Quadruped Walk Cycles

Taught by Toby Winder

Course Number:
Software Version:
Original Run Date:
March 2022 
6 hours 54 minutes 
In this course, taught by Toby Winder, you take your first steps in animating quadrupeds. You will learn how to analyze references to better understand the anatomy and body mechanics of the animal and then use this knowledge to help produce a quality walk cycle that could then be used in actual production.

Toby Winder is a senior animator currently based in Montreal. He has been in the animation and visual effects industry since 2006 and has contributed to many projects such as Batman: The Dark Knight, Dr. Strange, and Alien Covenant. Toby has animation experience in high-end VFX, television, commercials, and games.
Quadruped Walk Cycles
Watch our overview of the course

Class Listing

Class 1: Maya Setup

Maya setup, project, hotkeys and preferences etc.

Class 2: Quad rigs

A discussion of the rig we will be using, an examination of the various options for controls, and hunting for potential issues. Also, what to look for in a quadruped rig if you wish to use a different one.

Class 3: Anatomy and Reference

Breaking down the reference. What makes a good or bad reference? What to look for? A discussion of the anatomy of a quadruped which causes them move in the way they do.

Class 4: Initial key pose blocking, Part 1

Roughing out initial keyframes of the walk cycle.

Class 5: Initial key pose blocking, Part 2

A continuation of the initial keyframing of the walk cycle.

Class 6: Initial key pose blocking, Part 3

Adding details to the chest and the toes.

Class 7: Back Legs

Using the animation created for the front legs to create the base animation for the back legs .

Class 8: Tail and presentation methods

Adding details for the tail and working through a useful method of presenting your cycle for feedback.

Class 9: Self critique, refinements, and head animation

A self-critique of our cycle, attempting to look at it as carefully as possible, for what isn't working and needs improvements and refinements.
Next, we move on to refinements of the head motion.

Class 10: Final refinements and polish

Adding more more refinements and small details, including overlap and splay to the toes as well as some subtle facial overlap.