Guidelines for Modeling

To model a robot face for the ros-package robot_face you have to follow this guidelines to get a working model in the application. This guideline will not tell you how to model a complete face, but helps you to get things work.

Required Software

First of all you need Blender and an Ogre3D mesh exporter plugin.

It's true that there exist newer versions of Blender and the meshexporter, but the new meshexporter was not showing good results. Using the old versions is the safest way.


  1. Blender Exporter is installed
  2. Blender 2.49b is running
  3. in your 3D-view: View has to be set to Front


To get a working model in the robot_face application, please follow this guidelines.

  • /!\ All scaling, rotation and translation needs to be done in "Edit Mode"

    • Ogre3D perceives only coordinatetransformations of the mesh and not of the object

  • /!\ All normals need to be flipped to be on the outer side

    • If the normals are pointing inside the mesh, nothing will be displayed in Ogre3D
  • The mesh has to be in the center of the coordinatesystem. Viewing direction along +Y-axis. Viewing direction of the robot face along -Y-axis. Up-vector is +Z-axis.
  • Your mesh should be scaled by 5
  • You must create the following shape keys and name them as followed: (optionally add more)
    • mouth-rest: mouth in rest position

    • mouth-wide: mouth widened

    • mouth-narrow: mouth narrowed

    • mouth-open: mouth opened

    • mouth-close: mouth closed

    • mouth-smile: mouth smiling

    • mouth-sad: mouth looking sad

    • mouth-afraid: mouth looking afraid

    • mouth-disgusted: mouth looking disgusted

    • eyebrows-rest: eyebrows in rest position

    • eyebrows-up: eyebrows higher than resting

    • eyebrows-down: eyebrows lower than resting

    • eyebrows-sad: eyebrows outer part down

  • Optionally you can add animations for eye blinking, a wiggle and breathing naming blink, rotate and breathe

    • important for exporting (see Exporting)
  • /!\ Name your materials during creation. Naming them later may result in errors.

  • Eyebrows and mouth must have different materials and need to be different to the rest of the objects materials
  • You have to name at least the following Materials:


Check the following options in the meshexporter GUI:

  • Animation Settings of "": Pose

  • Material Settings: Export Materials (name .material file); Rendering Materials

  • Export Meshes (choose save path)

  • Fix Up Axis to Y

  • Require Materials

  • Skeleton name follow mesh

  • Apply Modifiers

  • OgreXMLConverter

  • Tab "Preferences"
    • Location: Auto

    • Export Options: Edge Lists; tangent; 3 component; Reorganise vertex buffers; Optimise animations

  • To get the breathing, wiggle and blinking animation to work, you need to create the following animations under Pose:

    • breathe
    • rotate
    • blink
  • If the export fails, try to export with admin rights

Wiki: robot_face (last edited 2013-07-09 15:11:46 by JulianGiesen)