BVH Carnegie Mocap for DAZ Carrara Tutorial

edited February 2013 in Carrara Discussion

How to effectively use the BVH mocap data from the Carnegie collection, with Poser Figures (DAZ, Carrara). For more info and tutorials please like facebook.com/scififunk.

Here I will show you how to cut down the large BVH files from the carnegie collection into fractions of their original size using BVH Hacker, and how to prep them for low poly (daz based) figures which I created in a seperate tutorial
here - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cG55S3Lir4Q

In part 1 we concentrate on reducing the BVH file size.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOQI6Zqgn7g

Part 2 more file reductions and I show the import process in detail.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-YePspTd0E

Part 3 how to get that perfect (extended) walk loop from your BVH import.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6gzIcR4BTE

Post edited by Sci Fi Funk on Youtube on

Comments

  • JimmyC_2009JimmyC_2009 Posts: 8,318
    edited December 1969

    Very nice tutorial, thank you. I downloaded and watched it this afternoon.

    I have just downloaded BVH Hacker as well, so it was very useful. I am looking forward to part 2.

  • edited December 1969

    Glad it was useful.

    I've just completed a part 3 as well which looks at how to loop imperfect BVH walk loops. I'll put that one out in 2 days time.

  • JimmyC_2009JimmyC_2009 Posts: 8,318
    edited December 1969

    Better and better!

    I think BV Hacher is a great tool, but there is a lot to learn for me. Your videos help a lot, thanks.
    .

  • 0oseven0oseven Posts: 388
    edited December 1969

    another great tut = thanks scifi.

    Helped me get more out of hacker

    I mentioned this on youtube but again here - How do you deal with applying animation to replicated characters so that they do not look like armies all moving in sync ?
    One way is to have a few different replicated groups, each group with different animation but then the groups act like independent armies.Hope you follow.

  • info2_5206216b80info2_5206216b80 Posts: 118
    edited December 1969

    Very good tutorial. Keep it coming.

    Two important remarks. Also have a look at the related videos at YouTube. Some interesting stuff there. Not sure if you are going to mention this in the sequel, but click twice on the 1/2Sample in BVHacker for going from 120 FPS to 30 FPS. You don't need 120 and you won't see the difference.

  • edited December 1969

    Hi there and thanks.

    0oseven said:
    How do you deal with applying animation to replicated characters so that they do not look like armies all moving in sync ?

    re: not looking like armies. It depends on just how many characters you have to show.

    In a forthcoming video "cyberpunk people". I'll have as many unique low poly characters as I can fit in (hoping for 100), then I'll nest my replication (using the standard replicator) and spread these figures all over the place (so you don't see the same one twice).

    I'll do a video about this to show various ideas in more detail, but there is a teaser for a start!

  • edited December 1969

    Pjotter said:
    Very good tutorial. Keep it coming.

    Two important remarks. Also have a look at the related videos at YouTube. Some interesting stuff there. Not sure if you are going to mention this in the sequel, but click twice on the 1/2Sample in BVHacker for going from 120 FPS to 30 FPS. You don't need 120 and you won't see the difference.

    excellent point and this gets covered along with some other reductions in part 2. You won't believe the final file size!!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-YePspTd0E

  • edited December 1969

    A Quick note for anyone interested in the upper limit for individual (low poly) figures in a scene.

    I think the practical limit is approx 200. 66 unique figures (I tested on 33 figures and copied each of them), x 2 reps. (so 3 of each figure).

    Yes you could go a lot higher with the surface replicator replicating less figures out massively, but you couldn't place them exactly where you wanted and/or editing their position (with animation frames) would be practically impossible. Also they would look like an army, all marching in unison and in the same direction.

    The method I'm using allows exact placement of each figure. I'm in the middle of testing these upper limits. (note the load/save times are a pain).

    more than 66 figures led to load / save issues. (scene would not load for example).

    I'll do a full tutorial in the future on this, but it may be a while as this is tricky!

  • 0oseven0oseven Posts: 388
    edited December 1969


    The method I'm using allows exact placement of each figure.

    I'll do a full tutorial in the future on this, but it may be a while as this is tricky!

    I didnt think standard C replicator allowed that ? Are you using Inagonis replicator which does allow it ?

    Just for interest - I noted inagonis replicator created NLA tracks - bad news, is clips dont work on them though the skeletons are there but not attached to replicated character. Unfortunately Julien said he couldn't fix this.

  • edited February 2013

    Im using a mixture of replicators (nested internal and inagoni), but I'll complete my test before giving the full answer - sorry to be a tease, but I know the theory - I want to see the practice before saying any more.

    inagonis replicator was updated in Dec 2012, and now handles groups! However it looks more like a copy than a replicate. There are other issues too (probably as I'm pushing Carrara till it screams) - again - I'd better make sure before leading anyone astray.

    Will post again soon. I have to - it's next on my list of things to do (after paid work!).

    EDIT. I assure you this works, what I don't know are the upper limits of replication. My best guess on the work done so far I posted earlier in this thread. /EDIT

    Cheers ooseven.

    Post edited by Sci Fi Funk on Youtube on
  • 3dtoday3dtoday Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Excellent Tutorials Sci Fi Funk!

    Will this series cover realistic rendering tips as well?

    thanks

  • rk66rk66 Posts: 158
    edited December 1969

    Hi,
    here is an website with "Daz-friendly BVH release of CMU's motion capture database":

    https://sites.google.com/a/cgspeed.com/cgspeed/motion-capture/daz-friendly-release

    rk.

  • edited December 1969

    3dtoday said:
    Excellent Tutorials Sci Fi Funk!

    Will this series cover realistic rendering tips as well?

    thanks

    Hi,

    Not this series sorry, it would be outside scope.

    There are some fantastic artists out there who can guide you on realistic rendering. As an animator I can't afford to wait for Global illumination per frame, so I did a tutorial series on how to "fake it" - including indirect light here.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igaRa7XStoY
    and here
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QskBQ1lvU0U
    Plus some other ideas for lighting exist on the channel. It's a big subject and something I guess we all keep learning over a lifetime.

    Check out some of the artists on Carrara cafe for example. Excellent!

  • edited December 1969

    In part 3 I concentrate on how to create walk loops to the length you need (not the length of the original BVH file). How to create a respectable walk loop.

    It's pretty easy once you've practiced a bit. The technique uses DAZ to create an aniblock, and edit out the start and end so that a loopable middle is left.

    The technique for finding the most loopable part of the BVH import starts with finding the first frame where the actor places his left foot on the ground.

    For some reason the best loops can be found with this method. Perhaps the Carnegie actor(s) were left handed or something? Anyway that foot placement is usually at the same pace as the bulk of the loop which means you'll avoid speeding up and slowing down in the loop.

    The rest of the video shows how to cut the end just right.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6gzIcR4BTE

  • info2_5206216b80info2_5206216b80 Posts: 118
    edited December 1969

    Im using a mixture of replicators (nested internal and inagoni), but I'll complete my test before giving the full answer - sorry to be a tease, but I know the theory - I want to see the practice before saying any more.

    inagonis replicator was updated in Dec 2012, and now handles groups! However it looks more like a copy than a replicate. There are other issues too (probably as I'm pushing Carrara till it screams) - again - I'd better make sure before leading anyone astray.

    Will post again soon. I have to - it's next on my list of things to do (after paid work!).

    EDIT. I assure you this works, what I don't know are the upper limits of replication. My best guess on the work done so far I posted earlier in this thread. /EDIT

    Cheers ooseven.

    Don't forget it probably also depends op computers specs. Some can do more, while others can do less as you.

    Maybe this can push the limits a lot more and improve save and load time:
    Put the character in small groups.
    Maybe create a new folder in the browser.
    Drag all the groups in the browser.
    Delete the groups from the scene you don't need at the moment. If I am correct, Carrara also saves its positions and keyframes.
    With limited groups, your scene loads and saves faster.
    So only put the the characters into the scene if you need them.
    Don't use multiple camera views, because it slows things down.
    For testing purposes, lower your frame rate. Sometimes I run at 6 FPS. It will be woody, but faster.
    Don't forget, with a heavy loaded scene, Carrara cannot handle the right speed. But the renders will be correct.

  • edited December 1969

    Pjotter said:

    Put the character in small groups.

    Yes I am finding this as well. Particularly with the replicator, it seems to lose the plot with large groupings.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,943
    edited December 1969

    You can check out all of the video series' of Sci Fi Funk Right Here!
    They're all excellent!

  • edited December 1969

    You can check out all of the video series' of Sci Fi Funk Right Here!
    They're all excellent!

    Thanks Dartan!

    Trying to push the limits of replication now, but real life is getting in the way! New thread on replication with low poly figures coming out soon.

  • edited December 1969

    Ok I have an answer.

    I can fit 132 of these low poly (but high density) figures into a scene, walking about with distinct walk loops (ok about 24 shared but enough to fool the eye).

    A year or so ago I managed way more figures with just lorenzo lo-res but they look "army like", all marching along in (near) unison. These look more individual. That's harder to achieve.

    I'll start a new thread on replication next week with a couple of videos to talk about how this was achieved, but the BVH importing to low poly characters was key.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,943
    edited December 1969

    You are an amazing individual, Funk! I hope everyone appreciates your efforts as much as those of us who have expressed our gratitude already. This is some powerful education you're passing along. There are many ways in which we can "Layer such effects by rendering some, then using that as a background and adding more to it. Rinse and repeat. Something I may cover when I get the time. But you, pushing the limits so that you can report back to us the information regarding what we can expect to achieve is truly selfless... and it deserves respect and appreciation.
    Thanks a tetrazillion!

  • edited December 1969

    You are an amazing individual, Funk! I hope everyone appreciates your efforts as much as those of us who have expressed our gratitude already. This is some powerful education you're passing along. There are many ways in which we can "Layer such effects by rendering some, then using that as a background and adding more to it. Rinse and repeat. Something I may cover when I get the time. But you, pushing the limits so that you can report back to us the information regarding what we can expect to achieve is truly selfless... and it deserves respect and appreciation.
    Thanks a tetrazillion!

    Many thanks for you kind words :-)

    I am learning a lot reading these forums and I am happy to add to the knowledge-base.

    I notice that you have a goodly collection of techniques and as you know I follow you and the other carrara animators progress on youtube with great interest.

  • info2_5206216b80info2_5206216b80 Posts: 118
    edited December 1969

    Not sure if I am the only one who missed it, but meanwhile part 2 and 3 are added (in the first post). So a refresh for this thread.

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