I’ve never been satisfied with max’s render elements, so I’ve started work on my killer app. A script to help compositing by automatically sorting lighting passes shadow passes and colour passes.
The idea is to render passes with one light turned on at a time, then add the lighting together in a compositing package or using a screen blend in photoshop. Because render times are proportional to the number of lights on in the scene rendering each light separately does not take much longer than rendering the whole scene at once. But the real advantage is that you dont have to re-render the whole scene whilst you are tweaking the lighting. By compositing all the lights as separate passes you can quickly play with their relative strengths, tighten highlights etc in realtime in your 2D package.
Eventually Ill add separate shadow passes, a full colour and a light only pass, and a neat trick to add a refection pass.
The script is called '[Render for compositing](http://www.designimage.co.uk/scripts/Render for Compositing.zip) " All feedback is very welcome at this stage.
Thanks josh that network code worked a treat