Riding a Bike

I've been working on a small, animated passion project over the last few weeks, knocking out small chunks at a time. I illustrated this bicyclist but got stuck when it came time to rig his body in After Effects.

In the past, I've used the RubberHose plugin to cheat legs and arms where I want them, but this character's tapered jeans required a little bit more attention. I've heard of folks using the DUIK Bassel plugin before, so I installed it and forced myself to sit with it for a few hours.

Painpoint #1: My style calls for a lot of broken line segments, which tend to get lost when the different appendages start bending over each other. There were some details I had to forgo.

Painpint #2: I definitely miscalculated the foot pedal bar length and ended up having some knees nearly piercing the man's chin — and that was after I animated the entire loop of his feet. I essentially had to scrap it and redo the entire foot animation.

Win #1: DUIK is a thousand times easier to rig custom shapes than RubberHose. In fact, I feel confident that I could swap out this guy's features and create a whole second character without breaking the rig.

Clint Hess
Vector Illustrator & 2D Animator Based in San Diego.

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