite preferences and settings
      7m 28s
  3. 22m 34s
    1. Importing CINEMA 4D files in After Effects
      1m 5s
    2. The CINEWARE plugin settings
      4m 42s
    3. CINEMA 4D Lite render settings
      6m 15s
    4. After Effects project settings
      1m 23s
    5. After Effects previewing tips
      3m 50s
    6. Using the Picture Viewer in CINEMA 4D
      5m 19s
  4. 1h 14m
    1. Editing primitive objects
      5m 18s
    2. The Move and Scale tools
      7m 18s
    3. The Rotate tool
      4m 24s
    4. Axis limitations
      1m 46s
    5. Working cylinders
      7m 15s
    6. Linking body parts using object hierarchy
      9m 49s
    7. Spline modeling with Sweep NURBS
      7m 22s
    8. Adjusting NURBS settings
      4m 6s
    9. Using nulls as controllers
      3m 33s
    10. Creating copies with the Instance array
      6m 44s
    11. Carving shapes with the Boole array
      10m 28s
    12. Reshaping objects with deformers
      3m 14s
    13. Adding surface detail with a Relief object
      2m 55s
  5. 55m 41s
    1. Understanding coordinates
      5m 0s
    2. Understanding rotation
      2m 39s
    3. Timeline shortcuts
      3m 1s
    4. Basic keyframing of properties
      4m 31s
    5. Copying keyframes
      2m 3s
    6. Keyframe interpolation
      5m 20s
    7. Adjusting F-Curves
      5m 45s
    8. Holding values
      5m 8s
    9. Using XPresso to link properties: Part one
      4m 17s
    10. Using XPresso to link properties: Part two
      2m 27s
    11. Importing existing animations into CINEMA 4D Lite
      6m 21s
    12. Animating cameras in CINEMA 4D Lite
      4m 37s
    13. Animating using presets
      4m 32s
  6. 46m 30s
    1. Importing music and soundtracks
      4m 12s
    2. Customizing commands and shortcuts
      6m 7s
    3. Adding markers
      4m 25s
    4. Creating multiple cameras in CINEMA 4D Lite
      8m 17s
    5. Cutting between CINEMA 4D cameras with CINEWARE
      4m 23s
    6. Creating cameras in After Effects
      5m 30s
    7. Merging 3D camera data into CINEMA 4D Lite
      3m 10s
    8. Animating cameras with Stage objects
      4m 27s
    9. Extracting cameras from CINEMA 4D files
      5m 59s
  7. 43m 49s
    1. Adding CINEMA 4D text to After Effects comps
      5m 4s
    2. Formatting text in CINEMA 4D
      5m 47s
    3. Creating CINEMA 4D text or logos in Illustrator
      6m 9s
    4. Importing Illustrator text into CINEMA 4D Lite
      4m 38s
    5. Applying material presets to text
      7m 51s
    6. Merging CINEMA 4D files
      5m 51s
    7. Registering CINEMA 4D Lite for MoGraph features
      1m 8s
    8. Using MoGraph Fracture on text
      3m 25s
    9. The MoGraph Random Effector
      3m 56s
  8. 12m 8s
    1. Creating a wiggle expression
      7m 49s
    2. The Reset Position script
      4m 19s
  9. 30m 56s
    1. Applying a custom material
      6m 32s
    2. Making a metallic material
      6m 15s
    3. Adding an environment channel
      2m 20s
    4. Adding texture with shaders
      4m 21s
    5. Built-in material presets
      3m 52s
    6. Combining materials
      2m 41s
    7. Using selection sets to isolate surfaces
      4m 55s
  10. 27m 42s
    1. 3D camera tracking in After Effects
      6m 3s
    2. Creating nulls from tracking points
      2m 40s
    3. Adjusting the Shadow Catcher for CINEMA 4D
      3m 31s
    4. Importing a CINEMA 4D file into a scene
      4m 21s
    5. Exporting CINEMA 4D files from After Effects comps
      3m 42s
    6. Merging objects from CINEMA 4D files
      3m 23s
    7. Manually adjusting scenes between apps
      4m 2s
  11. 19m 18s
    1. Setting up layers in CINEMA 4D
      6m 11s
    2. Compositing CINEMA 4D layers in After Effects
      3m 28s
    3. Casting shadows on layers in CINEWARE
      4m 56s
    4. Adding reflections in CINEMA 4D
      4m 43s
  12. 36m 10s
    1. Using preset lighting setups
      6m 24s
    2. Light types in CINEMA 4D Lite
      6m 38s
    3. Creating visible lights
      7m 56s
    4. Adding ambient occlusion effects
      6m 55s
    5. Optimizing your CINEMA 4D scenes
      8m 17s
  13. 34m 39s
    1. Multipass compositing explained
      2m 28s
    2. Adding passes to render settings
      2m 8s
    3. Viewing passes in the Picture Viewer
      2m 35s
    4. Adding object buffers
      4m 51s
    5. External compositing tags in CINEMA 4D Lite
      3m 8s
    6. Previewing and experimenting with passes
      4m 30s
    7. CINEWARE multipass options
      7m 8s
    8. Adjusting reflections
      3m 2s
    9. Isolating elements with object buffers
      4m 49s
  14. 53m 2s
    1. Extracting 3D scene data
      8m 11s
    2. Adding video elements to a CINEMA 4D scene
      5m 49s
    3. Working with proxies
      10m 2s
    4. Color correction of shadows
      4m 10s
    5. Layer styles
      3m 50s
    6. Adjustment layers
      4m 58s
    7. Setting up depth of field in CINEMA 4D Lite
      3m 10s
    8. Adding depth of field with camera lens blur
      4m 4s
    9. Speed ramps with time remapping
      4m 14s
    10. Motion blur with the Pixel Motion Blur effect
      4m 34s
  15. 13m 59s
    1. Rendering with the After Effects Render Queue
      5m 39s
    2. Background rendering with Adobe Media Encoder
      4m 6s
    3. The BG Renderer script
      4m 14s

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