Log into your account to keep track of your progress. You can work through the lessons without logging in but your progress will be lost when you refresh the page.
In this masterclass, William Harley shows us how to rig in APEX. He begins by creating a simple rig using Components (scripts) and Subgraphs (similar to HDA's). Once the essentials are explained, we take a look at a more complex rig and how it was created (the Chicken rig, which you can download and follow along). While the Chicken rig is not shown "from scratch" (pun maybe intended), all the key essentials as pole vector, look-at constraints, neck/spine, pose blends, control shapes and output, are reviewed.



I started my career doing lighting, lookdev and VFX in Cape Town. Always looking to streamline the character rigging and animation process I got involved in setting up a rigging tools in houdini and assisting animators to get used to the new tools, I have fallen in love with CFX, building rigs for films, games and cinematics.

More from William Harley


  • LukeP 1 month, 2 weeks ago  | 

    Unable to open the link on iPhone device

  • IceBar0n 1 month, 2 weeks ago  | 

    Thank you for the tutorial !
    At last it's clear for me, after years of waiting for simple, artist friendly character rigging in Houdini, all hopes are lost =))))

    • rmagee 1 month, 1 week ago  | 

      Don't worry they are delayed but not lost.

      While this video deals with the low level setup using APEX, it also talks about the ability to build packaged up workflows within the APEX graph (squash and stretch) and then graphs that can be set up using the Autorig component SOP. As this project progresses, more and more of these mid and top level workflows will be available for riggers to quickly set up rigs - this can then lead to high level artist-friendly Auto-rigging tools. The procedural nature of these tools will then allow for quick setup of any character or creature you bring to the table.

      If you want to learn all the low level concepts being taught here then you will be able to make your own components and provide a custom toolset to your rigging team.

    • kodra 1 month, 1 week ago  | 

      Houdini's premise is and will always be that you'll need "someone" to make artist friendly tools for you. The someone is a TA/TD in your studio, or the Labs team in SideFX, or someone amongst the community.

      APEX is for the "someone". It's not for artists.

  • BrettSinclair 1 month, 2 weeks ago  | 

    Very cool.

    • william_harley 1 month, 1 week ago  | 

      thanks Brett

  • ffortin 1 month, 1 week ago  | 

    It's Super cool, i can totally see the power in there.. but i don't see myself explaining the producer why it takes 6 months to build a character rig... i really love Houdini but i think you got lost on this one.. you will need to provide at least a few decent wrappers to layout those nodes otherwise you are getting really far from the we wanabe user friendly goals...

    • william_harley 1 month, 1 week ago  | 


      At the moment it will take longer to set up a initial rig and it will be more technical. We are working on more wrappers to make the initial
      setup faster. But like with any rigging system, if you want more out of it, its good to know whats going on under the hood.

      But what I find really nice about apex is how easy it is to repurpose my existing rigs. For instance, now that I have the lucha rig
      I can easily grab another biped character mesh, adjust the position of the joints on the base and controls skeleton,
      add or remove any rig logic you dont need for that rig and have a usable setup within a day (excluding weight painting).

    • EZiniT 4 weeks, 1 day ago  | 

      Got to agree with "you got lost on this one" ....... there isn't much that is user friendly about Kinefx and Apex right now.......hopefully it's improved in the next release ^^

  • arnoutmeysman 1 month ago  | 

    Thank you for the tutorial! Definitely trying out proceduralism in rigging and making small setups like the squash stretch example.

  • exoticaleathers2022 3 weeks, 5 days ago  | 

    The most common predator is the jaguar (Panthera onca), which can be found in many parts of South America. The jaguar will stalk its prey and attack it from behind, using its sharp claws to sever the capybara's spine and kill it instantly.

    • mohammed 3 weeks ago  | 

      I had to login, just to ask why did you say this?

Please log in to leave a comment.