View Full Version : Keep the shape ...

Thomas M.
10-12-2004, 10:54 AM
Hi everybody,

as some of you might have noticed I'm currently working on an octopus. Right now I'm modeling the arms and as I didn't get any reply today from my AD I tried to bend the arm in Layout with the help of bones. What might be pretty easy seems to be a bit more complicated than I thought in the first place.

My problem is: How do I bend the arm without distorting the suckers? The suckers have to follow the movement of the arm, but they need to maintain their general shape. Some of you might propose that I use a bone for every sucker to maintain it's shape, but there will be several hundret suckers on this buddy and I thought about adding some MD-Fx to them (so that they are moving around while the arm is being moved). I guess bones will be an overkill.

Anyone a thought?

Thanks in advance and thanks very much so far for all the comments on the head of my octopus.


10-12-2004, 12:48 PM
maybe Fi's_bezierbend or Shift_SplineTransform will be a solution ( check Flay )

10-12-2004, 01:00 PM
I have never used the plugins listed above, but using weight maps will prevent any unwanted deforming with bones. But with a drawback that it will do it linearly since the bones are not curves. Maybe a combination of those plugins and weight maps will work.

I hope this helps.

10-12-2004, 01:51 PM
What about using more smaller bones within each tentacle.


Thomas M.
10-12-2004, 04:06 PM
Thanks guys! I tried some stuff and did have a look at these x-tra plug ins. Looks like these plug ins work like the new spline control in LW8. Unfortunately it looks like you can't twist the spline and you tend to end up with quite distorted shapes. I really would like to work with bones. The attempt with smaller bones doesn't work that great as the top of the arm ends up with a lot of wrinkles. Larger bones deform the arm in a very smooth way and you get a nice curvature, but the suckers are a problem. If I apply a Wmap to the top of the arm all the suckers stay exactly in place and get distorted in the most ugliest way.

If I bend the arm the end of the suckers should be further appart or closer together as the base of each sucker goes with the curvature of the arm while the rest of it maintains it's shap and volume. Isn't there a way to just bend the arm with a few bones and all the suckers follow in a magical way? ClothFX, SoftFX, MD, ...?

Aahh, ...! I didn't imagine that it might be that difficult!

Any other thoughts?

10-13-2004, 03:08 AM
It isn't that difficult... If the suckers are seperate.... Cut and paste them onto a new layer, amd parent that layer to your octopus with the bones. Apply ClothFX to the octopus, and use the Scan Motion button in the editfx tab. Apply FXHardlink to your suckers and they should follow the deformation, WITHOUT stretching.

Thomas M.
10-13-2004, 04:06 AM
Thanks, that sound interesting, but isn't it a major drawback to have the object on different layers. I imagine that there will be a really ugly seam where I cut it apart (No smoothness)?

I just played around with ClothFx and if I bend the arm (bones) the suckers are actually following the movement of the arm, but they are hanging down like a dead limb. I just don't now how to maintain the original shape. I'm playing around with hold-structure and this stuff, but not successfully.

10-16-2004, 03:34 AM
I think the answer is to use more bones but dont just rotate individual bones. Rotate them in groups. Thats easy to do with selection sets. Check out the tentacle rig on my site. :)