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Mirroring armatures for bilateral creatures

From: Blender 2.48 Essential Training

Video: Mirroring armatures for bilateral creatures

So as we create our armature, we are going to go ahead and select the bone here and then tab into Edit Mode. So as we work with the root bone and then we work our way up to the spine bone. What we want to do is kind of use the mesh that we are rigging for reference, and the way we can do that is come over here and Shift-click on Layer 2 and we are in Wireframe Mode, so we'll be able to see the armature and we can also turn on X-Ray up here like I talked about before.

Mirroring armatures for bilateral creatures

So as we create our armature, we are going to go ahead and select the bone here and then tab into Edit Mode. So as we work with the root bone and then we work our way up to the spine bone. What we want to do is kind of use the mesh that we are rigging for reference, and the way we can do that is come over here and Shift-click on Layer 2 and we are in Wireframe Mode, so we'll be able to see the armature and we can also turn on X-Ray up here like I talked about before.

As we work our way up in the Armature, I want to note a couple of things. One is you want to put the tips of the bones where there are vertex rings, or edge loops, when we modeled the mesh so that the mesh can smoothly deform. From any tip of any bone, you can extrude out another bone to come up here to the chest area. I have created two bones here; one on the waist bone that goes out to his belt buckle and then another one out to his chest.

Bones don't have to be connected to one another and we'll go ahead and scale in here on his hand. Here is his hand bone, and then we have the thumb and the pointer and everything and you can see the names of the bones showing up over here. So we have his pointer and notice now as we get into bilateral creatures, we have an issue because I'm lazy and I only like to do half the amount of work that I have to do. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to put an .L right here and as I come down the ArmHi and the ArmLo, everybody uses different names for the different bones.

So you kind of get a lesson in biology sometimes when you look at somebody else's rigs. But here is the bone, this is connected to the leg bone, shinbone is connected to the leg bone and then we have the foot down here at the bottom. And what I have done is I have a toe bone, so that I can move his toes up and down but then the foot bone is the main bone that I use to position the foot and here is the heel bone just for extra control and just a little extra guiding and positioning when I get into animating.

So now as we have these bones that form the left side of the body, we need to mirror them on the right side. And so we are going to go into Edit Mode and in the Front view, select the bones that make up the half of the body that we want to mirror. So we are going to do B and drag and Shift+Select, then the hip as well as the shoulder. Now, since these bones are over here as the selected bones as list, we just do a quick quality check to make sure they are all .L to mean for the left side.

Now we can Shift+D to duplicate them and click in place and go to Armature > Mirror > X Global. Now what's happened is those bones that I selected and duplicated have now been flipped on the X-axis. I can G+X to move them over and line them up with the other core bones in the center. Click to drop them and now you notice that they are named Shoulder.L.001, which is the standard thing that Blender does whenever you duplicate something.

So what we want to do now is to go Armature > Flip Left & Right Names. Now what Blender has done is it has taken that .L and it has changed it to an .R.So now we have individual bones for each side of the body. We can't just mirror the armature because we want the left arm to be swinging forward while the right arm swinging back as he is walking and things like that. So we need a balanced armature for bilateral creatures. And that's a real quick way on how you can do that.

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This video is part of

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Blender 2.48 Essential Training

131 video lessons · 25784 viewers

Roger Wickes
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  1. 12m 5s
    1. Welcome
      1m 16s
    2. Using the exercise files
      58s
    3. Using Blender's full capabilities
      4m 16s
    4. Getting and installing Blender
      3m 8s
    5. Mouse and keyboard differences on the Mac
      2m 27s
  2. 1h 6m
    1. Blender oddities
      7m 38s
    2. Introducing the User Interface, Console, and Render windows
      3m 8s
    3. Configuring the desktop for an efficient workflow
      6m 27s
    4. Using the mouse and tablet on a PC or a Mac
      5m 7s
    5. Acquiring keyboard skills
      7m 38s
    6. Window panes and types
      7m 53s
    7. Exploring the default scene
      5m 53s
    8. Setting themes, UI colors, and user preferences
      4m 0s
    9. Understanding how to safeguard your data with autosave and backups
      6m 52s
    10. Appending and linking assets
      7m 27s
    11. Using the open-source movies and assets
      4m 18s
  3. 2h 7m
    1. Working with objects in 3D space
      6m 24s
    2. Navigating 3D views
      4m 23s
    3. Understanding Blender modes
      1m 51s
    4. Understanding meshes
      2m 8s
    5. Editing a mesh
      3m 28s
    6. Using the Mirror modifier
      2m 55s
    7. Working with Vertex groups
      2m 35s
    8. Using Bézier curves
      3m 52s
    9. Working with text objects
      5m 23s
    10. Using reference images
      3m 38s
    11. Modeling boots by extruding circles and joining meshes
      8m 59s
    12. Applying the Mirror modifier to duplicate the boot and rotate
      1m 58s
    13. Modeling a helmet with NURBS and the Boolean modifier
      7m 14s
    14. Modeling a belt and pants by making a compound object from multiple primitive objects
      3m 51s
    15. Modeling legs by using edge loops and the Knife tool
      6m 9s
    16. Modeling a chest and arms using edge loops
      5m 30s
    17. Stitching the shoulders and neck
      5m 13s
    18. Modeling hands with the Proportional Editing tool
      9m 4s
    19. Linking vertices to create knuckle joints
      4m 7s
    20. Reinforcing modeling basics to create the face, eyes, nose, and ears
      13m 6s
    21. Appending and linking assets
      3m 54s
    22. Sculpting basics
      3m 3s
    23. Using the Subsurf modifier to smooth
      2m 34s
    24. Parenting
      2m 7s
    25. Working with groups
      2m 1s
    26. Understanding the endless possibilities for editing mesh with modifiers
      2m 37s
    27. Duplicating objects using the Array modifier
      1m 54s
    28. Modeling a set
      7m 52s
  4. 39m 41s
    1. Lighting overview
      4m 25s
    2. Using the Omni lamp
      4m 50s
    3. Working with the Area lamp
      2m 57s
    4. Using the Spot lamp
      4m 9s
    5. Using the Sun, Sky, and Atmosphere lamps
      4m 51s
    6. Using the Hemisphere lamp
      2m 3s
    7. Working with Ambient and Radiosity lighting
      7m 34s
    8. Lighting with three-point and other multipoint lighting rigs
      5m 30s
    9. Understanding shadows
      3m 22s
  5. 1h 21m
    1. Realism overview
      2m 56s
    2. Creating a world in less than seven days
      6m 36s
    3. Applying ambient occlusion
      3m 47s
    4. Working with basic materials
      3m 24s
    5. Working with node materials
      4m 27s
    6. Applying Pipeline options
      2m 51s
    7. Painting vertices
      3m 13s
    8. Using shaders
      7m 59s
    9. Using mirrors
      4m 41s
    10. Working with transparency
      4m 28s
    11. Using halos
      2m 40s
    12. Simulating with Subsurface Scattering (SSS)
      4m 26s
    13. Applying textures
      9m 34s
    14. Mapping image textures to an object to create a decal
      4m 19s
    15. UV unwrapping
      4m 54s
    16. Applying multiple materials to a single object
      3m 31s
    17. Painting in 3D
      4m 14s
    18. Using bump maps
      3m 14s
  6. 1h 25m
    1. Understanding animation
      4m 14s
    2. Keyframing objects
      6m 15s
    3. Keyframing materials
      3m 14s
    4. Creating Shape keys
      2m 28s
    5. Creating Facial Shape key animation using reference video
      2m 12s
    6. Animating by combining Shape keys
      2m 53s
    7. Working with lattices
      3m 37s
    8. Using hooks
      1m 30s
    9. Working with Vertex groups
      2m 33s
    10. Creating armature objects
      3m 44s
    11. Mirroring armatures for bilateral creatures
      3m 43s
    12. Attaching mesh to the armature by way of skinning
      5m 7s
    13. Posing a character
      4m 43s
    14. Using inverse kinematics
      4m 29s
    15. Creating a walk cycle with inverse kinematics
      6m 34s
    16. Completing the walk cycle
      3m 49s
    17. Limiting range of motion and degrees of freedom
      3m 47s
    18. Managing actions using the Action Editor
      3m 52s
    19. Blending actions together using the Non-Linear Animation Editor
      4m 34s
    20. Tracking
      3m 2s
    21. Following a path
      2m 21s
    22. Mimicking an existing animation
      3m 47s
    23. Using the grease pencil
      2m 56s
  7. 50m 43s
    1. Understanding particle systems
      2m 20s
    2. Working with game engine physics
      3m 52s
    3. Spewing particles
      7m 25s
    4. Guiding particles
      3m 43s
    5. Creating reactions and collisions with particle systems
      3m 15s
    6. Creating hair and fur
      4m 25s
    7. Grooming hair and fur
      3m 26s
    8. Jiggling and squishing soft bodies
      3m 43s
    9. Simulating cloth
      6m 10s
    10. Simulating fluids
      5m 47s
    11. Using boids to simulate swarms, schools, and flocks
      6m 37s
  8. 21m 29s
    1. Using Render controls
      6m 18s
    2. Radiosity
      3m 31s
    3. Stamping text on video
      2m 32s
    4. Setting up test renders
      4m 43s
    5. Rendering image sequences
      4m 25s
  9. 1h 5m
    1. Viewing node thumbnail images on certain Macs
      1m 31s
    2. Overview and integration
      2m 12s
    3. Render passes and layers
      4m 27s
    4. Using Input nodes
      6m 22s
    5. Using Output nodes
      3m 54s
    6. Working with Color nodes
      4m 29s
    7. Color mixing and layering
      3m 27s
    8. Using Distort nodes individually and in combination
      7m 15s
    9. Using Vector nodes
      6m 46s
    10. Creating effects with Filter nodes
      8m 49s
    11. Using Converter nodes
      6m 7s
    12. Chroma keying with Matte nodes
      6m 15s
    13. Understanding node groups and reuse
      4m 17s
  10. 38m 43s
    1. The Video Sequence Editor (VSE)
      11m 47s
    2. Integrating audio
      3m 31s
    3. Using VSE Greenscreen and other plug-ins
      5m 40s
    4. Integrating the Compositor with the VSE
      7m 50s
    5. Layering and splicing video
      6m 18s
    6. Speeding up and slowing down sequences
      3m 37s
  11. 5m 26s
    1. Putting it all together: Captain Knowledge visits lynda.com
      5m 12s
    2. Goodbye
      14s

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