Building Cyd's body

One important step in the development of a 'virtual person' is to design the person's 'body' -- a three-dimensional body that will later be animated. While the animated images are projected onto a two-dimensional computer screen, they must appear to be three-dimensional. To gain this effect, one 'creates' a three-dimensional object in much the same way that one might build a physical object. Let's say that you want to build a replica of Abraham Lincoln for a parade float. You would first build the basic 3-dimensional framework of Lincoln's body using wood and wire mesh screen. Next, you would apply layers of papier maché to the framework to create his skin and clothing.

The body of Virtual Cyd has been designed by Andrew Hughes (Illinois State University Applied Computer Science major) in 3D Studio Max using a method that is quite similar. First he creates the wire framework for which determines Cyd's overall body shape.

Front View

Left View

Diagonal View

Top View

Once the wire frame has been constructed, then the artist can apply layers of 'skin' on top. In this case, Andrew has designed Cyd to be a gender-neutral android.

Cyd Standing

Cyd Squatting

Cyd's Face

Once the body is complete, Character Studio can be used to enhance the image (Cyd could wear a coat that would flap in the breeze). When Cyd walks the (relatively) natural motion of the arms and legs also comes courtesy of Character Studio.