Recently, I’ve been rigging some characters for Rick & Morty, aside from my usual duties as Scene Prep supervisor. This got me thinking about how fascinating and different rigs can be from one production to another.

Some productions lean toward highly complex and heavy rigs, full-on reformers, textures or master controllers. In contrast, others are made so animators have to draw a lot, so they can capture a more traditional frame-to-frame feel.

This is important because there’s not only one way of rigging. Not only animation, but the compositing will be key in some of the choices made. Are we doing the comp in After FX or Toon Boom? Will animators have the time to draw hundreds or poses, or we soak the thing in deformers for every little thing? Will their PC’s going to be able to handle more than 3 characters in the same scene if they are this sophisticated? Do we need a rigging system that can be replicated easily by other studios involved?

Choices. A lot of them.

In recent days I’ve been putting together a rig for reel purposes (Alex rig, I made some entries about it), without really putting much thought into what kind of animation would be more suitable. When you do a rig for your reel, you just want to try and put all the tricks you know into it to wow people. It may be interesting to do the same character in different styles of rigging to showcase the pros and cons of every choice. Don’t you think?