So, I made a new years resolution, but I wanted to give myself a month before I did anything about it, to make sure I thought I could follow through. Well, it’s the last day of January, so here’s the deal: I’ve been wanting to make another rig for a while now, both as something to have and share, and as a means to develop some rigging tools and ideas again. I’ve had great opportunities to help build and develop rigs as part of my job, but I haven’t really created anything by myself from scratch since I was in school.
It can be really hard in an established character pipeline to update or change core concepts, and indeed if the current system is working, it’s difficult to justify the cost of overhauling it. I’m guessing a lot of riggers probably fantasize about what they would do if they could start fresh with a clean slate. I know I definitely have my own dusty collection of biases, preferences and ideas, and I’ve been wanting to give some of them a try.
So I’m giving myself a year, hopefully, to have a finished rigging system and to release a finished rig. It’s going to be a busy year even without this resolution, but I’ve already been having fun this month brainstorming and getting started on the foundation of the pipeline, so I’m hoping that motivation will hold. This blog will help with that, since that was one of my original plans for this space when I started it up, whenever that was. As I have stuff to show, report, discuss, or hopefully get feedback on, I’ll post it here.
So what kind of rig? Last year my wife and I got a new puppy, Miles:
He’s not really a puppy in this photo anymore….anyway, he’s a whippet, and ever since we got him I’ve wanted to animate him. He’s super athletic, amazingly fast, and it’s really great to watch him run because he loves doing it so much. Anyway, I figured I wanted to make a quad rig for that reason, and because there’s getting to be a lot of great bipedal characters available already out there, so who needs another one. I’ve also been animating and rigging a lot quadrupeds for the last couple years, so it will be a way of organizing those experiences. Finally, It’s so much easier when you have a lot of reference handy, and Miles is great for that. I’ve already been using him as animation reference at work, he wont mind a few more pokes and prods.
The project is called Devo because we thought that would be a great name for a whippet, but couldn’t bring ourselves to actually name our dog that. I’ll leave you with this video of Miles at the beach, to give you an idea of what inspires me: