Talking Character in (True) Profile View

Explorer ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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Hello! How do I design a character to talk in a full profile view and be able to see the background behind him? Front and 3/4 view mouths typically are filled because of the inside of the mouth. I'd like to have a character talk in full profile view without out his mouth filled or the fill of the head seen. (See attached images. I'm shooting for the bottom image.) based on my limited skill with CA, I'm guessing it's not possible without creating a head for each phoneme (mouth shape). Does anyone know if this possible? Any suggestions?

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LEGEND ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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I would suggest creating the base face with a big hole in the face artwork in the area where the mouth goes. The mouth viseme artwork would include the skin around the closed mouth (not just the lips), to make sure it covers the hole in the face.

 

In this case I would probably not make the mouth independent. You want the artwork warping with the rest of the head so it lines up properly.

 

I think it should work...

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Explorer ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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Are you saying make up a separate head for each viseme?

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LEGEND ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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I meant the face more like this:

51DFDEA9-BE9D-4974-A71E-8F321F4E8008.jpeg

Each mouth position then has to cover as much of the gap as appropriate.

 

(Note, the hole can probably be smaller - just needs to be big enough to cater for the largest open mouth position you have.)

 

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LEGEND ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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An example viseme might be:

C2C1C1BE-A34E-4B78-9535-2E6B645E7CF5.jpeg

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Explorer ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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Thanks. That's what I thought originally.  I did somethiing similar with a bearded character so wide visemes would not run into his beard. I was hoping to have the jaw move like I have it in the front and 3/4 views but it sounds like I shouldn't set that behavior. Is that correct?

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LEGEND ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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I am hoping that if the mouth is not indepenedent, you will still be able to use jaw moves (and any other head warping) and still have everything line up. 

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Explorer ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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I just started messing aournd with CA. What do you mean by 'independent'? Does that mean I can't assign lip sync to the visemes?

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LEGEND ,
May 27, 2022 May 27, 2022

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In puppet artwork, if you start a layer name with "+" it marks it as "independent". This is the little crown symbol at the start of a layer the rigging hierarchy. (You can change it in the rigging hierarchy, but I always use "+" in the artwork file.) CH actually has two hierarchies in a puppet. There is the tree of layers, but there is also a tree of "meshes". Each layer that is independent starts a new mesh. I like to think of a mesh as a thin layer of rubber. A mesh can flex and stretch and bend. If you start a new mesh, you start a new sheet of rubber. Stretching one sheet of rubber does not make other layers stretch - but the child mesh gets "attached" to the parent mesh (where the origin marker is) so the child will follow the parent around. (You can see meshes when you click on them - there is a yellow outline that CH with draw, and a blue bounding box. This is the mesh.)

 

If the Head layer is independent, it tends to rotate where it connects to the neck. If not independent, the neck and lower part of the head flex a bit instead. Basically whenever you want a part of the artwork to not bend with the other part, you use independence. E.g. dangling bits of hair you often make independent as if the hair bounces in the wind, you don't want the face under it moving - just the hair.

 

I often make mouth shapes independent so they don't stretch in strange ways if the face flexes. E.g. near the neck. In your case however, you want the outline of the face to always perfectly line up with the viseme shape. If the face warps, you want the mouth visemes to warp too. So I would *not* make the mouth independent in your case (so call it "Mouth" and not "+Mouth" as a layer name).

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Explorer ,
May 28, 2022 May 28, 2022

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Yes. After a long moment contmeplating the situation and deconstucting a few downloadable Character Animator characters, making 16 layers with head and mouth as one object the simplest way to go. Thank you for your help!!

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