In fact, setting up weight maps can be done very fast when you know how to do
it. And in the end you're much more flexible than with plugins like
PuppetMaster or Bendypoints.
If you'd need to paint them you could get "Vertext Paint" by D-stom ( check
* ) which is a great tool for more complex Weight Map setups ( you can even
rotate the bones and check how the limbs bend while painting the maps ),but
also for directly painting vertex color maps. It only works in combination with
But for more simple stuff like you're discribing assigning weight maps to point
or polygon selections goes much faster. The way I do it - with fingers for
instance - is to select the last point on the tip of one finger, hit the ']'
key to expand the selection as far as it needs to go, hit "Ctrl + Shift + Rmb"
and select "Create Weight Map". This way it's very easy to select the hard
parts of an object. The best thing is to give the weight map exactly the same
name as the bone that should influence it, this way Layout will automaticly
pick the right weight map with the right bone. ( when al goes well, sometimes
it just does not..dono why )
You can treat your weight maps the same way you break the object a part for
Bendy Points or PuppetMaster, so at the parts that should bend have the weight
maps overlap. This way the vertices that have 100% of two weight maps ( index
finger top + index finger base for instance ) will stay right in the middle,
just like PuppetMaster works. So you don't have to tell every bone exactly how
much it should influence every vetice, just let Layout do that job for you.
In the bone settings just have the proper weight map assigned with no other
options activated ( so "Use Weight Map Only" deactivated ). You also dont have
to create a weight map for every bone, just at the critical parts. You can for
instance create one weight map for the upper body and assign the same weight
map to 4 or more spine-bones, works just fine. And when you need control over
just a few vertices in your object, create a weight map for them, add a small
bone with that weight map assigned and move them around. When you don't want
any other weight map influencing those vertices, select them and the other
weight map you want removed from those vertices, and use the "Clear Map" tool.
I also use the VMaps window a lot so I can navigate very fast though all my
Hope I've been of some help.
Ronald van Vemden
3D Animation & Computergraphics
> holy krike!
> i thought setting up POINT GROUPS first would be a good idea... and it
> really is for assigning vertices to WEIGHT MAPS later...
> it's a really good idea but GEEZ! soooooo tedious....
> i'm setting up a homer simpson at home... simple setup, pretty low res mesh
> but enough for articulated fingers and such and to be subpatched...
> i can see the advantage of weights but in terms of setup, i think i'm gonna
> have to go back to BENDY POINTS....