Description
Course info
Rating
(17)
Level
Intermediate
Updated
Jun 2, 2017
Duration
2h 39m
Description

Animation is a complex process and learning helpful tips that can improve your animation and speed up your workflow is invaluable. In this course, Animation Tips in Maya, you'll learn vital tips and techniques for speeding up our workflow, and learn about the various tools in Maya that can help you create even better animations. First, you'll explore how to properly create an animation cycle. Next, you'll discover how to animate with constraints and learn about an animator friendly constraint setup. Finally, you'll cover industry workflow techniques for breathing more life into a character. By the end of this course, you'll have a better understanding when it comes to animating in Maya. Software required: Maya.

About the author
About the author

Mark started out with an interest for animation at a young age, and it eventually transformed into a passion for the subject. Mark made an impact on the industry quickly, working for Pluralsight (Digital-Tutors) as an Animation and Rigging Instructor. Currently, he is working as an animator on the popular children's series Floogals for NBC Sprouts.

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Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Course Overview
Hi everyone. My name is Mark Masters, and welcome to my course, Animation Tips in Maya. Animation is a complex process, and learning helpful tips that can improve your animation and speed up your work flow is invaluable. This course will start by teaching you tips and techniques for utilizing Maya's Graph Editor in a more efficient way. We'll then jump into animation where I'll walk you through the process of creating a seamless cycle, and teach you the techniques involved creating a smooth cycle every time. We'll then learn how to animate with constraints, as well as how to create an animator friendly constraint setup that gives you more control and flexibility when using constraints. We'll also learn about baking our animations for use in a game engine, as well as discuss various animation work flow tips, and learn about an extremely powerful free plugin for Maya animators. Finally, we'll wrap it all up by learning tips for animating eye blinks and eye darts, as well as break down a list of animation tips that can be applied to any 3D application. Now this course assumes prior Maya and animation experience, so I highly recommend first checking out the Maya Animation Fundamentals course. With that let's get started in the next module and discuss Graph Editor tips.

Cycling an Animation
In this module we're going to learn about some of the techniques we can use for creating an animation cycle, as well as learn about some of the tools within Maya that can help us with the process. So let's go ahead and go over a real quick over view of some of the things that we'll be learning throughout this module. So, first and foremost, I'm going to walk you through the process of creating an animation cycle, and in this specific module we're going to be creating an idle animation. Now in your animation career you're probably going to be creating a lot of different types of cycles, especially if you're working in games, so you might be creating maybe a run cycle, a walk cycle, maybe even things like a crawl animation, so we're actually going to learn about some of the really important aspects of creating a cycle, as well as learn about some of the things that you need to understand before you actually jump in to creating any type of animation, and then after that we're going to take a look at how we can take advantage of Maya's Graph Editor to really help us with the process, and help us create a really nice, smooth cycle, and then finally, we're going to learn how we can fix a jittery cycle. So this is going to be something that you're going to run into quite often when you're creating really any type of cycle, whether it's a run cycle, a walk cycle or an idle animation. You're going to find that there's going to be maybe a slight pop or just a little bit of jitteriness happening at the beginning or the end of your cycle, and this can be a really huge headache if you don't know how to get rid of it, but that's what we're going to learn how to do. We're going to learn about some of the ways that we can really remedy a jittery cycle and make sure that we have a really nice, smooth, seamless cycle. So now that we've gone over some of the things that we'll be discussing in this module let's go ahead and jump right in in the next clip and begin creating our animation cycle.

Baking Animation for Use in Games
In this module we're going to learn how to export our animations for use in game engines like Unreal Engine or Unity and we're also going to learn how to utilize Maya's motion path constraint to very easily have an object follow a path and then learn how we can bake that animation down to keyframes that's going to allow us to very easily edit it further and also bring it into a game engine. So let's go ahead and go over a real quick overview of some of the things that we'll be learning throughout this module. So first we're going to take a look at Maya's game exporter. This is a really helpful tool that's going to make it super easy for us to export any of our animations to an FBX file that can then be brought into any game engine whether Unreal Engine or something like Unity and then we're going to take a look at how we can create an animation that follows a path utilizing Maya's motion path constraint, but then we're also going to take a look at how we can then bake the information that we get from that motion path into actual keyframe animation so that we can use it in a game engine. So now that we've gone over some of the things that we'll be discussing in this module, let's go ahead and begin and in the next clip we'll learn how we can utilize Maya's game exporter.

Speeding up Animation Workflows
In this module we're going to learn about tips and techniques for speeding up our animation workflow. So let's go ahead and go over a real quick overview of some of the things that we'll be learning throughout this module. So first we're going to take a look at ways we can actually isolate parts of our character rig, so this means actually hiding specific parts on a character, things like the character's legs or maybe the character's arms, and you want to do this so that you can actually focus on really the most important areas of your animation. First, say for example, if you're animating something like a walk, you want to make sure the up and down movement or the weight of the character is correct before really worrying about what the legs are doing, so this is a great way to really focus in on those important areas, and then we're going to take a look at previewing our animations in real time utilizing Maya's Playblast feature, so this is really helpful for making sure that you're actually looking at your animation in real time whatever you're animating to. In our case, it's going to be 24 frames per second, and likely most of the animations that you do in your career will be at 24 frames per second. And then we're going to take a look at utilizing Maya's Editable Motion Trail for very easily being able to track the arcs of our animations, and then finally, we're going to learn about some really powerful plugins that we can take advantage of to really help us speed up our work flow. So now that we understand some of the things that we'll be taking a look at in this module, let's go ahead and jump right in in the next clip, and learn about ways we can isolate parts of a character rig.

Animation Tips
In this module we're going to learn about various animation tips. So let's go over a real quick overview of some of the things that we'll be learning throughout this module. So the first thing that we're going to learn is a formula that we can use for animating eye blinks. Now obviously you can animate eye blinks in all sorts of different ways, but there is a really great formula that we can use to give us a really nice looking eye blink. Now blinks are going to be something you're going to be animating quite a bit, especially if you're doing any type of dialog or acting scene with a lot of facial animation, and then after that we're going to take a look at how to animate eye darts. Again, eye darts are going to be something that is really important for any facial performance. Eye darts really help to sell an emotion to the audience. Something as simple as having the character's eyes dart around in a certain way can give off a completely different feeling or thought process of that character, so we're going to take a look at great ways to animate eye darts, as well as learn about just overall eye animation and how we can go about animating the eyes, and then finally, we're going to take a look at just some overall animation tips. These are tips that I would have loved to have learned or known about when I was studying animation, as well as just some tips that I've learned along the way. Now the goal of this module is to really teach you great animation tips that aren't really specific to any software, so these are animation tips that you can go and apply to any animation that you're doing in any 3D application, as well as if you're doing 2D animation. These are all tips that are going to help you with your process. So with that let's go ahead and get started in the next clip, and take a look at the character rig that we'll be using throughout this module.