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This wizard character was a commission based on existing 2D cartoon designs (created by Oscar Rodriguez of Icanect) for use in an automated website creation user guide. A mix of still poses and animation clips were designed to assist users step through the process involved in creating and maintaining their websites.

The surface texturing is kept simple in keeping with a cartoon look; with the beard and clothing using gradient controlled noise and ambiance materials for a richer edge sheen. Image decals are only used in the creation of the star pattern, finger nails, eyes, and mouth.

Pose sliders are used for all face and hand control, with simple eye bones and a null target to guide his glance. IK (inverse kinematics) is used on his arms with Aim At elbow targets to keep them bending naturally. FK (forward kinematics) is used for the pelvis, torso and head control. His forearms have additional roll constraints to keep alignment with his hands.

For driving some secondary motion, the bottom of his robe is setup with an array of four knee like joints (knee aiming into the model), forming a bell shape. As his body moves the bottom of his robe flexes and bends more naturally as if resting on a ground surface. Additionally, the hat and beard have several linked bones driven with Aim At and Orient Like constraint combinations, providing an effect that tries to keep them from moving too much relative to the main body action. This saves some of the hand keying of secondary motion later.

Welcome Thinking Introducing Magic Hang on! Arrrrgh

If you'd like to see more detail on the animation and setup, there are example animation and a brief discussion on their creation in another web wizard animation article. Topics covered are lip-synch, rigging and animation facial blocking using pose sliders.

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