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Grouping and parenting in Maya
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In this lesson, we'll talk about the concept of grouping and parenting in Maya. So let's jump in here. This is 10 Begin. And we just have a few spheres in here that we'll use as our example. So we talked about the objects in Maya existing as transform and shape nodes. There's a couple of places where we can actually view those nodes instead of here in the 3D view. So let's go ahead and go to Window. And I like to use the Outliner. You can also use the Hypergraph. But we'll go ahead and open up the Outliner. And it's just a window that basically contains a list of everything in your scene. You can select the cameras that we're working with. And we also have the geometry. We also have some placement nodes for the textures, and so forth. We can come in here and select whatever it is that we have. We can double click on that. And we can rename it. We can rename any of these. Now, we're not moving anything in here. But you can see that it corresponds to, in our 3D view, the objects that we are working with. So it's just a nice way of organizing all the objects in your scene. Now, right now, we are selecting this Transform Node. If we open this up, you can see our Shape Node underneath. So these are the two nodes that we've been talking about. Now, you can see where the Shape Node is underneath this node at the top. So what we can start to do is create hierarchies, some sort of organization of these models, so that we can transform them in conjunction. So right now, if we were to come in and select this large planet and move it around, nothing else is moving. So-- let me go ahead and turn this off-- nothing else is moving with it. It's moving by itself. But let's say that we want the two moons to follow along with this particular planet. One way we can do it is to parent the objects to the larger object, so create a parent-child relationship. So let's select the small one. And there are a few ways that we can do this. We can Shift-Select the larger one and hit P on our keyboard. Now, can't really tell what's happened here. But if we open up this node, now, underneath this node, we now see our planet. So what that means is when I select this main planet now, anything underneath it is moving along with it. And that includes the geometry that we just parented. If we select that planet here and hit Shift-P, it drops it out of that hierarchy. And now I can select this object. And it's no longer connected. I can also, in the Outliner, select the object that I want to be the child. And I'll just middle mouse drag it up to the parent. And I can drag it underneath that way. Or I can drag it back out. So anything underneath is going to be the child. And it makes sense. It's following along with wherever the parent is moving. So when I select that, if I have these two parented underneath, then whenever I select that object, it will move around. Now, the nice thing is that if you select the parent, you're moving everything. But if you still select the children, you can still move them independently. So I can still move these around, move them over here. And then when I select the overall parent, I can still move everything. So you can have your moons orbit around and then still move along with the planet as it orbits around another star, maybe. And then at any time, we can come in here. And if I want to get rid of that relationship, I can unparent just hitting Shift-P or dragging those out. So it's just a way of connecting the movement and position of different objects if you want them to move together. Another way to do this would be to create a group. And this is the same thing as parenting, except we're creating just a dummy object at the top of the group. So rather than parenting one of these objects to another object, we would select the objects and go ahead and hit Control-G on our keyboard. That's going to give us a new group here. You can see we have a little icon for it called Group 1. If we open that up, you can see all three are at an equal level underneath this parent group. So these are now the children of this parent, which is this null group object. There's no geometry that makes that object. It's just a node. So I can select the group and move everything around, just as we were selecting the parent before. But now, each individual child can be selected, as well. So I could move this independently. I could move this independently, and so forth. We can also rename the group, just as we would any other node. Having some display issues here. But you can see I can rename that Planet Group. And then it contains all the children through that. Now, if I select one of the children, and I want to go up to the top of the group, I can hit the Up arrow on my keyboard. And that'll automatically walk up to the top of the group. And that happens with any of these children. They're all at the same level. So one tap of that arrow will take me to the top of the group. And then I can move that whole thing as a group. So if we take a look at, for instance, the rotation here of our planet, if I were to go in and rotate this entire group, you can see how those transforms happen on the Group Node. And then these nodes don't have those transforms on there. If I were to take this-- so this has all these rotation values, but this one doesn't-- if I were now to unparent this, it's going to inherit those values. I can undo that, drop it back into the group. So organizing things like this-- when we get into modeling, at the end of the modeling, we'll go in and make sure that everything is organized. But it's a good way, a good practice to get into, just organizing things in logical groups, so once you start building models, it'll make sense. Where you're a building a wheel, and so you want to have the tire, the rim, the brake pad-- there's a lot of stuff that you want to have as part of one group, and so you drop those into one group, and you name them appropriately, and just keeps everything nice and organized. And you can view this in your Outliner. You can also come in here to the Hypergraph. And you can look at things here in a slightly different way. You can scroll up and down. We don't have a lot of stuff in here right now. You can also Alt and click around inside the Outliner. And so there's a lot of different places to be able to see your nodes. But you just need to know that they're there. Apart from existing in your 3D view, each of these Objects Nodes are organized here in our Maya scene. And we want to keep those nice and named appropriately, grouped appropriately, parented the way that we want, whether it's parented under another object or under a group that we've created. All right. So that's a look at parenting and grouping. Just remember the child-parent relationship, and then also the creation of the groups to serve as that parent. And you can nest groups, as well. So if I were to click on this upper group and Control-G again, I now have a group up above that group. And it can contain several groups. So you can go very deep with your organization of that. So the next thing that we'll talk about is using the Hot Box, which we touched on a little bit earlier. We'll go into a little bit more depth on what's available there and why we might want to use it. So we'll go ahead and do that next.
This in-depth Introduction to Maya 2014 tutorial is designed to help you get a solid understanding of the core features found in Maya, and help you to ease your transition into this very powerful program.

Over the course of these lessons, you'll have a chance to learn about different aspects of Maya from several of our tutors here at Digital-Tutors.

Digital-Tutors is the worlds largest resource for Autodesk training, and for over 10 years, we've had the honor and the privilege of teaching some of the top artists and studios all around the world. And for the next several hours, we'll be giving you the most structured, well-rounded, and easiest-to-follow Maya training to help you get up and running with Maya 2014.

In the first portion of this tutorial, we'll be getting you familiar with some of the vocabulary and foundational skills that you'll need in order to begin moving around and working in Maya. From there, we'll move into exploring some of the modeling features found in Maya, and we'll begin building the aircraft that will be our central project for the remainder of this course.

Then, we'll go deeper into Maya and take you through the entire process of adding textures and materials to the vehicle, basic rigging, adding animated movement and animation controls, adding dynamics, and finally we'll learn how to add lights, shadows, and output our final animated sequence.
Partner
Partner
Introduction and project overview
1

Introduction and project overview

 
01:36
Navigating the viewport
2

Navigating the viewport

 
09:51
The Maya user interface
3

The Maya user interface

 
15:20
Creating Maya projects
4

Creating Maya projects

 
04:49
Saving scene files from Maya
5

Saving scene files from Maya

 
08:11
Viewport shading and selection modes
6

Viewport shading and selection modes

 
06:01
Transforming objects in Maya
7

Transforming objects in Maya

 
09:11
Modifying object components
8

Modifying object components

 
06:44
Using the Attribute Editor
9

Using the Attribute Editor

 
05:57
Grouping and parenting in Maya
10

Grouping and parenting in Maya

 
07:46
Using the Maya Hotbox
11

Using the Maya Hotbox

 
06:03
Working with MEL scripts
12

Working with MEL scripts

 
09:20
Creating custom Maya shelves
13

Creating custom Maya shelves

 
06:08
Modeling Section Overview
14

Modeling Section Overview

 
01:19
Adding reference images
15

Adding reference images

 
06:14
Box modeling the main body and wing
16

Box modeling the main body and wing

 
09:26
Shaping the wing with deformers
17

Shaping the wing with deformers

 
10:15
Combining and smoothing the geometry
18

Combining and smoothing the geometry

 
12:35
Adding the windscreen
19

Adding the windscreen

 
10:20
Extruding in the under side
20

Extruding in the under side

 
05:49
Creating the gun ports
21

Creating the gun ports

 
07:59
Building the inner gun port structure
22

Building the inner gun port structure

 
10:55
Modeling the cannon
23

Modeling the cannon

 
06:05
Modeling the guns
24

Modeling the guns

 
14:01
Cutting out the front section
25

Cutting out the front section

 
11:19
Building the ladder using NURBS
26

Building the ladder using NURBS

 
12:11
Creating the repulsor
27

Creating the repulsor

 
09:53
Modeling the engines
28

Modeling the engines

 
10:05
Adding detail to the wings
29

Adding detail to the wings

 
08:50
Using BevelPlus to add detail
30

Using BevelPlus to add detail

 
06:15
Adding the bottom dome
31

Adding the bottom dome

 
05:45
Building the landing gear
32

Building the landing gear

 
07:13
Adding tubes underneath
33

Adding tubes underneath

 
06:57
Hierarchy and model preparation
34

Hierarchy and model preparation

 
08:35
Materials Section Overview
35

Materials Section Overview

 
01:19
Creating and applying simple materials
36

Creating and applying simple materials

 
07:51
Adding gradient ramps
37

Adding gradient ramps

 
08:13
Applying multiple materials to objects
38

Applying multiple materials to objects

 
07:06
Working with procedural textures
39

Working with procedural textures

 
07:21
Combining multiple procedural nodes
40

Combining multiple procedural nodes

 
08:34
Working with UVs
41

Working with UVs

 
12:31
Adding bump
42

Adding bump

 
04:45
Using file textures
43

Using file textures

 
10:12
Rigging Section Overview
44

Rigging Section Overview

 
00:43
Cleaning up the scene
45

Cleaning up the scene

 
04:22
Creating control objects
46

Creating control objects

 
15:50
Working with groups and selection handles
47

Working with groups and selection handles

 
06:57
Custom attributes
48

Custom attributes

 
10:05
Connecting attributes with Maya's Connection Editor
49

Connecting attributes with Maya's Connection Editor

 
07:14
Controlling attributes with Driven Keys
50

Controlling attributes with Driven Keys

 
09:38
A look at our gun rig
51

A look at our gun rig

 
01:43
Automating systems with expressions
52

Automating systems with expressions

 
10:09
Creating joint chains
53

Creating joint chains

 
11:18
Creating IK handles
54

Creating IK handles

 
07:05
Binding objects in Maya
55

Binding objects in Maya

 
05:56
Making our rig animator-friendly
56

Making our rig animator-friendly

 
04:34
Animation Section Overview
57

Animation Section Overview

 
00:43
Creating and editing keyframes in Maya
58

Creating and editing keyframes in Maya

 
13:01
Managing keyframes in the Graph Editor / cycling animation infinitely
59

Managing keyframes in the Graph Editor / cycling animation infinitely

 
11:29
Auto Key and simple expressions
60

Auto Key and simple expressions

 
08:17
Animating objects along a path
61

Animating objects along a path

 
09:50
Starting on our flight sequence
62

Starting on our flight sequence

 
18:13
Finalizing the movements of the ship's body
63

Finalizing the movements of the ship's body

 
15:17
Using Secondary Action to finish the animation of the ship
64

Using Secondary Action to finish the animation of the ship

 
11:50
Adding a shot camera
65

Adding a shot camera

 
16:51
Wrapping up our work on the flight sequence and creating Playblasts
66

Wrapping up our work on the flight sequence and creating Playblasts

 
07:31
Dynamics section overview
67

Dynamics section overview

 
01:09
Key concepts of dynamics in Maya
68

Key concepts of dynamics in Maya

 
07:14
Creating nParticle emitters
69

Creating nParticle emitters

 
08:58
Animating nParticle attributes
70

Animating nParticle attributes

 
06:51
Enabling nParticle collisions
71

Enabling nParticle collisions

 
15:15
nParticle shading and caching
72

nParticle shading and caching

 
11:37
Lighting and rendering section overview
73

Lighting and rendering section overview

 
00:53
Working with the Maya Render View
74

Working with the Maya Render View

 
12:47
Overview of various light types
75

Overview of various light types

 
08:49
Common attributes of Maya lights
76

Common attributes of Maya lights

 
14:44
Changing the Render Stats of objects in Maya
77

Changing the Render Stats of objects in Maya

 
05:25
Lighting our aircraft scene
78

Lighting our aircraft scene

 
12:46
Using the Attribute Spread Sheet
79

Using the Attribute Spread Sheet

 
12:36
Increasing render quality and adding motion blur
80

Increasing render quality and adding motion blur

 
10:22
Rendering the final sequence from Maya
81

Rendering the final sequence from Maya

 
15:32