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Watch as author George Maestri employs the basic principles of animation to bring to life simple 3D characters in Maya. Starting with an overview of the character rig, this course provides guidelines for arranging stock characters into strong poses and explains how to generate locomotion between poses in a modular fashion. The course includes step-by-step instructions on animating realistic gestures, walks, runs, facial expressions, and dialogue, and culminates with an animated scene built entirely from scratch.
Prerequisite courses: Maya 2011 Essential Training.
In this chapter, we're going to animate a run. Now, before we actually get in to keyframing that run, let's go ahead and do a quick analysis of what makes a run a little bit different than a walk. Now, a run is actually similar to a walk in that the character is shifting his weight from foot to foot and those feet are pulling the character forward. So let's go ahead and play this run. We can see it very quickly here. So this is playing. It's a fairly fast run. Let's go ahead and see this a little bit closer. I am going to bring up this Perspective window here.
So, that's actually a pretty fast run, and that's actually the first difference between a walk and a run. Typically, a run happens faster. Whereas a walk may take a half a second per step, a run may only take a quarter of a second. Also, another thing about the run is that the character moves further with each step. That's because the character is actually taking a leap. He's jumping from footstep to footstep. So here in the run, on our first frame we have this character set to take off in a leap.
So he actually leaps in the air, both feet are airborne here, and then he catches himself on his foot. And very much like the walk, the character's cushions-- In other words his weight--gets absorbed. So the weight goes down, and the character's knees bend to absorb the shock. Then the character pushes off again into another leap and grabs himself, and the cycle continues.
Now, another thing I want to show you about a run is that it's very similar to a walk in the motion of the shoulders and the spine. So for example, when this left foot is forward, the left hip is forward, and then the left shoulder is back. So that's the same sort of motion. We have that same twisting of the spine in a run that we would have in a walk as well. A run is definitely more exaggerated.
Now, these arms will go further back. They'll swing further forward, swing further back. The character can and will pump his arms to help with the motion. So generally, the run is basically faster, longer steps, and more exaggerated. So let's go ahead and go through the process of animating a run, so you can get the hang of it.
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