Beginner here so please explain like I'm 5. I made a mesh, made a skeleton from bones, parented them with auto weights and am now trying to edit the areas that weren't sorted automatically. My character has fingers but I wasn't able to paint where I wanted the knuckles to move. So I searched and it said I need more vertices as weight paint attaches to them, not faces. So I subdivided a couple of times so more vertices appeared. It looks like I have way more than I need now. But the paint is still not appearing where I want it.

Have I missed a step? Am I supposed to assign the new vertices to something or parent them or what?!

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Can you provide pictures demonstrating the problem? $\endgroup$
    – Kirbinator
    May 8, 2020 at 17:52
  • $\begingroup$ Done. (One has added as a link for some reason) $\endgroup$ May 10, 2020 at 13:28

2 Answers 2


There is a soduku of issues here and I don't know what to address specifically, so I'm going to skim all of them.

The steps to model and rig a hand are:

1) Model the hand. You seem to be running into a topology issue here. When people talk about "Topology" in terms of 3d modeling, they are talking about the layout and organization of the vertices and edges. The rule of thumb is that each vertex and edge should be describe something unique about the model. I could probably dissolve about 2/3rds of the verts in that hand and it would look functionally the same. Additionally, there is isn't really topology describing how the fingers would bend.

The following wouldn't be considered good topology or even a good hand, but it is functional as far as animating is concerned. Notice that even without a texture, you can tell where the fingers will bend and that it is a monster-y hand.

Topology of a monster hand

It is also only 500 verts and faces, which is far less than your hand right now.

2) Make the armature. Rigging is an entire profession, so to keep it short: create an armature and add bones until you are satisfied you have enough control points. You seem to have done that, though I will add you seem to have extra bones in the palm.

3)Bind the armature to the Mesh. In Blender you do that with the Armature modifier on the mesh. Add the modifier to the mesh, then specify the Armature you want to use in the modifier.
Armature Modifier

You can also click the mesh, than the armature while holding shift, then press ctrl+P and choose the Armature Deform option of your liking, this does the same thing.

Parenting mesh to armature

4) Tweak bone weights. Now you get to specify how each bone affects each vertex in the mesh. You will need to turn off "lock edit modes" in Blender 2.8x, as it prevents being in pose mode while weight painting.

Turning off lock edit modes

Now: select your armature, and change to pose mode. Then, select your mesh, and go into weight paint mode. From here, you should be able to click on a bone to select it. Click and drag on the mesh to apply your current tool. You can change your current tool by pressing N to bring up the toolshelf, going to the "tool" tab, and clicking the picture to change what brush you are using. Adding to the mesh increases the proportion of the influence exerted, and the color will change from dark blue (no influence) -> green -> yellow -> red (full influence). You can try moving the selected bone by pressing R to test how it is working out.

Weight Painting the claw if things are working.

There are plenty of online resources that can describe this in detail, but that is the gist.

Update It appears that there are so many influences on these vertices that weight paint is giving up. Four is pushing it, but many of these vertices have at least 7.

9 influences on a single vertex

Completely blanking these influences allows weight paint to work again, but honestly, deleting and re-making the offending geometry will probably be easier and cleaner. You do not need this many verts.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for your detailed reply. Hopefully if I tweak the mesh a bit that will help. But I'm not sure if it answers the issue about why the paint is not applying along the finger. On the linked image it shows red where I can paint, but it stays blue everywhere else despite the excessive vertices. $\endgroup$ May 10, 2020 at 18:37
  • $\begingroup$ It sounds like you either need to add an Armature modifier (and bind it to the correct armature) or you need to select a bone before painting. $\endgroup$
    – Kirbinator
    May 10, 2020 at 19:56
  • $\begingroup$ Armature modifier could be it? Although the mesh is all one object that has been parented to the armature with auto weights at once. So I don't know why some bits are getting painted and others aren't. $\endgroup$ May 10, 2020 at 21:20
  • $\begingroup$ Is this a file you are willing to post? $\endgroup$
    – Kirbinator
    May 10, 2020 at 21:43
  • $\begingroup$ I could post it yes. As I say, I'm a beginner, so it's not likely to be something people will be dashing out to steal. 😆 $\endgroup$ May 11, 2020 at 11:03

dissolve parenting and parent them back again

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Hello and welcome, thanks for taking the time to answer. We value more fleshed out replies that attempt to explain the workflow. Could you edit your post and add some more details describing the process, ideally with some accompanying images? See How to write good answers $\endgroup$ May 8, 2020 at 22:40
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the reply, but it seems to have made no difference. $\endgroup$ May 10, 2020 at 13:34

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