4: Rigging

In this case, by rigging, I mean to add the necessary bones to the model to allow us to animate. In this case, because of the simplicity of the model, we will not be using any constraints on the body itself since we'll be creating only a very simple set of repeated actions.

Okay, enough of that, let's set some bones! Bring up your HeadSeg model in it's window. Let's hit '4' to get a left view. Now, let's get in to Bones mode (if you're not there already). On the bar across the top (again, assuming a default interface), you should see a small bone. Click on it. Looks like this:

Time to set some bones. Click on the Add Bone button on the right side of the screen (for the last time, assuming a standard placement. Looks like this:

Now click (when I say click, I mean Left Mouse Button (LMB) click - if I say Right Click, well, it's the other one - RMB) inside our HeadSeg and now drag (while holding down the LMB) towards the back of the body, stopping with the bone still inside the body. Now let up on the LMB. You should now have your first bone in the HeadSeg. Now check the alignment in the body by hitting '5' (Top View) and being sure the bone runs down the middle (more or less) of the body. If it's misaligned, click in the middle of the bone (between the two yellow highlighted ends) and drag it so it sits where you want it. You can also drag each of the endpoints by clicking on them and dragging. Congratulations, we've set our first bone!

A quick word about hierarchy in bones. Let's say we set another bone right now (go ahead and try - we can always delete it later). Now, assuming you haven't done anything in the interrim, you should see in the Project Workspace window our new bone Bone2 is the child of Bone1. You can see the relationship by it's name sitting below and slightly inset relative to Bone1. As a child of the parent Bone1, if Bone1 translates (moves) Bone2 will follow it. Sometimes this is what you want and sometimes it's not. If you didn't want Bone2 to be the child of Bone1, you can simply click and hold on Bone2 and drag it up on to the model name and let go. Now it sits at the same level as Bone1.

Now, let's set the leg bones for the legs. Click on the model name. Hit '2' for a front view and hit 'a' (Add Bone). Click and drag a bone to go along the upper left (your left) portion of leg. Now hit 4 to check the orientation from the left. Odds are you'll need to move it in to the leg from this view. Now switch back to the front view ('2') and add a lower leg bone to the lower leg. Note that it should be a child of the parent upper leg bone.

Now let's rename those bones to something more descriptive than Bone1/2/3. Click on Bone1, hit F2 (rename) and type the new name, something descriptive like Body. Now do the same for Bone2 and Bone3, renaming them to Right Upper and Right Lower (now the creature's right, not yours).

Do the same for the other leg, but remember to click on the model name before laying the upper bone or you'll need to drag that bone and move it up the hierarchy.

Now, add a bone each for the eyes and lids and mouth parts for a total of six more. Your bone chain should look like this:

Now let's assign some CPs (Control Points) to each bone. Switch to the front view ('2') of the model. Now select the Body bone (either in the PWS - Project Workspace or by click on the bone in the model window). Now hit 'g' or 'Shift-g' and select a point or two from the body. Now hit '/'. This should select the rest of the body. That was easy!

Now do the same for the upper and lower segments of each leg. The mouth segments are probably best selected from the front view while the lids and eyes are probably best selected in Bird's Eye mode. Just click on each bone in turn, the shift-click on a single point of that part then hit '/' to get the rest of that part. You'll note that each part will blink all it's CPs the color of the bone so you can see what you've selected.

You should have a fully boned body with body parts assigned to them. Examine the HeadSeg model from the example and be sure yours is defined similarly.

We still need to create the BodySeg. Go to Modeling Mode (F5) and select the entire model. Hit ctrl-c (Copy). Now LMB click on Objects in the PWS and select New...->Model. Now go to Edit->Paste with Bones and shazam! A copy of the HeadSeg with bones! Saving us time for other things. Be sure to (in Modeling Mode) select and delete the mouth parts and eyes and lids from the BodySeg (be sure to rename your model to BodySeg). A body segment with eyes on this creature would just be *wrong* (or kind of cool - you decide).

So, now we have two models, one of a head (HeadSeg) and one of the body (BodySeg). "Just one body segment?", you might ask. Yes, just one. We're going to use the joys of replication to let A:M handle multiple copies of this one segment, giving us a more complex creature with just two segments. Not bad.

Now, one to the Basic Walk Action

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