Original Article

The Visual Computer

, Volume 30, Issue 2, pp 213-227

First online:

Sketching human character animations by composing sequences from large motion database

  • Innfarn YooAffiliated withPurdue University Email author 
  • , Juraj VanekAffiliated withPurdue University
  • , Maria NizovtsevaAffiliated withPurdue University
  • , Nicoletta Adamo-VillaniAffiliated withPurdue University
  • , Bedrich BenesAffiliated withPurdue University

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Quick creation of 3D character animations is an important task in game design, simulations, forensic animation, education, training, and more. We present a framework for creating 3D animated characters using a simple sketching interface coupled with a large, unannotated motion database that is used to find the appropriate motion sequences corresponding to the input sketches. Contrary to the previous work that deals with static sketches, our input sketches can be enhanced by motion and rotation curves that improve matching in the context of the existing animation sequences. Our framework uses animated sequences as the basic building blocks of the final animated scenes, and allows for various operations with them such as trimming, resampling, or connecting by use of blending and interpolation. A database of significant and unique poses, together with a two-pass search running on the GPU, allows for interactive matching even for large amounts of poses in a template database. The system provides intuitive interfaces, an immediate feedback, and poses very small requirements on the user. A user study showed that the system can be used by novice users with no animation experience or artistic talent, as well as by users with an animation background. Both groups were able to create animated scenes consisting of complex and varied actions in less than 20 minutes.


Sketching Character animation Interactive systems