Time for a large update! I haven't posted in a while because life has been pretty crazy lately with school, the BFA Gallery, getting ready for graduation, and finding a new place because I got an internship for the summer! :)
- Vis Dev is still moving forward with their layouts! Now that I am only going to have to finish half of the project by graduation, there are slightly fewer layouts to finish. I'm planning on hopefully getting all finished layouts by May 1st.
- When I tried working with the ncloth again, I ran into a new problem that we never encountered before and the ncloth basically blew up. Luckily I found an amazing tutorial that completely saved my project!! The tutorial covers the wrap deformer tool in Maya. Using this allows you to attach clothes to a rig really easily. I highly recommend that every animation student watch this video because it can really help transform your character!
- I took the clothes and stripped all of the nodes that made it ncloth. Once I reduced it to just the model, I exported it and brought it into a clean scene with the base model. I then cut up and modified the clothes to attach to the rig. I had to slightly modify the design to fit the parameters of the wrap deformer tool but I am happy with how closely I was able to keep it to the original design. I then followed the tutorial and attached all the clothes! For some reason after I did this Maya had to work VERY hard when I moved anything on the rig and my computer chugged. I thought this was happening because the clothes are high res. This will have more significance later.
- Unfortunately my modeler was having some computer problems so this week I had to UV map and texture Ahmi's clothes. When I opened up the clothes in the UV texture editor, the UVs were broken up into a million pieces and were all over the place. Luckily my art director Brandon Coates knows more about modeling than I do and was able to create the UVs much faster than I would have been able to.
- I then started texturing! This took me about 3 days to finish. I applied the textures to the clothes and everything was awesome until....
- The UV maps started moving whenever I moved the rig. That is why my computer was chugging every time I moved the rig!! At this point I seriously started to freak out because I just spent days texturing, I have many deadlines coming up and I didn't want all of that time go to waste. I did a bit of research and basically every problem in Maya has a million causes and solutions. The most important and only thing I got out of my research though was to DELETE ALL HISTORY. I remembered hearing this from my one modeling class many years ago but it never occurred that I would need to do this before attaching clothes to the rig.
- I deleted all history from all of the clothes models. This broke the wrap deformation and thus the clothes stopped moving with the rig. I tried exporting just the clothes again but the rig came with it, so I duplicated the clothes and exported it again. Some of the rig still came with it but not as much so I just went through the outliner and deleted everything that was unnecessary. LUCKILY exporting the clothes brings the UVs and textures with it so I didn't have to redo everything.
- I imported the clothes into a clean scene of the rig again, reattached everything and then EVERYTHING WAS FIXED! My computer no longer chugged when I moved the rig, the UVs didn't move and my textures stayed in place, it even resolved problems that I was having when rendering out the clothes. So never ever forget to delete history. Don't panic at 2 am like I did.
- tl;dr Always delete the history after modeling something and especially before UV mapping, texturing, and attaching it to a rig.
- I'm currently working on two shots for my thesis. The first one is finished and the second one is blocked out. I should be able to finish the second shot in a week because after Sunday I won't have any other shots to work on!
- Scott has been giving feedback to all of my animators and the results are looking amazing! All of his story ideas are fantastic and he is able to give much more detailed and pointed notes. Almost all of the animation should be finished by May 1st so I can start rendering.
- This week I had to prepare prints for the BFA Gallery which is just the senior gallery show. I am in the process of preparing 3 pages on my thesis and it has been really inspiring putting everything together. One reason I needed to finish the texturing was so that I could create a render for the prints and honestly, it looks badass! I am going to post all of the prints after the gallery is over, but for now I want to at least post the render so you can see the texturing I did :)