3D Rigging

Free Animation Training


8 classes, basic to advanced techniques

In addition to the classes, your instructor Chris Fazio mentors you through each and every assignment to ensure you are on the right track.

Rigging in 3d is really like adding strings to a marionette doll. It’s so much fun to add controls to your 3d model and see it move for the first time!

The most basic part of rigging in 3D is understanding the hierarchy system and the child/parent relationship. Our first class begins with this basic concept and demonstrates it with polygon objects first. We then introduce bones and how they are created in a hierarchy.

You’ll learn how to create your own character skeleton using the bones tool in Maya, this is important in case you want to customize a skeleton to any creature you create in the future. Some of the rigging presets are also covered to accomplish this task faster.

After your skeleton is bound to the polygon model (the skin) we show you in great detail how to paint skin weights so the joints bend and deform in a desirable way.

We then move onto setting up a characters legs and arms. Every character rig I’ve worked with in the industry has an IK/FK switch for the arms. You’ll learn how to create this switch and why it is needed for animation.

The next step is to add control curves for the main part of the body, I’ll show you the best way to do this and how to colorize them for a more appealing looking rig. You’ll also learn some tricks on how to re-shape and attach the control curves to the character.

Near the end of the course I fully demonstrate how to  rig the characters face using a variety of techniques and deformers. Because faces need to be set up for speech and to properly show emotion,  rigging the face is almost as involved as rigging the entire body.

This course finishes with tidying up some odds and ends so that the rig is more animator/production friendly. For example, hiding certain channels in the channel box that aren’t needed, making some parts of the rig unselectable, applying limits so parts won’t bend in an unnatural way and much more.

Rigging is a lot of work, but if you love character animation and you love building things – you’re going to love 3d rigging!