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Blog Post

Clever Wing Rigging Setup

February 5, 2024 Behind-the-scenes

Rigging birds is always a challenge, especially when the film has a low budget and we cannot afford hair simulation with feather collision. As a result, on Butterfly Tale, we had to be very creative! With Singing Frog Studio, we used feathers in geometry with a system described below. Partnering with a professional rigging studio like Rigbox significantly simplified their workflow. Take a look! 🎬

βœ… All wing feathers are combined in only one mesh (left and right side together), excluding the β€˜β€™finger’’ feathers.

βœ… The arm feathers are deformed by a skinned lattice, which allows for smooth silhouettes and easy deformation.

βœ… To prevent the feathers from stretching in width due to the lattices, post-envelope blendshapes are added. These correct each feather’s width based on angle interpolators that are specifically placed on each wing articulation. Having a single mesh for the arm feathers also allows for easy modeling and mirroring of the blendshapes.

We were very happy with the result in this production context!