Cartoon Robots

Animation Master Character Rigging Basics (Part 1)

Section 18: The Neck and Head

We’re going to do the neck and head now.
The procedure is almost identical to how we did the spine.

Here’s how the bone assignments are at this point.

We are almost finished with Character Rigging Part 1.

By now, you should be more comfortable accomplishing these tasks than you were before.

In these last parts, I’ll be telling you what we need to do but not exactly how to do it (unless we have not covered it yet).

Let’s get started now on the neck and head…

Neck bones from the side. Here is my layout for the neck bones from a side view. My third bone in the neck chain will also control the head.

Hide all of the mesh except for the head and neck sections so that we don’t accidentally assign some CPs to the wrong bone.

Lay out your bones for the neck and head.  You may want to try one bone per section of the neck mesh and make sure that the bones are evenly centered within the mesh.

The first  neck bone should be a child of  “(GEO) Spine 3”. You will see that these two bones will not line up in the side view when each bone is centered within the mesh it controls or will control.

That is alright because the mesh is what dictates where the geometry bones should go not necessarily the position of previously placed bones.

Here are my renamed neck bones and the hierarchy is correct.

Rename your neck bones from the default names and double check your hierarchy.




Here is my CP assignments for these bones.

Assign the CPs to the bones and test the set up in an Action window.

When you’re satisfied that you do not need to tweak the bone placement or CP assignments any further then you are finished with this portion of the model!

Now only the arms are left to be done…




Next: Section 19: The Arms