Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Animating a walk: The feet

From: Character Animation Fundamentals with Maya

Video: Animating a walk: The feet

Now that we have all preliminaries in place, let's go ahead and start blocking out the footsteps of the walk. All we want to do at this point is just get the spacing and timing of the feet right. Now we're going to start with the extended position. This is where the feet are furthest apart. Now you can start with any one of the four positions you want, but I find the extended position is probably the best way for the beginner to start animating a walk. So I'm going to go ahead and select one of the feet. In this case I'm selecting the right foot and I'm going to move it forward.

Animating a walk: The feet

Now that we have all preliminaries in place, let's go ahead and start blocking out the footsteps of the walk. All we want to do at this point is just get the spacing and timing of the feet right. Now we're going to start with the extended position. This is where the feet are furthest apart. Now you can start with any one of the four positions you want, but I find the extended position is probably the best way for the beginner to start animating a walk. So I'm going to go ahead and select one of the feet. In this case I'm selecting the right foot and I'm going to move it forward.

Now how far forward depends on the character of the walk. We can move it forward just a little bit for small tiny steps. We can move it forward quite a bit for big broad steps, but I'm just going to go somewhere in the middle. Somewhere around here, so where this foot is just ahead of the opposite foot. So I'm going to go ahead and move it forward about 16 units. Now when we do this, notice how that foot here is pointing towards the goal, but it's not really own the ground.

This is because the hips still haven't put in place. So what I need to do is take the hips and move them forward and just kind of get them pretty much right in the middle of the two feet. Now, when I do this notice how these are kind of becoming knock-kneed, and that's because I've got these two targets in the way. So let me go ahead and select these two knee direction targets and move those forward.

These two objects are what the knees point at, so if you move these in any direction you can see how the knees actually point at these objects. So we just want to make sure that those are in front of the character. Now once we have those kind of moved out of the way, we can do the final position of the hips. Now what I want to do is I want to get those hips kind of halfway between the feet. Well, I know if I moved 1 foot forward to 16 then halfway would be half of 16 or 8. So I am going to move that forward eight units and then I'm going to go ahead and move that up, but before I do that, remember that the hips are actually rotating side-to-side, so they're kind of twisting around the vertical axis.

So as that right foot moves forward, the right hip will also rotate forward so we need to incorporate that into our walk as well. So I'm going to rotate this forward about 15 degrees and now that I have those in place, the final step is to just move these hips up or down to kind of get a good first position. Now if I move it too high up, you'll notice that these knees kind of lock and we don't want that. So I'm going to go ahead and just move those so that the knees are slightly bent and we have a nice extension.

So now that we have those in place let's go ahead and make sure we've set keyframes for the hips and both of the feet. Now we have that first pose blocked out. Now we can go ahead and move the time slider forward out to frame 17, so remember this is a 16-frame cycle. So our next extended position will happen at frame 17, which is 16 ahead of 1. So let's go ahead and select that left foot and move it forward. We're going to move it forward, well, 16 to make it even, plus another 16 for 32.

Now this will go ahead and put the foot exactly in the same place, except on the opposite side. So now that we have this in place, let's go ahead and select the other foot. Make sure we have a keyframe set for that. So again we're going to move the hips forward another 16 units for a total of 24. Now if you notice, the hips are actually kind of rotated in the wrong direction. This is one of the legs are overextended. So if I want remember again that the hips rotate along the vertical axis, left-right.

So I want to make sure that I rotate these hips forward about 15 units, or actually -15 units, and get those in place. So once I do that, let's make sure I have all of my keyframes set and then we can see I've got my first footstep blocked out. Now this isn't really the full foot step. It's just getting the placement. So let's go ahead and do this one more time for the right foot to finish off the cycle. So again I'm going to go all the way to the end of my timescale, at frame 33.

And we're going to go ahead and move that right foot forward again. Now it's at 16. 16+16+16 puts it to about 48. Let's go ahead and type in 48, and again the hips are needed to move forward as well, another 16. So let's go ahead and move those forward. So 24+16 is 40 and we also need to untwist it and rotate the hips in the other direction. So again we're going to go to 15 on this side.

So once I have that in place, let's make sure we set all of our keyframes and we should have the timing and spacing of the feet blocked down. Now let's go ahead and just scrub through this. You can see now this is the basic timing of the footsteps, so let's go ahead and do a quick run-through and you can see that that works pretty well. Now obviously, we've got to kind of finish this off by animating the feet lifting and all that, but we'll do that in the next lesson.

So now that we have the timing and spacing of the feet blocked out, we can go ahead and finish off the hips and feet portion of the walk, and we're going to go ahead and do that in the next lesson.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Character Animation Fundamentals with Maya
Character Animation Fundamentals with Maya

65 video lessons · 10015 viewers

George Maestri
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 22m 18s
    1. Introduction
      1m 10s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 8s
    3. Character rig overview: Simple character
      6m 19s
    4. Character rig overview: Full character
      7m 30s
    5. Using other rigs
      48s
    6. Using screen drawing tools for Windows
      3m 9s
    7. Using screen drawing tools for the Mac
      2m 14s
  2. 23m 47s
    1. Creating strong poses
      3m 27s
    2. Creating custom MEL scripts to help pose characters
      4m 39s
    3. Using layers to select characters
      1m 10s
    4. Learning the basics of posing characters
      10m 7s
    5. Creating stock poses
      4m 24s
  3. 25m 11s
    1. Understanding forces and character motion
      2m 13s
    2. Understanding drag
      5m 51s
    3. Working with secondary motion
      5m 33s
    4. Bringing the character to life
      4m 21s
    5. Refining the animation
      7m 13s
  4. 39m 30s
    1. Keyframing initial poses
      4m 21s
    2. Creating the blocking pass
      7m 42s
    3. Moving holds
      5m 27s
    4. Animating weight shift
      4m 21s
    5. Animating pose to pose transitions
      7m 46s
    6. Animating a wave
      9m 53s
  5. 42m 15s
    1. Analyzing a walk
      5m 43s
    2. Setting up a character for a basic walk
      1m 22s
    3. Animating a walk: The feet
      5m 55s
    4. Animating a walk: The lower body
      8m 23s
    5. Animating a walk: Making the cycle symmetrical
      3m 10s
    6. Animating a walk: Working with the spine
      5m 59s
    7. Animating a walk: Arm motion
      7m 28s
    8. Animating a walk: The head
      4m 15s
  6. 24m 15s
    1. The importance of the passing position
      4m 52s
    2. Working with foot placement
      3m 50s
    3. Adding character to a walk: Contact position
      5m 10s
    4. Adding character to a walk: Passing position
      3m 20s
    5. Adding character to a walk: Finalizing
      7m 3s
  7. 52m 27s
    1. A run in four poses
      2m 39s
    2. Animating a run: The first pose
      4m 31s
    3. Animating a run: The second pose
      7m 17s
    4. Animating a run: Mirroring the basic poses
      10m 59s
    5. Animating a run: Hip and foot motion
      5m 12s
    6. Animating a run: The upper body
      5m 2s
    7. Animating a run: Left arm motion
      5m 31s
    8. Animating a run: Right arm motion
      4m 39s
    9. Animating a run: Cycling the animation
      6m 37s
  8. 1h 20m
    1. Animating blinks
      7m 56s
    2. Animating changes in eye direction
      5m 6s
    3. Animating a head turn
      4m 35s
    4. Working with audio
      3m 38s
    5. Overview of mouth controls
      2m 44s
    6. Animating vowels
      15m 14s
    7. Animating consonants: B, D, and G
      7m 2s
    8. Animating consonants: F, M, and S
      8m 22s
    9. Animating lip sync: Assigning phonemes
      10m 43s
    10. Animating lip sync: The head
      9m 44s
    11. Animating lip sync: The body
      5m 10s
  9. 55m 55s
    1. Creating the main poses
      4m 18s
    2. Blocking poses to dialogue
      7m 1s
    3. In-between blocking pass
      3m 27s
    4. Animating moving holds
      5m 19s
    5. Creating weight
      6m 19s
    6. Adding secondary motion
      10m 0s
    7. Animating dialogue
      8m 12s
    8. Finalizing the animation
      11m 19s
  10. 24s
    1. Goodbye
      24s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
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

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

Congratulations

You have completed Character Animation Fundamentals with Maya.

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


OK
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?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

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:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
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.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Your file was successfully uploaded.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com 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 lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com 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.