Parenting Armature to Character

FORUMS FORUMS Rigging Parenting Armature to Character

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    • #5234

      ProofStudioCMP
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      I have watched the tutorials about the Builder function in the program, but is Builder used to parent the armature to the character? I still have a lot of confusion about parenting rigs to characters. For Instance, in many tutorials, people just show rigging tutorials with the circles surrounding the characters in pose mode and they move the characters perfectly but when I make a rig, the bones are there but when I go to pose it, the character itself moves and looks all wonky, the bones do not follow.

      Also, does Builder do bone constraints as well?

    • #10105

      admin
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      Hi. Yes, Builder’s parent button works contextually and will parent your mesh (character, object whatever) to your bones. Not only that but its clone and mirror functions can be used to create a perfect reflection of your rig (while in edit mode) so you don’t have to manually rename, recalculate, and re-position your bones. Just build the right half of your rig first, hit Builder’s “Mirror” button to switch it to “Clone” then press the Builder “X” button. After that you can switch to object mode, select your object, then shift select the rig and hit “Parent” to finish parenting your object to your armature.

      Using Builder’s clone X button to clone-mirror your rig becomes especially handy down the line when you are animating and want to be able to easily flip your character’s pose. If you don’t use the described method (or else are using Blender’s built in meta rig) you would half to manually rename all your left side and right side bones appropriately to get the flip pose feature to work.

      The circles and stuff either come from the “Meta Rig” which you can create from the add menu “Shift-A” or people have manually changed the visual representation of the bones to a custom shape. This can be done for each bone in the “Bone” menu of the properties panel. This option appears in your properties panel (bone icon) under the “Relations” menu, when you have an armature selected (but stupidly only while in object mode, which means to change the bone you’re adjusting you need to first switch to edit mode).

      You can switch out the basic bone “Octahedral” shape for anything, including mesh objects like cubes, but most people use curve objects as custom shapes. Some even go as far as importing custom made shapes from Illustrator to help really customize the armatures look. It’s typically a good idea to keep whatever custom shapes you’re using on a separate layer than your main work layer. You can move your custom shapes to another layer by selecting them and pressing “M” to move to layer while in object mode.

      When you said you try to move the bones but your mesh moves all weird this has to do with what portion of your object’s mesh each bone in the armature is controlling. Blender’s “Weight Painting” feature is used to control how each bone is connected to a part of the mesh. To get to this mode you would select the object and change the mode down at the bottom to “Weight Paint”. You can press alt and left click to select a different bone (while in Weight Paint mode) and see which area (and how much) of the mesh it controls. In Sensei Format you can simply paint to add area of influence on the mesh to the selected bone or hold Shift and paint to remove influence. In most paint modes holding down Shift acts like an eraser with Sensei Format or Zero Brush.

      Rigging is definitely a huge discipline in 3D animation unto itself. The complexity of a rig can range from, quick and easy, to incredibly complex. It’s its own job position most of the time in studios, some employing dozens of people just to rig things, so don’t be discouraged if it seems at first daunting. I have a couple of videos explaining the basics of rigging but none which yet take advantage of the Builder tools (videos are a bit old). New videos will be released in the future to replace the old ones. Here is a link to the old ones which may help demystify the concept a bit:

      Also, sorry for taking nearly a year to reply ^_^’

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