PART 2 of Making Materials with CLIP STUDIO COORDINATE


"Aiko" model loaded in DAZ Studio

This is part two of a five part Series on importing 3D models to create Character Material in CLIP STUDIO COORDINATE for CLIP STUDIO PAINT and MANGA STUDIO.  Here is the table of contents for this series:

DAZ Studio is a popular FREE suite of software for creating 3D Characters.  Their stand-alone modeling program is called “Hexagon.”  You can download them here:

The primary source of models is the DAZ Content Marketplace where you can buy all sorts of pre-made, posable 3D characters, props, clothes, hairstyles, etc.  Though you can play around with a few free ones as well.

Whether or not a model from DAZ Studio will import into CSP/MS depends a lot on how the structure of the model and any props.  

First Attempt: DAZ to FBX to CSC to CSP/MS

The first thing I tried was exporting the model directly from DAZ Studio as FBX.

1. Select your model in DAZ Studio (recommend 4.6)

2. Go to File > Export and select Files of Type “Autodesk FBX” and give the file a name

3. In the “FBX Export Options” Panel select the following:

Depending on what model you exported the hair (and other props) may be wildly out of position, and possibly static (not able to be repositioned).  :-(

In trying to solve the hair export problem I first noticed that the hair (as a prop) has no parenting.  So I manually parented it to the head object.  That at least puts the hair in the right place when exported as an FBX file, but it’s somewhere between posable and static (it moves, but not precisely with the head).

Select the Hair Prop, Context Menu -> Change Parent

"Parent In Place" checked

Set new parent to "Head"

I also tried converting the hair into a “figure” inheriting the skeleton/armature of the main model.  That, too, put it in the right position but the head could still move out from under the hair.  If the original hair model is not a “prop” object, however, this doesn’t appear to be a problem.  I had much better success with the “Victoria” model with hair than the “Aiko” or “Genesis” models with hair.

"Aiko's" Hair is at least in the right place now...

But her head can slide out from under her hair!

A secondary problem with these models is that DAZ uses a different “standard bone” structure for the posable skeleton armature than the CLIP STUDIO programs.  While this still allows the exported models to be manually posed the CLIP STUDIO programs will not recognize the range limits (you can spin the head around right through the body, for example) they also will not assume or save preset Poses in CSP/MS.

Second Attempt: DAZ to OBJ to CSC to CSP/MS

So I gave up on the idea of exporting FBX directly form DAZ as it clearly just doesn’t work.  CSC will recognize more than just FBX models for import of a “body” model, however.  So the next thing I tried was exporting from DAZ as a “Wavefront OBJ” file.  I knew this format is also supported in CSP/MS, but the downside of directly importing an OBJ file to CSP is that they are essentially like a hollow bronze statue.  You can’t pose them.  Fine for static objects, unusable for posable characters.

However, if you just export to OBJ and then try to pull it into the CLIP STUDIO programs you’ll get the mesh but none of the textures!  The CLIP STUDIO programs are rather picky that the textures MUST be in the same folder as the model, so after exporting as a OBJ you have two options:

1. Move the OBJ and MTL files into the same folder as the texture files, and manually edit the MTL file to point to the new relative position of the images or
2. Convert your OBJ into an FBX with the FREE Autodesk FBX Converter program, which you can download here:

When you export from DAZ to OBJ, though, it strips out the bones so even when you convert it to FBX to fix the textures there won’t be any bones inside the  model - it will still just be a statue.

The closer your DAZ model is to the standard “T-Pose” used in CSC the easier it will be to rig with the built-in CSC tools, but it’s still not perfect.  You will get a model you can pose, but it’s very likely to distort the mesh in strange ways.  You’re much, much better off if you can rig it in another program and bring the FBX model into CSC pre-rigged for posing (even if it’s not a skeleton built to the CLIP STUDIO “Standard Bone Spec” it will still work).

My preferred method goes something like this:

1. Configure the model in DAZ Studio with clothing, hair, etc.
2. Set it into as close to the “T-Pose” as I can get it (feet together, arms straight out - which is NOT exactly the standard DAZ pose)
3. Export the model as an OBJ with textures
4. Open the OBJ file in Cheetah3D (Maya would work too)
5. Import the Celsys sample model of the fully assembled girl
6. Extract the skeleton from the Celsys model and delete the mesh
7. Tweak the skeleton to fit the DAZ mesh and “bind” the new mesh to the donor skeleton
8. Export as an FBX file
9. Import the FBX to CSC if I want to add accessories, change scale, set up alternative texture maps, etc. or
    Zip up the FBX with its textures and drag-n-drop into CSP/MS (if it’s not a model I’m going to reuse)

DAZ Studio "Aiko" getting a skeleton transplant in Cheetah3D

Tweaking the bones to fit the DAZ model is somewhat time consuming.

There are still some problems with this, however.  Sending a model through multiple format conversions always introduces errors to the mesh it seems.  In the end my attempt to export the “Aiko” model form DAZ did produce a native pose-able Character Material file, but there were some texture mapping errors and, most annoyingly, a single plane from her head had somehow been pinned to the ground - stretching a weird, skin-colored “spear” all the way to floor.  You could move and pose the model however you liked, but that “spear” would always be tacked to the same spot.

Another issue with DAZ models (and it isn’t exclusive to them, the same can be said for MakeHuman or many other programs) is that these models have a very high polygon count compared to the Celsys sample models.  That’s because most of these “posing” programs aim to produce photo-realistic, highly detailed models and not “comic book” quality images.  The CLIP STUDIO programs will actually accept these high-poly models, but they’ll introduce a significant amount of lag that will affect your productivity.  The best solution I can offer for this issue is to reduce the poly-count of the models, which is called “decimation” (see the General Concepts for two free options for accomplishing that).

As noted in the Introduction, though, you have a couple of free options to reduce the poly-count of the models by "decimating" the mesh.


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