Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.



  • @krios said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    This might be a topic for a separate thread, but doesn' it make sense to have all the keyframes on one layer? Kinda hard to adjust 1 whole character if all the keyframes are spread out over several layers without the possibility to edit the keys all at once.

    The layers are still uncharted territory for me, but at first glance there are two major problems with it:

    1. once a body part is moved in one layer, it can no longer be moved in the Base layer (am I missing something?)
    2. once a key is set, no keysframes in the editor can be deleted---Poser keeps asking about deleting the actual figure or prop (again, am I missing something? ...my computer be trippin'??)

    My animation background and education is from 2D animation, and the concept of animating with layers is similar to drawing different body parts of a character on separate sheets of paper. Possible, but not convenient. And if you have more than one character in a scene, good luck with the layers ;]

    1 - if a body part is moved in one layer, you can still have it in multiple layers; either use in other keyframes (if that's a Replace layer) or in any keyframe (if that's Add layer). For example, I use it all the time to control eye expressions and blinking. I put blnking in a separate layer with Add... so an Add blink with values 0, 1, 0 will make it blink for one frame, even if the current face expression involves some other blink values. As blinking is typically uncoordinated with other movements, I can usually just set some random blinking in tht layer and be done with that.

    Another example, I use it to control wobbling, like conforming hair moving sideways. If you try to add that in the main animation it will be completely polluted with side-side/front-back hair movement after head movements. So I move these again with Add to separate layer, so that I'll have less keys in the main timeline -- just need to care that the hair movements are actually due to head movements.

    Finally, I have experimented in using separate layers for IK feet; the idea is to again avoid polluting the main timeline with the toon walking, and for that I've tried with both Replace and Add. Replace is significantly more tricky, as any new full key in the main timeline will make the feet snap to their default positions; Add works better, but then you need to be sure that when yuo're posing a toon in main layer you don't touch the feet. So kinda of more mixed results for this.

    2 - that's an old bug in the gridline; if click in the gridline and then you move the camera around (or do other stuff, I never remember), and then press DEL to delete the key, it will instead try to delete the figure. What I do is that I always click again in the gridline before clicking DEL. This bug has been around for millenia, so I just got used to doing that. Or use the "-" button.



  • @erogenesis
    Poser is most certainly worth improving in the animation department... but as a power user, you probably know that it's not the tool but what you make of it that counts. For me Poser is perfect (other then not being able to collapse everything at once in the hierarchy window). Still got a lot to learn about Poser to understand half the things being discussed in this thread... starting with animation layers.



  • @fbs7
    Thanks for taking the time to explain the layers a bit for those who are unfamiliar with it.
    Sounds useful and definitely something to look into and to learn.



  • @fbs7 said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    2 - that's an old bug in the gridline; if click in the gridline and then you move the camera around (or do other stuff, I never remember), and then press DEL to delete the key, it will instead try to delete the figure. What I do is that I always click again in the gridline before clicking DEL. This bug has been around for millenia, so I just got used to doing that. Or use the "-" button.

    sh*t that's bad. I hope they fix that asap. The bug cuses more drama but I don't exactly remember what. Its bad in any case, especially since its been around for that long... while Photoshop and other apps have been doing layers for almost decades...

    Yes its certainly how you use it that counts, but I have zero patience for software not developed with usability in mind. Why build a screwdriver if its just going to cause more drama than its intended to solve. Go Portugal go!



  • @erogenesis said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    Yes its certainly how you use it that counts, but I have zero patience for software not developed with usability in mind. Why build a screwdriver if its just going to cause more drama than its intended to solve.

    There are people who don't know how to use a screwdriver to save their children... let alone a high powered nail gun...
    That doesn't mean those tools are bad ;]

    Every computer software got flaws, bugs and imperfections, especially something as complex as 3D animation.
    You always hear Maya people talk about how lucky they were that not much went wrong with the software during production. And it's those times that we can be grateful that Poser is such a simple and effective tool... less features = less problems.

    Kinda like cars for professional drivers, they will want the most basic model, manual windows, manual transmission... less things to break down.



  • @krios said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    @fbs7
    Thanks for taking the time to explain the layers a bit for those who are unfamiliar with it.
    Sounds useful and definitely something to look into and to learn.

    Anytime.

    By the way, I explained too simply with the Replace Mode. A layer with Replace will indeed ignore any keys you have in the main layer, but only between the 1st and last keys in that layer. Consider this:

    (a) Open Andy, Main layer, add keyframes with hip left on frames 5, 15, 25
    (b) Add Layer_1 with Replace, add a keyframe on 10 with hip right

    So Andy will move left on frame 5, then right on frame 10, but then it will ignore all hip keys on main frame on 15, 25, 35.. that's because Poser added a key on Layer_1 on frame 30 without you asking for it, so from frames 5 to 30 that's under control of Layer_1. That's not very helpful. So:

    (c) Remove in Layer_1 the key that Poser added at frame 30, then add another key with hip right on frame 20

    Now Andy will move left on frame 5, then right on frame 10, then ignore key on main layer frame 15 (as that's in between keys in Layer_1), then move right on frame 20, then will suddenly snap back left on frame 21 (as Layer_1 is finished, now it's back to main layer), and will move left on frame 25

    So Replace is a possible but tricky business when trying to work with other layers. That's why I almost always use Add, as I can just add multiple layers (just be sure to keep a 0 in main frame if you won't want main frame to be part of that.



  • @krios Yes every software has its flaws, as individual artists do, it is almost common law by now, but every user has their passions, and that is inevitably part of the manifesto of the software producers. Voice them with enough passion and they will be heard. However, endlessly professing the limitations of mankind, at every hint of them, won't help us advance beyond them. Sometimes we need to press forwards, mercilessly, dutifully... and nudge our fellow soldier in the back to motivate him thus.

    Amazing things can be achieved in defiance of our limitations.



  • @erogenesis said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    Amazing things can be achieved in defiance of our limitations.

    Right you are Ero! Poser is our tool and we gotta do our part in making it great!



  • @krios said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    @erogenesis said in Do you animate in Poser? If so, tell us about it.:

    Amazing things can be achieved in defiance of our limitations.

    Right you are Ero! Poser is our tool and we gotta do our part in making it great!

    I can't resist... Make Poser Great Again!



  • @fbs7
    Interesting experiment... Andy is moving kinda funny. Still a bit hard to understand
    why not just use one layer, but maybe with time and some more experimenting it'll
    sink in. Thanks again for taking the time fbs!


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