My puppet was working just fine the other day but I did add a ton of different layers, although I don't remember editing the face specifically.
Now when I try to turn my face left or right the puppet's face distorts, I have the image attached.
I've checked the hierarchy and everything seems right and I don't think I made any changes there when I added the new layers.
One suggestion - in the scene window turn on the yellow mesh icon (at bottom of the scene panel). It might help you identify the spot in the artwork that is "stuck". It could be things like tags, or behaviors picking up different layers to control causing parts of the face to behave differently. Sometimes I export the puppet, import it (making an independent copy), then start deleting parts of the puppet to try and see what part I deleted to make it work better.
Thanks for the reply and sorry for the delay in response. Ok great, I'll try that out and see if I can find something 🙂 When you say export, where are you exporting it to? Do you mean to make a copy of the puppet, rename it as a test puppet, and begin deleting?
If you copy and paste the puppet inside CH, I am not sure it makes a copy of the artwork. I think both puppets will share the same artwork file wwhich can get confusing. (They did however improve things here - maybe it works know.)
The way I know works is to select "Export Puppet" from the menus and it will write a file to disk. If you then import the saved file it makes a new copy of everything (rigging, artwork etc) so you can edit with confidence you are not messing up the original.
Ah, I see! Great, I'll test that out and hopefully find the cause.
So I tried it out and it didn't transfer over the rigging properties from the original character I have. I would have to reconfigure the puppet it seems, not sure if I'm missing something.
Did you use export puppet from the menus and then import the puppet file?(It has a .puppet file extension) That includes the rigging. If you import the artwork file only then the rigging is lost.
Ah, I think I found the cause. When I exported it the first time from the file explorer there is the box for "filename" and right next to that there is one that asks in which format you want it imported. I had all formats selected first.
This next time I made sure to manually select the .puppet file 😄
Just an update. I tested the other puppet and deleted different elements within the face but I still haven't been able to pinpoint the issue. Everything is named and positioned properly from what I can see.
Well, it seems the more I try to fix it the more it gets worse. Plus I'm adding different expressions..now my right eye just stopped blinking, not sure why. Can anyone help with this?
Are you able to export to a puppet file and share a link to a Google Drive or Dropbox upload here? Can have a look and see what can find. A bit hard to debug from the description alone. It is normally incorrect tagging... but not always!
I definitely can, thanks for all the help! For the life of me I can't figure it out..I'm sure it's something being overlooked too, grrr.
This link should work https://www.dropbox.com/s/ejd6mahf5f4g7ug/shirley%20character%20new.puppet?dl=0
Having a first quick look. Could you share some of the things going wrong so I can try to repeat them?
The first thing I notice is the mesh is pretty bad. Here are the eyebrows for example. The yellow outline should follow the shape of the eyebrows....
ARGH! I hate this new forums sometimes. I type ^Z and it wiped 15 minutes of input and screenshots. Going to do a series of smaller replies.
I would make the Left and Right eyebrows independent like above.
I would also create a new group "Normal Eyebrows" and move Left Eyebrow and Right Eyebrow under that, for consistency. Later you can then put a swapset on Normal Eyebrows, Sketchy Eyebrows and Mad Eyebrows. It will be hard to do with the current structure.
See the "1" next to Mad Eyebrows? You have added a handle to the Mad Eyebrows parent layer. Delete that handle. The child layers called Left Eyebrow 3 etc should have the eyebrow tags, not the parent.
Here is the sort of mesh you should see clicking on an eyebrow layer.
Here is the mesh your puppet started with before I cleaned up the independence settings on the layers.
As soon as you see a yellow rectangle alarm bells should go off. It should follow the shape of the artwork. It is unusally because there is unconnected artwork in the layer - in this case the left and right eyebrows are not connected but not marked independent in the Mad Eyebrows and Sketchy Eyebrows layers. (Hidden settings do not hide it from CH - those layers can be activated by a trigger, so you have to get ALL the layers right, not just the visible ones)
Like the eyes above, I would change the mouth structure around. I would create a "Gob" layer under "The Face" then put under that "Mouth", "Sad Mouth", "Happy Mouth" etc. Later you will use a swapset to pick which mouth to display.
You must not put other non-official visemes under the Mouth layer (e.g. Sad Mouth under Mouth is wrong).
Each mouth should be independent normally, so its really "+Mouth", "+Sad Mouth" etc.
Here is another alarm bell. Clicking on the Frontal, Head, etc layers does not show a nice yellow outline around the character - it shows a big rectangle. That mesh will almost certainly distort in bad ways (legs will distort the other leg etc).
There is Poof and BigPoof as siblings to profiles (left / right / Frontal...). That worries me. I would create more nesting so you just have profiles under the parent layer. If you need something along side profiles, then create another group above the profiles and put the "poof" layers up there. Keep the tree structure of the puppet clean with each grouping layer having one purpose.
(Ugg. This forum software used to be easy paste images - now it takes like 10 attempts before it works.)
ANyway, I deleted all the other profiles at the top level and see how its much cleaner? That indicates the problem is not in Frontal - its in one of the other profiles.
Same pattern again for eyes.
If you want different emotions, then create a folder for each emotion including the default neutral emotion. Then put the eyes under the emotion groups. You will need that for the swap set to work properly. So create a Neutral layer and move the Left Eye and Right Eye layers under that.
Again, don't forget that hidden layers are not hidden when it comes to meshes.
Your Nervous layer has Left and Right Blink layers under it. "Blink" has special meaning to CH which is used to hide all the siblings when you actually blink. In your case since it is not part of a normal eye with lids etc, I would call "Left Closed" or similar - don't use "Blink" due to the special meaning.
Blink here is done correctly. It will hide the other layers when it blinks. The only problem is there pupil is moving too far in the eyes. This is because the Right Eyeball is acting as the pupil range and is large.
You want the white dot to not move as far. You can correct this in different ways. One is to try experimenting with the strength settings of the behavior, so it just does not move as far.
What I normally do however for better control is to introduce another "Left Pupil Range" layer that I make invisible (turn off eyeball). Make this a circle the size of where you want the white dot to move. Then make sure the Eyeball layer does not have the Pupil Range tags on it (as it does now). Adding your own pupil range layer will restrict how far the white dot in the eye moves - you will have precise control that way.
I tried deleting everything except the Left Profile this time. The mesh looks pretty good. The only new problem I saw was the rear hair was not attached to the head. You need to drag the origin handle of the hair over the body (where it should flex from) so it turns green. You could put a dangle then on the lower part of the hair if you wanted to make it bounce when walking.
Ah, deleting the Big Poof layer fixes up the mesh a lot. So something is wrong there. If you remove that, the mesh for all the other profiles looks much better. Remember that hidden layers are still considered a part of the puppet as a trigger might turn them on at any time. You cannot "hide" artwork from CH - you have to delete any unused artwork to keep the mesh correct.
See how I have made the Right Profile visible and clicked on it, but the mesh is more of a frontal profile? I don't use profiles often personally, but I think the best default approach is to make each profile independent so they don't affect each other by accident. Without this, each profile may affect the warping of other profiles unexpectedly.
Oh no, so sorry to hear that, I'll be going through all of them!!
Yes, the first issue is the face frontal face is distorting when I turn my head left or right. The eyes look like they're melting off my face, ha!
The 2nd issue happened a while later but the right eye will no longer blink. Now sure what damage I did there.
Thank you for all of the feedback and suggestions. I've changed some of my structure around and applied those tips, unfortunately, the problem I'm having still persists. The right eye doesn't blink and the face is still distorting.
I'm not sure where this issue is coming from.
Can you sure the updated puppet? Can have a look later...
Disregard, I didn't download the updated puppet 😅 The blink is working again!! Thank you! The face distortion is still there but I'm going to try a few more things.