Trig Functions in Maya without Third-Party Plug-ins

By default Maya does not ship with any nodes to calculate trig functions. If you want to use a plug-in, you can use the great plug-in Maya Math Nodes written by Serguei Kalentchouk. If you want or have to use default Maya, there is still hope. I recently added trig function support to dge, my library that converts string math equations to Maya node networks. Using math and trig knowledge, we can recreate these functions with the nodes that come with Maya....

Space Switch Using Offset Parent Matrix

Maya 2020 introduced the offsetParentMatrix attributes to transform nodes. This attribute allows transforms to be driven directly with a matrix and can cut down the number of nodes and connections in your set ups. In this post I'll show how to set up space switching using the offsetParentMatrix attribute instead of constraints and extra transform nodes. A parent-child relationship is a simple matrix multiplication and can be replicated with a multMatrix node:...

Website Housecleaning

I have migrated my site off of Wordpress which I've used for the past 12 years and switched to Hugo, a static site generator. My Wordpress site was just getting too messy and perpetually needed updates to plug-ins and the whole backend. I wanted something a bit cleaner and lighter weight. I did some house cleaning on the content. I got rid of my old DirectX 9 and Managed DirectX tutorials....

A New (Virtual) Reality

It has been a long time since my last update. In the last year, I have become a father so I've been a bit busy. But with the closure of Visceral Games I had some time to think about what I wanted to do next. I felt like I already received all the satisfaction I would get out of the VFX industry. Not to mention just about the entire VFX industry has moved out of the country to chase tax incentives....

Python Scripting for Maya Artists 2.0

I've updated my semi-popular pages on Python Scripting for Maya Artists. The material was originally written in 2009 and the pdf has been downloaded over 18,000 time so it was all due for an update. Updates include: Various cleanup on examples and explanations. New material on string formatting. New material on directory traversal. New material on docstring formats. New section on code conventions and PEP8. New section on writing clean code....

Unit Testing in Maya (Part 2)

Edited: 6/18/2016: Updated RollbackImporter to support relative imports and “from package import module” syntax. In my last post, I went over writing scripts that can be used to write unit tests for Maya tools and then run those tests from the commandline outside of Maya. In this post, I'll go over running those tests interactively in Maya. Being able to run tests interactively in Maya will greatly speed up debug times when tracking down issues because you'll be able to see what is going on in your tests....

Unit Testing in Maya

Unit testing is a valuable tool that a lot of studios fail to implement. Unit testing can save a great amount of time and energy (and therefore money) by allowing developers, tool writers, and even content creators to catch broken deliverables before passing them downstream in the pipeline. The lack of unit testing with TD's is most likely due to one of the following: The person doesn't know what unit testing is....

New Job at Electronic Arts

I have officially joined the game industry! After 8 years in the film and feature animation industry, I decided to switch over and try the game industry. I accepted a Craft Director position at Visceral Games of Electronic Arts where I will be helping with character and cinematics technology. Lots of exciting challenges await!...

Creating a GPU-Driven Wrap Deformer Released

I have finally released my GPU-Driven Wrap Deformer video series! It is 55 videos totaling over 12 hours of content. The code for the wrap deformer is free so if you can't or don't want to purchase the series, you can get the code on my github. To checkout and/or purchase the series click here....

Coming Soon: Creating a GPU-Driven Wrap Deformer in Maya 2016

My next video series is in progress. You can check out the introduction video here and download the open source code on my GitHub....