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Rigging Workshop 3 Breakdown

Students will further learn the rigging principles, pipeline used when creating a character rig and how to build a robust facial rig. The second half of the workshop, the student will continue with facial animation and learn about tools creation possibilities that can be done with Python. The instructor will also talk about plug-ins and automating a riggers workflow. (The cost of this 11 week workshop is $999) | APPLY


Week 1

Concepts and Theory Students will learn the current state of face rigging technology. Key projects highlighting facial rigs will be reviewed. Key concepts such as emotion, communication, and lip sync will be discussed. The FACS system and thee Uncanny Valley and their implications to facial rigging will be explained. Also the differences between types of face rigs for film and games will be covered.

Week 2

Anatomy of the face and neck.  It's mandatory for students to understand the anatomy of a face to rig it correctly.  Students will learn the landmarks of the skull, the parts of the face and all the underlying muscles.  The muscles of the neck and their connection to the head will also be covered.

Week 3

Skeleton and Geometry requirements.Good edge flow and loops are essential for good facial deformations.  Edge flow as well as resolution requirements will be discusses.  Also correct geometry layout for eyes and mouths will be presented. Laying out the skeleton. The correct layout of a base skeleton including the neck jaw and eyes, as well as orientation will be explained.

Week 4

Skinning the neck, head, and jaw.   The students will learn the ins and outs of painting a good skin cluster for a face rig.  The mouth and jaw deformations are the basis for the full range of mouth shapes including phonemes and lip sync performance.  We will create and process a corrective blendshape for the mouth to ensure a solid base moving forward.

Week 5

The Eyes  Joint placement for the aim system as well as the blink system will be covered. Also students will gain a clear step by step process for painting the eyelid skin cluster.  Soft eyes and correct blink timing will be covered.

Week 6

Eyes part two. After setting up the aim system students will learn a layered eeye joint system to drive blinking as well as soft eyes.

Week 7

The FACS system  The Facial Action Coding System.  This unique tome of information was developed in the 1970s to study psychology.  Lucky for us this is the ultimate guide for creating a face rig.  Every possible motion of the face has been documented, illustrated, and described in detail.  Students will begin modelling a complete set of facial expressions.  The first group of shapes are the Upper face shapes including brows, cheeks, and nose.

Week 8

FACS week 2. The rest of the FACS shapes will be discussed and explained. It will be clear after this lesson what needs to be in every face rig.

Week 9

Phonemes, and Vizimes  The last group of shapes are all used to create speech.  The concept of phonemes/ vizimes will be explained as well as their importance in lip sync animation.  Students will learn how a key set of mouth shapes are able to create a large range of sounds.

Week 10

Working with the shapes in the rig. Blendshape nodes, targets and maps will be shown as well as integrating shapes with the existing skin cluster.

Week 11

The Interface. Animators need a great set of controls to be able to work quickly and accurately. It is essential to organize the complex set of facial controls in a straight forward and intuitive way so an animator can pick up a rig and get results without a steep learning curve.  Control creation, naming and layouts will be covered.  Students will learn how to connect the interface to the various parts of the face rig.


Click HERE to apply for the Rigging Workshop.

Our Instructors

...can both do and teach! See their bios HERE

Our Characters

Check out our exclusive feature level characters HERE