Monday, 1 December 2014

Mathilda - a new Free Rig for Maya Animators!

Mathilda, courtesy of SCAD
Mathilda is coming! This new free rig, now available for use by Maya animators, has just been released by SCAD - The Savannah College of Art and Design. We haven't road-tested it yet, but it looks cool - with a really nice range of facial expressions.  Mathilda looks very attractive, well designed, and we're excited to see what our students can do with this latest addition to the now very wide range of freeware available to those learning to animate in Maya.

Who Made Mathilda?

According to a recent post at,  the Mathilda Free Rig was developed by Leon Li-Aun Sooi and Xiong Lin from Savannah College of Art and Design. Its features include:
  • Animschool Picker - new technology from AnimSchool
  • Advanced facial control -  Sticky lip, Eye scale, Bendy head,  Fleshy eye,  Secondary controls
  • IK/FK limb control - The key framed position of IK or FK can convert with each other by using picker. 
  • Stretch Spine - Limbs, bendy Limbs.
  • Hand and foot control system: additional attributes allow easier control of the rig.
  • Auto interaction: The jacket will automatically interact with gravity when you rotate the body. The eyelash will also bend when you pull the eyebrow down.
  • Easy shader loading: All the advanced shaders(Subsurface scattering, procedural) are saved in another file. So rig will not be too slow when you create the rig reference. By using the picker, you can easily assign all the advanced shaders to the model.
  • N-hair is available for this rig. Check the help document to see how to render and simulate n-hair.
  • Global Scale: scale the size of the rig.

How Does She Work?

Mathilda Rig Demo from Mathilda on Vimeo.

What are the terms of the license?

The purpose of this project is providing a free high-end character rig for animation students to develop their professional portfolio. Commercial use is forbidden.

Credit Where It's Due

Leon Li-Aun Sooi is responsible for rigging, tool development, body blendshape modeling and tweaking hair for the test animation. Check more of his work at
Xiong Lin is responsible for modeling, texturing, head blendshape modeling and lighting two test shots in this demo. Check more of his work at

So what's stopping you? Download Mathilda and start animating!

For more on the experience of studying at Bucks New University, come and visit us at one of our Open Days, take a virtual tour of one of our animation studios, check out what our students think of our course, and see why we're ranked in the top 12 creative universities in the UK. Find out why we're giving free laptops to all our students, and why we give all our students free access to videos at Also, see what financial assistance might be available to you. Learn which is better for animation, a PC or a Mac? Get hold of a copy of a map so you can find your way around campus, and learn about motion capture at Bucks.

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