Shape Keys to morph/move gums and Shaders to make file look realistic

I am working on a small project that involves importing an stl file of misaligned teeth into blender, segmenting them and realigning them. For accuracy, I need to import an image of a curve into the blender background over a set of misaligned teeth then aligning them accurately along the curve. So far I have managed to segment the teeth, realign and animate them, but having a challenge using shape keys to get the gums to move accordingly with the teeth.The surrounding tissue, the gums, should be deformed to adapt to the new form of the jaw and tooth position.
Also, how do I make the stl file look realistic with colors like the final animation?

This is the blender file with the animated teeth:

This is the rough animation I made:

This is my intended final result.

Your animation don’t seem to display, can you use Vimeo, or YouTube instead?

The Shrinkwrap Modifier might be an option, just assign the relevant gum vertices to a Vertex Group and use this in the Mod. You can animate the influence of the Mod to effect the vertices over a set number of frames.

Bear in mind, that Shapekeys move the vertices in a straight line from start to end position. This is also true of Shrinkwrap Mods, so your other option is to use bones to move the gum vertices, that way you can define a curved path fro the m to move along.

If you can sort your videos, we can see the problem better.

Cheers, Clock.


Your file link expires in a few days, consider using instead, this site is run by Blender folk and the links last a lot longer.

Hi Clock,

Which animation?
This one?

Or are you talking about the second one with the gums?
It is from the bottom section of this webpage:

Thanks for taking your time to respond.

This video shows shape keys used on the gums

Aha! Yes this last one works and looks very good. I will think on about the issues you have.

Cheers, Clock.

Do let me know how you thought through this little challenge.