Introducing Character Animation with Blender / Edition 1

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Let this in-depth professional book be your guide to Blender, the powerful open-source 3D modeling and animation software that will bring your ideas to life. Using clear step-by-step instruction and pages of real-world examples, expert animator Tony Mullen walks you through the complexities of modeling and animating, with a special focus on characters. From Blender basics to creating facial expressions and emotion to rendering, you’ll jump right into the process and learn valuable techniques that will transform your movies.

Note: CD-ROM/DVD and other supplementary materials are not included as part of eBook file.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470102602
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/27/2007
  • Edition description: With DVD
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Meet the Author

Tony Mullen, Ph.D., teaches at Tsuda College, Tokyo, where his courses include modeling and animation with Blender as well as the Python programming language. Mullen has been a cartoonist and an illustrator. His screen credits include writer, co-director, or lead animator on several short films, including the award-winning Gustav Braüstache shorts.

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Table of Contents




Chapter 1: Blender Basics: Interface and Objects.

Work Areas and Window Types.

Navigating the 3D Space.

Objects and Datablocks.

User Preferences.

Chapter 2:  Working with Meshes.

Polygons and Subsurfacing.

Extrusion Modeling and Box Modeling.

Chapter 3: Completing the Model with Materials, Textures, and Particles.

Material Datablock.

Material Properties.

Textures and UV Mapping.

Using Static Particles.

Chapter 4:  Armatures and Rigging.

Blender Armature System.

Building a Simple Armature.

Rigging Captain Blender.

Chapter 5:  Shape Keys and Facial Rigging.

Shape Key Basics.

Building a Shape Key Set for Captain Blender.

Facial Bones and Controls.

Improved Mesh Deformations Using Driven Shape Keys.


Chapter 6:  Basics of Animation.

Keyframes and Ipos.

Using the Ipo Editor: Bouncing a Ball.

Interpolation and Extend Types.

Chapter 7:  Armature Animation.

Posing and Keyframing with the Action Editor.

Walk and Run Cycles.

Pose-to-Pose Animation.

Chapter 8:  Facial Animation and Lip Sync.

Facial Posing.

Lip Sync.


Chapter 9:  Nonlinear Animation.

Using the NLA Editor.

NLA in Action.

Mixing Actions: Walking and Talking.

Chapter 10:  Further Issues in Character Animation.

Interacting with Props.

Deformation with Lattices.

Softbodies and Metaballs.

Chapter 11: Lighting, Rendering, and Editing Your Animation.

Lighting Basics.

Rendering Your Animation.

Editing in the Sequence Editor.

Chapter 12:  Using Python Scripts.

Installing and Executing Python Scripts.

Standard Scripts.

Extended Functionality with Scripts.


Chapter 13: Full-Scale Productions: Elephants Dream and Plumiferos.

GPL, Creative Commons, and the Blender Artistic License.

Elephants Dream, the World’s First "Open Movie."

A Preview of Plumiferos.

Chapter 14:  A Look Into Elephants Dream.

Proog and Emo Rigs.

Texturing Proog.

Ways of Walking: Following a Path vs. a Manually Keyed Walk.

Tips on Studying the Elephants Dream Files.

Chapter 15:  Feifi the Canary: Plumiferos Takes Wing.

Introducing Feifi.

Rigging a Cartoon Bird.

Chapter 16:  Blender in the Pipeline.

Production Pipeline.

Using Libraries.

Collaboration with Subversion and Verse.

…and Back Into Blender.


Chapter 17:  Other Software and Formats.

Importing and Exporting Other File Formats.

Useful Open-Source Software for Blender Artists.

Blending into the (Near) Future.

Chapter 18:  Resources for Further Learning.

Selected Online Resources.

Recommended Books.

On Becoming a Blender Master.


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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Learn the ropes, but the author is not a master animator

    Before diving into this book you should look at the same animations on the accompanying DVD--you will see that the resulting models are fairly simple and the animations are stiff and lifeless. This is a good book to learn the basics of the Blender interface but it won't make you an effective animator. I recommend you instead look at the "Basic Modeling and Animation" tutorial on for the basics and the "Learn Character Animation Using Blender" DVD published by the Blender foundation for vital character animation. For animating faces, I highly recommend "Stop Staring."

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted April 7, 2010

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    Posted March 28, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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