Simple arc tracking
A really simple arc tracking method. I know there are all sorts of tools for arc tracking out there, but I really don't see why anything complicated needs to be done. This method is simple and fast, and it just uses what is already built into the software (in this case Maya):
- place the body in a separate layer and hide this (or put it in a set and hide it from there: either way you want to be able to easily turn it on and off)
- create a locator, give it a name like "LocatorGhostBody", scale it down to something tiny, maybe 0.2 or 0.1 in all scl axis.
- parent-constrain the locator to the ballie_ac_C_body triangle control. It's handy to leave that control visible to also be able to see rotations
- ghost just the locator, to 20 frames before and 20 frames after.
- because it's the simplest of primitives, the locator's ghosting updates fast and unlike ghosted geometry you don't need to be in High Quality Rendering mode for it to work nicely. If an animation change is made, you just need to re-scrub over that segment of animation to get it to update (doesn't update immediately as in SI unfortunately).
- when you're done, choose Animate > Unghost All.
- you can make as many locator constraints as needed to track arcs for any location. It's a good idea to point constrain to geometry with this in many cases. For example, to a heel. [edit: actually, just constraining with an offset is simple enough. Point-snap-match to the desired place on geometry, then just parent constrain to the object, with offset]
- the same thing can be done for knees, though in that case because they're small it's a lot more workable to just ghost them directly.
Pretty much got this tip from Jon Collins last class, it was his suggestion. Previously I had only really been ghosting geometry, which is often massively confusing.