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File: eyeRig.jpg (266 KB, 992x707)
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I have a rigging question for Maya.

I have a cartoon character with blend shapes for facial expressions, and separate upper and lower eyelids that can be rotated around the eyeball.

Each blend shape for the face (area around the eye) requires the eyelids to rotate to a different value in order to fit in properly.

I have made 4 locators for the eyelids per blend shape, which the respective eyelids are orient constrained to.

I can get the constraint to work just fine if the eyelids were to always be open, but I need to be able to get the eyes to blink.

Here's what I think I need: I need some kind of toggle that can hold infinite values and blend between them smoothly, and store 2 values within every value (open and closed eyelid), which can be toggled only when that value is activated. When any of the various values are set to 0, both values within it are also set to 0, having no effect on the eyelids.

I've been fiddling with driven keys for a while now, but I can't get the eyelids to follow correctly. I'm not sure how many problems there are with this approach, but one I'm aware of is that even though I clearly set the minimum and maximum value of the constraints and other attributes to 0 and 1 respectively, I will still get values of -1 and 2 when testing the eye rig.

I'm not sure if I've explained everything properly, please let me know if you need more info.

Thanks for the book recommendation. I'll probably pick that one up.
If i understood correctly what you're trying to do, you'd need to create a corrective blendshape for each of the eyelid combinations. Meaning, when you activate the upper and lower eyelid together, you'd have to subtract the corrective blendshape so that it actually looks good.

But if you're trying to get the animation curvature of the eyelid sliding over the eyeball, it would be easier to skin the eyelids to joints and then use them to rotate the eyelids, and in the end use corrective blendshapes to 'pretty' up the mesh when the joints set the eyelids in the desired positions.

Hope this helps you out.
File: eyeRig.png (12 KB, 460x358)
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Thanks for for the advice.

For this character, the first character I\m making from the ground up, the eyelids slide over the eyeball by skinning it to one joint.

But will it work differently with several joints rather than just constraining the one joint (one per upper and lower eyelid) to locators?

I like the idea of corrective blend shapes. It sounds like what I'm looking for, as long as it's possible to do the that, but purely with rotation of joints. I don't need blend shapes for the eyelids, because the eyeball and eyelids make up 2 perfect spheres (unless you meant lining it up a little with the surrounding geometry, which I could look into as well), which are deformed by parenting the joints I use to control them, to a scale joint that is non-uniformly scaled. Pic related if that last part was confusing.

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