How To Render Wireframes With Ambient Occlusion In Maya, Using Mentalray


More often than not, students come to me asking for a good method of creating wireframe renders, so in this tutorial I'm going to explain two different methods of achieving a wireframe render with Ambient Occlusion in Maya using Mentalray.

Step 1

This is the model I'll be using to create the Wireframe render with Ambient Occlusion.

Step 1 Image

Step 2

Since I'm going to be using Mentalray for this tutorial, make sure it's loaded in Maya. If it's not, go to Window>Settings/Preferences>Plugin Manager.

Step 3

From the Plugin Manager window, check the 'Loaded' and 'Auto load' options for "Mayatomr.mll", to enable it.

Step 4

Now open up "Hypershade", by going to Window>Rendering Editors>Hypershade.

Step 5

Click on the 'Surface Shader' as shown in the image below.

Step 6

Now from mental ray’s "Textures", click on "mib_amb_occlusion".

Step 7

Middle mouse drag and drop the "mib_amb_occlusion" onto the surface shader created in step 6, and select 'Default' from the options box that comes up.

Step 8

Next assign the Surface shader to the model by "Right Clicking" on it, and selecting the option "Assign Material To Selection".

Step 9

Now double click on the "mib_amb_occlucion" node, and from the settings, change the "Samples", "Spread" and "Falloff" values as specified in the image below. The Samples control the quality of AO, so more samples equals better quality, but at the cost of additional rendering time.

Step 10

Select "mental ray" as the renderer and hit render. The Ambient Occlusion is now set, so let's start working on the wireframe.

Step 11

Select the surface shader, and click on the "Input and Output Connection’ button in Hypershade.

Step 12

Now select the "Surface Shader 1SG" node (which has just come up after clicking on the create input and output connection.)

Step 13

From the "Attributes" of the "Surface shader 1SG" node, go to the Mental ray options, and check on "Enable Contour Rendering" in the "Contours" rollout.

Step 14

And from the "Draw By Property Difference" options, check on the "Around all poly faces" option.

Step 15

Hit "Render" again and this is the result we're going to get, for this smooth is on (by pressing the "3" key.)

Step 16

Now go back to the "Surface Shader 1SG" shading group Attributes, and under "Contours" change the "Color" and "Width" as specified in the following image.

Step 17

Hit render again to view the result.

Step 18

From the "Render" settings, select "Production" from the "Quality" tab.

Step 19

By selecting the "Production" preset for quality, the "Around all poly faces" option in the "Features" tab gets deselected, so you'll have to turn it 'ON' again. Under "Contours", set the "Over-Sample" to 4 to improve the quality of wireframes.

Step 20

For changing the background of the rendered image. Go to View>Select Camera from the Perspective viewport menu and press "CTRL+A".

Step 21

Or press the button shown below.

Step 22

From the "Attribute Editor" window, under "Environment" change the "Background color" to medium Grey.

Step 23

Render again, and here is our final result.

Step 24

The same results can also be achieved using the contour node. To do this, select the "Contour_shader_simple" node from the "Contour Shader".

Step 25

Double click on the "Surface Shader" shading group node in Hypershade.

Step 26

Expand the "Custom Shaders" rollout from the "Attribute Editor", and middle mouse drag and drop the "contour_shader_simple" onto the Contour Shader slot.

Step 27

For changing the Color and Width of the wireframe, double click on "contour_shader_simple" and change the color and width accordingly.

And that concludes the tutorial, I hope you enjoyed it!

Related Tutorials:

Related Posts
  • 3D & Motion Graphics
    Create a Game Ready Fire Extinguisher with 3D Studio Max: Part 4Max fire extinguisher pt4 retina
    In this part of the tutorial, we are going to learn how to bake Normal and Ambient Occlusion maps from the high-res model.Read More…
  • 3D & Motion Graphics
    Create Realistic Glass and Caustics in Maya: Part 2Maya glass caustics retina
    Achieving a realistic render can be a challenging task, especially when re-creating a real-world object or scene. In this two-part tutorial, you learn how to build and render a realistic glass of water, complete with accurate caustics in Maya.Read More…
  • 3D & Motion Graphics
    Building Thor's Hammer in Maya - Part 2Thor hammer retina
    In the second part of the Thor Hammer tutorial, Chandan Kumar will show you how to unwrap each element of the model and pack the UVs before moving into Photoshop to create the textures. You'll wrap up the project by heading back into Maya to create shaders, setup scene lighting and do the final render.Read More…
  • 3D & Motion Graphics
    Creating Fireworks With Particles in MayaRetina
    In today's tutorial Chandan Kumar will introduce you to working with particles in Maya, and show you how they can be used to create a cool looking fireworks animation rather quickly. Topics include, preparing your scene for animation, working with particle emitters, fine tuning your settings to achieve a specific look, creating and apply materials, adding glow effects, rendering image sequences and finally, how After Effects can be used to turn that image sequence into a final animation.Read More…
  • 3D & Motion Graphics
    Create a Classic He-Man Action Figure using Maya: Part 73d and motion graphics
    In the seventh and final part of the He-Man Action Figure series, you'll learn how to create and apply plastic shaders to the skin, weapons and accessories to achieve a truly toy look. This lesson also includes creating a basic rig for posing, lighting the scene, rendering passes from Maya using Mentalray, and finally compositing those passes together in Photoshop, to achieve the final end result of this series.Read More…
  • 3D & Motion Graphics
    Model & Render a Realistic Toothbrush in MayaMaya toothbrush thumb
    In today's tutorial, you'll learn how to create a realistic toothbrush using Maya. Chandan will start by taking you through the modeling process using tried and true poly modeling techniques where you'll learn how to create a detailed subdivision ready mesh using Maya's built in modeling toolset. From there you'll learn how to create the necessary shaders, setup the scene for rendering, apply Depth Of Field and finally how to render out and composite your render passes using Photoshop.Read More…