Importing artwork vs drawing them from scratch on Moho 12

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Importing artwork vs drawing them from scratch on Moho 12

Postby Ingloriousbesterd » Mon Jan 14, 2019 4:40 am

I've been playing around with Moho 12 (used AS8 a few years back too) for about a month now everything feels alright except for the drawing tools which I feel are sub par. Do guys usually create your characters on Moho itself or do you import it from some other 3rd party app?

Not sure if it's just me or the drawing tools on Moho actually suck. :?
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Re: Importing artwork vs drawing them from scratch on Moho 1

Postby hayasidist » Mon Jan 14, 2019 8:19 am

you might find this helpful

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=32597&p=186070#p186070

Ingloriousbesterd wrote:Do guys usually create your characters on Moho itself or do you import it from some other 3rd party app?

and to your question: both - depends on what I want to do
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Re: Importing artwork vs drawing them from scratch on Moho 1

Postby Greenlaw » Mon Jan 14, 2019 9:00 am

It depends on the style of the show I'm working on.

The 'Moho' segments in the Croods tv show were painted in Photoshop and then imported and rigged in Moho. (Well, at the time, ASP 10 actually.) For Puss In Boots, a lot of elements needed to look painted so textures were mostly painted in Photoshop, but I used vector shapes created in Moho and filled the shapes with the bitmaps using Image Texture or layer masking. This approach gave me the best of both worlds: lots of painted details with very flexible shapes. The 2D 'Moho' segments in King Julien were also hybrid setups (at least in the animations I worked on.)

A recent show I worked on with a lot of 2D Moho animations was Boss Baby. In that show, I drew almost everything in Moho using its native vector tools. The show's character designs lent themselves to Moho's vector tools so that's what we went with. This isn't to say it was easy (it wasn't) but I think it worked out really well.

Anyway, if you go with a painted look, then you need to use another program like Photoshop or Krita. For line work or solid shapes, Moho's vectors are ideal, and they can actually be easy to work. However, I can't include Moho's Freehand tool in this statement. IMO, it's too buggy and unreliable to draw with. I sometimes like using the Blob Brush but, like Freehand, it can have some issues too. But I think Moho's other vectors tools are actually pretty decent.

I do almost all of my Moho vector drawing using the Add Point tool, Draw Shape tool, and the various shape editing tools like Curvature and Magnet. Unless I need really complex boolean operations, I don't bother with an external vector program like illustrator. (That said, I wish Moho had its own version of Illustrator's Pathfinder window.)

To get good deformations in my Moho characters, I find it's best to draw them using Moho's vector tools. The process is actually more like 'modeling' than 'drawing', but to me, it's just a different way to draw. (I guess it helps that I started my 'digital' drawing career way back in Adobe Illustrator 1.0, which was 'click-and-drag' all the way, and I have also done a lot of 3D modeling in my time.)

My typical Moho drawing and rigging workflow is to import a character sheet scanned or drawn in another program, and then use Moho's 'click and drag' tools to trace the artwork. Tip: set the Add Point tools to draw with sharp angles and plot the points at key positions to get good deformations. At this stage, I'm just blocking out the shapes and doing it very quickly, not even trying to make them 'perfect'. Next, I use Curvature to smooth out the points that need it. If necessary, I'll use Add Point to add more points where the drawings need it. I don't start coloring the shapes until I have most of the shapes drawn out. When I get to that stage, I'll setup custom Styles for strokes and fills that I may need to make global changes to later on. For example, custom Strokes are useful if I need to change all the lines weights in a very near or very far version of the character. But I try not to go too crazy with custom Styles. Custom Styles can make easy changing several parts of a character all at once, but creating too many Styles can just be a waste of time, or make the Styles window cluttered and unwieldy. Once you get the hang of this workflow, this drawing process can actually go pretty quickly.

Depending on what the character needs to do, rigging can go quickly or take a lot of time. In my experience, a scene-specific 'one-off' rig can be done very quickly in Moho, but a 'do-it-all' rig that needs to work for almost any situation obviously takes much longer to build. For example, the rig I made for the 'choice points' in the interactive episode of Puss In Boots took several weeks to build...but on the plus side, it took less time for me to animate 18 scenes running about 900 frames each using only that same rig.

And to be fair, that was my first complicated 'all-purpose' Moho rig. Knowing what I know now, along with the improvements made to Moho since ASP 11, rigging a character like this could go much faster now in Moho 12, I think. (If you haven't seen the Puss rig, I posted a demo reel here: 'Puss In Book' Interactive Scenes'.)

Hope this helps.

(In a couple of months, I should be able to show a new reel with more recent work completely drawn in Moho. Stay tuned.)
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Re: Importing artwork vs drawing them from scratch on Moho 1

Postby Ingloriousbesterd » Tue Jan 15, 2019 5:38 am

Thanks for all the insight guys!
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