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enter image description here

I currently have a vector image of a simple sprite similar to the people in the image except with eyes and I was wondering if anyone knew how to add a texture to the imported vector image and then give it a bone structure that allows me to move the arms, legs and neck around similar to in the image. Ideally, the texture would be animated (so they can blink) , but I'm asking a lot now and I'm not sure if that's possible.

I'm new to Blender, by the way.

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    $\begingroup$ You can rig your shapes with bones as if there were 3D volumes. And about the texture, you can animate it with the UV Warp modifier as explained here: youtube.com/watch?v=5NlvgMYZgaY $\endgroup$ – moonboots Sep 2 '19 at 7:10
  • $\begingroup$ In the video a small area is unwrapped. If I wanted to add a texture to the whole thing would I just select the edges around the edge of the mesh/an outline? $\endgroup$ – Doot Sep 2 '19 at 7:58
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    $\begingroup$ yes you can unwrap the whole mesh, if you don't want to use this modifier you can also move your UVmap on an Image Texture with the Mapping coordinates. It really depends on how your texture looks like $\endgroup$ – moonboots Sep 2 '19 at 8:13
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    $\begingroup$ do your characters have the thin white line on their border? $\endgroup$ – moonboots Sep 2 '19 at 8:38
  • $\begingroup$ Yes. I am on mobile so I can't post the image I made, though. It is black with a white border with eyes. $\endgroup$ – Doot Sep 2 '19 at 9:11
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You could do it several ways I guess. Here is one (but sorry I won't go too much in details). There are 2 aspects, the rigging and the face animations:

  • Create your mesh, give it enough geometry so that you will be able to bend it, if you're using a Subdivision Surface modifier of course it would need additional edge loops.

enter image description here

  • You could directly parent your object to an armature, it really depends on the deformation you'll need. If it doesn't work smoothly you may prefer to use a Mesh Deform modifier: Create a sort of cage that will encompass your character. Give it a bit of subdivisions. Make it invisible in Render mode. Give your character a Mesh Deform modifier and Bind it to the cage.

enter image description here

  • Parent this cage to an armature, maybe choose Bendy Bones so that the bones bend smoothly (not sure it's useful for a simple mesh though).

enter image description here

  • For the face animation you could use the UV Warp modifier as explained for example here by BornCG. This is the cleanest way to do it. A simpler way would be first to create an image with all your different facial expressions then create one UV map by expression:

enter image description here

  • Then to switch from an expression to another, use a Mix Shader that will switch from a UV map to another:

enter image description here

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