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Ian Ross has just released a book on Anim8or. It's perect for a beginner and a good reference for experienced users. It contains detailed chapters on every aspect, with many examples. Get your own copy here: "Anim8or Tutorial Book"

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Messages - Arik_the_Red

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General Anim8or Forum / Re: Share Your Modelling Tips:
« on: March 22, 2009, 12:11:23 pm »
Making Eyes (at the girlies ;) )

headwax's comments on making eyes reminded me of what I am currently working on... so I thought I'd share here, plus create a thread showing the development of a character I'm making.

I've only created a few heads from scratch so far, but when I have, I've found I like most to make the eyes first... starting with the eye socket, eyelids and eyeball - working on one side, and then mirroring when I have the entire side of the head created, and joining the two halves into one complete head.

Starting with the eye socket.... I make the eyesocket made from a sphere that I convert to mesh and rotate the sphere forward, so that the "poles of the sphere" are facing front to back. I cut out the shape of  the eye into the socket as if the eye is "wide open". 

I then create the eyelids from a sphere that has been rotated sideways and cut in half. I flare outward the front edge of the eyelid.

The eyeball is a sphere slightly smaller than the eyelid sphere size. Like the socket, the eyeball is rotated forward.  I then do whatever seems right to make it "eyeball-ish". You can simply color the eye or add a texture of the iris and pupil.  But I am a nut for anatomical appearances with eyes.  I don't like the simpler look of an eye with the iris and pupil simply plopped on the sphere. I go to the extra bit and flatten the iris area and the color/texture it, plus the pupil. Then I add a high-gloss, transparent dome to cover the iris circle... thus you have a more realistic eyeball appearance, which gives more character and pizzazz even if you make the character cartoonish.

Building off of the eyesockets is fine for the upper face and head, but likewise I form the lower part of the face by building from the lips and outward, with the hopes of bringing the upper and lower portions together.  Teeth, gums and inner mouth structure are another area formed separately.

I made the below goblin head with the above techniques in mind...

In fact, the goblin's irises are not flat, but actually concave into the eyeball like a dish.  Also, the pupil is an actual hole with a black surface set behind it... I did that as an experiment to see about maximizing the realistic look of of the eyes.

This below face, too, was made following the idea I've tried to explain.

I also like to make pictorial  "tutorials in progress" for myself when trying to standardize my techniques that work for me... in case someone else wants to try it my way...

So, I'm going over this stuff with screenshots, etc., in a "Work in Progress" thread... because I want to develop a character here in the forum and get some feedback, criticism, etc.  I think it could also serve to give others pointers as I share and learn from the "experts" better ways to make the character.

If you like, you can follow that in the thread Making Sarge:

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Share Your Modelling Tips:
« on: March 22, 2009, 11:52:38 am »
I don't know if anyone has tried this but you can use a sphere to make a basic head. Just delete the point on the bottom of the sphere, select the  bottom vertices and extrude them to make the neck.

I've done that... it's a way to make a basic head and face, using the cutting tool to make eye holes, mouth hole, etc. and build from there when experimenting with "head making".

Finished Works and Works in Progress / Re: First Head Model in Anim8or
« on: March 22, 2009, 09:59:08 am »
She looks pretty good to me! Tell us about the hair?

Finished Works and Works in Progress / Re: Trying to "FLY"
« on: March 22, 2009, 09:57:23 am »
Yah, what headwax said... as for the comment on wings being thick, the front rim would be thicker because that is the main support of the wing, with the extremely thing membranes expanding back, framed by the thicker "veins" sort of like stained-glass window-work.

I was just sort of wondering at what would be involved in making the eye-lenses more round... just to give the brain a headache and thinking of such a nasty task ;)

I like the green fly color!

Finished Works and Works in Progress / Re: WIP: Locomotive
« on: March 22, 2009, 09:49:17 am »
$imon, this loccy is looking really nice.

If you are wanting to get into serious reference images, look into model railroad forums.  I used to do model railroading as a very "part-time" hobby, and had a big stack of "Model Railroader" and "Railroad Model Craftsman" magazines. These magazines always had features with technical drawings of actual locomotives, rolling stock, etc., for anyone wishing to try and build a model from scratch. I would wager that you could get drawings from a railroad hobbyist if you posted in one of those forums. In fact, two magazines - "Model Railroader" and "Trains" have an active forum where people share their works, plans, etc.  Try these:

Finished Works and Works in Progress / Re: some stuff I made
« on: March 22, 2009, 09:40:57 am »
maya for free?  ~choke-cough~

Isn't it available as a sort of demo mode for free? as for full-version, not likely.... at least not legal, eh?

Finished Works and Works in Progress / Re: some stuff I made
« on: March 21, 2009, 11:30:45 pm »
cool... what about the "hat"? did you make that in anim8or, too?

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Anim8or too primitive?
« on: March 20, 2009, 12:45:53 am »
Ensoniq's comment had nothing to do with "professionals" and the tools they do or do not use. It had to do with people using anim8or along with "professional packages" such as 3ds-Max, Lightwave, and Maya. 

As for "professionals" and what they use, that would require knowing a fair number "professionals" in order to speak for them. I know a "professional" who has a storefront across the street from where I live. He does some very nice 3D animation work using only Blender... and nothing else. He says he would never purchase any 3D-CG software since Blender handles all his needs quite nicely. But then, Blender does things that Anim8or cannot, just as Anim8or has some advantages in ease of model-building and such.

edit - Here's a web-link to the Blender guy's site, where he's put up some basic tests of things done with Blender... a lot of "soft material" work -

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Anim8or too primitive?
« on: March 19, 2009, 11:39:04 pm »
BenCole, how can you possibly say that statement is false?  Firstly, it states, "in my opinion" about the writer's view of anim8or... and lastly, unless you can actually speak with knowledgw otherwise,  it may very well be possible that many animators using high ends programs DO use anim8or  for wireframes... as a matter of "fact," that is very much true... go to "AnimAnon" and "Cg-Nation" both have people who use high end programs for much of their work, but settle for using anim8or for their object-forming.  I know of a number of users of Carrara, 3DS-Max, and Lightwave who also use anim8or for their design work. And the things they create are quite spectacular.

And as for the one quoted.. Ensoniq is VERY familiar with the works of quite a few who do in fact use anim8or as well as those higher end programs.  There are a number of works in AnimAnon's competitions that were created in just that way - using anim8or for the modelling, and then moving on to Carrara, etc., to implement some of the higher end work.  

If you're willing to take on challenges... and you don't want to a wad of cash, I'd say work with anim8or, and the go to look at blender as free software choices. blender has been used to create some pretty spectacular, very professional wor, and does really nice things with liquid, hair, and such things.

If spending money, maya's definitely a very big thing to have, but I wouldn't go that route unless you're born of money, know what you're doing and born of money, or really know what you're doing and have a solid lead on profiting greatly from your work.

Otherwise, 3ds Max or Carrara are definitely two to consider. I personally think Carrara is more worth the purchase if you're looking at the "under $1,000" spending range.

In any case, you need to be ready commit serious time and effort to learn these programs, because none of them do all the work for you.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Good Bye
« on: March 18, 2009, 01:52:28 pm »
"almost cool," you're not the only one who "never seems to finish a project."  I have nothing BUT unfinished projects after almost two years.  But I keep telling myself "one of these days, I'll do it!" Folks knowing anything about me know well how I start great ideas and then never get much further than some half-finished object.

But you have to understand also, people will always push and prod at you if they see something they like, because they want to see it come to completion. It's just how people are.

It doesn't change the fact that I have still, after almost two years, have nothing finished, of course.

ASL Scripts / Re: Anim8ing a Tank Tread
« on: July 14, 2008, 01:16:44 pm »
NickE mate, you are 105% a star fot coming up with this script! I hope we can get some more scripts going especially in the animating sense as this is definately where its needed!

You are a god!

It's amazing what bloodletting can accomplish when it comes to making wishes, eh?

ASL Scripts / Re: Anim8ing a Tank Tread
« on: July 14, 2008, 03:07:21 am »
I just wanted to personally thank NickE for contributing this marvelous new feature for anim8or.

He doesn't realize it, but the real push for tank treads had a lot to do with a project I'm working on, which in turn branched off to a contest at AnimAnon.

Nick, you've opened up a whole new dimension for anim8or users... tracks/treads have so many useful applications, not just for tanks and vehicles, but for conveyor belts, and so much more!

And your truly outrageous approach to making this tank sample is great!


I realize Nick didn't share his sample, and don't know whether he wants it here, so here's a link to his entry for the AnimAnon "Get Tanked" contest...

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: CRASH! boom smash plop
« on: July 13, 2008, 03:20:08 pm »
As far as I know, there were no changes to the settings of my system.

I can't figure out just what happened, but it seems the only way I can run anim80r right now is by opening existing files to get it rolling.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Are You New To Anim8or??
« on: July 13, 2008, 03:16:18 pm »
We developed the "mentor program" as a way to hook up with others for direct, one-to-one mentoring between advanced users and newcomers to anim8or.

Anyone wishing to know more may inquire here, or seek out AnimAnon staff to find out about this program, to find yourself a mentor, or offer your services. 

So far we've had a number of folks linked up in different capacities, and it has thus far proven to be very good.

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