Hi soulo, I had an enforced break here while I waited for Dell to replace my failed video card and screen, so I apologize for a delay in answering.
Iridescence is 100% correct. You need a full animation capable program like Blender (cough...cough FREE!..cough..cough) or those other $$ guys (maya, etc.) to rig your mesh.
The first video of the machinimatrix mesh series was sufficient to teach me to rig the avatar. And from that site you can download a copy of the avatar and its bones. (It took a lot of experimenting in Blender to shrink it to a teeny tiny size and scale it to a giant - painful yet fun.)
You need to stick to the default avatar bones without adding or removing any, however you can scale bones to fit your mesh, just don't change the "hip" location. Check out the Second Life Mesh forums. I think Gaia Clary (machinimatrix.com author) has a beta tutorial of some length that she posted for feedback with plans to refine it and turn it into a video. I read it and it's an excellent start.
Thank you, Nancy you have been a great help
Hi Marcus and thread gang...
I am going to sound like a noob as I have been using Zbrush 3.1 and the Zsculpty plugin for 3.1 to make my SL sculpties and I have learned enough about this environment to let me create my sculpty maps with ease.
Now, I got version 4 and I installed the plugin you offered at the beginning of this thread and I can see the plugin in the Zplugin tab.
But, when I load up one of my old 3.1 create ZTL tools into Zbrush4, it all looks fine on screen but I get one error after the other in trying to create a sculpt map from it. I read this thread. I tried a couple things lke executing the UV Master on it. And I am as close as now being able to create the sculpt map before it comes back and says:
MESH IS NOT SUITABL FOR SCULPTY MAP, OPERATION ABORTED.
In as much noob language as someone can speak, how do I convert my old 3.1 save ZTL files to a manner than lets me use the new plugin?
Or, is it just too complex to be worth converting them?
Thanks in advance if someone has explained the steps to convert old ZTL files to V4 and this new plugin.
PS... the past zsculpty plugin was a godsend.
Hi Toysoldier, something to try until Marcus chimes in (I no longer have an activated version of 3.1 or 3.5 to try this in advance so you'll have to do the experiment):
1) Import the sculpty from the previous version of Zbrush. Go into the UV subpalette of the Tools palette and delete the UVs. Drop the tool back into the palette by turning off the edit button.
2) Set up up the primitive type you used for the item you are bringing in to version 4, for example a sphere. Make it a sculpty polymesh via the button from the plug-in and go into UV Master to copy the UVs.
3) Re-load the sculpty (now without UVs) from your current tool palette. Go into UV master and PASTE the uv's you copied into this tool.
Proceed with making the sculpty map using Marcus' plug-in.
Please report back to let us all know if this worked. If so it might be useful for others.
If it doesn't work then the only other workaround I know of is to shrink down the UVs (reduce down to about 99.95 % uniformally - just a tiny bit) using another 3d program, such as Blender or Modo and reimport the item back into Zbrush then try out the plug-in with the externally revised UVs to make the sculpty map.
I had a moment to dig up some old tools from prior versions of zbrush to check out my previous suggestion. It worked in 2 out of 3 cases. Not sure why this workaround failed in one case. Be sure to back up anything you play around with!
Nancyan's method should work but there is a simpler way:
1. Open the ZTL in ZBrush 4.
2. Press the ZSculpty Tools> Scale UVs button.
3. Export the sculpty using ZSculpty Tools> Export Sculpty map.
(You will get the 'Mesh not suitable...' message when the UVs are wrong for sculpty map generation.)
Non-Primitive; made with Zspheres
I'm a newb myself. I just started using Second Life a bit, and I want to make my own anthro(furry) avatar, I love the amount of detail those guys put into them.
I'm creating a personalized fox avatar, and I'm having difficulty preparing the head for my model for use with the plug-in. I guess that's because I started using Zbrush right away and made a Zsphere-made sculpted model of a fox head. I wanted to import it to SL and see how it looked so I found your plug-in.
Is there anyway to get my current Ztool-fox head made from Zpheres to be accepted by this plugin? It comes up with the obvious error; not a primitive, and if I try the other thing (UV scaling), it says not a polymesh.
Any tips would be wonderful. I read the whole thread to see if anyone was in my same boat.
I was wondering if you could tell me the steps to polypainting the sl male grouped .ztl mesh and export the texture for use in secondlife..
soulo that's a tall order, and not one I'm best qualified for. If you have specific questions about the process perhaps I, and others can be of assistance. I'm not at a professional level in either modeling or texturing and having attempted a few SL skins I greatly admire and respect the work I see by some of the better known SL skin artists.
There are a few versions of the SL avatar, some optimized for working in Zbrush and perhaps thats what you are referring to. I forget where I got a copy, but I will say that my copy of the male model isn't quite right in the polygroup divisions. There are polys in the bottom group that belong in the top on my copy, so to begin with that needs to be straightened out. If you have been having problems in this area and would like help let me know. I'll include a picture of what I mean. Its creates a problem with splitting the mesh properly for texture export as I describe below.
To begin with you need to create polygroups by going to the polygroup sub palette and selecting "autogroups with UV". The sl male grouped ztl which I think you are referring to, is almost properly divided, with the exception of a few polys assigned to the wrong part. If you are using a different version of the model which you imported as an obj file, you may find after pressing "autogroup with UV" your model splits into many groups, but they are easy to group together into the three main groups that coorespond to the models UVs.
You paint on the unsplit model so you can cross over UV boarders. After painting the whole model you can then split the mesh into subtools by using the "group split" option in the subtool menu. Then you can select each subtool and select "New from Polypaint" and you will get individual UV images for the head, top and bottom (and not the top, bottom and head all overlaying each other as you would with an undivided mesh).
Clone your textures, flip them vertically and export them to photoshop to refine them, or as bmp images to test out in SL.
The really great skins are worked on in great detail with many layers in photoshop. Seams are also an issue so you need to paint a bit outside of the uv islands to overcome this..that needs to be done in a program like photoshop, although there may be features within zbrush I'm not remembering that take care of the seam issue.
Possibly I confused rather than clarified here. Its a time consuming process with alot of steps, but other then the artistic skill part it's not too dificult.
Thanks Nancy and Marcus for the help! Yes Marcus, your idea did work and it was quick and simple!
Thank you nancy..fortunatly i have one of the better sl meshes, your efforts still managed to enlighten me in more then one way in your response..cheers
displacement or shadow map?
I was hoping you could explain how to get a displacement map made, and uploaded to secondlife. Do i have to choose between a texture or a displacement map or do i combine them in photoshop or something? i would like to allow residents in secondlife to be able to add their own textures or change colors to my sculpties and maintain the displacement or shadow/occlusion map details..
Much thanks in advance
This is an excellent question that can be better asked via the Second Life community forums. You can access the forums via the Second Life main website. There's a number of very helpful groups there and I follow the mesh forums closely. The Build and the Texture forum are also very helpful. Since this isn't a Zbrush specific question I think that you'd be better served there to get the Second Life specific information you need. Lots of friendly and helpful folks on those forums. Good luck!