Rigging a character in Maya!

This post is in reverse order, which just makes it more interesting right? I guess i screwed up the order when i uploaded them, but its a post that shows my progression with rigging a character in Maya (not a tutorial!) and it still does that job alright so i’m leaving it like it is.

When you want to create a more uniquely shaped control you can do this by going to ‘create’-‘curve tools’-‘ep curve tool’

Pressing ‘x’ in a top view allows you to snap onto the grid and draw out shapes like arrows and whatever.


You can just use circles for knee and elbow controls by going to ‘create’-‘NURBS ‘primitives’-circle.


As shown in the next screenshot.


The complicated process of parenting stuff to stuff.


The next screenshot shows most of the controllers are in place now!!


Moving the pivot point into the centre of a joint.


From ‘uniform’ to ‘chord length’ in the ‘ep curve tool’ when creating a unique controller.


Putting in the bones (remember the images are all in the wrong order..)


Mirroring the joints across (make sure the right axis) and replacing left with right which is super convenient!


The next screenshot shows almost if not all the expressive shape abilities i made for the character in the shape editor, hopefully i will have enough options when animating, i tried to take that into account when creating all the different facial movement. The ears move around (up for shock and around for general movements) and the throat moves for when hes talking.


You may have noticed i have an error on a lot (almost all) of these screenshots,this error message i think:

// Error: file: C:/Program Files/Autodesk/Maya2017/scripts/others/drInit.mel line 1961: Object ” not found. 

And i did some research, as i was a bit worried about it, but it seems to be something that just happens and doesn’t really affect anything. Here’s a fix that i found though:

“Mesh Tools > Show Modeling Toolkit” select the multi-component option.
Then go back to object mode and the red spam in the log is Gone. [1]

From an internet forum.So this makes the error go away it seems, for now..


So here’s my alien character with most of his controllers! But they still need parenting and whatever so there’s still work to be done before i can animate with him.



Starting to make the finger controls in this screenshot. These controllers will have a roll attribute added which will make it easier to pose the fingers into a fist or whatever.


Also put some shoulder controls in as well!


There’s a lot of stuff around the model by the end of it, but it will all be worth it when i come to animating the character.


Parented the knee controls to the feet so they move together.


[1] http://forums.autodesk.com/t5/maya-forum/maya-2017-installed-facing-differnt-problems/td-p/6469076

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