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Big Buck Bunny character converted to Maya


big-buck-bunny-mayaHere's an interesting bit of news: someone converted the model of Big Buck Bunny to Maya.

Michael Lawler wrote:

Hey everyone. Thanks for all the hard work and great Blender news and thanks to everyone in the community for supporting one of the best applications on the planet.

I'm writing today to draw everyone's attention to an interesting discovery over at It would seem that a person going by rajagopal has rigged BBB for use in Maya.

While I've not seen anything like this done with characters created under the CC/Open-Source type of agreement, this is an interesting turn of events.

If you have a copy of Maya, please let us know how it compares to the original! Oh, and if you're the author of this model, please change the license from 'freeware' to 'creative commons' (see the license information on Thanks!

About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


  1. For the curious, here's what it looks like:

    My first impressions are pretty good. It pops open window up when you open it crediting the model to the BBB team, which is nice. The skinning seems to be good, and is comparable to the original -after a few minutes of posing, I haven't managed to break it yet. It's not too slow to work with; posing it is nice and interactive; playback is around 7fps (which isn't great, but is still pretty good for Maya!).

    There's an odd choice here or there; arm stretch is turned on by default; the ear controllers are named *_CON instead of *_CTRL like on the rest of the rig; the geometry is selectable (should be put on a referenced layer or something)... But it has lots of nice options to play with - variable geometry LOD, FK/IK switching, full body squash-and-stretch, and no nastiness like cyclic dependencies. Overall I say it's a very faithful reproduction of the original, and good work :)

  2. Tried it out fun! It's a decent rig. Not that fast especially comparing to the Blender version on the same machine.
    In general I'd say that the Blender version has better deformation and volume control all around, and the facial rig is better because controls are on the face. The two things I like about the Maya version are the spine control (hey guy, it's about time for a spline IK, don't you think ?) and the foot roll and IK/FK switches included in the channel box (I'm sure 2.5 will allow this pretty easily).

  3. For someone who likes the BBB characters, and wants to give as much mileage to the spirit of the BBB project as they can, but need to use maya for the sake of their work environment, this is very cool. For something like the 11secondclub, I would most often rather use these characters than the generic ones.

    May find it sparks an awareness with those whose attention hadn't yet landed on BBB.

  4. He doesn't have to redistribute it as creative commons, he just has to attribute it to
    the blender institute (which he "almost" did, by attributing it to "the BBB team").

    As it says on the BBB website:
    "In short, this means you can freely reuse and distribute this content,
    also commercially, for as long you provide a proper attribution."

    So change it back again :-P

  5. Or am i wrong? The wording is a little unclear.
    I just think it asks him to state that the original work is creative commons...
    Otherwise there wouldn't be much use of the license that forces
    you to redistribute under the same license...

  6. Oh for gods sake, third comment in a row :-P:

    He has to make sure that everyone who uses his model
    for anything also attribute to the original creators.
    But that still does not mean that he has to release it under creative commons.

    Sorry for the confusion :-)

  7. It should be noted that for licensing type you only have an option menu with three choices:

    - Freeware
    - Shareware
    - Commercial

    This is not something he has any control over.

  8. That seems like a tricky one. He doesn't have license over the model, but he did create the rig. So maybe the licensing has to do with the rig itself? Or maybe because he used the BBB model his rig automatically come under the CC license? I don't know. Can anyone clarify what this means?

    Then again, I figure if someone wants to animate the model they should just download and pickup using Blender to avoid this whole licensing mystery.

  9. is it me, or is every piece of blendernation news breaking down to license wars! man.... stay on topic already!

    So can someone do a render?, It looks impressive on maya! too bad about the speed, but what about using layers, proxies?

  10. Lucas da Costa Dantas on

    I guess all the licence thing about that open source ,
    is what a wanted for keep to tell who created it ,not only changed .
    So to keep up its credits that opened the source for everyone
    than not everyone to did it as developer of the art that in this case is
    a modification of .

    I also read about a try on Blender.Org on its scripts programming .
    That with the open source to everyone ,when a creation of must to follow
    its original programming for fit .Also here some credits insue about who really made it .

    What is going on ? Its going down or get too good for everyone ?
    And now to who's the owner to all of it ?

    Its the tool getting its shape for the art or the art getting its shape by the tool ?
    what's the question .....

  11. Unsettlingsilence on

    One word:
    But if you are stuck paying that much for Maya you should get something for free. As long as it brings attention to blender I glad it's out there.

  12. I took a look at it briefly about a week ago.

    I like that it doesn't use x-ray bones (something I now avoid myself). And the spine is interesting, though I'm unsure how nice it would actually be to use in practice.

    I'm not really a fan of the facial controls. As an animator I prefer it when a rig feels (as much as possible) like a real object that I'm grabbing and moving around, and therefore I really dislike it when controls aren't on the character itself to intuitively drag around and manipulate. Though perhaps this is a matter of personal preference.

    In general the rig feels like it lacks polish. But, then again, so does the original. So dunno. :-P

  13. SUPER!
    Precisely because of the fact that the Blender exporters all are buggy, it's a great job!!
    There are much professional models for Maya, so why not things that have their origin in Blender?!!!

  14. probably because they can clutter the view and distract from the character. I kinda like them if you use em carefully. For instance, I like xray limblines better than circles around limbs, but other people don't. I guess it's user preference.

  15. BlenderFOundationZx32 on

    lol! what i guy. he needed to rig the model from blender (free) to maya (a fricken kachillion dollars), it just goes to show how good blender is.

  16. BBB on Maya fur... that would be nice..

    Maya vs Blender? Results are almost the same.. but Maya is easier cause has 10 years (Maya 2009 is the 10th aniversary release) of optimized code and commercial plugins...

    Maya fur is really trickly, see, results depend of lights and shadow linking. Trust me. Fur depeds of UV setup.

    Maya default renderer: 1500 x 1500 P4, 1 GB ram... 20 minutes.. just triangles always facing to the camera... no real hair geometry, good for speed and normal takes but really bad for close-ups so u need to set the hair width to 0.1 or 0.2 and increase the density a lot.
    Renderman: "HD1080 render could take about 14 minutes on an 8core machine with 4gb of ram" (, This is real hair geometry... really good for closeups.. supports maya fur automatic Maya scene to .rib translation and render.

    I have done a lot of tests of Maya 3D fur. My last job: Not so good at all cause I did it quickly... (less than 10 hours everithing)

    And have never could get a decent fur render of Blender.. I tryied... but its hard and double trickly... and very very heavy memory use.

  17. the weighting of the shoulders in the maya version is ... not so good. it pinches when you pose the character to say, grab an apple with both hands ... or clap or something similar. the blender version is better overall.

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