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Rigging Showreel: Max Hammond


Max Hammond has put together an impressive showreel of his rigging talents. You can find him (along with some informative tutorials) at


  1. Lawrence D’Oliveiro on

    Procedural animation all done with Blender 2.4x, too. I didn’t know it could do that. :)

    Just a few typos I found confusing: “gate” should be “gait”, “role” should be “roll”.

  2. Excellent Rigging Reel. The only one that I did not like was the first one. I think it has way too many controls for the simplicity of the mesh, specially if the model is intended for animation. The Rest of your models are simply awesome ! The ant is a very clever design, I always vote for rigs that simplify the animator's task rather than those rigs with many controls for one single leg or neck. When models are over rigged, then the animation is harder to smooth out.

    The vehicle is also great and very practical for good quality work with no much time invested. The Rope is also a very clever design for specific tasks. The girl at the end is great, I guess she is a bit over rigged, on legs, however I can't be fully sure of this by just looking at the video. For instance, the face really needs lots of controls due to her stylish appearance  ( Contrary to your first character in my opinion) for expressions and they look very well designed. Her expressions at the end are very natural, I wish you had spent more time showing us the face Rig. In a character like her the face is very important since  face expression is how the animation convince the audience.

    I also saw some automatic face expressions driven by the head movements, however I guess you can deactivate them right? If you wanted her to smile with the head down then according to how bones are constrained seems  a bit difficult?

    If I ever put my hands on that Girl model, the first thing I would do is to delete her clothes vertex by vertex to see how good you are at modeling !  Ha ha :)  she is cute !

    Excellent Rigging Skills, See ya !

    • Hi Animaticoide

      Thankyou for taking the time to comment. I get what you are saying about the rig being complicated but sadly all the controls do, do something and removing them would remove functionality from the rig. Normaly on rigs like this you use bone layers to simplify the rig and display only relevant controls like I used on the head of the robot character. But I showed all the controls at once for demonstration.

      You need to remember that in production a rig is static but shots can change so you need to build extra functionality into the rig to anticipate any shot changes. You may think your pen knife is too complicated becuse all you need is a knife at the momment but tomorrow you might need that bottle opener. The same applies to rigs you might only want the character to walk through the front door, but then someone says why not have him squeeze through the letterbox. Without all thouse extra controls you would not be able to do the shot.

      You also need to remember that although the character is simple, it is the simple characters that need the most complex rigs. This is becuse they are often stylized and stylized character design often has stylized animation and stylized animation requires lots of squash and stretch and bending. Something that needs to be built into the rig from the start.

      hope that helps.

      • Thanks for your reply Max, I know many aspects of rigging, about hiding bone layers etc. What you say is right, but you did not show the model going through a letter box for example. I understand your point we just simple have different point of views about some practical rigging. For example ( in my opinion ) that little neck is over rigged on your first character, the neck is really short and skinny in comparison with his head and body, so why so many controls for that little neck?  I know that if you put a bone on every 2 vertex the model will have more possibilities to do weird things ! We agreed, but is it necessary?

         Now your ant shows a 100% practical rigging !  And you use just ONE control with lots of bones ! That's my point, to create less controls and more automatic functions using lots of bones chains, shapes,action constraints,IKs etc ! Some other rigs did not show the functionality of so many extra controls ( in my opinion) The same could be apply to the girl, less controllers with more automatic responses.

         Some people have post ants rigs, and they have placed 5 controls on each leg ! it means 30 controllers for a walkcycle and they called OUTSTANDING rigging???, now you have made an ant with just one control, then that is OUTSTANDING for certain. But the girl lacks of this amazing practical rigging in my opinion.

        Remember that in production is always important to create rigs to fit the scene and ease the animator's task, this is key in practical rigging. Every control placed in a rig should justify a pose on the scene, otherwise is over rigged.

        Also I saw some poses in your demo that could be made using two automatic controls only, the Girl's body for example, however as I said before, the face is the one that mostly deserves lots of controls in order to express emotions.

        Hope it helps you a bit.

          • I guess you don't like when someone critics your work in a constructive way :(

             I have done the best approach possible to make you understand how you can get better at rigging for real animators. Some of your rigs are over rigged !, sorry that that makes you so upset to the point to bring an unrelated thread only to dismiss your flaws on your showreel.

             This is a social media, you must learn to accept crits of your work, there is not such perfect project from anyone, no even PIXAR !

             if you prefer to hear: Great ! Lovely..Perfect, then we better leave this comment session up to this point, so just beginners can write so.

            Just relax a bit and read my lines later to analyze them. Simply think that MARY wrote the comment and do not blind  yourself just because my name :)

            Good Luck to you too my friend ! This little bunny might help you relax a bit my friend !

  3. awsome work Max, im pretty new to the Blender community and so very much dedicated to the 2.5/6+ series. First thing what came up my mind right away is do you think it would be possible to combine procedure rigs/animations with a boids particle system? or is this a really stupid question..;)

    • No thats not a stupid idea, I had the same one. Use the Biods particle flocking sytem to controle the ants. The idea is sound and it would be the methode I would use to controle a large ant colony.

      Off the top of my head you would need to create the biods particle system, then attach an object to each particle. To do this you would have to bake out the particle animation and then use some form of vertex perant to perant each ant to each vertex. In the past the closest thing I can think of that I have done is to use a vertex triangle and then use the verex perant "max 3 vertex". But there might be a better way to do this in Blender 2.6X.

      Might be intresting to see it done. If you try it yourself let me know how it goes :P

  4. Thanks. It seems you are expert in animation. Any tuts for blender newbies in animation. If not, Pl, accept our request.

  5. Kirill Poltavets on

    Max, everything really impressed me!
    Comments in your videos are really helpful! :) Wrapping hooks onto the ground (for the tank) - I didn't thought about such a way first... But then just remembered that I used the same to auto-control the camera over the OceanSim surface.
    When I'll start "climbing" onto the rigging course I'll definitely follow your tips and use your auto-rigged ant!
    Thanks a lot, Max!

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