#animtip Blog Post Motion editiing retargeting

Blender Motion Editing Secrets

If you are an animator wanting or needing to move away from Maya and MotionBuilder and not sure how you are going to do it, this is the way.

We are about to expand on our Blender NLA Motion Editing and Animation Workshop with a deep exploration and look at Retargeting and Motion Editing along with how to avoid the pitfalls of the current limitations. If you are wanting or needing to move away from Maya and MotionBuilder and not sure how you are going to do it, this is the way.

Before we finish those new videos we wanted to share a quick set of preview videos that cover the basics to that everyone could use. These videos pair with our in depth look at the Blender NLA where we explore the settings and learn how to Map years of Maya/MotionBuilder animation and story tool work into Blender.

The Blender Retargeting secret you must know.

There are many, many tutorials showing “how” to retarget in Blender with the Rokoko and Rigify rig and they continue to perpetuate common errors and misunderstandings of how to use the tools without a destructive workflow or adding extra steps or simply being wrong from the start (retarget to the metarig for example) so we hope this helps clear up some of the common mistakes and helps you get your work done. 1. Pose your target character in a pose to match the source animation and use the “current” not rest pose button for better retarget. Don’t edit the rest pose destructively.
2. Build a custom name map for Rigify controls, don’t build the Bone list and leave it as is, it maps wrong bones like MCH, ORG, DEF bones, map the controls only.
3. Use the new extra item options to drive both IK and FK during the retarget instead of baking /switching one limb at a time after the FK retarget.
4. Fixing offsets after retarget is fastest with Animateaide animation offset mode.

Video 1 covers the must know trick to getting good retargeting results the first time with no extra editing.

Fix mushy mocap feet fast

Video 2 is a bonus editing video showing some ways to use the rig to clean up a foot plant


Rigging Dojo Seamless Mocap Cycles in MotionBuilder – Blender Edition Part 1

*Download Blender cleaned up version of the mocap run

Full MotionBuilder tutorial
From Game Anim Jonathan Cooper

“This tutorial was originally featured in issue 58 of 3D Artist Magazine and is kindly republished with their permission. The brief was for a 17-step tutorial to accompany an interview I gave, but the technique really only takes a few minutes once you get the hang of it, allowing you to quickly pump out mocap cycles as a starting base to work with. Importantly, these are just the first few minutes of a LOT of work required to make them final – that’s where the magic comes in.”

Rigging Dojo Seamless Mocap Cycles in MotionBuilder – Blender Edition Part 2 and 3

Part 4 is exclusevely coming to the Blender For Motion Editing ondemand class.

Here you can see that the retargeting can be done onto a more fully featured rig using an unreleased set of advanced retargeting tools.

UE to Rigify

Using the Unreal to Rigify tool from Epic? Check this tweak to speed up quickly converting your animation to IK on Rigify.
If you edit the template like sown in the Template Example video, so the IK controls are mapped for conversion to Rigify, you can skip the slow and painful process of doing the bake IK after. (click to download larger image)

How to edit the template
Epic Games Blender Training

Cycle Viewport Display Modes

Also if you haven’t see our new addon that lets you cycle the display of the viewport controls just like Maya and MotionBuilder go check it out on our Blender Addon repository along with our new Scrub Time (Maya K key, MotionBuilder Jog J key) tool we demoed in our training video.

Default hotkey on install is ALT + 1 to cycle the “rig” in pose mode as long as your armature isn’t set to “In Front” in object mode.

Rigging Dojo Blender tools on Github

If you are ready to learn more and join our Blender training community forum and get the latest updates and training.

Free Animation & NLA Videos

Great example of applying Motion Capture to a project and using it to make the end result better. Glad to have been able to share some tips and workflow ideas with him. Note that this is a very manual process for retargeting and works fine but using tools like B.L.E.N.D to build a retarget map or Rokoko to do the connection between the skeleton and the rig is recommended where possible. This example is a more destructive approach to motion editing but it is a good foundation look at rigging for motion capture and creative tool use to make a mechanical rig work with a human capture. This is one more retargeter that is node based.

CGDive has an extensive video library on retargeting tools and the NLA and Rigify rigging that we fully recommend as a resource and a friend of Rigging Dojo.

Special thanks

On demand motion edit and animation rigging by

Originally tweeted by Wardl (@Wardl_)
UE to Rigify blender tool kit
Retargeting Addon from Rokoko

Motion capture from the AI video to mocap company
Software by Blender Foundation

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