View Full Version : Suggestions on showcasing gym movements,muscles etc.

11-06-2009, 06:12 AM

Im wondering if anyone out there might have some suggestions
on a good way of illustrating the movements, and also muscle movement
when using gym machines.

Ive just started a new job doing some basic 2d illustrations, but we
have big plans for both doing machine illustrations of the gym machines
instead of photos, going solidworks to lightwave or something else for that.
But Im also thinking of showcasing the muscle movements by some sort
of 3d character or live people with 3d overlay highlights.

It would be nice to hear some suggestions on some good workflows,
like what character program to use? daz studio,poser,makehuman or simple
3d models and animate it all in lightwave, I have some hunch on it
but it would be nice to hear anyway.


11-06-2009, 10:25 AM
I've this diagram illustrating the movement limits of the human body, I hope it can help you in any way.

11-06-2009, 12:31 PM
I've this diagram illustrating the movement limits of the human body, I hope it can help you in any way.

not exactly what I need or so, but thanks anyway, the actual english
description in there thou, might be of help when we are translating from swedish to english:)

Im thinking of using full 3d characters sitting on the machines and having
animated movements, so thereīs a question of what character generator
I should use.

Perhaps it will only be enough by filming actual people but having 3d
overlays showing the active muscle working.
It would be nice to have a muscle system thou:)
otherwise I guess I have to model some muscles and put some nifty
muscle fiber textures on it.

Im fortunate to have this as an upcoming project with no deadline for
the moment, but to work at it between other stuff.


11-11-2009, 10:07 AM

Use these humans or poser ones...

And about muscles... you will need to model and texture....

Only Maya have an efficient muscle system. But it's hard to use, although easy!

11-11-2009, 10:16 AM

Use these humans or poser ones...

And about muscles... you will need to model and texture....

Only Maya have an efficient muscle system. But it's hard to use, although easy!

yepp I know, ive just recently tested makehuman, might be useful.
I thought the model exported out a little heavy in poly count with
the latest beta release, Iīm not sure but I believe the earlier versions
had less, or some kind of control for lowering the polys.

and yepp some modeling to do for the muscles and some texture work for the muscles.


11-11-2009, 10:33 AM
i did illustrations for 9 books [70+ for each book] on sports science training techniques and used 3dsmax and character studio to setup the characters as i could save bip files for poses and apply them to different characters when posed on different training equipment such as mini hurdles, ladders, viper belts and various grids..

in the last book i switched to lw just to see how it would work...was okay but def took longer to set up a character and multiple charcter where i needed like 10 or 20 people were a pain to work with.

also you need to get the poses right so that looks to be balance and weight to their workout as a error in the image could lead to a lawsuit if it showed a incorrect way of doing the exercise.

if i were to ho back in and do it again i'd use zbrush for the character modeling and go back to 3dsmax for setup and rendering as it was much faster and could handle huge amount of bones/rigs as well as instancing frozen copies if needs be...also theseday i'd use mental ray to render out or light tracer.

i will say the last book book i rendered with lightwave looked really nice compared to the old scanline of 3dsmax 3 i used waay back when!

11-11-2009, 10:50 AM
Thanks cresshead, interesting info there.

Yeah I was thinking z-brush and lightwave, when I get the grips on
the pipeline between them.

max is not an option right now, but maybe in some future, I believe max
has some muscle system plugin right?

and along with other of topic cool features such as fume fx, itīs interesting
once they improve the UI interface.

Im gonna wait a while thou to see how core is shaping up thou.

and the expensive houdini 8 muscle system would be nice.

some info on the houdini 10 muscles

Unfortunatly I havent had the time to test the new Houdini 10 along
with some hardware issues.


11-11-2009, 11:15 AM
added a real quck grab from my phone camera of some sample pages and some of the books...-
[note to self MUST do this properly and update my site!]

i'd say a good method with lightwave is to have your main rigged character in a separate scene and put him/her in poses every 10 frames then just go to that keyframe and 'export as' a mesh already posed and import into a clean scene to set up the final scenes with equipment or multiple characters that way you can create a lib of meshes with no bones needed.


just noticed i duplicated on of the piks!!..shouldn't rush stuff huh!...LOL!

11-11-2009, 12:00 PM
Max has a full modeled and rigger rigged muscle character called CG something ( from the guy that created cgtalk, but I don't remember the name now ) but the only one muscles that works fine with muscle simulation is Maya and Houdini ones, but Maya is better.

You can probably buy that CG muscled guy and export as obj to lightwave instead of modeling all human muscles.

You can animate one character on lightwave and on the second layer use the other deformed by the same bones and edit it in after fx.

11-11-2009, 02:27 PM
3dsmax can simply make working muscles no problemo, there's full video tutorial on the area for it...works extreemly well

11-12-2009, 01:09 AM
Im curious about one thing.

Doeīs anyone know anything about what tools are out there, like different heat sensors/cameras or other system that can scan a body or measure
muscle activity.

Letīs say I would like to see how much effect a certain angle on a gym
machine has on a specific muscle as opposite to a different angle on the machine.

I guess there are some pretty expensive medical and sientific physical
equipment out there.


11-12-2009, 02:15 AM
I don't think there are anything like thermal cameras to film muscle tension (yet?),
but there are ways to measure individual muscle tension through electromyography (EMG) and phonomyography (PMG).
The difference is whether you'd like to use needles or microphones on your body.. ;)