30
Aug
08

Composing conversations using the Face Track

The Face Track is a multi-track editing option now found on the Timeline in iClone 3.0

The Face Track is a multi-track editing option now found on the Timeline in iClone 3.0

Today’s tip touches again on the Face Track in iClone 3.0, showcasing how quick and easy it is to set up a conversation between two avatars. Now with the addition of the Multi-Track editing feature users have the ability to Record or Import a .WAV file and then line them up perfectly creating flawless facial animation timing and character interaction every time. This is great for Machinimators and professional voiceover artists because it allows you to use other audio editors to create the high quality .WAV file and then, with 3 clicks apply this as facial animation to an avatar. Further edit the emotion and coinciding motion animation to complete the effect. To apply a .WAV file to a pair of characters for the sake of creating a conversation you will need 2 audio tracks and then follow the steps below…

  • Load a set of Avatars
  • Go to the Animation Tab
  • Click the Facial Animation button
  • Locate and click the Open button in the Modify Panel
  • Navigate to your .WAV file
  • Repeat to second actor and .WAV file
  • Use Hotkey: (F3) to launch the Timeline
  • Locate and click the Tracklist button
  • Select the first character
  • Expand the Timeline and click the Face Track
  • Click and Drag the facial animation clip to the desired area on the Timeline
  • Select the second actor from the Tracklist
  • Click the Face Track
  • Align the second facial animation clip the match the beginning or end of the first clip

When this technique is combined with character motion layer editing and animation, a very natural conversation can be quickly created between two avatars. Another tip is to make sure you use Look At with both avatars selecting each head as the target for the other. You can now make clips of just about anyone carrying on with one another, find free .WAV files and make you own spoof clips, try your hand at sketch comedy, whatever you like. Really try and reach the full potential of this new feature because it can make all the difference in your next 3D short film or Machinima feature, by taking a once tough and never quite perfected method and revamping it to be a quick and easy way to create realistic conversations using the new Face Track. Below is a high speed video of the steps listed above and a very Lampoon example to appeal to the Griswald in us all! Only the best Clark!

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