Frequently Asked Questions

Licensing

  1. I always have to re-enter my license details every time I start SHAPES.
  2. I have updated my copy of SHAPES but I cannot find my license key.
  3. I recently bought the commercial version but my scenes are still showing the evaluation pop-up window.
  4. Does the license allow me to install SHAPES on my home computer?
  5. Are there floating licenses available for SHAPES?

Known Issues

  1. Maya crashes when loading a high resolution mesh.
  2. The target list is only growing even when I press the button for shrinking it.

Workflow

  1. Maya crashes when loading a high resolution mesh.
  2. The target list is only growing even when I press the button for shrinking it.
  3. Are scenes created with the evaluation version of SHAPES compatible with the paid-for version?
  4. I need to pass a rig created with SHAPES to a client. Does he need to have SHAPES installed as well in order to work with the scene?
  5. I am having trouble creating correctives or even loading the mesh. I am getting various errors.
  6. When using SHAPES Maya often gets unstable. What can I do?

Update

  1. I have updated my copy of SHAPES but I cannot find my license key.
  2. If I buy SHAPES now do I have to pay again when the next version is released?
  3. I recently bought the commercial version but my scenes are still showing the evaluation pop-up window.
  4. Where I can get the current version of SHAPES for a commercial license? I don’t see a customer login.

Custom Nodes

  1. I need to pass a rig created with SHAPES to a client. Does he need to have SHAPES installed as well in order to work with the scene?
  2. What is the weight driver?
  3. What are the ramp weights?
  4. Where can I download the weight driver or ramp weights node?

I always have to re-enter my license details every time I start SHAPES.

This problem can be related to certain system utilities which perform cleanup processes. Please contact us for an alternative way of licensing.


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Maya crashes when loading a high resolution mesh.

This issue is restricted to the Windows platform when loading a mesh into SHAPES which exceeds 35k polygons. The problem is related to evaluate the mesh during the symmetry mapping process. The current workaround is to disable Symmetry Mapping through SHAPES Menu > Symmetry > Symmetry Mapping. This way the mapping process is bypassed and mirroring of target shapes is based on position rather than topology.


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The target list is only growing even when I press the button for shrinking it.

Unfortunately this is a Maya bug which happens sometimes for an unknown reason. The same bug can be observed with the paint skin cluster weights tool. The joint list if the SHAPES window is affected as well.
The issue has been logged with Autodesk.
Sometimes it can be resolved by resetting the prefs, though there is no guarantee.

A simple solution is to right-click one of the resize buttons and choose a preset size.

Another workaround is to set the list size with absolute values with the following MEL commands:

treeView -e -h 100 shpUI_targetTree;
optionVar -iv SHAPESTargetTreeSize 100;

The commands can be set up as one or more shelf buttons with different values (replace the 100).
We apologise for this inconvenience.


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I have updated my copy of SHAPES but I cannot find my license key.

With the release of SHAPES 5.5 the licensing model has been updated and a license key has been introduced. An email has been sent with the license details upon release. It is possible that due to spam filtering the email hasn’t been delivered. Please contact us to reclaim your license key.


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If I buy SHAPES now do I have to pay again when the next version is released?

No, updates to SHAPES are free of charge until further notice. You will receive an email notification once a new release is available. Please regularly check your spam folder so that you don’t miss any updates.


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Are scenes created with the evaluation version of SHAPES compatible with the paid-for version?

Yes, all scenes created with SHAPES are fully compatible with each license model.


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I recently bought the commercial version but my scenes are still showing the evaluation pop-up window.

You only need to load the setup created with the evaluation version into the commercial version of SHAPES and save your scene again. This will eliminate the pop-up.


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Does the license allow me to install SHAPES on my home computer?

The SHAPES license allows you to install it on two computers but only one may be used at a time. If you have one installation running in your office it’s within the license grants that you have the second copy running at home, as long as you are the only one using both computers.


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Are there floating licenses available for SHAPES?

No, all licences are basically single user licenses but there is no restriction of where they can be installed. The SHAPES license allows you to install it on two computers but only one may be used at a time.


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Where I can get the current version of SHAPES for a commercial license? I don’t see a customer login.

You can simply download the evaluation version from the front page and use your license details to activate your copy of SHAPES.

Also, whenever a new version is available an email is sent out to the mail address used during the purchase process.
It is possible that the email hasn’t been delivered properly and has been filtered by a spam filter.
If you never received any newsletters please contact us.


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I need to pass a rig created with SHAPES to a client. Does he need to have SHAPES installed as well in order to work with the scene?

No, SHAPES is only needed when you want to create or edit a blend shape setup. SHAPES only uses default Maya nodes to make the scene files compatible with other environments which don’t run a license of SHAPES.

An exception are the weight driver, ramp weights and weights server nodes. These nodes are installed along with SHAPES but can also be downloaded for free to guarantee full compatibility. Furthermore the nodes are Open Source under the MIT license with their source code available on GitHub.


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What is the weight driver?

The weight driver can either be used as a vector angle based reader node, much like the Michael Comet’s pose reader node or a RBF solver. It’s part of the SHAPES installation but also available as a free node to allow scene compatibility with environments not running a license of SHAPES. The weight driver node can be downloaded from the brave rabbit tool page and the source code is available on GitHub.


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What are the ramp weights?

The ramp weights node allows to control blend shape target weights interactively to create partial or split shapes. It’s part of the SHAPES installation but also available as a free node to allow scene compatibility with environments not running a license of SHAPES.


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Where can I download the weight driver or ramp weights node?

The nodes are part of the SHAPES installation. It’s not necessary to install these separately for the computer where SHAPES is installed. For any other computer the nodes can be downloaded for free from the brave rabbit tools page or through the available Open Source repositories on GitHub.


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I am having trouble creating correctives or even loading the mesh. I am getting various errors.

SHAPES has been tested with various setups and rig configurations to make the process as easy and stable as possible. However, rigs can be build in a magnitude of ways and the possibilities are endless. Working with blend shapes in a complex rig can be very difficult, expecially when some requirements are not met. If you run into issues it’s quite possible that you scene contains information which hasn’t been forseen. Please contact us with a detailed description of your problem and the error as printed in the script editor of Maya. Also, usually it’s very helpful for us to be able to look at the scene. If you can’t share the scene file because of production regulations try to recreate the error with a simplified scene that you can share. The more information the better we can help you solve the issue.


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When using SHAPES Maya often gets unstable. What can I do?

Since SHAPES basically only uses standard Maya functionality it usually doesn’t influence the stability of Maya. The only known problem can be the extensive use of undo during the work. Undo can cause differences between the scene state and what SHAPES displays in it’s window. These differences then lead to false interpretations by the user and unexpected results. It’s always a good practice to use undo as little as possible when working with SHAPES. Also, incremental scene saving is highly recommended, as it is with all kinds of work.


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