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atayir

What program to use to make avatar accessories ?

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I'm familiar with the program Blender, but I'm not sure how to make accessories like piercings and earrings. Would I need avastar to rig stuff like rings to fingers? I'm not sure what rig and non-rig means. I'm still very new to blender. Thanks for the help. Sorry if this isn't the correct subject forum to post in.

Edited by atayir
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Read all of this with the understanding that I completely suck at rigging :)

unrigged: No weights painted on the vertices in blender, any avatar accessory functions just like the older prim-based ones - stick it to an attachment point, position and size to fit, it then follows the attachment point.

rigged: Vertices weighted to the SL skeleton. No matter where you attach it, it takes its position from the skeleton and cannot be resized (because the skeleton dictates where every vertex ends up, no matter what "size" the unattached object is). As the avatar moves, the individual vertices follow the movement of the bone(s) they are weighted to.

So to use your example of a ring:
Unrigged it would be able to be sized to fit any hand or be worn on any finger, but it would only be suitable for a non-bento hand as it would not follow the finger bones as they animate. Rigged, you'd have to size it and position it to fit the hand model it was to be worn on in blender, not inworld, but the weighting would be easy - every vertex would be 100% weighted to a single finger bone so the ring would follow that bone without distortion.

Most ear-rings you wouldn't need to rig - the ears have attachment points and they track pretty well. (human avs, that is..  when you get into non-human ears all bets are off)

Other piercings and body enhancements, yes - you will probably need to rig these. They will need to move with the vertices of the rigged body surface that they pierce. What's more they will probably have to be fitmesh rigged (to the volumes rather than the 'animation bones") because if they are not they won't fit for all ranges of the body shape sliders.

 

As for whether or not you "need" avastar to rig to the SL avatar in blender, technically no you don't but practically you'd be nuts to try and do without it. Everything accomplished by the python scripts, painstaking modeling and in-blender coding that Gaia put together to make avastar can be done without it in blender, but you will face a learning curve like the southwest face of Everest and months of frustration before you start making it work at all well for SL, even if you've some experience building rigged models for other engines. So spend the few bucks on avastar instead of handing over a lot more to your nearest bartender, therapist or both.

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1 hour ago, Da5id Weatherwax said:

So to use your example of a ring:
Unrigged it would be able to be sized to fit any hand or be worn on any finger, but it would only be suitable for a non-bento hand as it would not follow the finger bones as they animate.

Two exceptions: Left/Right Ring Finger can be attached to normally, in a way that follows the finger. 

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So, it would be advised to just begin creating furniture in Blender first since i'm not familiar with Avastar. I would guess that creating clothes would be much harder then creating accessories. If you guys are creators, do you use MarvelousDesigner at all for creating clothing? Also, I imagine that creating jewelry would just consist of creating a 3D model of a earring or ring, texturing it, and just rigging it to the finger or ear. 

Edited by atayir
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2 hours ago, atayir said:

So, it would be advised to just begin creating furniture in Blender first since i'm not familiar with Avastar. I would guess that creating clothes would be much harder then creating accessories. If you guys are creators, do you use MarvelousDesigner at all for creating clothing? Also, I imagine that creating jewelry would just consist of creating a 3D model of a earring or ring, texturing it, and just rigging it to the finger or ear. 

If you are new to Blender / modeling / Second Life, you should definitely start a little slower and get some basic models done. There's plenty of issues to run into while just making static models (like furniture or unrigged accessories). Once you're more familiar with Blender's UI/controls, and you've managed to UV unwrap a model, and you've managed to upload it to SL correctly, you can start looking at rigging that model to the SL skeleton.

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