Getting armatures to work right

Okay Ive been trying to make this whole aramture rigging thing work for like a month or so now, I can get them to move and stuff with the rotate buttun and all that, but that takes to long. How can I get them to like, in the skinny guy rig for example, you grab one armature and the arm bends and everything, I would really appreciate it if some one could explain this to me. Also, if its possible could someone explain to me how the foot works in Nozzy’s rig, I read the stuff that came with the blend file but I still couldnt figure it out. Agian thank you for your help.

sounds like you want IK solvers. IK solvers are single bones that cotrol a whole bone chain. i used to know how to make them, but nowadays i just go into an older version of tuhopuu and hit ctrl I which does it for me. however if you don’t have an older version of tuhopuu, you can review the process in the thread ‘animation workshop’. it might be in this forum, but i think it is in the ‘general’ forum.

this is how I learned IK.

what the tutorial fails to mention is that you must be in Pose Mode to add constraints, such as the IK solver constraint or the copy location constraint, both of which are very common constraints in this kind of set up. you will not be able to add them in Edit Mode. this was a stumbling block for me so I thought I’d share the knowledge and spare you some grief.

also, when you’re adding IK solvers, select the bone you want to have be affected by the IK solver, and add the constraint, targeting the bone that is to become the IK solver.

if you can work your way through the hand and foot rigging tutorials on this site, then it becomes very easy to add a Root bone, a spine, and hip bone just like the Skinny guy model. it’s just a matter of parenting some IK solvers .

hope this helps.

so the button next to the bone name that says “IK” when you click it does that mak it an IK Solver? If not what does it make it?

the little IK button you mention physically connects the bone to the one next to it. if you create your bone chains by extruding you should never have to touch those buttons. the actual explanation of that particular feature is actually pretty clear in the official documentation, one of the few things that is.

an ik solver is a bone that is separate from the chain.

use the blendo tutorial i linked to. it is currently the best tutorial out there for understanding how the blender pre 2.4 armature system works.

The official IK documentation confused me pretty well.
In fact, naming convention seems backwards to me.

Like TroutMask said,

  • what we call the IK Solver is really just a bone that has no constraints applied to it (at least none which affect the IK chain)

  • what we call the Null Bone is the one that has the IK constraint applied to it, targeting the “IK Solver” bone.

Good luck!

Oh yeah. Action constraints are really useful. Open Nozzy’s rig. Change the Text Editor to the Action Editor. Make sure your in Pose Mode. Next to the “Key” menu item (on the header bar) click the up-down arrow for the drop-down list box and select, say, “dvn_left_roll”.

Use the left and right arrow keys to see the foot animate.

If you Tab into Edit Mode (3D View) you’ll see all the bones. Select, say “IK_heel.L”, press F9, and un-hide it. Ctrl-Tab back to pose mode. Press F7 and select the “IK_heel.L” bone and you’ll see the Action Constraint targeting the “foot_roll.L” bone.

You’ll notice that “ik_heel.L” is one of the bones with keys in the Action Editor.

To make life friendly, Nozzy has hidden all these bones you never actually have to touch to animate the rig.

Hope this helps!

it doesnt u lost me…

Oh yeah. Action constraints are really useful. Open Nozzy’s rig. Change the Text Editor to the Action Editor. Make sure your in Pose Mode. Next to the “Key” menu item (on the header bar) click the up-down arrow for the drop-down list box and select, say, “dvn_left_roll”.


it’s funny you should bring that up. this is something i’m currently puzzles by. how does one create those actions - they seem to be completely independent of the scene’s main timeline.

this has had me banging my head off my desk for a couple of nights now. i’m currently trying to reverse engineer Nozzy’s Driven Hand Rig:

because it seems to me this is a powerful technique that once learned can be extended to create things like this:

Like you surmise, an Action Constraint is just a way to control keyframed stuff with some bone.

Check back Wednesday and I’ll have post a quick tutorial that’ll illustrate adding action constraints easily.

OK to hold your breath! :stuck_out_tongue:

nice gorilla rig. i especially like the way you do the nose. i will have to remember that.

modron, that’s actually an example image from the Messiah website - i didn’t do it, but i’d like to be able to.

duoas, i look forward to your explanation on wednesday. this looks like a powerful though underused feature of blender; underused becaused it is not explained properly in the official docs.


I wrote up a response in this thread:

that might be of some help getting started with IK solvers. It’s basically the same thing you would find in the animation workshop from Gabio, but might be a little clearer? Don’t know if it will help, but maybe! :wink:

pld, that IK link is a fast favorite. Thanks for a clear tut! (too bad you didn’t write it up before I was learning IK… it took me a while…)

Here’s the promised Action Constraints tutorial.
Hope you all enjoy!

Sorry, I post this just to pump it up for today later use … %|