Top Autodesk Maya Tools for Quick Character Modeling

Animation is a versatile technique to get inanimate objects to life and there is also a plethora of ways to do this. However, while this may seem like a trivial task, it is anything but. Perfection is the key to making excellent and elaborate animations. If you are a beginner, you can consider whiteboard animation as it helps you learn the ropes of the techniques involved and how animation works on a basic level. However, if you do plan to create an animation film that looks like a Disney’s masterpiece creation, you may have to promote to more dependable software.

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Autodesk Maya Tools

Autodesk Maya Tools

When it comes to animations, Autodesk Maya is gold. It is used by animation artists all over the globe and although it can be slightly difficult to manage at first, it is a program that you are likely to swear by. When it comes to animations, character modelling is the very first step that takes the process of animation forward. However, using the conventional tools can be quite time consuming and the result may not be as refined. Given below is a list of autodesk maya tools that will help counter this problem an enable you to design character models at a faster pace.

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Soft Selection Tool

This tool can help you survive the character modelling nightmares especially when you are a beginner and manually having to arrange the vertices and the edges may seem like a never ending daunting task. This is where soft selection comes to the rescue. This tool can help make modifications to the actual mesh that you may have created and it helps soften the vertices, edges as also the faces with better control. Besides, all you need to focus on is just one vertex, face or edge and the adjacent elements will smoothen out accordingly. This is extremely beneficial especially when designing facial features since they need to be extremely soft and natural looking.

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Relax Tool

When designing in Autodesk Maya, you need to first create the mesh and then smoothen it to see the actual result. As a beginner, your character model may look flawless when constructing it, however, the minute you turn the smoothing on, you may notice several flaws, bumpy faces being the most common. You may begin arranging the vertices and edges to correct the flaws, but you need to realize that this is extremely time consuming and can eventually wear you down. If you happen to notice bumps along your character model, the relax brush available as a sculpting tool will work best. This versatile tool enables you to smoothen out any bumps without harming the basic shape of the character model.

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This is one of the tools that is most underutilized and possess an extreme amount of power that can help make any character modelling job notches easier. One of the reasons for this could be its absence from the polygon section on which you may rely. Instead, this tool can be found in the ‘Animation’ category. Autodesk Maya is very different from whiteboard animation and using lattice can help take the pressure off the modeller. When you use the Lattice tool, you will notice a new set of edges, vertices and faces will be created orbiting your original shape. All you need to do is make changes to this lattice object and it will show the final effect on your character model. Therefore, you need not actually work on the model and use the Lattice wireframe instead. However, it is important to delete the History once you are done using the Lattice tool to avoid interference when working with other tools. Check out 128 keyboard shortcuts for autodesk maya.

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Jack Muster is a character modelling specialist and enjoys working on elaborate animations as well as whiteboard animation. His love for sketching and computer arts led him to take up animations professionally. He has never attended an animation class and is absolutely self-taught.