Award-winning Vancouver 3D animator TJ Galda adds to the series of books on Character Rigging with a beginner book outlining how to rig characters using computer graphics software such as Autodesk’s Maya. The book is designed to make the techniques as accessible as possible, so that beginners can create and animate lifelike characters. Beginner Character Rigging is available through digital publishing site Lulu.com and major outlets such as Amazon or Barnes & Noble.
TJ Galda has worked as Senior CG Supervisor and Character Technical Director on films like Fantastic Four, Shark Tale, Over the Hedge, Kung Fu Panda, and many more. Recently, Mr. Galda received the worldwide Autodesk Maya Master Award. With over a decade of instructional experience, the book is aimed at explaining why things work the way they do in an easy to understand manner. In writing the book, Mr. Galda drew on his work in character animation, as well as his experience as an animation instructor, mentor, and lecturer.
Rob O’Neill, Director of the Pratt Institute Digital Arts Research Laboratory, offers praise for the book: “The book provides production proven techniques and practical insider information on one of the least documented aspects of character setup. TJ Galda is an expert in the field and has produced a welcome and valuable resource for the community. I wish he would stop giving our secrets away.”
The book explains in detail all of the basic topics used in crafting modern computer graphic characters, from architecture to deformation. It then delves in to the meat of the topic, covering everything from joints to wires, from the connection editor to pruning small weights. With over 30 example files, 200 images and countless step by step tutorials, the text is rich in both practical steps and theory.
These systems are typically quite complex in modern films, but Mr. Galda uses an approachable writing style to simplify the topic. Mr. Galda says: “After being asked countless times about techniques, and having conducted speaking engagements around the world, I saw the need for this series. Creating characters for today’s computer animation films and games is complex; these books strive to make that process as simple as possible. The main goal is for the reader to be able to answer the question of why. Knowing that is the key to being able to troubleshoot and to innovate new techniques.”
The release comes with a twist. Proceeds from the sales of the book will be given to charity and buyers can inform the choice of the charities. This is a first for the industry and Galda hopes to raise funds for the fight against cancer, wildlife and more.
TJ Galda also have a book available titled Advanced Character Rigging: Creating Advanced Tendon and Muscle Systems