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Meet The Rigging Team From The Anomalia “Wildlife Crossing” Course

Meet The Rigging Team From The Anomalia “Wildlife Crossing” Course

3 faces in a column, a cartoon pretend snail and text that says wildlife crossing
Rigging Dojo short film rigging in Maya

This summer, Rigging Dojo partnered up with Anomalia to put a small group of rigging students into a production environment to create animation rigs for their short film, “Wildlife Crossing”. In this post you’ll meet the 6 students and see the great work they produced.

This special 8-week course was taught in the Rigging Dojo online classroom and was called “Advanced Cartoon Rigging”. The team created stylized cartoony animal and vehicle rigs. They also created various scripts and UI’s to help the animators. With video feedback and supportive guidance from the mentors and team members, this was an exciting chance to experience what it takes to work in an actual production.

“I had a great time here, and have learned a lot of new things – thank you Josh, Dan, Brad. The feedback for my work was really constructive and I really liked that it was showing directions without giving everything on a plate. Also thank you Lee, Ivan, Matteo, Jason, Daniel. I’ve peeked into your posts / rigs and got some knowledge from there as well.” – Bogdan Diaconu

Rigging concepts were covered such as face rigging, stretchy limbs, twist-locking, joints/hierarchies, skinning work-flows, corrective shapes and advanced deformation tricks. Advanced workflow concepts were covered such as naming conventions, pipelines, scene organization, scripting and team feedback. It was mentored by Josh Carey, Brad Clark and Daniel McCrummen.

“I had great time with this class. I learned so much, from reviews to other students works, and I had the opportunity, for the first time, to have some feedback from animators to improve my rig.” – Matteo Di Lena



The Anomalia course is the non-profit organization that is put together for European students every year. It is part of a summer marathon of animation courses hosting expert instructors from top studios such as Pixar, Valve and Aardman Animations. They have specific courses (rigging, animation, story telling, etc), where students go to a small town in the Czech Republic for 2 weeks and learn face to face.

The “Advanced Cartoon Rigging” course was focused on giving the students a good representation of rigging for a production and teaching the fundamentals of cartoon rigging, all while producing production-ready rigs that were used at Anomalia on their short film.

Don’t miss the next time we run a special course like this. Make sure you subscribe to our newsletter or follow us on Facebook  and Twiter where we will announce future dates.

Here are our excellent students that took on the challenge of learning and rigging for the short film.

Matteo Di Lena


Deer Rig:

Rig realized for Anomalia’s last short film, Wildlife Crossing, via Rigging Dojo summer class.
Thanks to all the rigging dojo staff and students for their great feedback!


“My name is Matteo, 26 years old, from Italy. I work as a 3d Artist since 2008. I started looking at rigging more or less a year and a half ago, I really enjoy it and I would love to be a professional character rigger in the future, as for now I couldn’t spend too much time digging into this world since I have a full time job. This course could be a very good starting point to understand production needs, so here I am! 🙂

I started my career working as a 3d generalist with 3ds Max on architectural and commercial projects in late 2007, constantly looking to something new to improve my skills. I discovered character rigging in late 2009, I’m focusing on it since late 2011, and took my first rigging dojo class in 2012.Â

I have 5 years experience in modeling, rendering, compositing and post production, but now my main focus is to continue with character rigging to improve my skills, starting with some deep study on scripting in MEL and Python to improve my workflow.

I currently work as a 3d Artist for an Italian wheels design company.”


Bogdan Diaconu


Fly Rig:

This is the last character I’ve rigged for Anomalia’s short movie, ‘Wildlife Crossing” : :
– quadruped legs rigging with auto stretch
– stretchy spine with twist control
– independent eye’s sockets with move/rotate/scale
– dual layer ribbon implementation for the lips ( a ribbon driving a ribbon )
– body squash
– IK/FK/Dynamic wings, in IK mode the wing tip can be attached to something else ( rig requirement)

Kid Rig:
Kite Rig:

“This class was a way of verifying my knowledge in regards to rigging, I have already worked as a technical animator but I have never had a lead or a senior person to poke me in the right direction or to teach me things. All I knew before was through tutorials and a lot of trials and errors.Â

I’ve started in the CGI industry as an animator immediately after graduating Computer Science University. Due to my studies, i was attracted by the technical side of animation and proceeded to understand the art of rigging and generally scripting.Â

My career evolved from TV series to commercials and for the last 5 years to the games industry.”


Lee Ozer


Lee came from a background as a programmer from the video game industry. For the last 6 years or so she has been studying visual effects, working as a software engineer and VFX artist/generalist, including rigging biped and quadruped characters.

Frog Rig:

Shows off some of the basic controls for the frog:
* move, scale, rotate
* attributes to controls visibility of controls and model/proxy geometry
* ik/fk switching and blending
* ik stretching
* forearm and shin twist joints
* flexible spine
* facial blendShapes
* finger and toe curl and spread
* head, mouth, eye, tongue controls
* space switching on arms, legs, and eyes


Daniel Crandall


“My name is Daniel. I just finished my Master’s degree in 3D Modeling at Academy of Art University. While studying modeling I had discovered a passion for rigging. I have been working on a few student projects trying to get more experience rigging.”

Car and Truck Vehicle Rigging


Ivan Mendoza


Ivan finished a degree in Digital Art and Animation last December. Since then he has been rigging for a cartoon TV series in Mexico where he has also done some scripting.

Doe Rig:

Doe Trot:His rig in action


Jason Redd


Kid Facial Rig (sadly cut from the film due to animation time limits)
Jason is currently an intern at Green Grass Studios in Dallas where he is doing python tool development and rigging.


Congrats to the whole team for their hard-work and teamwork during this production. Once again, if you’d like to be notified the next time we run a special course like this (*we just might be doing one soon), make sure you sign up for our newsletter.

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