Partial aniBlocks

aniBlocks allow us to add motions to our figures in a manner that is flexible and powerful.

The motion data contained within the block can be edited in many ways without even having to look at the key frames within - using the many wonderful tools within aniMate 2 in ways that would be incredibly difficult and time consuming to do in any other way.

"Partials" are aniBlocks that contain motion data for a specific limb or collection of limbs and will not affect any other part of the figure, being incredibly valuable for assembling multitudes of motions far beyond the intention of the original aniBlocks.

We can use these Partials to keep an arm down when it is otherwise doing something else, like firing a pistol. Or we can have our character fire a pistol instead of brushing her teeth! 

Creating a Partial aniBlock:

 and you have a nice Partial.

Now you can use that new aniBlock in a Subframe to replace the motion for those limbs of the original aniBlock!

It's all very quick and easy to do, and makes for a powerful catalog of partials as you save more and more of them. Trust me. It's worth the tiny bit of extra effort. 

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In some of the generation 4 aniBlock packs I have, there are motions for touching the face, stretching arms, rubbing the head, etc.,

I made partial aniBlocks of just the arms, sometimes just one of the arms, sometimes the arms and the neck and head, etc.,

It was one of those that I chose to use to get Rosie 7 to put her hair back behind her ear in the course.

These partials get me close, then the added Control Dials I made help me finish it all off in the timeline easily without having to hunt down keys to edit in the graph editor. Nothing against the graph editor, I just don't really need it with these dials, and the dials have the added benefit of being adjustable anywhere along the timeline with a selection of tweeners for the transitions.

It's a very elegant way to work. I love it!!!

You can see some of the dials in action in this promo - taken from the course but, for the promo it's playing at a Very High Speed.

Fun bit of trivia:

Nobody that I know - even my Bass Guitar-playing brother - caught the fact that, when I mention Rosie's Base Scene that she comes out playing a five-string bass! LOL

If you have any questions or comments, 

Reply to the thread - I monitor it often so answers come quickly!

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I like to make time for "Partial Creation Sessions", where I browse through my aniBlock collection looking for things like:





When I'm on these creation sessions, I categorize the partials into folders that match which limbs are used, like Head_Neck, Arms_Only, Arms_Head_Neck... that sort of thing - all within a single folder that I call "Partials".


I capture the entire motion capture for these partials, even when my initial intent might only be to use part of it. 


So when I have a bunch of these, the fact that I have them sticks in my head, much like they way my purchased aniBlock packs do. This makes it easy for me to quickly decide to do a particular action for the story. My first thought is always the main motion that the character has to partake in. Is the character moving to or away from something? Backward, Forward, to one side or the other? Jumping, standing still... etc.,

As soon as I know that, I almost always know the rest. And I almost always think of several base motions that would get me there, which in turn tells me exactly what sort of Partials I want to try.


To get this job done, I collect as many aniBlock packs as I can get my hands on - whatever the subject matter of the pack. For example, I am entirely tired of seeing freaking zombies everywhere. I mean... I don't mind them, but the last thing I want to render... yeah... Zombies.


So for the longest time I didn't collect any of the many various Zombie packs. But I did have some packs that had Zombie motions. When I tried them out, huh... I can use these!!! And not for Zombies, but for my characters when they're injured or trying to pass through a force field, or...


As I started collecting the Zombie packs I was previously ignoring, I started to realize how valuable the motions are for characters that are nothing similar to a Zombie. Even regular people can benifit from these motions in part or even in whole. Our Control Dials can do wonders for changing up and entire motion's behavior and effect - story wise...  as can Partials!!!


I'm also not really wanting to make a presentation on dancing. But dance moves of all types are really handy to have. Sometimes a bit of dancing is exactly what the scene needs. Other times just a bit of dance motion combined with an entirely different torso, arm, head and neck partial won't turn out to be dancing at all, but a really cool action that has some real attitude about it - something that's also quite unique and looks really good.

Office actions are captured office moves. Plain and simple. But they don't have to end up as the character being in the office. Sometimes a typewriter motion on the arms, head and neck can work really great for something entirely different, like playing a guitar (using dials to rotate the arm sections around correctly according to the instrument model) or standing at star ship controls. 


The point I'm trying to convey here is that we shouldn't think about the action that aniBlocks are captured from, but rather, what motion they 're making and what else we can do with it.


One aniBlock I have is for chugging down a drink, cocking the head back.

I made a partial of just the arms through the fingers. So this patial has one hand by the side, moving but only enough to look "alive" and the other hand just goes up to the face. Into it actually.

This is one of my main partials for tucking the hair back behind the ear - one of them.

This was taken using GoFigure's "Calling a Pet" for V4/M4. After the hands get to the knees, I delete all the rest of the key frames for both collars when they're collapsed, which also deletes the keys for the entire limb and all fingers. Keeping that set of key frames when the hands reach the knees, I delete all the rest of those collasped collar keys between that and the first frame of animation. 

Then I go to the point in time where I kept the keys - the point where her hands touch her knees, and I adjust the various joints to place the closed fists aggressively on the table. While on that frame, I Crtl+Select each hand and then the table top and run LimbStick - setting it to run from that frame to the point where she stands back up. Worked perfectly the third try.

Finally I work out the final resting place for the limbs and work out the beginning and end transitions to and from the LimbStick work. 

The whole process didn't take long at all.

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