How to Transfer Animation Data

msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
edited December 1969 in Carrara Discussion

Hello Carraraites,

I need Help. I have redesigned a character I recently animated and I need to transfer the animation data from version 1 to version 2. I'm trying to avoid days of extra character animation. I used good old fashioned keyframes, tweeners, and the graph editor.

Comments

  • FenricFenric Posts: 347
    edited December 1969

    The current built-in method is to save your animation as an NLA clip, then apply that to the new character. I'm not familiar with the exact details, but there are several people around who are and I'm sure they will help you out.

    As an alternative, my Pose Transfer plug-in will also do the copy

    http://www.daz3d.com/pose-and-shading-tools-2

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 13,966
    edited December 1969

    I actually prefer both, which is one thing that puts a fear in my gut about jumping in and using Genesis 2 right away. Anyways:

    I like to use Fenric's plugin to save animated PZ2(or you can opt for BVH) files because then I can add the keyframes from the file anywhere along the timeline I want, by setting the time, and then applying the animated PZ2. For more compatibility with Carrara, since I have the aniBlock plugin, I would then apply the PZ2 in DS and convert it to an aniBlock to gain access to aniMate 2 features.

    Okay, but otherwise, for simple transfer I just use Carrara's NLA clips and poses.

    The basic method is to select the figure and use the NLA tab. If it's one of your custom figures, which I'm assuming it is, take a quick check in the manual on how to give it NLA. It's simple and fast. In the NLA Tab, "Create NLA Clip" will bring up a dialog that enables you to select which parts you want to store in the clip, name the clip, choose between whether to use all keyframes in the timeline or just those within the yellow scene range markers, and whether or not you want the tool to delete all keyframes from the timeline when it's done making the clip. It also gives you an option now to select what part of the body will be used to store placement values on if the 'loop' value is selected. The hip is a common choice for loop calculations, but I've also seen people use one of the feet.

    Some key notes being:

    Always save the clip to the browser right away. Once you close that file, so is the clip if you didn't save it after making the clip. You need that clip file to add the animation to another figure.

    When you allow it to delete keyframes, it takes them all except at frame 0.00, even if you set it to scene range instead or keyframes range. This can be handy when all you want to do is to delete all of your keyframes! then just delete the clip ;)

    When making clips, you can make different clips for different parts. Say, the hip down through each foot as on which stores what the hip, legs, and feet are doing, and then another for the torso, perhaps another for right arm or both, etc.,

    For just storing one animation to another, just a full thing with everything selected is what you want. You can always divide it up later, if the inkling strikes.

    To apply the animation to the next figure, it will need to have an NLA tab too

    Now just put the clip onto the NLA track in the timeline.

    But what if we want keyframes instead of a clip?
    In the NLA Tab "Load Data from Clip" will load the stored data from the clip to the timeline. Love that!

    This "Load Data" option is also a great way to save information from one figure to another that is not animated. This is when you instead use "Create Master Pose" and select what you wish to store in the dialog. Again, this could be just everything. But it could also be anything else that can accept a keyframe.

  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited December 1969

    "save your animation as an NLA clip," thats the method I was trying to remember! Looking forward to someone posting about it. My experiments come up zero. I checked out you plug-in, very cool. So I can transfer few hundred key frames to to anonther like character and get the same animation? Both characters were created from M4.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 13,966
    edited December 1969

    I actually prefer both, which is one thing that puts a fear in my gut about jumping in and using Genesis 2 right away. Anyways:

    I like to use Fenric's plugin to save animated PZ2(or you can opt for BVH) files because then I can add the keyframes from the file anywhere along the timeline I want, by setting the time, and then applying the animated PZ2.

    Actually, it's useful in many more ways as well. This plugin gets a lot of use when I am in my animating zen. But it gets blurry to me as to which feature comes from which plugin now, because they are now, to me, how Carrara is. The Pose Tools that Fenric made are so useful that when I install a new version of Carrara, it doesn't even work the same to me until I get those plugins installed. They add some serious benefits to me, a Poser figure animation guy.
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 13,966
    edited December 1969

    Check it out!
    evilproducer just posted how to turn it into an NLA!
    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/viewreply/566186/

  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited March 2014

    Yep, that will do it, Thanks Dart. I knew It had something to do with the NLA function. I am using M4 this time but this tute will defiantly come in handy for my custom kids. You just saved me a ton of work.Since I have you on the line, can you tell me where I can get a DMC for genesis?

    Post edited by msolomon on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 13,966
    edited December 1969

    I'm not sure, except that Wendy made one and put it up at ShareCG:

    I made and gave away a free dmc for Genesis 2 female,, it is on sharecg
    I do indeed know how to make them now
    but can only share ones I made from the default one

    the Genesis one was made by Daz and you should have it already in C:\Program Files (x86)\DAZ 3D\DAZStudio4\plugins\dzmimic\Configuration_Files
    not in 64bit can install both


    Here's the original link regarding Mimic Pro: Using Mimic in Carrara Pro

    I think there some NLA stuff in there too ;)

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,269
    edited December 1969

    Hi MSolomon :)

    I used good old fashioned keyframes, tweeners, and the graph editor.

    It doesn't matter, .in fact it makes creating an NLA clip even easier.

    Select your figure,. Go to the NLA tab, then click "create master clip"

    that will transfer the animation into an NLA clip,.

    You can also reverse that process by using the "Load clip data" at the bottom of the NLA tab.

    that will open a panel where you can select any loaded clip in your scene.
    Once you select a clip, Carrara will load the key-frames back onto the track for the selected figure.

    Hope it helps :)

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 13,966
    edited December 1969

    Silly me... she says it right there in the post where to find it on our own computers!
    "the Genesis one was made by Daz and you should have it already in C:\Program Files (x86)\DAZ 3D\DAZStudio4\plugins\dzmimic\Configuration_Files" LOL... my bad! :ahhh:

  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited December 1969

    3DAGE said:
    Hi MSolomon :)

    I used good old fashioned keyframes, tweeners, and the graph editor.

    It doesn't matter, .in fact it makes creating an NLA clip even easier.

    Select your figure,. Go to the NLA tab, then click "create master clip"

    that will transfer the animation into an NLA clip,.

    You can also reverse that process by using the "Load clip data" at the bottom of the NLA tab.

    that will open a panel where you can select any loaded clip in your scene.
    Once you select a clip, Carrara will load the key-frames back onto the track for the selected figure.

    Hope it helps :)

    Thanks 3Dage, that was a huge help.

  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited March 2014

    Silly me... she says it right there in the post where to find it on our own computers!
    "the Genesis one was made by Daz and you should have it already in C:\Program Files (x86)\DAZ 3D\DAZStudio4\plugins\dzmimic\Configuration_Files" LOL... my bad! :ahhh:

    Finally, I've been looking all over for that DMC. I had to translate your search path to mac speak. So for you Mac users with mimic for Carrara: Applications/daz3d/Daz3d/Carrara8.5/right click Carrara app/show package contents/contents/MacOS/Mimic Content/configuration files/**BOOM, there they are**. You might want to copy the entire configuration folder and place them some place easy to get to.

    Post edited by msolomon on
  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited March 2014

    Well, I just tried the NLA method and it worked flawlessly! Once I created the Master Clip it saved in the browser.When I moved onto the 2nd file the new clip was not in the clip browser. So I had to go back to the 1st file, drag the clip into a NLA track and copied it. I, then, pasted the master clip into a NLA track in the 2nd character. It worked perfectly. Since I'm on a role, I'm working on a way to use NLA's with my custom characters. Yep, Now I'm getting greedy Oh, and the "load clip data" command is very cool.

    Post edited by msolomon on
  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited December 1969

    OK, I just tried it with one of my custom characters. I selected the hip bone, clicked Animation/Create Animation Group in the main menu. I selected the new Animation Group created in the sequencer, Clicked the NLA tab in the Options tray and clicked the Create Master Clip button. The rest is the same procedure. Thanks again guys, you're always a big help.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 13,966
    edited December 1969

    Cool! Yeah, to get the clip in from the browser, you go to the bottom of the right instances tray and open the Clips tab and drag the clips from the browser into the Clips tab :)

    You'll love it even more, the more you use it.

    For example, say you've worked on a particular expression and it turned out just perfect. Save that to a master pose so you can use it again later. I think that 'Load Data' pays attention to where it is n the timeline though, so you need to be careful with making them on frame 0.00, or that's where they'll load. For this I often chose somewhere else, like at 1.00, so that once I "Load Data" I can grab the keyframes and drag them around.

    But I have a pile of GoFigure aniBlocks (and others) and will save different portions like I mentioned earlier for mixing and matching and it's a beautiful thing! Like taking just the part of where the character is rounding the corner in either the jogging, sprinting, or running from the At the Park collection, and deselecting the head and arms from the clip save. Then I can keyframe my own arm and head movements, or I can load the arm and head movements from the same aniBlock, from when I saved those... or a different one, like the temper tantrum arms and head from Office Moves, as a small spark of the possibilities to save time, and simly come up with cool motions from someone else' hard work on professional motion capture! :)

    I picked on GoFigure, but I like others as well, including my own keyframing :)

  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited December 1969

    Cool! Yeah, to get the clip in from the browser, you go to the bottom of the right instances tray and open the Clips tab and drag the clips from the browser into the Clips tab :)

    You'll love it even more, the more you use it.

    For example, say you've worked on a particular expression and it turned out just perfect. Save that to a master pose so you can use it again later. I think that 'Load Data' pays attention to where it is n the timeline though, so you need to be careful with making them on frame 0.00, or that's where they'll load. For this I often chose somewhere else, like at 1.00, so that once I "Load Data" I can grab the keyframes and drag them around.

    But I have a pile of GoFigure aniBlocks (and others) and will save different portions like I mentioned earlier for mixing and matching and it's a beautiful thing! Like taking just the part of where the character is rounding the corner in either the jogging, sprinting, or running from the At the Park collection, and deselecting the head and arms from the clip save. Then I can keyframe my own arm and head movements, or I can load the arm and head movements from the same aniBlock, from when I saved those... or a different one, like the temper tantrum arms and head from Office Moves, as a small spark of the possibilities to save time, and simly come up with cool motions from someone else' hard work on professional motion capture! :)

    I picked on GoFigure, but I like others as well, including my own keyframing :)


    Dah, I was so excited about avoiding days of extra work I forgot about dragging it into the clips tab in the browser, Thanks.
    I agree, I am looking forward to creating a mountain of common, time saving clips. Before I became so busy I had made a habit of figuring things out before I really needed it. But now I spend most of my time going from one deadline to another. I still absolutely love what I do but a little more time spent exploring would be nice. Thanks again.

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,269
    edited December 1969

    Another important part of the NLA structure is the "Track" properties, which allow you to select or deselect the parts of your animation which are used in the NLA clips, so,.. you can limit which parts of your figure are animated with each track.

    Also, when you create a mater clip, there's a Dialogue list, where you can select which parts of the animation are saved in the NLA clip,
    this allow you to limit what's saved in each NLA clip,.

    For example: you have a walking figure, with swinging arms,. you can save the legs hip etc, and deselect the arms. then you could make another Clip for the arms, or even a single Pose clip, for example, "holding a box", and the arms will hold that pose, while the figure walks along.

    Andy :)

  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited December 1969

    Thanks Andy,

    Great info. I'm all ready using NLA tracks like a thirsty man who just found water. The less mundane key frame work I have to do the more time I can spend improving my animations, modeling, texturing and so on. Of course my animations will be so much more using NLA's

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,269
    edited March 2014

    It's perhaps obvious but I think worth mentioning. Saving clips in your browser.
    once you've made a master clip, drag it into your clips section of the browser.

    It also helps to create some new folders in your (user/My Documents/Daz3d/Carrara/my presets/ my clips, just to organise things.

    It's really easy to be working in a scene, making clips or other stuff, and completely forget to save the bit's into the browser so you can use them in other scenes. or maybe it's just me that forgets. :)

    clips.jpg
    1380 x 509 - 233K
    Post edited by 3DAGE on
  • msolomonmsolomon Posts: 153
    edited December 1969

    I totally agree. When I get lost in a job chaos will ensue. The multiple folder idea is a good one.

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