Elysiun the coolest place for 3D discussions. Rendering.

It is a slow day at work today so I thought I would log into my silver membership discussion group at autodesk (formerly alias). It is so dull and boring and nonexistent with inspiration and information that I have to come over here to read about 3d and just get inspired.

I miss working with Blender. Have been traveling down the maya road for a couple of years now. Just incorporated it into my job in the last year or so.

So instead of writing a negative crit at Autodesk about how lame there community is. I decided to come over here and say how great I think this forum is.

Also have become curious about rendering software lateley? What do people think about: Renderman (pixar version)
Mental Ray

Any comments are appreciated.

good you think us are cool, about these renderings i cant say that much, but you can bet thaat blender will have it

What was it that attracted you to change to Maya? De they have better feutures?

I don’t know much about the renders but Blender have a very good support for YAFRAY, I think Blender support Mantal Ray and PovRay atleast it support Renderman.

You make it sound like he’s cheating on you. :smiley:

Can’t really say I know anything about renderers. 3delight is interesting but I haven’t really gotten around to trying it seriously.

yep Maya is so much more feature rich… the more features however the worse the workflow/interface.

i think all functions in software should be more seperated. such as Modeling, rendering, texturing, and animating.

Maya seperates a lot, but not enough IMO.


I work in News. I tried for a while to get people on board with Blender. And it seemed like because it was free it was not appropriate. (This is sort of the reason I posted to begin with) I like Maya quite a bit. My work bought one license for maya complete. The other designers were really excited to get it. That was a couple years ago and now although I am low on the totem pole in the scheme of the department. Maya is installed on my mac and I am the only one who has made anything that hits the air.

Now that said. The other designers are quite confident and capable. They have taught me many things. Because we work in News there is a very quick turn around. And it is a trick to be able to produce stuff that can hit air on time for the countless deadlines.

However, my work also bought me the silver subscription to autodesk’s community (formerly alias) which is dim in compairison to here.) I think there is more in the box in Maya than Blender. Paint effects for instance. However, for what I am doing at work Blender would be a superb tool. But while everyone I work with is “wow, I want to work with Maya” they just look at me like I am a bit ecentric when I talk about Blender.

So there is the nostalgia. I was always interested in 3d but my road there didn’t reallly begin until the day I downloaded Blender and started reading the posts on this forum. Thats when things started clicking for me.

I bought a book about Mental Ray. I haven’t used YafRay yet. Maya has mental ray prepackaged as a plug-in. Now there is also a Plug-in for Renderman(pixar) for Maya. And I have seen countless cool examples of renders done with POVray on the net.

So curious now about render software.

I’ve been very curious about 3D too before I downloaded Blender but I couldn’t find any free except the Open FX (think it’s called that) and everywhere I heard of it it was very hard. Then I saw some demos on some on a comp mag cd and thought I should try them, I tried Cinema 4D and couldn’t understand anything. Then I found Blender and understood everything.

Why do you use Maya in a News job? I mean you aren’t making the models and stuff yourself you are going to the place where something happend and shoot.

“Why do you use Maya in a News job? I mean you aren’t making the models and stuff yourself you are going to the place where something happend and shoot.”

VFX artists generally aren’t the ones on scene… I don’t know how the news is where you live but around here it’s very rich in graphics for promotions and various things throughout the newscast so there’s plenty of room for a 3d designer to work in the news industry. I’m suprised to hear Maya a bit though, I’ll admit for broadcast. I know lots of studios/companies opt for Cinema 4d for that line of work, very easy tools for that sort of thing. But, I guess tools are tools so any app would work if the features are right.

Yes there is ample opportunity to make things all the time. Generally flying logos with fx. The staple tool at our station is Zaxwerks Invigerator. Works as a plugin for After Effects. Very quick and surprisingly good results with less effort. I don’t like the size of the workspace in Invigerator. And also there is a ceiling for what you can do truely 3d.

Ahh, ya Zaxwerks is a pretty good tool. I was introduced to it last year for some small things, pretty handy!

To use a free software is excentric? Be my guest and be excentric. It’s standing out of the crowd when you use Blender.

Yup, I downloaded Blender at work. I am quite rusty. Took me 5 minutes to pan and dolly since the keystrokes are slightly different in Maya. Also exported a blender model as .obj and imported it into Maya. Pretty cool. It seems like you can only exchange polygons? Also you never seem to know how the wireframe is going to look.

yafray can deliver some quite amazing renderings.

mental ray is a professional quality engine. one of the best i worked with next to renderman. but since i am an artist wihtout any coding experience reyes engines are a magical box for me. but from my experience with 3delight i can only say that the engines is very fast and delivers rock solid results.

pov ray seems to be very powerful as well. however good images do not say everything about the engine and its usefulness in a workpipeline…

mentalray and renderman are poofen industry standarts.


Learning RiSpec is no easy task, hell I’ve been learning and using it for like 2 years now and only recently have had all this work come together in my head - the “AHA!” moment if you will. I still have yet to actually write a shader by hand, I use Shaderman for that. I can go in and read RIB code and know what’s going on now.

The problem with using Blender and Renderman together is not so much the learning of Renderman itself, but that there really isn’t a feature rich script to export to RIB format from Blender. Sure there are a few scripts that do work, and quite well. But if you compare Blenderman to Maya’s Liquid plugin - well it’s like comparing a VW Bug to a Ferrari. Both do the same thing, but Liquid offers way more control over the scene, better options and it’s a little bit more stable.

There are also certain limits because of the Blender Python API, such as lack of NURBS surface export, as well as particles. Even cheats like DupliVerts doesn’t work (be it particle data or instancing objects). Things like this really limit what you can do, and some of the really cool effects that Renderman can push out with ease like volume shaders for cloud or dust effects, well you have to be really imaginative to get them to work right.

However scripts like Blenderman can be improved on, in fact I am trying to add some more functions to it. Things like bucket sizes, grid sizes, pixel aspect ratio (really important if you want to use it for TV renderings), eyesplit controls, and so on. Some of the less known but powerfull functions of RIB, all these can improve the speed of your renders. The original Blenderman script works fine, sometimes is buggy but for the most part can work flawlessly. Now we just have to improve on it.

Other efforts like Shortwave and his BtoR thing… well who knows how that is going. I have tried contacting him several times and still no answer. Maybe all these people are giving up? I can’t say. But I know I am not. Grant you I may not use Blender %100 of the time, but since I am working in an indie movie using Blender, Aqsis and Pixie… well Maya has kinda been shelved for the moment. My job actually is to get this CG pipeline to work, and that is what I am trying to do here. Blenderman is the only script that I know of that can work on Linux and Windows, being that our CG team uses both. Things like this I am trying to work with, while at the same time improving Blenderman.

So yes there may be a lull in Blender to Renderman export… but some of us are working on getting production capable code.