Rest&Bind Pose (Rig to Any Pose)

Avastar-2 now has full support for arbitrary rest poses. So you no longer have to work strictly in T-Pose. You can model your characters and attachments with a better suited Rest pose (like an A pose for example) to bind your meshes and tweak the weights.

Some words of warning

You must be aware that this feature only works reliably when your character rig has been derived from the SL Default Rig by only rotating bones. As soon as you have edited joints by moving them around (translation), then very special rules apply and bind to pose no longer works as expected! There are ways to get this to work again, but we do not recommend to use this for edited rigs!

About the origin of the demo file

The blend file used in this document is based on an older tutorial from blender guru about rigging a complete character. The original of this file was downloaded from blendswap.com but it seems to no longer exist there.

We provide the shaolin blend as is and only for demo purposes. If you intend to reuse parts of this blend file for any other purpose than learning for yourself, then please ensure that you have the appropriate permissions to do so.

Preparations

You can download the blend file from here:

Download

Click on image to download the blend file

Some of the tools that we need in this document will only be available in Expert mode. So please open the settings panel and make sure that Expert mode is enabled.

Now lets create a new Avastar character using:

Add -> Avastar -> Complete

In the Workflows panel select Pose & Animate to see only the green animation bones

From the newly created Avastar Rig we only need the Armature and the eyes:

  • Open the Rig Display Panel and
  • Make sure the Armature is selected

 

  • Open the N-Panel (right side)
  • Locate the Armature Tools
  • Delete Avastar Meshes

This will initially delete all Meshes. However, immediately after you clicked the Delete Avastar Meshes button, an Operator Redo Panel shows up in the tool shelf (see below)…

  • At the bottom left side of the 3D Viewport you see a box
    named Manage Avastar Meshes
  • If the box is closed, then open it now
  • Enable the Eyes

When adjusting a rig to a mesh it is easier to work in Stick display mode. And for adjusting the eyes to the mesh it is good to see the eye bones as well:

  • Open the Rig Display panel in the Tool Shelf
  • Disable the Shape Display
  • Enable the Face and Hands
  • Set the finger IK to Simple Fingers
  • Disable the Eye focus bones

 

  • Open the Appearance sliders panel
  • Set the gender to male

Now we are almost prepared to adjust the Rig to the mesh.

Important: We will work in Pose mode all the time and we will only(!) rotate the bones and use the Appearance sliders to adjust the bone sizes.

As a final tweak we will hide all face bones except the eyes:

  • Select all face bones except the eyes
  • Press ‘h’ on the keybord to hide the bones

Tip: You can later unhide the hidden bones by typing  ALT h

Now we can begin with the real work..

Below here is to be reworked

The eyes

I adjust the eye height by reducing the Avatar height in the Body slider section. However, it is not possible to adjust the eyes exactly to the character’s face with the eye depth slider, because initially the Avastar eyes are located well in front of the character mesh. So i used a little trick here:

  • Gender: Male
  • Body height: 18
  • I rotate the chest back by ~2.5°
  • Then i compensate the rotation by rotating the Neck forward by ~2.5°
  • Finally i set the eye depth slider to 23

Initial (female default shape)

final: with all changes set

If you get different results, then check that you have set the gender to Male in the Appearance sliders!

Fine adjustments

Thew eyes balls poke through the mesh. We have 2 ways to fix this:

  • Make the eye balls smaller (Eye size slider)
  • Edit the character mesh a bit

I have chosen to edit the mesh:

Note: Make sure that X Mirror is enabled. Of course this only makes sense when the Model also has X Mirror symmetry. otherwise the X Mirror option can not be used and you are forced to model both eyes manually.

Before editing

After editing

Hint: You can use the eye textures from the female Avastar materials. Make sure you have the Armature selected, and the Viewport Shading is set to Material preview. Then you find the Avatar Materials panel in the N-Panel

 

The eyes show up immediately on the eye balls

The arms

Now we proceed with the arms. I used the arm appearance slider to adjust the arm length to 45. Furthermore i posed the arms just by rotating the bones in pose mode. However, i spent most time with adjusting the fingers.

Note: I only pose one side of the armature and enabled x-Mirror (in the Tools tab in the N-Panel)

The legs

For the legs we have to disable the rotation limits.

  • Open the Rigging Tab in the “N” Panel
  • Locate the Rig Control panel
  • Select the knee bones
  • Disable rotation limits

Now you can pose the knee bones as necessary (see images below).

Initial

Final

Note: I also rotated the Tinker bone a bit for a better positioning of the leg bones.

 

Create Bind Pose

  • Make sure the rig is selected
  • Open the Posing Panel
  • Locate the Rig Modify Tools
  • Make sure that Apply Pose to Mesh and Also Avastar Meshes are both enabled
  • Apply As Bindpose

Now we are almost ready to go.

Binding

Make sure that all animation bones are visible (also all the face bones and the hands)

 

  • Select the Mesh parts (body, skirt and belt)
  • Open the N-Panel
  • locate the Skinning Panel
  • Strategy: Automatic from Bones
  • Options: Only Visible Bones
  • Bind to Armature (3)

Now you can export the meshes as usual and import them into SL. SL even knows about the bind pose option so it is capable to upload your A Posed rig lossless without the need to import joint offsets!

Important: When you import your meshes then please disable the option with joint offsets