Thought I would ask here to see if anyone has run into similar problem and found a solution - what works and what doesn’t work.
GOAL: Have a number of characters that can be posed and placed in the Blender environment for IMAGE rendering.
WHAT I HAVE DONE SO FAR: Created MANY different characters in MakeHuman, created original clothing for them, imported to Blender. They were rigged, had facial expressions and I originally was working with them with Blender Render and started the process to convert them to Cycles.
THE PROBLEM: Somewhere between all the upgrades between Blender and MakeHuman, the rigs and facial expressions don’t work anymore. This makes almost all the work I put into the characters useless. I have found an option somewhere that will allow me to bring the expression back - it’s a somewhat manual process but can be done, but still I see issues where I try to move the rig and I get weird, unusable results…like maybe I move an arm and the entire rig goes bizerk - not good.
THE POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS: I can fight all the way with the characters I have - reapplying expressions, recreating clothes so they move properly with the mesh, trying to fix the MHX rigging…or…is there another way? Is there a worthwhile and fairly easy character package out there that will allow me to import into Blender and pose and get facial expressions?
I have looked a little at DAZ 3D as their character lineup looked impressive, but it didn’t seem very friendly when creating your own clothes - and I cannot use existing clothing for these characters. Also, I am not sure about the expressions - and if you can bring the character into Blender, I am doubtful it would include rigging, facial or otherwise.
As a worst case, I guess I could do complete posing outside of Blender and composite it in, but I hate the idea of not being able to apply lighting effects, compositing, etc. on the scene and then having to TRY to get the correct effect on the character as well in an environment outside Blender - and there is still the issue of custom clothes.
So, with all that said, I guess what I am asking is what is the best software solution you have found to create custom characters with custom clothes, poseable, with expressions. Ideally, the expression would come as presets and the character already rigged. And of course, it would be best if all could be imported into Blender.
Please don’t say make your own characters and do all the rigging/facial expressions yourself. I have too many characters that I have to do to have to do that over and over again. Making all the clothes is hard enough. I’m looking for a software solution - the best one that others have been happy with.