Struggling to get the walk cycle to look natural

Hello blenderartists!

I’m fairly new to all this animation jig, and recently I’ve been working on a tiny animation/rig project, just for my own amusement and possibly learning something new. But anyways!

I’m almost done rigging my character, with just a few more control bones, constraints and whatnot to add. In the meantime I wanted to check out how easy it is to make a walkcycle with the rig. Mind you my animation experience is “zero” so it most likely is laughable.

Here’s a short cycle set on repeat in the NLA editor, I’m fairly pleased with it, but one thing that irks me, is how it seems to slightly “pause” when the cycle repeats. Also I misaligned the keyframes for the arm swings so they’re not perfectly synced to get a more natural result. However, attempting to do so on the other swing, which just happens to be at the end of the NLA track, leads to more unnatural pauses.

Can you share any advice as to how to get a natural result with it? I’m attaching the .blend file.

Sorry but the forum attachment system hates me :stuck_out_tongue:

Im a anti walk cycle person. is it for games or something? How long does it take to do the poses? If I need 20 steeps I pose 20 steeps. It looks funny when some people walk in real life.
So this guy is strolling down the road and he feels relaxed? That what i see
I would up down the toes. The elbows look stiff to me. I would lose the IK.
A little more tail action as he looks like he is putting effort in his steps/ a happy walk.
and the head bob. it looks like it goes left and right on a even plane maybe a little up down at the left and right. 3 keys left and right. Just so slightly.
These are just my opinions. I take a more different approach. I do lots of animation and walking and think on day i will be good at it. That is to say if it is not perfect Im happy.
make him walk like a girl and a cocky young guy and a old person.
And that is my I had a beer 2 cents.
PS It looks good to me it is just so little animating

I wouldn’t worry about getting everything perfectly synched. That rarely happens in real walks anyway. The only thing I saw that really needs to be fixed is the hips: The hip of the weight bearing leg (the one in contact with the ground) goes UP not down. The weight bearing side is the side supported from the ground, and is providing the forward thrust for the whole body, while the non-weight bearing side sags since nothing is holding that side up.

kazinger’s suggestion to make different kinds of walks is a good one, you’ll learn a lot about posing your character that way. Another thing you could try is to start the first step from a standing pose, then use your walk cycle to have him take a few more steps, then return to a standing pose again on the last step. All sorts of comic possibilities if he just doesn’t stand like a statue after stopping.

Thanks for the advice! I’ll fix the hips just like you said. It’s not a game character, it’s not an “anything” character really, it’s just a little thing I worked on in my spare time and I still don’t know exactly what I want to use it for :stuck_out_tongue:

And you misunderstood me there, I -want- it to be slightly out of sync to get a more natural motion in there :slight_smile: Problem is, the moment it repeats in the NLA, probably because the “furthest away” arm locations just happen to be at the end of the action track, it creates some odd pause/jerky motion when it’s not perfectly aligned.

I suppose I could readjust the keyframes so that the end of the cycle happens at the “middle” pose.

Oh, I see. Yeah, that can be a problem. You have to end the ‘cycle’ one frame before the actual completion of the cycle, so the first frame doesn’t repeat the final frame. That trips me up a lot, too.