ngSkinTools brain dump and workflow

Starting with ngSkin Tools can look crazy scary

But it can also be probably the most powerful tool you can posses!

Mirroring weights using masks

So I got stuck with this one and found that this was my best strategy:

  • Create new layer
  • Select joint ( in my case, the cheek joint )
  • Flood the weights with a value of 1
    • You will notice that it looks like the entire head is now weights to the cheek. Well your correct but this is where the layer mask comes into play
  • I would suggest selecting some verts for where you want this joint to influence the most.
  • Go to your layer ( cheek R ) and select the [Layer Mask]
  • Now click paint and replace the weights to again a value of 1.
    • Here you will notice that now only this area is weighted and our base weights layer is now not being effected.
  • My next step is to deselect the verts and select the entire head geo again.
  • Go back into ngSkinTools and select the [Layer Mask]
  • Now click paint and then smooth with an value of 1.
  • Here you will see a nice blend from the cheek into the rest of the head.

The mask is acting much like a mask in photoshop.

  • White effects completely
  • Black is completely transparent and the weights set on this layer will not be used.

Now to mirror this:

  • Create a new layer above.
  • Right click and copy the influence from the joint ( In my case I copied the R_cheek_sknJnt)
  • Then in my new layer I paste this influence information to the opposite joint ( L_cheek_sknJnt )
  • Now copy the Layer Mask from Cheek R layer
  • Paste this into the new Layer Mask inside of Cheek L
  • Mirror the Weights under the Mirror Tab
  • And then remove the weighting from the original side.

And there you should have it 2 sides with the same nice weighting.

Im sure there’s an easier way…



Benn is responsible for much memorable character and creature animation on films such as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, Passengers, and Paddington 2. With over 10 years’ experience in the industry, his most recent work before joining Oxford VR was at Third Floor London as senior previs artist on Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. At Oxford VR Benn has been in charge of setting up the Rigging and Animation department and has chosen to adopt MRS for the studios in house solution.