Performative Avatars | Morphing & Rigging (W3)
Questions from Readings
Imagined fembots are problematic because they portray the female as objects of desire without agency. What about “real fembots” who actually make deliberate choices like Kylie Jenner & Poppy? Perhaps behind their content lies an intent to reclaim, subvert, or present new ways of seeing.
But then my follow up question is: Does the intent even matter when majority of audience just consume content at face value, without context?
Becoming Dragon suggests that the experience of becoming or being a different self digitally is a valid (for lack of better word) state of being. Yet, when I compare Becoming Dragon to Eva Tiamat Medusa, a former-person who has physically modded her body to be more dragon-like, I read the two very differently. I instinctually read Eva’s state of being as more real. She physically experiences and expresses being another species, and she spends the entirety of her daily life living as a dragon lady.
So, is the virtual world going to remain a training ground, and our goal to actualize our digital selves into the physical? When we reach complete realism (or beyond) in virtual reality, will our physical self and state of being still matter?
Scan Morphing & Rigging
I used this scan as my starting file, because it turned out the best among the other scans.
Some problem areas that I noted were the ears and feet, and I planned to not morph the base model to these problematic shapes.
First step is Maya which was straightforward. I had to rotate my model a little bit but that was not too hard.
I don't know how to take a screenshot on Windows, so I used my phone...
Next I went to Wrap3, and I realized when I viewed the two meshes together that my hands and arms positions were so different compared to the base model. I was worried that the base model wouldn’t morph properly.
After that I put the alignment and morph points. I tried to put more dots than the video tutorial, especially on the hands and arms.
In the free polygon step, I took extra care to cover most of the feet, up to the ankle, because my original scan’s feet are really misshapen.
I computed and the result was really good, except that the lower legs look really weird. So I went back to paint a bigger area of free polygon (who can really tell if my calves are accurate anyway?) and re-computed. Note to self: I need to fix the texture on photoshop.
Then I put it in Mixamo and I had the time of my life. But I realized that my feet look like they’re always on invisible high heels?