Rigging Academy

Master Character Rigging in After Effects.


Learn to Create Professional Character Rigs using Duik in Adobe After Effects

Rigging is the unsung hero of Character Animation

Rigging is the Unsung Hero of Character Animation

Character Animation takes a lot of know-how and practice no matter how you do it. But if you’re working in 2D or 3D animation software, great character animation also takes something else: a well-built rig. A bad rig makes animation difficult, inefficient, and limits the character’s range of movement. A good rig will give you a greater range of motion, but more importantly make the animation process faster, easier, and more intuitive allowing you to focus on the most important thing – the character’s performance.

Become a rigging MacGyver

Become a Character Rigging Master

Rigging Academy is designed to teach you how to rig almost ANYTHING in After Effects. In this course you’ll learn core rigging principles that can be applied to humans, animals, aliens, robots, cartoon characters, and just about any other type of creature you can think up. Once you know the basics you’ll be ready to handle rigging characters of all shapes, sizes, and styles. You’ll be well prepared to tackle the most challenging characters to rig, and have the skills to troubleshoot technical problems that may come up along the way.

What will you learn in Rigging Academy?

Character Prep

Learn how to prepare your artwork for rigging the right way so you can get to animating in no time.

Rigging 101

What makes a good rig? How many controls do you need to build in? FK or IK? We’ll answer all your rigging questions.

Options Galore

Puppet-pins or jointed limbs? How about hybrid joints? Heel-roll? Hip roll? You'll learn 'em all.

DUIK Wizardry

You'll learn some of the most important features for quickly and easily creating robust rigs with Duik.

Facial Rigging

Facial rigging can be complex, but we'll break it down and show you how to pull off amazing facial rigs in After Effects.

Advanced Concepts

What about 4-legged characters? Props? Level-swapping? By the end of the course you’ll be a rigging wizard.

Morgan Williams

Morgan Williams

Course Instructor

Morgan has been a professional animator and animation director for over 20 years. He has created work for numerous clients including Sony Pictures, the BBC, Comedy Central, and WGBH Boston and have been the recipient of several awards including a local ADDY®, a Telly, and a Best in Show award at Minnesota Siggraph. His short film work has been screened at festivals around the world including the Philadelphia International Film Festival and the Annecy International Animation Festival. Morgan is also a full time faculty member at Ringling College of Art and Design teaching and developing curriculum in the Department of Motion Design.

Morgan's Clients Include:

  • Jenny LeClue
  • Sony
  • BBC
  • Comedy Central
  • Flickerpix
  • WGBH

Course Format

Go at your own pace.

As soon as you purchase the course, you gain access to everything. We’ve designed the course to work not only as a training program for Character Rigging with Duik, but also as a reference that you can come back to whenever you need a refresher or a new technique.

You get lifetime access to the course once you purchase it, so go through it at your own pace and come back as often as you like.

Go at your own pace.

It's all here.

This course is, in true School of Motion fashion, packed to the GILLS with information. We’ve organized everything neatly into chapters, and you can go through the course at your own pace as you see fit.

There are over 15 hours of video lessons, dozens of pages of PDFs to reference, and more project files than you can shake a puppet pin at. We were very thorough in building Rigging Academy.

It's all here.

Tons of rigs to explore.

You’ll be able to download complete character rigs for every character you meet in this course. You’ll see Morgan rig in dozens of different ways, and you’ll be able to open up his After Effects projects to dig deeper into anything you’re curious about. You’ll see bipeds, quadrupeds, and many different ways of rigging limbs, torsos, and even faces!

Tons of rigs to explore.

Bootcamp Schedule

Rigging for Rookies

Start by getting the lay of the land. Learning some rigging basics, make sure your tools are set up properly, and dive into your first lesson. Why do we even need rigs in the first place? You’ll know soon enough.

Rigging for Rookies

Character Construction

Before you can rig anything, your character’s artwork has to be prepped. How this is done depends on the character design, and there are many ways to skin this cat. You’ll learn just about all of them in this section.

Character Construction

Arms to Hold You

You’ll learn more about arms than you ever thought possible. In this section we go into jointed arms, puppet tool arms, and even combination arms and blended joints. You’ll have an arsenal of arm options at your disposal soon enough.

Arms to Hold You

Hand Crafting

What good are arms without hands? As with any rigging task, there are options here. You’ll learn how to build mechanical hands (hands that actually animate) as well as how to make replacement hands which are easier to implement.

Hand Crafting

A Firm Footing

Time to rig the legs. Legs are like arms with feet on the end, and feet can be tricky. Find out how to make everything work correctly and add some controls for things like heel and toe rolls. Break a leg.

A Firm Footing

Core Training

Rigs often neglect the stomach, chest, and shoulders of a character. Learn a bit of basic anatomy and set up controls that will give your character a much greater range of movement and emotion. Don’t neglect the abs.

Core Training

Face Time

The eyes are the window to the soul, especially in character animation. Learn how to build a face rig that will give you the control you need to emote with your character.

Face Time

Limbs Unlimited

Now we start getting fancy. Find out how to add and work with props, how to deal with level-swapping, and how to utilize a handy feature called rotation morphing.

Limbs Unlimited

Running on All Fours

You’ve mastered the art of the biped, now let's take a look at rigging our four legged friends. You’ll learn about some very important differences in rigging creatures that get around on four legs instead of two, and be able to rig up a tail by the end of this lesson.

Running on All Fours

Full Speed Ahead

Once you’re done rigging your characters it’s time to get them ready for animation. We'll go over some very important house cleaning steps so you can tidy up those project files to make things as easy as possible for the animators on the job.

Full Speed Ahead

Rigging Academy Alumni Testimonials

Sara KopkeFreelance Animator & Editor
sarakopke.com

I have yet to find something similar that can come close to touching the comprehensive knowledge here. If you find character animation a portion of the motion graphics world you’d like to conquer I’d suggest this class as a necessity.

Matt CallaghanCreative Director - Inklish
inklish.com

Rigging Academy is the course I’ve waited years for. No other course as thorough exists. Everything I wanted to know is all here and it’s amazing! Morgan does a superb job in breaking down every element, every expression, and every meaning behind what he does and how he does it. The secrets of incredible character rigs are a mystery no more. I highly, highly recommend this course. It has absolutely changed my approach to character design & rigging for the better.

Flora BelleMotion Designer - Université de Poitiers
vimeo.com/florab

Morgan always shows many ways to achieve a result and this is really valued. I’m totally thankfull for that. Moreover, the characters and rigs in the course are beautiful and pleasant to work with. I would definitely recommand this bootcamp for people who are (as I was) scared to dig by themselves into this deep subject! This course is not easy but you’ll definitely learn more than you can ever imagine. Morgan performed this feat to make rigging attractive and understandable.

What's included with the course?

You get instant access to all of the content in Rigging Academy that you can work through at your own pace.

Rigging Academy contains

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  • Over 15 hours of video instruction
  • 9 Characters created just for Rigging Academy
  • In-depth PDFs guides to support your learning
  • Lifetime Access to the course