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Harmony 11 - How To Use Bone Deformer
Break down the superhero character further for use in Bone Deform animation. Here you’ll learn the difference between this and the cut-out technique of animating, the benefits and disadvantages to using it.
- 1. Interface — 21m
- 2. How To Draw and Animate — 27m
- 3. How To Paint — 22m
- 4. How To Import Bitmap Images — 25m
- 5. How To Build a Cut-out Character — 43m
- 6. How To Use Bone Deformer — 49m
- 7. How to Animate a Cut-out Character — 18m
- 8. How to Create Templates — 19m
- 9. How to Setup a Scene and Animate Objects and the Camera — 18m
- 10. How to Create a Multiplane — 10m
- 11. How to Import Sound and Add Lip-Sync — 12m
- 12. How to Add Effects to your Scene — 38m
- 13. How to Export a Movie — 27m
Welcome to the tutorial How To Use the Bone Deform. In this tutorial, I'm going to show you how to use another Harmony animation technique. Deformers are interesting in that they allow you to have the same liveliness in your drawings that you would get with the traditional animation style, but to also keep the efficiency and the time-saving attributes that you get from cut-out. Just to show you quickly, here at the top, this is your Deformation Toolbar. All the tools that you need for the deformation style are housed there right behind the Advanced Animation Toolbar. If you remember, this is our Animation Toolbar and this is our Advanced Animation Toolbar. One of the first things I'd like to do is actually extend all our drawing exposures. I don't know if you played with the playhead here in the Timeline, but as soon as you move past Frame #1, all of our drawings disappear. In order to have them last for, let's say, 60 frames, you need only to select the first frame here, right-click on it and select Extend Exposure or use the keyboard shortcut F5. Then the Extend Exposure dialogue box opens and you can select the number of frames that you would like the drawing to be exposed for. I'm going to say 60. Now when we un-collapse our master peg, you'll see any of the drawings layers, so these are the peg layers again if you remember, but these ones with the red triangle, yellow circle and blue square are drawing layers, have been extended for 60 frames. Now if we move the playhead across, you'll see that our drawing is always there.
The other thing I'd like to show you is that between the last tutorial and this one, I've separated a lot more of the hero's body parts onto different layers or different modules. That's because, unlike cut-out where I said you shouldn't break down your character into too many unnecessary details, with the bone deformation, it's actually quite the opposite. Our hands, we're going to leave as cut-outs, so I left them as is, but when we start deforming the torso for example, and let me zoom in a bit so we can take a better look at the torso, all of these curved lines like the lines delineating the abs, the clavicle, etc. will get warped in a way that looks potentially unnatural, unless your character is sort of like a Gumbi-like character where you want it to stretch unnaturally. We do want a lot of squash y stretch and liveliness in our drawing, but at the same time, to retain a realistic-looking volume for a human form. In order to bypass this problem, what I did was I separated the clavicle, the right and left, onto their own layers, as well as the abs, which are just these lines. If we go to the Drawing View, I guess you can see them all more clearly. The clavicle is just the black line, same for the right clavicle. The abs, once again, are just the lines. The chest triangle, so this triangle up here along with the line from the pectoral muscles, the pectoral muscles. As well as with the arms, I separated the wrist cuffs and the triangle which I actually forgot to draw in the last tutorial that is on the sleeve of our character.
One other thing that I wanted to show you, it's a quick technique, is that if we go back to the abdominal muscles, which are right here, sorry let's go back to the Drawing View, and I use the keyboard shortcut [K] to select all strokes, you'll see that there's an invisible stroke around the lines that delineate the abdominal muscles. What that is is an invisible colour I put around the strokes so that when you're trying to select that line, it's a bit easier. Because sometimes, as you're animating, you're trying to grab a single line and it's not happening because the line is so thin. Well if you put a zone around a line, it's a lot easier to grab. I did this just for the abdominal muscles, but not for the clavicle because I wanted to show you how it was done. So let's go to the clavicles in the Drawing View, and we see this blue line and the two points because the Show Strokes is on. So the colour that I used, if we go to the colour palette, is this one right here called Ghost. The Ghost colour is actually a fluorescent green and that's because we want to be sure when it's at zero alpha, so it's 100% transparent, that we don't see it at all. If it's something like white, you might not be sure, but if it's a fluorescent green, you're 100% it's not being seen right now in the Camera View. So you'll pick a bright colour like that and put it at zero alpha. Then I'm going to select the Brush Tool and let's go to the Tool Properties to make sure we have a nice thick brush. So I'll select this one right here, 20, and I think I actually bumped it up to 30 points for the width. Then you just paint over your stroke. Right now our invisible zone is on top of the black line because it was drawn second and the black line was drawn first. What I'm going to do is grab the Select Tool, select our invisible line and then go to the top, and select Drawing > Arrange > Send To Back. Now if we zoom in, you can see that we can see the blue central vector line of the stroke, as well as the contour of the invisible brush stroke because this black line is now on top.
Let's do the same thing for the other clavicle. I'm going to go back to the Network View, select the second clavicle, select the Brush Tool, create stroke over it, bring up the Select Tool, select the brush stroke and then go to Drawing > Arrange > Send To Back. There we go. If we go to the abs, you'll see that is has already been done. I'm going to use [K] to hide those strokes and let's go back to the Camera View. Now let's get back to the business of rigging our character with deformers. I'm going to select the Rigging Tool from the Deformers Toolbar and actually let's bring up the Tool Properties panel for this tool. It looks like this. There are two types of deformers that you can create for your character and that's either Bones or Curves. You usually select one or the other based on the movement that you need to create. For example, with the arm, we'll use Bone because we want the arm to work the way it would in a natural skeleton. However, with other types of bones such as the spinal column, there's a lot of tiny little vertebrae. There aren't just two larger, major bones. So in order to simulate what a spine bone can do, what you could choose instead is a Curve deformer so that you can create that type of rounded bend. But in fact, you can use either or. There are no hard and fast rules for the type of deformer that you should use for your character. I'm going to actually select the Transform Tool first just to select the torso, so that I can find the torso in the Network View. Here it is. We want the drawing selected, so not the peg, but the actual drawing. Then I'm going to go back and get my Rigging Tool. I'm going to select the Camera View and zoom in just a bit. Even though it's hidden beneath the belt and the hips, we know that our torso drawing actually comes down a little bit further than just the straight cut at the waist.
When you're rigging a torso, you actually rig from the belly button upwards or maybe the pelvis region upwards, and not from the neck downwards. With a Curve Deformer, I'll show you as I create one, you get little Bezier points and Bezier handles like that, but the centre of rotation is going to come here from where you created your first point with a little handle. For this reason, I created two curves because I clicked here once, so this is my first curve, and I clicked here again, which is my second curve. Because when I attach the arms onto this curve, it'll rotate from this point, which is not what we really want. We want the arms to follow this curve right here, so that it looks more natural as it moves with the shoulders. I'm not going to edit this curve just yet because I actually created this curve to show you a wrong example. If we go into the Deformer, which has been created right here between the drawing and its peg, and we can go into that group by clicking on this arrow right here, we can see that this #1 group has been created. We can click to go inside that and we see all the modules we think that we should see, the multi-port in, the deformation root, the offset, the curve and curve #1. This curve right here is the first curve created in from the deformation root to the second point. And then our curve #1 is actually our curve #2. It's almost like have a zero and a one. So it would be this second curve right here. You'll see what I mean by curve when I edit these two curves because then I'll use the Bezier points to actually create a natural curve. For now, they just kind of look like straight lines. But what I didn't want, if we go out of this group, is to have this right here, the group #1. By default, the software assumes that you're creating multiple views for your character, such as the front view, the three-quarter profile view and the profile view. So this is three-quarter profile. In general, usually in most animation studios, the first pose would be the front view, the second would be the three-quarter and the profile would be the third. However, we're not going to go into that much detail in this tutorial. We only want to create a single pose.
What I'm going to do is exit this group by clicking on this blue arrow right here, select the Deformer Module and delete it. Automatically, my drawing is reattached to its peg and we see that the controllers have disappeared in the Camera View. Now what we're going to do is go up to the Stage Menu and select Preferences and if you're using Windows, that would be under Edit > Preferences. Then we're going to go to the Deformation tab, which might be hidden way at the end here. We're going to uncheck this option here, Automatically Create New Deformer Structure for Each Pose Drawing and then click OK. Now if we do the same thing, we select our torso drawing, we have our Rigging Tool selected, we have the Curve Deformer option selected and we create our curve, and we go into our group, we'll see as we scroll down that that blue box is not there. This time, we see our deformation root, our offset, our curve #0 and our curve #1 directly in the name deformer group. So we exit out, we see the deformation module for the torso, we go in and this is all we see. There's no extra little blue box or blue module that groups our deformers. When you're creating a rig with deformers, when you see green, that's actually the Active Animation Mode and when you rig, you're already in that mode. However, this is not really what I want my skeleton to look like. My Bezier handles are turned this way. I don't really want that. I can edit this curve by clicking on this button here, the Setup Mode button and then by selecting the Transform Tool, I can pull on these handles and correct my curve. I want it to look something more like that, like pretty straight like that. You can also grab the root and move it around, like this if you want, if you want to be more precise. This handle rotates the spine, etc. So red means set-up, green means animation.
Then if I exit the Set-Up Mode, you see it's back to green. But there's some funky stuff happening here and that's because I changed what we call my resting position. If you notice, as I toggle back and forth between the Set-Up Mode and the regular Animation Mode, the actual curves change. The Bezier handles go back to the way they were before. The position of the entire chain is back to its original position. What we need to do to copy what we see in the Set-Up Mode, our resting position to our current position, is we need to click on our deformation group in the Network View and then click on this button here, Copy Resting Position To Current. Then if we do that, all of a sudden, we're still in the green Animation mode, so we're ready to animate, but our curve has changed to the one that we created in the Set-Up Mode. Just as a warning, you can change the resting position of any of the deformers as much as you want before you start animating, but the moment you've created key frames and you've created deformations and you've actually done some animation, you shouldn't create a new resting position and then copy a resting position because then everything will get totally screwed up. So make sure your start position is definitively the way that you would like your deformers set up before you start animating. In saying that, I'm just going to select the Transform Tool quickly, select the hips in the Camera View, use the keyboard shortcut [D] to disable so that I can see where the torso really comes to an end and we see that my deformation root is quite a bit lower. So I'm going to go back to the Set-Up Mode and then with the Transform Tool, I'm just going to move the deformation root upwards and then all my other points a bit downwards and maybe adjust the curve so that it looks nice. So something like that.
Then what I'm going to do it exit the Set-Up Mode and obviously things look quite funky. I'm going to select my torso deformation group in the Network View and then I'm going to click on Copy to Resting Position. As we can see, the torso has adjusted itself one more time. Once again, we're ready for animation. At this point, with the Transform Tool, if I make any adjustments, key frames will be created in the Timeline and this'll be something that's actually being animated. If I move this Bezier point around, you can see that the torso's getting deformed, I can pull the handles, etc. I'm wondering if it looks a little funky because the peg for the torso should actually be between the deformation group and the torso drawing. But I'm going to adjust all these little things a little bit later because we still have to create deformers for the arms, as well as for all these other little details of the torso that I separated. I'm just going to undo all of those things and we should re-enable the hips. We can actually look for the hips by doing a search here in the Network View. I actually believe that's Hero_Hips. So here are the hips and let's select the module and then use the keyboard shortcut [A] to re-enable the hips.
Now let's take a look at rigging the left arm. I'm going to select in the Camera View, click back in the Network View, use the keyboard shortcut [O] and we see it's highlighted right here, Hero_UpperArm_Left. I'm going to grab the Rigging Tool one more time from the Deformation Toolbar, but this time instead of using Curve deformers, I'm going to use Bone deformers. Then I'm going to click to create my deformation root, click where the elbow would be and then click again where the wrist would be. Now I'm going to go to Set-Up Mode, grab the Transform Tool and then adjust my deformers a little bit. One thing with the articulations, and that's what this round circle is, it's a joint or articulation, it's best to have the circumference of the circle touch the edges of the artwork that it will be deforming. The reason that I stopped here at the wrist is because we're going to leave the hand, like I said, as cut-out. There are a few things we need to do here. First of all, you may notice that only the upper arm is highlighted, but this forearm isn't and neither is the hand for that matter. Right now, this deformation chain is really only controlling the upper arm. The way that we can change that is first of all, I'd like to place this peg underneath the deformation root. Let's bring this here. Right now, this deformer is going to be deforming the upper arm and as it stands, the little triangle on the sleeve. We might change that again in a bit. I would also like to connect this deformation module to the upper body peg. Because we also want it to control the forearm, which is right here, we're going to do the same thing. We're going to grab the node of the peg of the forearm, drag the peg underneath the deformation group and then link the deformation group. Right now, the forearm peg controls the forearm and also the wrist cuff peg, which is this, which is controlling the wrist.
The next thing I'm going to do is come out of Set-Up Mode, select the deformation module, click Copy To Resting Position just to kind of reset the arm a bit there and then what we're going to take a look at is something called the kinematic output. We're going to use this kinematic output to attach the arm to the torso, because as it stands, these are two free moving pieces. They are in no way really connected. One doesn't move the other one. One of the first rules that you have to learn about deformation is that one deformer cannot control another. You couldn't, in theory, take a wire from the torso deformer and then plug it into the upper arm deformer. It doesn't work like that, because if you think about it, if I then deform the torso, then it'll deform the arm in turn. We want the arm to follow the torso, so if it bends forward, we want the arm to follow its position, but we don't want it to be deformed in the same way that the torso is being deformed. The only way that you can have the arm follow the torso without it being deformed is to add what we call a kinematic output to the torso deformation group. Let me just fix this whole peg situation. However, in doing this, now all these little bits and parts of the torso that I originally separated will be controlled by the deformation group until I create deformers for each individual part. So just bear with me in terms of that. In case you're wondering, this torso peg controls all those little elements, the clavicle, the abs, the chest, the pecs, etc. That's why if the torso peg is being controlled by the deformation group, then all of those elements will also be deformed. Let's just make sure that the torso deformation group is also connected to the upper body, which it is, which is perfect. Then let's click on a group and then click on this button right here, Create Kinematic Output. If you noticed, a new port was created on the left side of the deformation hero torso group. Anything that is coming out of the right port will be deformed by this deformation group or these controllers. However, anything connected to the left port will follow this deformation group, but not be deformed. Let's go inside the group to take a look. The way things are right now, everything is connected correctly. Like I mentioned, this is curve #0 and this is curve #1. We do in fact want our deformation group to be connected to curve #1. But sometimes, you have to make adjustments and actually reconnect this from a different curve or bone in the chain. For example, I now just connected this output port from the first curve. Let's undo that and take it from the second curve. The next thing we should do is rename the kinematic output so we know what it's connecting. If you remember, this chain is the torso and what we're essentially creating is the shoulder socket, so let's name it KO, for Kinematic Output, _Shoulder_L for left and close. Now when we exit the group and we hover our mouse cursor over that port, the tool tip will say KO_Shoulder_L, so we know that the left arm should be attached to the left shoulder, which is coming out of the torso. I'm going to disconnect the upper arm deformation group from the upper arm peg and then connect it to this port. You can see that this entire arm has now been highlighted.
Now what's going to happen is that if I start animating this torso, and like I said, you can see that those lines are following the group now, but I actually move the entire torso, you can see the arm, except for the hand because we'll connect that in a minute, is moving with this group, and in a very nice and natural way. If I move this, we see that it moves from the shoulder as it should. Let's undo all of that and then take a look at connecting the hand properly. Just like we added a kinematic output from the torso deformation group, so that we could actually have a deformation group control a deformation group which otherwise would not be possible, we have to do the same thing for the hand. We want the hand to follow the arm, but not be deformed by the arm. Let's click on the left upper arm deformation group and then do the same thing. Let's click on the Create Kinematic Output button and as you see here, a new port has been created. Let's go into our group and rename our new kinematic group to KO_Wrist_Left so that we know this is where we should attach our left hand. Then let's click on the Close button. I just want to be sure that this is in the right place, so this is bone #0, this is bone #1, so yes we would like our kinematic output coming from bone #1. That looks good. Let's exit the group and then let's find our left hand peg which is right here.
I'm going to disconnect the hand peg from the upper body peg, drag it over here and connect it the left wrist port. Now what's going to happen with the hand is that it will follow the arm deformer but it in itself will not get deformed. Let's see what that looks like in the Timeline View. Let's grab out playhead and drag it across to the tenth frame and then click on the Add Key Frame button. Then using the Transform Tool, let's try to create a bit of movement. The hips will definitely have to be brought back. You see that the hand is now following the arm. Then if we do something like this, you'll see that the forearm has been deformed. The hand retains its shape. The one thing we don't like that's happening here is that the wrist band is getting stretched. We're going to take care of that right now by disconnecting the wrist cuff peg from the forearm peg and actually connecting it to the same port as the left hand. Now if we do exactly the same thing, we rotate the arm and we stretch it, we see that the cuff retains its shape just like the hand. You might be wondering why we cut the upper arm, forearm and hand into three parts when we could simply have a single drawing and then rig it with deformers. Well we know why we cut out the hand, because we don't want it to be deformed, but why bother separating these two pieces? There's actually a very good explanation for that. If we select just the forearm peg in the Camera View and then we click back on the Camera View and we use the keyboard shortcut [Option] + [↑], you'll see that the arm got pushed behind the torso. If I deselect, you can see that. If we do the same thing to the hand and the wrist cuff, what we have now is the hero's arm hiding behind his back. He's able to have part of the arm in front of the torso and part of the arm behind the torso. If the upper arm and forearm were actually a single solid piece, this entire part of the arm that's covered in a black sleeve would have also popped behind the torso. It wouldn't have been possible just to hide part of the arm. In dividing the pieces up, you have greater ordering flexibility. So that's why we did that. Let me just undo all those things.
The other thing you may have noticed, if we select the forearm drawing and then go to the Drawing View, is that the forearm actually has a straight cut where the elbow should be, but that the upper arm drawing has a rounded portion here. Actually, this could be a straight cut as well. The great thing about deformers is that, let me just turn on the Light Table so that we can see the entire figure, it will automatically create the space between the forearm and the upper arm, even if there are straight cuts. This rounded portion is actually something that you would use more in cut-out, where we need the limb to look like it's rotating on an axis. So that's good to know. Cut-out, overlapping rapid pieces to create a full circle. Deformation, if we go back to the forearm, straight cuts are fine, you don't have to go through the pains of making sure you have that nice clean circle for rotation. I'm just going to reset my character by clicking on this key frame here and then clicking on the Delete Key Frame button. We'll see that the arm goes back to its original position and I'm just doing this because I don't want to start animating until I have finished rigging the entire skeleton. What I'm going to do is continue to rig the skeleton, but I'm going to do it off camera, because at this point, it's somewhat of a repetitive process to continue to create deformers and then add kinematic outputs in order to connect them to different deformation groups. However, after I finish rigging the entire network, I will go over any important changes that I have made.
Now that I've finished rigging our character, let's take a detailed look at all the changes that I've made in the Network View, starting from this group on the left-most side. Let's zoom in and as you can see here, this is the left arm, so this arm right here. If we take a look where all of these modules are in the composite, we'll see they're at the front of the composite and that's because if you think about it, if we move any of the pieces of this arm, they should cover any other body part of the character. So if I bend the arm and the hand all of a sudden is in front of the face, it should be covering the face. If it passes in front of these legs, always appear in front of the two legs. If we didn't have the wing backpack, this arm right here, the right arm, should always retain the opposite position. It should always be behind everything so if it swings, it should swing behind the hips and the torso. Then if we needed the arm or the hand to pass in front of the face, we could nudge the drawing backwards and forwards like I showed you before by using [Alt] + [↑] or [↓] on Windows or [Option] + [↑] or [↓] on Mac. In case I didn't explain it well before, you should do use up arrow to nudge a piece back into space, so away from the Camera View. You should use the down arrow to nudge a piece forward in space. If you look down on your keyboard and you see the up arrow and the down arrow, you should try to picture it like an overhead perspective, where the down arrow is actually pointing towards you and the up arrow is actually pointing away from you. You can think of it that way.
As you see here, we have the deformation group for the left arm and the upper arm, the little triangle that's on the upper arm here and the forearm, are all attached to the port that will deform them using the deformers, whereas the hand and the wrist cuff are connected to the kinematic output port of the arm, which allows them to follow the movements of the arm without getting deformed. Once again, if you hover your mouse cursor over the port, you can see that it's defined as the kinematic output port for the wrist left. You might be wondering why I am allowing the triangle to be deformed but not the wrist cuff and it was just to show you that you can have either or. If we click on our deformation group and then click on this button here to Show Controls, our deformer controls will appear. Now if I rotate the arm and then stretch it, you'll see that this triangle stretches with the sleeve, but this wrist cuff does not stretch with the arm. If I wanted this triangle to stay unstretched, I would connect it to the left port, but if I want it to be stretched, I would keep it connected to the right port. It was just to show you that you can have either or, and depending on whether this is made of cloth or metal, you can make that decision. If it was metal, you might want to not have it stretched, whereas if it's part of this sleeve, you might want it to stretch along with the sleeve. So let's undo those movements.
Another rule I'd like to tell you about is that if you have a deformation group, you don't really need to have a peg if the drawings are connected to the right out port. However, I kept the pegs for these three drawings in particular because as I showed you before, sometimes we'd like to nudge the drawings backwards and forwards along the Z-axis in order to have it appear as if the arm is hidden behind or in front of the torso. I kept the pegs here, but when you see the deformer, you know that you have the deformation root that allows you to displace the entire arm. It lets you rotate the arm and essentially that's what the peg does as well. It houses all that position information. The only thing that you would need this peg for is to nudge forwards and backwards along the Z-axis. Of course, if they're attached to the right port, you most certainly need a peg to be able to move these drawings around.
The other thing I wanted to mention is that when you have drawings plugged into the right port of a deformation group, you don't really need to place their pivot points. However, for any drawing that is not attached to either deformation group or that is attached to the left side, you should set the pivot for. I set the pivots for all of the body parts that have a peg, except for this hand right here, because I wanted to show you how it's done. What we're going to do is select either the Translate Tool or the Rotate Tool from the Advanced Animation Toolbar. We're going to select the hand, and you can select either the hand or its peg, it doesn't matter, because as you remember, we disabled the ability to have any animation information on the drawing, which is once again why there is no [+] sign for any of the drawing layer in the Timeline. Anything that you do to the drawing layer that's position-related will automatically get transcribed to the peg. In saying that, you can then see your pivot point here. You can grab it using either the Rotate or the Translate Tool from the Advanced Animation Toolbar and then drag it to where you think it should be. In my case, it should be in the centre of the circle that forms the wrist. That's the natural point of rotation. If we zoom in a little bit here, you'll notice that the wrist still has that black outline. Let's go to the Drawing View to see that more clearly and I'll zoom in once again, and turn on the Light Table. We can see that this hand still has that black line, which obviously will look unnatural when being animated.
There are a few things you can do to eliminate this black line. You can use the Auto-Patch Module, which you can find from the Module Library under All Modules in alphabetical order, so Auto-Patch is right here. I'm not going to show you how to do that, but you can refer to the Online Help for a detailed description on how to use that. There are also several other techniques you can use, one of the easiest being to grab the Contour Editor Tool, to select part of the black line here between two points and then just delete it like that. Sometimes if you try to select a section between two points, you'll see that it's not highlighted. It's not white. That means I'm actually selecting the blue contour outline section and not the black line section because it is white and highlighted, but under this black section of line. I'm going to try again. Now, it's highlighted and I can delete it. I see just a little piece right here that I'd also like to get rid of. If we go back to the Camera View, you can see now it looks more blended. If we grab the Transform Tool and we rotate, you can see that there's a nice natural blend between the hand and the wrist, and you can always move the cuff around or rotate it so that it looks more natural around the wrist. Now let's continue on and look at the second group. Here we have the head group and don't get confused because they're the same colour, but the head group here is pale, but it's a group and not a deformation group. It's being controlled by a peg and let's take a look here in the Camera View. The head is not being deformed in any way and neither are any of the elements inside and that's why it's coming out from the neck deformer from a kinematic output. Let's just go into the head group real quickly. We can see that everything here has a peg and everything has its pivot points set, even pieces that are being hidden, like for example, underneath the helmet, if we disable that for a moment, we see there's an ear there and you can see that the pivot point has already been placed properly. In terms of the head, I set a pivot point where you would naturally see the head rotate and if you want to rotate the head with the facial features and the helmets and everything, you'd of course have to exit the group and rotate from the main head peg. Then if we go into the facial features group, it's the same thing. I set a pivot point for the irises, the eyes, inside these two groups, the nose, the mouth, the eyebrows even, so that you can slant the eyebrows to make the character look more angry or slant them the other way to make the character look worried, etc. All of that has already been done.
Let's exit out of those groups. I actually have to re-enable the helmet first by using the keyboard shortcut [A]. I'll exit out of the group and we'll take a look at the neck deformer really quickly. I have the neck deformer group selected, I'm going to click on the Show Controls button and now if I choose to rotate the neck, the head will go with it because of course this deformation group is controlling the head and telling the head to follow it but not deform it. This can be useful if you want to bend the neck and make it look like the character's looking up or have the character's neck bent this way like he's looking down. You can make it more subtle so it doesn't look too rubbery or exaggerated, but I used a curve deformer because just like the spine bone, the neck bone has a bunch of little vertebrae bones and can form into a curve. Of course the neck deformer, as well as the arm deformer, are both coming out of the shoulder port here. If we hover over the node, we can see it's the shoulder of the torso. Both the clavicles are not being deformed. They each have their own peg and I just put a composite there as pass-through so that we had one less wire going into the composite. Of course, the clavicles sit in front of the chest triangle, which sets on top of the pecs, which sits on top of the abs, but you don't really need to make a distinction between those two because they're underneath each other and they don't overlap, and that all of those elements of the torso appear before the torso. When I mean appear is that they appear more to the left on the composite, which means in the Camera View, they will appear in front. The one thing I did want to show you is that, you may have noticed that in the torso, I added another kinematic output port and this one is for the abs and that's because if we go inside the group, our shoulders are connected to the first curve, whereas our abs are connected to the second curve. Actually, in order to make that more clear, let's, for a moment, hide all of our controls in the Camera View, exit the group, select the torso, show the controls and now if I move what we know as curve # 1, this is curve #0, this is curve #1 of the torso, the pecs, the clavicle, the arms, the neck, which then control the head, all follow this curve, which I essentially call it the shoulder curve. However, this other one down here, you can do that by moving this, controls more of this middle section of the torso. I decided to attach the ab deformers also to this because it seemed to me that it made more sense to at least follow, for the most part, in terms of positioning any movement that happened using this curve.
But the pecs and the abs, as well as the chest triangle have their own deformers. I'm going to once again hide all deformers and then show you what those look like. The triangle deformer looks like this. It just spans the height of the triangle. The pec deformer looks like this. Of course I used curves for all of these, so you can really manipulate the pecs as you want them to like this. Then lastly, the abs deformers look like this. The ab lines are kind of a hard one because they are so wriggly already. They're a little bit of a challenge to animate. You can always play around to decide how you best make the lines of the abs should be rigged. I'm going to hide all controls again and let's move on here. Although the torso appears to be more on the left side of the composite just because of the way I fanned out the modules, in fact, if we look down here, there's a bunch of other modules from the lower body that actually appear in front of the torso and one of them being the hips, for example, because if we think about it, the torso actually passes below this section here, which are the hips. So they should appear in front even though they below to the lower body, not the upper body. You shouldn't think of it as if the upper body, because it's all grouped together, should necessarily appear in front or that the lower body should appear behind. You have to think about it logically, which pieces pass in front of other pieces. The hips are definitely in front of the torso, but like I said, these two legs are in front of this arm and everything is in front of the wings and the wing backpack. After that we have the right arm, the arm back here, which once again I didn't fix the hand yet. Of course, these are plugged in closer to the back of the composites. In the back are the three that we disabled, the line art, the colour art, the background. After that we have our wing pack. They're the most back, so it's these three right here. Then after that we have all of our right arm modules. The only thing I wanted to show you from this group, it's identical to what we see here for the left arm, except that I didn't make a straight cut between the upper arm and the forearm, but I did make one here. I wanted to go over that with you to show you how it's done. Let's take a look at the left arm first. If we go to the Drawing View again, we'll notice when you do things like cut-out which is what the hand is, you want to have two round pieces overlapping. However, that's really unnecessary in terms of deformation and usually in fact it looks better if you have a straight cut between the two pieces because then when you nudge a piece forwards or backwards, I don't know if you noticed it in the first part of this video, I nudged this arm, this hand and this wrist cuff behind the torso. We saw a round black circle that kind of covered the glove coming from the upper arm and that of course looks weird. So if there are two straight cuts, as soon as I nudge this arm back, it's flush here and it doesn't look like there's body part in front of another body part. It looks like a continuous drawing, which is what we want.
Let's do the same thing for this arm here and I'll show you how that's done. We're going to select the upper arm drawing of the right side, go back to the Drawing View, I'm just going to take a quick look to see where the forearm ends, so it's right about there. What you can do is use the Cutter Tool, which is hidden behind the Select Tool and you can either have it as a Lasso Tool to make a more organic shape cut or you can change the cursor into a marquee to make more of a straight cut. But I think because the arm is slightly tilted, I might just use the lasso and try to make it as straight as possible. You can just do that and hit the delete key. Unfortunately, I left a bit of space, so let me try that one more time. I'll hit just a little bit under, I'll delete and that looks like a pretty nice clean cut and if there's still a little bit that you'd like to get rid of, you can use the Eraser Tool and make another straight cut. If we just select on something else momentarily, we'll be able to see them both. There's still a little bit of an overlap that it would be ideal to get rid of, so you can get rid of that on your own time so they can be exactly flush. Obviously, I'm doing a quick fix patch. When you're breaking down your original character, like tracing those pieces that we did in one of the previous videos, that's when you would take the time to make this a nice clean cut instead of kind of doing it backwards like I'm doing right now. But I just wanted to show you that that was possible in a very fast way and that also illustrates the difference between the Drawing View and the Camera View. Here we can isolate a single piece and work on it like we're going back to the drawing board literally. We're working on a single drawing. Then if we go to the Camera View, that drawing has been updated.
Let's continue on. We went over the wing bed. The only thing I want to touch upon here is that like I mentioned before, rigging is a very creative process and it really depends on the design of your character, as well as what your needs are in terms of movement for certain pieces. That will determine how you rig your character. I could have rigged all three of these pieces of the wing, so that's the right wing, the left wing and the backpack, to the shoulders for example, so that as I animate the shoulders, the bag follows. I could have also added a peg to group the three of these so that if I make a movement on one, everything would have to move together as a single solid piece. However, as you're animating, you can also hold down [Shift] and select three pieces and move them around at the same time. I didn't really feel like that was necessary. I decided not to attach them to the shoulder port of the deformation group for the torso because as I was moving around, I think it looked really stiff and unnatural because it's not really connected to the body. It's like part of the costume or it's an apparatus that can be taken on or off, so I felt like it should move independently. Other than that, I think we only have then the parts of the lower group, which I'm not going to touch upon because they were done in cut-out and we're going to look at them in the next video when we animate the cut-out character. The only thing I want you to know is that I renamed the leg group to Shin because some people would consider the upper part of the leg the leg. Some people would consider the shin the leg because leg is a more general term for the entire limb. I just found it easier to name each specific piece since the leg is cut into three pieces. Let's reset our view there and let's zoom out here. Once again, you're going to get the sample material, so of course you can examine all of this for yourself. That's it for the tutorial How to Use Bone Deform. Stay tuned for the next tutorial How To Animate a Cut-out Character.