This week our first year undergraduate students (VFX, animation and games – our first year is a common year) are studying how to animate a walk cycle, creating a successful biped walk and then giving it character and personality.
One very useful resource is the Bio Motion Walker from the Bio Motion Lab, located at York University in Toronto, Ontario.
The Bio Motion Walker allows animators to move a range of sliders showing how to make a walk cycle feel masculine or feminine, heavy or light, anxious or calm, happy or sad.
|“Zombie” walk by Michael Davies|
We have many walk cycle tutorials available for our students at Escape Studios. These form part of our series of online animation tutorials, to support our students’ classroom learning.
Ways to Animate a Walk – which is best?
One of the most common questions student animators ask when they tackle their first walk cycle is this: is it better to animate the walk cycle “on the spot”, as if on an imaginary treadmill, or is it better to animate the character physically walking across the screen, taking two steps?
|Walk Cycle from “The Animator’s Survival Kit”|
Both methods of creating a cycle are effective approaches to the problem of character walks, and at Escape Studios we teach both methods. Both, however, have their advantages and disadvantages.
Watch this five minute video here to understand the difference between the two approaches, and decide for yourself which one suits you best.
Locomotion Resources at Escape Studios
To see more about how to animate walks at Escape Studios, read the blog posts below:
- “Stewart” Walk Tutorial with Marc Stevenson
- Animating the ZigZag Walk with Alex Williams
- Learn to animate a basic walk with “Monty” by Alex Williams
Basic Walk Cycle Tutorial using “Ultimate Walker” with Amanda Costa
- Character Walk Tutorial with “Monty”, with Alex Williams
- 100 Ways to Walk with Kevin Parry
- How to stop feet sliding in a walk cycle, with Alex Williams
- Character walks with Houman Soroushnia
- Basic Run Cycle Tutorial with Marc Stevenson
- “Monty” walk tutorial with Marc Stevenson
The Escape Studios VFX Blog offers a personal view on the art of visual effects.