For a character illustration to be used as a puppet in adobe character animator, it should follow a very specific structure, hierarchy, and naming conventions. All of those are described in detail in our guide to creating a puppet in Adobe Illustrator *.
The easiest way to assign proper hierarchy and names to an existing illustration is by using a blank puppet template.
By using a script available for free download in this post you can generate a blank puppet template in any illustrator document.
There is nothing wrong with using a standard blank puppet template file and placing your character art upon it. However, using a script might be a more convenient option.
You can also save the download .jsx file in the Presets –> Scripts folder for Adobe Illustrator. that will allow you to easily run this specific script directly from the scripts menu.
Once you run the Blank Puppet Maker Script the following UI panel will appear:
Here you can select the type of template you would like to create and the views that should be included in it:
A new layer named “Puppet” will be created and it will include all the puppet layers that were selected in the section “Body views to include”:
The head sublayer will include all the selected head views. Each head view will have a sublayer for accessories, hair, eyebrows, ears, nose, and eyes.
The mouth layer will have different mouth layers for different moods: happy mouth, sad mouth, angry mouth, and regular mouth. Each of those will have sublayers for lip sync. If you plan to use just the regular mouth group you can delete all the other ones.
Each eye will also have its own structure and will include: the blink layer, lid layers, pupil layer, and pupil range layer.
Once the blank puppet layer structure is created it is time to place your art on those layers and later rig the puppet in Adobe Character Animator *.
Here are a few more scripts that you might find useful when working on your puppet art in adobe illustrator:
Use the comment section below to tell us if the script was helpful and what other processes you would like to automate in your workflow.
Stay tuned for new tutorials.