Assignment #6: Sit Layout and Constraints Tutorial

Assigned: Tuesday, November 6th, 2015
Due: Tuesday, November 13th @ 10:00 AM


Part 1: Object Interaction Exercise

Follow this tutorial covering object interaction using constraints, do a playblast using the playblast button when you're finished, and turn it into Catalyst. Don't worry about polishing the motion on the ball - the focus is on the technical aspects of using constraints.

Part 2: The Sit Planning and Layout

To start the Sit, we will need to Plan and Layout our scene. It is important to know what we are animating before we animate it, especially with an action as complex as a sit.

Sitting down is a complicated action. You will need to study your reference and figure out how the body shifts weight. You will also be required to incorporate emotion and acting into your character for this assignment. What your character does and they feel is completely up to you. However, the action should be clear and the emotion easily read. Start your character in a standing position and end in a sitting position with acting throughout; be creative!

Try not to spend too much time modelling extra props. Create rough models or just use primitives instead; the focus is on the motion and acting in your work.

This is an ambitious multi-week project, so remember to start early! And have fun with it!

Planning and Layout

Summarize what you plan to animate by preparing a two sentence description of your sit's story. One sentence will need to describe the personality of the character you will be animating and the other sentence will describe the circumstances surrounding the sit. Include the video reference that inspired your story.

Draw a planning sheet of the key story telling poses then apply them in Maya using a copy of the Corruption rig. The important thing for this week is laying out your animation. Pose the key poses ("golden poses") in stepped mode from your planning sheet. Don't worry about the extremes, just make sure your story reads. Animation layout is meant to cover the broad strokes. It gives you a chance to catch any major problems before you advance too far in your motion. Think about shot framing, how far your character needs to travel across the screen when moving, how many steps need to be taken, if your golden poses read, and if there are even enough key poses to properly convey the story.

You will be animating from a single, fixed camera angle. The camera should be about 3/4 to the front and your character's full body should be in view throughout the entire animation. The resolution of your final output will need to be 1280x720, however you can work in 640x360 for now (as it's the same aspect ratio). All of your motion arcs and silhouettes will be relative to this camera. Don't be afraid to exaggerate your poses such that they only look good from this view. However, remember that you still need to pay attention to weight shifts on all sides, as those shifts will still affect how your character moves through space.

Grading Criteria and Turn-In Checklist:

You will be submitting your files into Canvas. Below is a list of criteria we will be using for grading, in addition to a list of the files you will need to turn in for each part of the assignment along with naming specifications.

Also indicated are the minimum requirements for what we expect to review for your motion check-in.

Motion Check-In:

Part 1: Object Interaction Exercise

Part 2: Sit Planning and Layout