I was thinking about a better way of dealing with paint weights in general.

(A new node or expanding an existing node?)

The idea would be to have something not exactly like the paint node in houdini but rather a more layered approach.(the houdini approach could be also fine)

-Be able to combine different painted layer with some operation like add, sub, mult etc.

-This node would allow us to easily share the same painted wheight with different deformers.

-Also be able to duplicate/rearrange/toggle a painted layer in the stack.

-Having overrides per layers to globally increase/decrease the strength (i guess a point node in between would do the trick but maybe it’s better to have something directly in the node, an intensity slider or something)  

-A neat feature in this node would be to have a function to extrapolate the weights if the input mesh changes along the road.

thanks, let me know what you think

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I remember having conversations with Alias (before Autodesk bought them) guys about this kind of stuff.
While it can be done, it won't be a clean and lean solution, considering the current deformers framework in Maya.
Each deformer in Maya is on its own. Weights are stored internally and the deformer is self-container.
Instead - weights and other attributes should be stored on the MObject(s) passed around the graph and accessed by the deformers, or other operators when needed.
Hope this short note makes sense.
In the meantime - SOuP has all the building blocks to implement such a system, but it will require scripting to automate the workflow and construct the necessary nodal networks.

There is a rigging system + custom skin cluster deformer with built-in layers, painting, blending, etc. It looks pretty good.
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ok i see, i was fearing the quirkiness of how maya is handling things sometimes.

Is it the ngSkinTools you are talking about? yes the painting system in this plugin is great and so easy; it's a must have.


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Yes, ngSkinTools is the one i referred to.

My hope is that Bifrost will be able to do what we are looking for at some point later.
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