Refined the walk cycle a bit… Using the graph editor really makes a difference, being able to see the arcs of movement in a kind of abstracted way like that is very useful for analysing how your model is moving versus how you want it to move.
I evened out the up and down motion of the body – initially I thought it seemed too choppy because I made the movement too broad, but altering the spacing really helped make it more subtle. I still might alter the range of movement if needed on a later pass.
I straightened her arms and made their swinging more even, and curled her fingers in as having them in the default position made Ridley look like she was doing the robot rather than casually walking. I also put a little follow through on her wrists for the forward and backward swing of the arms, but this needs tweaking and smoothing out to get a nice arc going.
I moved her feet a little further in under her body, and exaggerated the shifting of her weight to each side as she takes a step. I think these changes make her feel more grounded and solid. I have made a note to bear in mind the character’s centre of gravity earlier on next time.
When viewed on a loop, the point where the clip repeats could be smoother – I think extending the walk cycle is a good idea for the next pass, to make up for this.
Speaking with one of my tutors raised an interesting question for when I have the facial expressions finished – whether animal expressions will ‘read’ clearly for an audience, or whether some measure of stylisation will be necessary, or even inevitable, in making animal expressions that an audience can understand at a glance. I will be very intrigued to see whether this is the case or not, and is one of the things I could possibly ask a test audience about.