Scripting & Tool Dev. for Maya

An 8 week course learning the essentials of scripting

Course overview Course overview

Course Overview

Learn scripting essentials

For some disciplines such as rigging and fx, knowing how to script is essential, but that does not mean that scripting isn't also useful for other areas such as modelling, animation or lighting. Knowing how to script will allow you to write your own tools for repetitive, mundane and boring tasks, extend Mayas capabilities and speed up your own, personal workflow, so that you can focus more on other aspects such as creating art. Starting with MEL the first thing that we will look at are the basic concepts such as variables, procedures, loops and if­else statements that apply to many scripting and programming languages followed by a look at some UI commands, so that even somebody that has never scripted before, will be able to follow along. After that we will get our hands dirty and start writing some useful tools for Maya, that can speed up your workflow and that will function as showcases of what is possible, while learning useful commands and techniques for writing your own scripts. In the last three weeks we will take a look at python, pyqt and at the end of the course, we'll take a peek into python API which allows you to write your own plugins and deformers. Starting quite basic, but then getting to a more intermediate level, this course is for everybody, from total newbie to people that already have some mid­level experience with scripting. If you have always wanted to script but never knew where to start or if you already know a bit about scripting, but want to know more about tool writing and best practices as well as get an indepth look at some of the guts in Maya, then this course if for you.


Course Format:   Standard
Lecture Type:   Pre-Recorded
Feedback:   Individual Recordings
Duration:   8 weeks
Assignment:   Deadlines each week
Q&A:   Once a week
Materials:   Maya (or 3D program equivalent)
Skills level:   Intermmediate
Prerequisites:   Intermediate knowledge using a 3D software and rigging; ideally, students should also have some experience in animating, but it’s not a must

Environment design WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

What you'll learn

The more you know, the better.

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ScriptEditor. Input vs Output. Print command. Select command. Where to get help. Documentation examples. Syntax. External texteditors. Sublime, jedit, nedit, textpad. Syntax highlighting. Line numbers. Errors.
Variables. Procedures. Arguments. For­loops. If­else statements. UI commands.
Tool development. Pseudo code. Documenting. Writing a script that will reset all controls of a character. Writing a scatter / randomize script (based on selection). Writing a mirror script.
TextScrollList with a good filter. Write a rename script based on selection. Write a script that will list all influences of a skinCluster and allow filtering.
ScriptJobs in Maya. Looking at different events for scriptJobs. Writing a script and a scriptjob. Writing a particle fx script?
Python syntax. Classes. Def. Dictionaries. String manipulation.
PyQt. How to install PyQt. qtdesigner. Building an interface in PyQt.
Python api. Nodes. Deformers. Locators.

Your journey starts here

Lectures by Nico Sanghrajka

Nico Sanghrajka is a technical director that graduated in 2006 from the Institute of Animation and Visual Effects at the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany. He currently works at Atomic Fiction and previously at Framestore, Dreamworks PDI, and MPC, he has worked on titles like Rudy the Return of the Racing Pig, Megamind, Kung Fu Panda 2 & 3, Madagascar 3, Mr. Peabody and Sherman, Penguins of Madagascar.

May 14th - July 23rd

Summer TERM Registration



Classes Begin

May 5th!

Pricing & Schedule

Even though our courses are the most affordable for the quality of education.

These Finance Options allow you to focus on your goals instead of the barriers that keep you from reaching them.

Employer Reimbursement

Animation Guild CSATTF

Payment Plan

Companies that hire our students

  • Naughty Dog
  • Luma Pictures
  • Google
  • EA Games
  • DreamWorks Animation
  • Blizzard Entertainment

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