Rigging a Simple Character

In this stream, we rig a simple character entirely from scratch.

Download the alien rabbit mesh to follow along.

Example Rigs and Meshes
Contour Man Example Rig

Contour Man is an example rig that demonstrates the most important features of Contour Rig Tools, like flexible control over limb shapes, perfect twist behavior, and stretchy IK. The rig also includes a simple muscle system built with Contour, and uses Contour in concert with other Maya deformation tools such as Pose Interpolators, post-deformation blendshapes, and delta mush. It’s both a great way for animators to test out a Contour rig, and a learning tool for TDs who want to examine how one works internally.

Download Contour Man Version 1

Take a guided tour of the Contour Man rig with Raf Anzovin:

To use the Contour Man Rig you'll need the Contour Rig Tools plugin. You can download Contour here. While the features required to make Contour rigs are limited to a 30-day trial, animating Contour rigs is free of charge, so you can continue to animate with Contour Man even after the trial expires.

NOTE: Due to bugs present in some versions of Maya, Contour Man won't work properly with Animation Caching or GPU Override enabled in Maya 2018, 2019 and 2020. You can still try Contour Man in those versions of Maya, you’ll just need to turn off those features. Both issues were resolved in Maya 2022. It is possible to build Contour Rigs that work with these features enabled in Maya versions prior to 2022, but it requires a bit of extra rigging, and we wanted to keep this example rig as clean as possible.

Contour Man Mesh

If you'd like to follow along with the "Getting Started" chapter of the manual, or you want to experiment with rigging Contour Man yourself, you can download the Contour Man mesh here.

Introducing Contour Rig Tools

Each video from this series focuses on one of Contour Rig Tool's features.

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