View Full Version : Maya Mental Ray? Where to get started?

11 November 2006, 12:36 AM
I want to get better at rendering, and my lighting skills are fairly bad.
Im using maya 8.0, BUT it seems i dont have mental ray, what am i sopposed to do?
How do I check to see if its loaded or if I have it at all? Do i have to load a plug in? Can I download it?
Was it included in the installation and I just didnt check to install it?

Where is a tutorial for the absolute begginner? Ive been doing 3d for about 2 years now, the main skills I am lacking is lighting and rendering. Wich makes all my other skills useless, terrible lighting and rendering is killing how cool my projects could have looked.

11 November 2006, 12:41 AM
Maya comes with mental ray, but sometimes the plugin doesn't load properly. An issue that has plagued Maya for years.

Window > Settings/Preferences > Plug-in Manager

Then find Mayatomr.dll and make sure it's checked.

For some mental ray tutorials a new site dedicated to mental ray was just opened up a few days ago:

11 November 2006, 09:38 AM
i know exactly what you mean, not so long ago i was there myself. even mental ray isnt such a high end render but at least it seems not to suck as much as the maya one..

so this is the simplest mental ray tutorial i have found, that covers any of the cool features that make it so easy to create good looking renders compared to mayas render. (final gather and ibl mainly.) honestly this one tutorial got me started and i'm mental raying it up like crazy now, though i still consider myself far from an expert, i have been using it in commercial work and definitely finding why everyone uses mental ray (or better) instead of the maya render isnt hard.

so this little tut will get you over that initial fear factor :) you can skip ahead to the end too, the first 2 pages are just a dumb modelling tutorial.. heh.

11 November 2006, 06:36 PM
I don't know how deep you want to get into lighting and rendering, but I just bought/read "Digital Lighting and Rendering" by Jeremy Birn. Kinda pricey, but a very good book cover-to-cover. It is not app secific, but Maya is used in much of it. No tutorials in it tho...

11 November 2006, 08:44 PM
ive been in the same boat youre in. very recently too. theres a lot of material online as far as tutorials, you just have to dig around for it. conveniently enough, the vast majority of tutorials ive found are now all condensed on since that sites gone up my understanding has improved drastically. it should really help you out!

11 November 2006, 04:23 PM
get "rendering with mental ray" from Thomas Driemeyer. It'll reduce your trys and errors to a minimum!!!

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11 November 2006, 04:23 PM
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