Character modeling can be some of the most rewarding modeling you can undertake. But it can alos be frustrating and rather challenging to say the least. It can be especially painful if all you want to do is practice a little rigging and animation.
Luckily, Blender users have quite a few free characters and even rigs that have been created by fellow Blender users for you to practice / play with and study. In addition to the many characters that can be found online, here is a new batch of characters that have been submitted for you to study and enjoy. All of the blend files for these characters can be found in the blend zip download file for this issue (#35), in the Character Blends folder.

Characters on parade-1.jpg

Ely the elephant

Created by Christoph Pöhler aka Dracio Ely is the star of a little animation for Christoph's niece. The song is called the bogey.

The layers contain:
Layer 1: Ely mesh
Layer 11: Ely Armature
Layer 2: Custom Shapes (Hidden)
Layer 6: Basic camera rig
Layer 16: Basic photo background which automatically changes position to the camera rig
Layer 7: Two light rigs each of these light rigs are made up of two lights. One Area light for the Scene and one Spotlight for the Fur (because Spotlights are the only lights which are able to create shadows for strands)
The textures are 16 times smaller than the Textures on the videos… (but it is still enough)
If you have any questions about the rig, the model, the textures, what ever! feel free to write a comment or send me an E-Mail to or here read.php?224337-quot-Ely-quot-or-quot-the-bogey-quot
So have fun with Ely.

Sharque mesh

Sent in by Christoph Pöhler aka Dracio I am working on an open movie project called "Jerks of the sea". It should become an Open Source Pirate Short movie.
The plot of this movie is that these pirates are very big jerks except for the Captain.
My job in this team is most of the character modeling. I talked to the director Oliver Freudrich ( and he allowed me to send you a model from the movie.

Characters on parade-2.jpg


Created by Erik Ramirez

This a collaborative worque and library Sintel Lite Head based on Jeff Bridges digital topology, Some designs and concepts are from the Tron film.
There are still several issues around in regard of shape keys, cage mesh, and a ton of settings without checks. The rig comes from Rigify (first iteration). Polygon hair and central wear may be driven by lattices.
Some settings are not recommended to copy because they are obviously wrong (like the light sword parented with fque controls) Fixes and tweaks may follow as a sequel of this file.

Characters on parade-3.jpg

Jake Rig

created by Ben Simonds

This is a rig I created as a test for the Two Rivers Partnership, a small animation and VFX studio in London whom I worque for. They’ve kindly allowed me to release the rig to the blender community.

Characters on parade-4.jpg


created by Francesco Milanese

This is a simple character. I plan to use it for a simple game but it is still a worque in progress.
For the mesh I started from a subsurfed cube.
Then I modified it in edit mode. I obviously textured it in blender. It 's a bit ugly.. but it is oque as a proof of concept.
Then I rigged it.

Characters on parade-5.jpg