Join George Maestri for an in-depth discussion in this video Rigging the main foot control, part of 3ds Max: Character Rigging.
At this point, we have got our basic controls for the foot in place but we don't have master control linked in. So, we have got this one here, which bends the foot. We have got again, the toe bend and then we also have the one that controls the toe. Now if we wanted to move the foot, we could actually use this one here to move the foot, but that's really not what we want because the pivot is in the wrong place. So, let's go ahead and take a look at this again in our scene explorer. What we want to do is take this master foot control and make that the wrapper for the whole thing, so we want that to be the main part of the hierarchy. So all I need to do for that is to select this toe tip, and then select and link that out to the outside control there. So now the toe tip is a child of the foot. And the heel and toe bend are a child of the toe tip control. So now, if I move this, you can see I get a very good motion here. In fact, if we zoom out here, you can see how the character's foot moves pretty good. Now another thing we can do is we can actually rotate this, to rotate the foot, sideways or the other way so, again, we have a lot of control.
Now that we have this in place, lets go ahead and just clean up our rig just a little bit. The first thing I want to do is to hide my IK handles, I really don't want my animator to see these. I want them to control the foot through these controls. So let's go into our layers panel here, and actually I'm going to create a brand new layer. So let's go ahead and create a new layer, and I'm just going to call that IK. And that'll be the holder for all of our IK handles. So I'm going to open up our default layer. Select those, and drop those into my IK layer. Okay, let's drop them all in. I didn't get them all. There they are. And so now, if we want, we can hide this layer. And the IK handles will hide, so that way we won't reveal the controls to the animator. And so all the animator will see will be these four controls and that will give him control over the feed, so they won't have to touch the IK handles. Now, another thing we want to do is to limit these controls.
So for example this heel control I can rotate it here around my x-axis, but I don't really want to be able to move it, because that's really not going to make the rig work, that's actually going to break the rig. So lets go ahead and start locking some of these channels so that way the animator can only do what you want him to do. So we need to go into our curve editor. I'm going to bring this down just a little bit here. And let's go ahead and start with the heel, I'm going to select the heel. And you'll see we've got these controllers on it. So I want to lock my position, so I'm going to shift, select all of my position controllers. And right-click over it. And up here, you'll see there is an option called Lock, and when I do that, you'll see that these are locked. So now if I try and move it, I can't. I can do the same for Scale. If I Select scale, I can lock my scale. So now I can't scale this either. All I could do is rotate it. So, I can rotate this and if I want, I can even lock down rotations, if I want. Now, we could do the same thing here for the toe tap.
I can select all of my position and again lock them. Select scale and lock that. Same for my toe tap. I can lock position and scale. Now for my main control, I actually do want to rotate and translate it. So I don't want to change my position, but I don't really want to scale it. So I'm going to go ahead, and right-click over this. And we're going to lock down scale. So now that I have all of these in place the way that I want, I've got a pretty good control system for my feet and the legs of my character. So now that I have my controllers locked down, I have a really good rig for my foot leg. But I only have a control for the left side so go ahead and use the exact same process and rig the right side of your character and then we'll come back and do a little bit more.
- Setting up layers
- Drawing and positioning bones in the skeleton
- Rigging foot controls
- Creating hip and spine controls
- Setting up IK and FK skeleton controls
- Wiring the IK/FK switch
- Rigging hands
- Skinning characters
- Setting up single- and multiple-axis face controls