Creating and Animating a Simple Eye Rig

When I’ve explained the process of rigging in the past, I often start by asking the other person (or people) if he or she enjoys playing games like Chess or — for a computer gaming example — Minesweeper. It’s an apt comparison. The core mechanics of these games involve having the players logically track their way along a series of interdependent events. Rigging is a lot like that. It’s a complex task, a technical artform that simultaneously involves the logical problem-solving skills of a programmer, the usability considerations of a designer, and an animator’s eye for aesthetics. »

Unwrapping Your Eye and Painting a Detailed Texture

In preceding tutorial, I show you how to add basic materials to an eyeball model (created in the eye modeling tutorial). While the model looks pretty good, you can provide an additional splash of realism to it. In particular, you can get a much more detailed iris, and you can add some of the fine blood vessels around the white section of the eye. Those kinds of details are difficult to pull off with just material shaders and vertex colors. »

Coloring the Eye

If you followed the eye modeling tutorial, you should have a model of an eye that has the boring, plastic default gray material. If you haven’t modeled that eye, don’t worry; it’s right here. Feel free to download it if you need a starting point. The purpose of this tutorial is to make that eye look more like an actual eye and less like a gray ball. Setting up a Materials screen for BI When working with materials in Blender — particularly when rendering with BI (Blender Internal) — you find out very quickly that you often have to scroll the Properties editor or you frequently have to switch between different sections of the Properties editor. »

Modeling an Eye

If you’re modeling characters, chances are good that those characters are going to need eyes. Granted, there’s a chance that all your characters may be robots, moles, and worms, but I’ll assume that’s not the case. Eyes carry the life of a character, so you want to get them right. This example walks you through producing a nice eye model that you can make quickly and even reuse in future projects. »