What you’re looking at is a standard FK rig (Forward Kinematics). I have locked the direction of the bones so the animator won’t accidentally move things in odd directions; this is done by the little padlocks on the wrong directions in the [N]-key Properties toolbox. It looks “flash” because I’ve used bone shapes to generate user friendly controllers. The actual shapes are hidden on another layer.
The job of the rigger is to set up intuitive controls for the character in order that the animator can work their magic with minimum fuss. If you’re serious about making a professional production, I’d recommend The Animator’s Survival Kit by Richard Williams. There’s nothing in there about rigging, but you will get an in depth understanding of the language of animators and thereby know what to look for as a director.
There are two reasons why you can’t select the mesh.
- (not the reason) In pose mode, bones are most easily picked up by the mouse.
- (the real reason) I have protected the mesh in order to stop the animator from accidentally selecting and moving it instead of the bones.
To undo this, split the main window and add an Outliner view. Expand the Armature branch and you will see a whole lot of Minifig.000 shapes (I should have named these but it appears I didn’t so fire me ) In the outliner each of these has an icon of an eye, a mousepointer and a picture frame. Re-enable the mousepointers to make the pieces selectable again.
P.S. If your character is from a video game, make sure you’re covered in terms of permissions / copyright.