Doctor Pitterbill round-up

Update: I now have a dedicated Poser Pro blog!

The affordable and excellent Poser / DAZ Studio character Doctor Pitterbill (currently $10) has a growing range of clothing and new character styles, some of it free. For example, here’s my basic OpenGL render (from DAZ) of the free Sepit mod wood-gnome clothing set for him

(Tip: to get free Elf Ears on Doctor Pitterbill, give him the facial expression you want. Then give him facial expression #3 from Nursoda’s other DAZ character called Malini the Clown. For some reason, this gives Pitterbill “instant elf-ears”, without changing the expression you want. I discovered this by accident.).

Other add-on characters/clothing sets for Pitterbill are currently: Wild West / Steampunk :: Harpert the Clown :: Torba the Insane One :: Prison Inmate :: Steampunk :: Dracula (also Steampunk / Wild West) :: Sorcerer/Priest :: Dr. Mabusa (horror) :: Jones (Safari / Adventure / Steampunk) :: and A Jester, as well as some sports stuff. All are fairly low-priced. Also take at look at this free top hat and this free 1970s University Lecturer clothes set.

Pitterbill comes with an excellent and large set of expressions and poses as standard, but then so do some of the add-on packs. For instance, here’s the large expressions set that comes with the $6.80 “Torba” add-on for him…

He will also accept body poses meant for other Nursoda characters (e.g. Malik, Malini).

There’s also a set of approved clothing templates for Pitterbill (with a commercial re-use licence from Nursoda, to encourage clothing designers), and a Crossdresser 4 licenced script for DAZ clothing conversion/fitting of other DAZ clothing.

Frankly, Pitterbill looks better than many of the “pro” toon-guy rigs I’ve seen for the likes of Maya in the last couple of years. But he’s royalty-free, commercial-use enabled, and you can pick him up with five outfits for less than $50. His stylized face also bypasses “the uncanny valley”. So it would be very pleasing to see Pitterbill officially in iClone, poly-reduced and rigged with Reallusion bones in both the body and face, and with some clothing that moves with him. Like all of Nursoda’s excellent works he’s a standalone character, so there shouldn’t be any licencing problems with DAZ about the conversion.

16 thoughts on “Doctor Pitterbill round-up

  1. I’m curious when you say that it would be nice to see him in iClone. How can that happen, technically speaking?

    I’m not so familiar with taking characters from DAZ to iClone (motions included). Are there precedents that we can use as a case study?

  2. Overall quite a compelling post. You call it a basic Open GL render but I assume this you are referring to something done inside Daz. You preface the iClone face rig potential with an “IF.” Doesn’t that imply that one have Max and the skill to use it?

  3. @ Ren. Yes, there are already several precedents. For instance, if you go to the official iClone Store and search for “3D Universe”, you will find a range of characters for sale with motions, that have been ported over to iClone from DAZ as non-standard characters. iClone official developers have access to white papers and 3DS Max plugins for rigging models with Reallusion bones, to turn them into iClone characters able to accept the usual drag-and-drop motions.

  4. @ Mitch. The Open GL render is just a straight real-time render from DAZ, as I described here:

    http://myclone.wordpress.com/2012/01/17/making-daz-output-wysiwyg-real-time-renders/

    For simple quick renders of characters and props, this gives acceptable “2 seconds” results without having to wait hours for a real render. The lighting in that mode tends to be rather flat though, even if you throw a few spotlights in. You may have to tickle it with Photoshop afterwards. Still, it could be a very quick way to green-screen a little animation loop, for bringing into iClone via popVideo.

    Yes, I would love to have two weeks to figure out how to rig in Max, so that DAZ characters can be iClone characters. But I have yet to see or read a really good step-by-step tutorial, showing all the details including the facial rigging. And I’m not an official developer. Besides, if I did do that then I would be the only one to enjoy the character. Instead I would like to see Nursoda getting iClone income from it, and this high-quality character becoming one of the (increasingly many) flagships showing what can be achieved in iClone 5, and how high-quality stylised characters can help iClone to get animators past the ‘uncanny valley’.

    In fact, it would be great to see all of Nursoda’s character range in iClone. They’re all original characters, and not based off the DAZ models and rigs.

  5. When I look at the characters from “3D Universe” will they have facial animation motions as well?

    And what kind of motion files will non-standard characters be able to accept? Meaning, what is the file extension that comes with them? (Theoretically one could still use motion capture from something outside of iClone and apply it to these non-standard characters in their native motion format).

  6. Non-standard means they can only accept motions (or more, often, poses) that have been made specifically for them. They can’t accept normal iClone motions. The 3D Universe animals may have some facial movement via Motion Edit, but as far as I know they have no facial puppetry capabilities.

  7. No – I thought that a direct approach might be best left to Reallusion, if they’re interested. And I think he’s German, and his English is not good – in one interview he said he depended on online translators to understand English?

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  9. I wasn’t expecting them to have normal iClone motions or facial puppetry capabilities. However, do they accept their own facial animation motions or poses?

    And whether it is a body pose or facial pose…what is that file format that it would be in? And where would a user load that outside non-iclone motion file into iClone?

  10. @ Ren. Well, if you take a look at them on the Marketplace you will see they are .iAvatars, with .iMotion poses. Most of the 3D Universe animals converted from DAZ have basic facial posing possibilities, usually via Motion Edit. They are non-standard characters, so you can’t just load a BVH or standard iClone motion onto them.

    But my original point was, they are limited but they show it can be done. It is also possible to bring in a full human Pitterbill character, properly rigged with the iClone bones in the face and body.

  11. Please unpack the “full” in “full human Pitterbill.” Is that meant to say something about poly count? Because on the one hand, if the character is reduced to 25,000 polys, the official limit on iClone avatars, you are going to get subtle but significant reduction in appearance from the snapshot. On the other hand, if I had a mind today, I could completely recreate this character at the poly limit using an embedded G3 avatar, methods internal to iClone, and morphing in ZBrush.

  12. By full I mean: not just another non-standard character with no facial rigging. Rather, a proper conversion to a full G5 character. Yes, there may have to be some poly-reduction. For such a great character, I would be happy if he was under 60k.

    If you wanted to create and rig your own stylised character inspired by Pitterbill, that would of course be awesome! ;-)

  13. Can you help me with something? Did you stumble on some info about lipsync of Pitterbill? Not in iClone, of course, but in Daz or Poser?
    I know that it is not very difficult to assemble necessarily morphs to create dmc file for Mimic, or xml file for Poser’s Talk Designer, but I also know that some of the Nursoda characters already have these files – and I can’t find them nowhere. Maybe you know where?
    Thanks.

  14. Nursoda doesn’t test his content with Mimic or Daz Studio, but there’s a free third-party Mimic file for his Teo character here:

    http://www.sharecg.com/v/35548/view/

    Since the Nursoda character are all based on an original geometry and rig, sometimes you can get expression files for one of Nursoda’s characters that will fit another. Possibly the Teo Mimic file could be made to work the same way with Pitterbill?

  15. This will be very helpful. Thank you. Will let you know.
    BTW, to bad that Nursoda doesn’t care much for these extra stuff for his models, probably best on the market… I will buy, and many others I am sure, every file, plugin or whatever, to make his characters fully alive.

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