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jporter313
02-21-2005, 11:29 PM
Hey Guys,

I really want to learn how to set up Mental Ray shaders in Maya, I have looked over the documentation and found it very hard to figure out, can someone point me toward some tutorials that explain mental ray shading networks in the context of Maya in plain english (it can include Maya jargon, but the MR stuff has gotta' be layman all the way).

Thanks.

GaryHaus
02-22-2005, 12:02 PM
jporter313,


There is some useful information over here at the Los Angeles mental rayŽ User Group

http://www.lamrug.org/

One resource for getting up and going on using some of the specific MR nodes and even in conjunction with there use in shading networks.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Gary Haus

jporter313
02-22-2005, 05:43 PM
Thanks, that's kind of helpfull, I'm still having problems getting what I need though. I just need to have an explanation of the underlying concepts of Mental ray in Maya. For example:

1: What the hell is a phenomenon. I've read several descriptions of it, but they're all very general, and don't really explain how it works in practice, much less how it applies to mental ray in maya.

2: So I've figured out how to apply some mental ray shaders in Maya (that part is pretty straightforward) but lets say I apply the SSS_physical shader to an object, I then render it and it's got some cool sub-surface stuff going on, but it also has tons of reflections going on, and I can't figure out how to get rid of these.

I guess I just feel like there's some underlying foundation concept that I'm missing here and I need a really basic tutorial for how to start setting up shader networks. I did an SSS fast simple tutorial from the highend forums, got great results, but if I had to go back and tell you why I got those results or why I'm doing each step I'd be totally lost, and that's the problem.

Anyone have any suggestions, explanations, etc. thanks.

BillSpradlin
02-22-2005, 05:49 PM
1: What the hell is a phenomenon. I've read several descriptions of it, but they're all very general, and don't really explain how it works in practice, much less how it applies to mental ray in maya.

A penomenon is simply a shading network of mental ray shaders that has been compacted into one node. The creator of a phonomenon specifies durring creation what attributes from these nodes he wants visible on the single node to the user.

2: So I've figured out how to apply some mental ray shaders in Maya (that part is pretty straightforward) but lets say I apply the SSS_physical shader to an object, I then render it and it's got some cool sub-surface stuff going on, but it also has tons of reflections going on, and I can't figure out how to get rid of these.

There is a whole thread on this board about the miss shader, almost 30 pages long. I'd suggest reading through it from start to finish as there is a ton of information there on how to use that shader.

jporter313
02-22-2005, 08:18 PM
cool, I'll check out that thread, thanks a lot for the help guys.

As far as the phenomenon thing goes, let me see if I'm getting this right:

so a phenomenon is a way to combine different attributes of different shaders into a single shader and then be able to pick and choose which parts of each shader go into it. So like I could use an SSS shader to do subsurface stuff but then combine it with the surface qualities of a Blinn? is that something like what it does? If so, could you possibly explain to me how you would construct a phenomenon in Maya? I'll also do a search for this in the forum.

Again, thanks a lot to both of you for your help. I'm really pretty excited about learning the ins and outs of Mental Ray, I'd like to be able to use it proficiently and somewhat exclusively for my maya stuff eventually.

jporter313
02-25-2005, 11:36 PM
hey all, so here's a more specific problem maybe someone can help me with. Sorry if this sounds stupid but I have a really hard time understanding the docs on mental ray for Maya. So I have this SSS shader I made to look like Jade, now I need to put a bump map on it. Can anyone tell me how I would go about doing this? Attached is a shot of the shading network.

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