Animating Character Lighting

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shift
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Animating Character Lighting

Post by shift » Tue Sep 22, 2020 3:33 pm

Does the ability to animation character lighting like this exist in MOHO Pro? It would be a really nice feature. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_6wFnTq1S4
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synthsin75
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Re: Animating Character Lighting

Post by synthsin75 » Tue Sep 22, 2020 4:23 pm

Yes, you'd just need to have it controlled by a smart bone.
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Greenlaw
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Re: Animating Character Lighting

Post by Greenlaw » Tue Sep 22, 2020 7:03 pm

Yeah, I do this all the time, sometimes in Moho and sometimes as a post effect in compositing.

In Moho, you do this using the style effect you want. This is similar to breaking out a matte from the character or its body parts in a compositing program and off-setting the mattes to shade or darken the edges of your character, except a lot easier because the tool does all the work for you.

Or you can use a vector layer with artwork to create specific lighting effects. This method usually requires binding the elements to the character. It's more work but the result can look more realistic.

Either type can be setup to move using a Smart Bone. For a really advanced version that combines both, check out my Dekker Moonboots rig (from Boss Baby) as seen on my 2019 demo reel. This rig uses Smart Bone controls to change the body lighting and controls to change the up-lighting inside the helmet. The lighting also independently moves with the character when it's turning its body or head.

What I do more typically, is I use the alpha channel from the character in After Effects and manipulate it to create different edge lighting, shadow, and light wrap effects. This is probably the easiest and most flexible way to create convincing lighting effects on a character but it requires that you become familiar with Moho's Layer Comps window, Moho Exporter and After Effects. The Kung Fu Panda footage on that same reel is a good example of what that looks like--this rig had custom matte's created in Moho and set to export separately as Layer Comps.
Last edited by Greenlaw on Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:46 am, edited 3 times in total.
D.R. Greenlaw
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Re: Animating Character Lighting

Post by Greenlaw » Tue Sep 22, 2020 7:09 pm

That reminds me: one unfortunate issue with Layer Comps is that you can't export your settings to re-use between projects. Natively, you need to recreate your desired settings for every project. Thankfully, Synthsin75 created a handy script that makes this a lot easier. I'll have to look up the link later unless he beats me to it. :)
D.R. Greenlaw
Artist/Partner - Little Green Dog | Little Green Dog Channel on Vimeo | Greenlaw's Demo Reel 2019 Edtion
Lead Digital Animator, Dreamworks Animation

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synthsin75
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Re: Animating Character Lighting

Post by synthsin75 » Tue Sep 22, 2020 8:09 pm

Greenlaw wrote:
Tue Sep 22, 2020 7:09 pm
That reminds me: one unfortunate issue with Layer Comps is that you can't export your settings to re-use between projects. Natively, you need to recreate your desired settings for every project. Thankfully, Synthsin75 created a handy script that makes this a lot easier. I'll have to look up the link later unless he beats me to it. :)
Here it is:
viewtopic.php?f=12&t=32280&p=184169
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Greenlaw
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Re: Animating Character Lighting

Post by Greenlaw » Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:44 am

Thanks for following up on that, Wes! :)
D.R. Greenlaw
Artist/Partner - Little Green Dog | Little Green Dog Channel on Vimeo | Greenlaw's Demo Reel 2019 Edtion
Lead Digital Animator, Dreamworks Animation

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