How To Find And Import Motion Capture Data Into Cinema 4D

August 23, 2016

Introducing our new training series all about using Motion Capture and Cinema 4D to create some fun character animation effects.

In this video, you will learn how to find, setup, and import good FBX Motion Capture Data into Cinema 4D.

Watch the full motion capture training series here.

This training series was inspired by your questions about how to make animations similar to this amazing AICP Sponsor Reel Animation by Method Studios.

You Can Get Motion Capture Data Here:
1. Turbosquid
2. Mixamo
3. Unity Asset Store

How To Find And Import Motion Capture Data In Cinema 4D

How to convert a Joint Chain to Geometry In Cinema 4D

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  • Great stuff. I have thoroughly enjoyed watching them and experimenting with the techniques, but I have one question:

    How do I link motion capture files in order to have my character do multiple actions in a row?


  • Using the exact same steps, I don’t get the “Alpha Surface” object, so can’t make the emitter (in the 4th tutorial) come from the whole figure, it’s either limbs, torso, or joints.

    Help please!

    • Did you first select the character Y Bot as Nick did? If you use the default character Beta (the female bot), which comes in with meshes for limbs, torso, and joints, you will need to create matching emitter and trail objects for all the ones you wish to use. Beta is the default character unless you follow Nick’s sequence of selecting another character first. The Y Bot character comes in with meshes for surface and joints, of which Nick just used the surface mesh.

  • Yes, exactly what I was hoping for from GSG !!!
    Can you please make a tutorial of how to connect a different rigged character to a motion capture from Mixamo?

    • You can actually import and rig your own characters directly inside of Mixamo it’s a really easy and quick step by step process. Then you can add an animation to your rigged character and import it back in C4D just like Nick does in this tutorial.

      Hope that helps

  • Hi, if i have the motion capture rig and a character rigged, how do i make my character moving?

  • Just commenting to say I’m loving the new style of video, keep it up 🙂

  • what if I already got a character and want to let him dance? Do I have to make him a own skelton first to bring him into the right position?

  • Joining Jim on the motion systems it would be good if you guys could do one tutorial about them for those who don’t know about it, it’s such a powerful tool that not much people know about.. I’m sure you’re on it already 🙂

  • Can you tell me first video background music name? I like it very much

  • Hi!
    I have strange problem: when mixamo-project loaded, i can’t change parametres of cloner or hair. What the problem?
    Help me, please. :c
    P.s.: i like new style of GSG-videos, thanks for your great work! 😀

  • Hi Team, how can i apply these mocap files onto cinema 4d Advanced biped character object, Kindly assist since Most tutorials i have seen focus mainly on custom rigs.

    Best Regards

  • Awesome! Thanks for this. I had the idea to combine this with a mograph cloner for a makeshift cloud simulation, but the rigging breaks. Any ideas how to make it work?

  • Great job!. But I have a question. How can I put different animations in a row?

    • Using C4D’s Motion System you can add a Motion tag to the parent joint object which creates a Motion Clip in the Motion Mode timeline. After saving multiple clips as Motion Sources you can then string them together, adjust their duration, retime them, and easily create smooth transitions between them. It took me awhile to figure it out, but once you know how it’s actually very easy. Hopefully the greyscalegorilla gang will produce a tutorial for those unfamiliar with the Motion System.

      • Here’s a quick rundown that will hopefully save you some time figuring it out.

        To create Motion Clip and save as Motion Source:

        Open fbx file
        Select Joint object parent
        Animate menu > Add Motion Clip: rename and click OK.
        (Adds Motions tag to object and Motion Clip to Motion Mode timeline)

        Open Timeline. Select Motion Mode
        Rt. click on Motion Clip > ”Save Motion Source As”
        Name and save to “Motion Sources” folder (or whatever you want to name it)
        Repeat for multiple fbx files

        To merge and mix Motion Clips: (Use Animation Layout for more space)

        Add frames to Timeline to incorporate additional motion clips
        Rt. click in clip area of Motion Mode timeline > “Load Motion Source” (choose from folder)
        (Motion Clip will be added to clip area of timeline – repeat for multiple clips)

        Drag additional motion clip(s) to timeline next to each other
        Retime motion clip(s) by dragging ends
        Drag clips to overlap each other to create transitions

        Refer to C4D help files for additional info

  • This is terrific – something I have been struggling with for months. I would like to get more detail on how to edit the animation after it is imported – the animations are very short and I would like to extend the sequence, slowing down all of the movements, out to say, 900 frames. I tried selecting every element in the scene, then using the Region tool (and the Scale command) in the Curve editor to stretch the time for each, but invariably I get some elements that stop earlier than others. So in one case, the hands stop swinging after a few hundred frames, but the character continues to walk for the full 900. Any help or suggestions would be appreciated. (May be user error)

    • OK – I think got it. Not enough to select top level – need to go through every child and select, then scale works.

      • Dennis, if you follow my directions above all you will need to do is drag the end of the motion clip to slow it down or speed it up. As you drag you will see a % value changing, showing the new duration in relation to the original.

  • Nick,

    Hopefully this hasn’t already been mentioned, if so I apologize for the duplicate info.

    You can get Mixamo downloads if you have an Adobe ID, not just if you have a CC subscription. I have a registered copy of PS CS5, and AE CS5.5 and I was able to get stuff from Mixamo for free as well without a CC sub.

    So it’s a CC sub or if you register a license that you bought before things went CC you’re also set as well.

    Hope that helps somebody!

  • Great work man! Thank you guys so much for doing what you do!

  • Hi
    Anyone have any idea how to attach an object to a single point on the dancing frame? It needs to be a very specific point, that then moves along with the dancing, not all over body clone etc.

  • PS. Just to say, I have tried converting the bones to polygon objects, then tried to attach my object to one of those, and then redid the binding. However, that doesn’t work. The movement does not transfer to the object.

  • I created a video for one of my clients recently using this method and applying my own techniques! Thanks so much for the great tutorials, and if youd like to check out the video here it is:

    what i did was just use a base male model as the guy dancing and then applied a polygon reduction to the mesh and it created a super cool “low-poly” look! This is just another way to use the same principles and create something completely different!

    Thanks for always creating stellar tuts!

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