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Oftentimes the project upon which we are working requires a pipeline that will rely heavily on postproduction applications to bring together or composite a number of elements or pieces into a finished graphic or video sequence. When rendering with Maya and V-Ray, Render Elements functionality gives a 3D artist the ability to output a larger ray of scene elements or components that can be used in just such a workflow. Here we will show you how to set up your render elements, work with any associated parameters that may need tweaking and then run through quickly rendering your multichannel exr file to disk.
Firstly we need to go into our Render Settings window of course, so let's click the icon up on the main Tool bar to do that. If we come across in our tabs you see we have you Render Elements tab. In here we need to take a number of elements from the right-hand column, any of the elements that we want to work with and add them to the right-hand side so that they will be included in our final render to disc. So I am just going to select a number of elements in here. So I am going to first of all select our Multi Matte element then I am going to hold down the Ctrl key and add Reflection, Specular, Lighting, GI, want to come down to the bottom and grab our Z- depth element and then finally we want to select our Extra Tex element.
Now with the final option if we just double-click on that you can see what we get is all of our selected elements added into this right-hand column. Now as there are a number of these elements that we need to setup a few parameters on, I am just going to make certain we can see our Attribute Editor. Firstly we will work with our Extra Tex element; if we just make certain we get a view of all of its options in here. This essentially is a way of adding V- Ray maps into the Render Elements setup; we can use different V-Ray maps to work as elements for ourselves.
For instance if I click on the Map option here, you can see we get access to a number of map types that we can add into this particular element. I want to work with V-RayDirt; we want to use it to create an ambient occlusion effect for ourselves. Now instantly we get access to its parameter so I am just going to set these up very, very quickly. As our scene scale is very small, I am going to set our Radius to 1 cm and if we just scroll down all we need to do is make certain that we are working in Ambient occlusion mode and that is our Extra Tex or V-RayDirt option taking care of.
So I am going to make certain that this is just simply named V-RayDirt and now we can come to our Multi_Matte option. In here you can see we have a number of output channels available to us, we have red, green and blue all of them checked, so all of them will be included in this Multi_Matte element. Essentially we get three mattes in one with this particular element which is very nice indeed. What we do need to do though is make certain that we are assigning the correct object ID inside of this parameter field according to the particular scene geometry that we want the matte to be created for.
So we have a Red object ID value of 0 here, I am going to set this to 1. Then what we need to do is come across to our car object, our red car object. Then as I want my red car to correspond to this object id I am going to select the geometry in the scene, I am going to come up to Attributes, come down to the V-Ray option. And I'm just going to add this Object ID attribute. Now I need to select that rollout and set an Object ID value of one in there.
So as I want all of the red car to be included in this particular matte element, I am just going to select this hood object and again we are going to come up to Attributes, come down, select Object ID open up the rollout and set a value of 1. Now what we need to do is repeat that for all three of our cars. So if we select our Multi-Matte element I am just going to select values of 2 and 3 respectively in the Green and Blue Object ID fields, let's select our green car and again we can add our Object IDs.
So our green car, our Object ID becomes 2 and again we need to select all of the associated geometry. Set those to the same value, select our blue car and as we set an Object ID of 3 in there, that's what we'll set in our extra Attribute. And now the final piece of geometry, of course has the same value.
So as we have set the Object IDs we are now finished with the Multi-Matte element, we do need to move on to the final element we want to make changes to and that is our Z-depth element. I want to make certain that this is enabled. We of course need to set some parameters in the scene. Now as I have done some testing, I want to set our minimum Depth settings to value of 20cm and our maximum or our White setting to a value of 50 cm. I don't want to clamp our Z-Depth amount because I want to work with a floating point file output.
So we want to make certain that we have got the full range of values set in there and that again, it is pretty much it. We are ready to go on that element as well. Now what we need to do is set our Output options which we actually do want our Render Settings window fall. So if we come across in our tabs to the V-Ray common tab. Typically we would want to output all of these elements into a single file, of course you can render them out to separate files if you want to. But, really I like to work with a single multichannel exr file inside all the composite application whenever possible.
So from the drop-down list I would choose exr multichannel, we would want to set a filename. Now of course as we've already provided the image files for you, we're not going to be performing any renders at this moment in time. But the file name would obviously be important if you were rendering out at this point. One final tweak we need to perform before we could take any renders at this moment in time, I just want to come into our Color mapping and as typically in a compositing application I like to add the Gamma correction as a part of the postproduction process, I am going to set a gamma value in here of 1.
So we are rendering everything out in a linear format. So we are now ready to go with our Render elements, we have seen how to set them up inside of Maya, we have seen how we can output them to a multichannel exr file if that is what we want to work with and we are ready now to move on to showing you how to put all of these elements back together again using the Maya composite application.
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