Free Renderers for Maya 2013?

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  03 March 2013
If you're not blaming the renderer then why are you looking to replace it with a different one?

The thing is: Neither the renderer nor your "really slow computer" are the issue here.

Don't mean to sound harsh, but it's painfully obvious that you're lacking the fundamental knowledge of what makes good CG or art in general. If you can't afford to purchase a decent tutorial there's always free ones out there. Or head over to your local library and read up in a book.
Doesn't even need to be Maya-specific -- traditional basics of lighting, composition and color-theory still apply in the CG world.
 
  03 March 2013
I believe both things you mentioned were ruled out in previous posts. I shall scout utube for some cg lighting, composition, and lighting effects before I try something cool for my next project. Thanks for your help.

Here's my latest attempt at maya physical sky with simple lamberts and phongs. Please give a critical review!





Also, do these qualities (lighting, etc) come with practice?

Last edited by Enuniq : 03 March 2013 at 05:31 AM.
 
  03 March 2013
I'd say you got your question answered regarding the rendering engine.

That image is an improvement. And yes, it takes practice.

I think a good place to hang out at this stage would be WIP or focused critique.

Plan to spend a few months full time just learning the techniques you need to have to do nice lighting composition and so on. Which would include the software specific techniques of , Photoshop, Maya, etc.

And several years of experience and practice to get good, and a whole lifetime and career before you can - if ever - say you have learned enough.

CG of all things is not for the faint of heart.
 
  03 March 2013
Wow, guys, thanks a lot. Last question, what exactly is composition and color theory?
 
  03 March 2013
Originally Posted by Enuniq: Here's my latest attempt at maya physical sky with simple lamberts and phongs. Please give a critical review!
Not much to review here... what can we comment on? It's an untextured chess board with the built-in sky and default lighting. I would however say that overall it's a better render than your first, so that's an improvement I suppose

Sorry, but this is the digital equivalent of drawing stick figures and then asking professional draftsmen for reviews. Put some effort into learning the ropes first. I think we've given plenty of suggestions where to start.

Quote: Last question, what exactly is composition and color theory?
Come on man, put in some effort. Read a book or at least check Wikipedia...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compos...8visual_arts%29
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_theory

You're going to have a hard time developing skills in CG if you're not proactive in learning on your own.
 
  03 March 2013
Post

A chess board does not need to be textured if you plan to make it a plastic type (using blinn). The digital was attempting to start at the lower basics with lighting and materials. NOT trying to make it an eye candy scene made by pros. By the way, please respect people who are attempting to learn the skills of cgi. Thanks for all of the help guys!
 
  03 March 2013
Originally Posted by Enuniq: A chess board does not need to be textured if you plan to make it a plastic type (using blinn).
Right. So why are you asking for critiques again if you already know your render is the way you like it?

Because actually, it does need to be textured if you want it to look half-decent. Adding specular-maps for example will improve realism. You also shouldn't be using Blinn shaders these days, they're completely out-dated. The MIA material is far more appropriate for this type of work.

Originally Posted by Enuniq: The digital was attempting to start at the lower basics with lighting and materials. NOT trying to make it an eye candy scene made by pros
Fair enough. But if you're asking for critiques you'll need to post something that's actually "critique-able" (not sure that's even a word).
Yes, as far as untextured chess-boards with a default sky and lighting go, it's a decent render. What more do you want to hear?

Originally Posted by Enuniq: By the way, please respect people who are attempting to learn the skills of cgi. Thanks for all of the help guys!
Please show where was I being disrespectful. I just take issue with people who don't show an effort or willingness to educate themselves.
 
  03 March 2013
Smile

Originally Posted by klingspor: Right. So why are you asking for critiques again if you already know your render is the way you like it?


Was I really asking for critiques again?

Originally Posted by klingspor: Because actually, it does need to be textured if you want it to look half-decent. Adding specular-maps for example will improve realism. You also shouldn't be using Blinn shaders these days, they're completely out-dated. The MIA material is far more appropriate for this type of work.


Thanks for the info! What kind of textures would you use? Wood?

Originally Posted by klingspor: Please show where was I being disrespectful. I just take issue with people who don't show an effort or willingness to educate themselves.


I did in fact try to find what composition meant. I actually thought it was something different than the book def (in the industry). I do understand it with the color-theory. I didn't know cgi was actually so artistic. Thanks for your help!
 
  03 March 2013
Originally Posted by Enuniq: Thanks for the info! What kind of textures would you use? Wood?
That's up to you. Look at real chess boards and pick one you like. Marble, wood, plastic... anything will work.

Just look closely at the reference. Inspect it from different angles and under different lighting conditions and think about what you're seeing. Think about how and why the materials are behaving the way they do.
Once you have a reasonable understanding of what you're seeing, the technical act of setting up the textures and shaders is pretty easy.

The hard part is seeing things like an artist. Obviously a lot of it just comes with experience.
 
  03 March 2013
Originally Posted by Enuniq: I didn't know cgi was actually so artistic.


Just to put my 2C in.

It is really OK to spend a lot of time, I mean a lot of time tinkering with the technical basics like you did with that scene of the chessboard. You should not be expected at this point in the game to be putting out images of any great works of art and asking for or expecting critique. It should be understood in the context of "just learning how to set up a scene with a basic GI set up."

CGI is not artistic. It is art.

And it follows all of the same rules.

In any art form there are two basics to understand.

1) The gritty technical points, how to actually accomplish certain effects technically. Piano Scales Finger Technique, Stretching Canvas, Mixing Paint, Complimentary Colors, Lighting, Shot Composition and so on.

In CG it is about 1000% more technically oriented and complex than any other art form.

2) The finer points of getting out a message. What is the theme of your work, the story you are trying to tell, the emotional impact you are shooting for and so on.

And you could further separate it like this:

All of the rules and techniques of traditional art. And then all of the technical things you need to learn about software.

Take one thing at a time and do not try and mix many techniques together first.

One week or two just concentrate on lighting set ups.

Another week or so UV Mapping and basic texturing. Applying maps to an object.

Then move on to what all of the various maps you can use such as bump, specular, normal etc. Another week or so on just that.

And finally work on putting these three things together.

And at this point you have not even covered proper composition and color theory.

Spend a month on this alone, setting up scene after scene until it clicks.

And you have not even gotten too heavy into artistic use of lighting to create certain effects.

Spend a few weeks or more just on this.

Now you are ready to spend a while just learning how to use thise techniques to get out a message of some emotional impact.

Moving on...

And then add any of the other 100 or so various things that have to go together to make up CG VFX shot.

Start over with each set of techniques here.

It is a process of knowing the techniques so well you don't think about it anymore and then you can put your attention on getting out a message.

Animation?

Ready to spend a few years learning just this?

Again starting with the technical basics and moving over to making something tell a story as two separate things to learn.

Get the idea?

Last edited by cineartist : 03 March 2013 at 03:20 AM.
 
  03 March 2013
You said, "please give a critical review" so yes, you were asking for critique. I'm starting to think this guy is a troll. Nothing more.
 
  03 March 2013
Thanks cineartist and klingspor, you really got me understanding what I need to learn. I will definately look back to these posts in the future! As for you sacslacker, please do not insult on these forums. We're all happy, friendly artists that want to help and be helped. In the previous post to klingspor, I thought he meant I wanted a critical review again.

Happy Huntings!
 
  03 March 2013
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