21 February, 2009
I've come across a renderer other than mental ray and I'm considering using it. I've seen it's output and I really like what it can do. Especially for speedy GI, and since I'm faking a lot of things, I think the added bonus of having something real, would benefit.
I discovered the wonders of nCloth and how much easier it is to apply in maya 2k9 so it's in! Now that I have only one character model that deforms, adding cloth on top will get it to easily deform with the rig when I want it to. I like this a lot better than using the wrap deformer on geometry, but I'll have to go back to that if the cloth doesn't work out. Early tests have it working well, but we'll see once I have it on a more animated figure. As for hair; I've found some methods for creating a head of hair. One going the usual route and creating a hair system using curves. The other is faking it with paint effects fur. If I could get the flow of the fur to work right I would love to go with that for growing hair on Dan's bald head. Other wise I have the difficulty of trying to swap the geometry hair and make it look decent. More testing on that.
I decided to stick with the rig I used for previz rather than go with a new one for each character. I've modified the rig with blend shapes so I can do a morph transform on Dan rather than the flash idea I had originally gone with. This is going to save some time for animating due to my familiarity with the rig and now I don't have to model and rig two characters!