Facial Rigging in Maya

with Jason Baskin
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Facial Rigging in Maya
Video duration: 0s 2h 38m Intermediate


Robust facial rigs are vital to character expression and a natural and necessary addition to any stable body rig. There are two primary approaches to facial rigging: shapes and joint-based setups. Blend shapes are typically not supported by gaming engines, so it's important to learn both approaches. This course shows how to use each method to build facial controls that are versatile and easy to use. Jason Baskin shows how to use blend shapes to control expressions, and create a library of morph targets with the Cluster and Lattice tools and the Wrap and Wire deformers. Then learn how to connect eyes, eyelids, and other features to GUI controls that animators can use to manipulate the character's expressions however they like. Last, Jason explores a joint-based approach that allows you to sculpt the underlying facial structure before attaching it to the final mesh.

Topics include:
  • Understanding morph targets
  • Using Soft Select, Artisan Sculpt tools, and symmetry options
  • Splitting symmetrical shapes into asymmetrical pairs
  • Connecting eye rotation to the GUI
  • Working with eyelids, using blend shapes or fan joints
  • Creating a basic UI control
  • Connecting controls
  • Orienting joints and creating a support structure
  • Attaching joints to the support structure
  • Binding joints to the final mesh
  • Balancing shape fidelity with rig density and usability
3D + Animation


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