Seppe Vangrunderbeek has researched 3D muscles simulations for his VFX graduation work.
We know about muscles in real life. However, there are plenty of muscles to be found in the digital world as well, and a lot of times you wouldn’t even know they're there.
In some cases, you’ll find a company recreating almost all the muscles you can find in a human body or in a creature and other times they only make some of the main muscles. This all depends on the budget and the method that is used to get there, resulting in different ways to make muscle simulations.
Seppe explored three different methods: Maya nCloth, Maya Muscle System and Ziva Dynamics, and researched the best option for different situations
After an in-depth study of the 3 options, Seppe chose Ziva Dynamics as his main tool for his case study.
Since modelling and animation was not part of the scope of this graduation work, Seppe had the chance to use a bison model of Nicolas Morel, a UK-based modeller and texture artist (networking is important!), while Zoe Juhr-De Benedetti, a DAE student, was responsible for the animation of the walkcycle.
PART 1 : RIGGING
Besides the muscle simulation, Seppe also had to research and create a creature rig, since it is used as the base for the muscle simulation.
PART 2 : MUSCLES
All of the work above was necessary for the muscle simulation!
Attaching the muscles to the bones: on the left: the jaw, on the right: the neck.
All muscles attached to the bones
Creating the fascia, the layers between the muscles and the skin.
For his first muscle simulation this is a very nice result. Even Nicolas Morel is so pleased that Seppe is allowed to also rig and create the muscle system for his other creatures. Looks like a solid partnership is in the making!