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Riskmandel

Can some one explain nulls?

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what exactly are nulls and how are they used? I can't seem to figure out when, where, why and how I would go about using them for, say, constraining a bone movement...

 

Any help would be much appreciated.

risk

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Nulls are pretty much just things to be used as targets for constraints. For instance, if you have an Anti Aircraft gun, you would have the turret aim at a null constrained to the plane it was shooting at.

 

Another example is eyes, you could aim the eyes of a character at a null.

 

There really just things to constrain to, without actually having to put another model or bone in there. (I think if anyone knows any other uses, please tell!)

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Thanks so much!

 

just to make sure I'm understanding this---so nulls are really like invisible reference points to create a relationship to other actions...like the movement of eyes or the gun turret...?...

 

How would I use a null to constrain the movement of say, knees or a wrist or elbow? Are nulls the best/easiest way to do this? Should I be using a different kind of constraint to keep elbow, etc., from bending in un-natural positions?

 

risk.

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Go to this page and download Jeff Lew's two free models for A:M. They both have a great set of constraints that show an excellent use of nulls as trargets for controlling IK legs as well as constraining knees so they bend properly. You'll learn a boat load. I love this rig.

 

http://www.jefflew.com/DVD_support.html

 

Scott

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For an elbow . . . smartskin or an extra bone. I like the method of adding an extra bone that controls the elbow cps, then just set that to orient like the forearm 50%. Usually looks great and is easy, after you make that action, make it an on/off pose and hide the bone that controls the elbow cps, so you dont accidentally mess up the rigging in the chor.

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I have done a tutorial using nulls for a steamengine.

 

I hope someone will do a tutorial on rigging using some bones and some nulls.

Perhaps Rodney can do it? A short one... Just an arm?

Or Fisherman? He helped me with rigging a coffee cup...

3DArtz is also a nice guy - but you have to talk to him very neat - so he do not get upset... but he is clever - so perhaps just an arm!

:D

And there are several ways to do that arm rigging... sonofpat is a clever guy too I believe - itsjustme - a clever guy --- someday they can do a little tutorial - WINKing a bit - who knows...

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For controls where I'm going to be translating as well as rotating (like IK targets) I find Nulls much easier to grab and move than regular bones, and I don't confuse which ones I can translate with the ones I can't (which I do if everything is bones only)

 

-Alonso

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