Render for compositing script


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 don’t 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 I’ll 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]( for " All feedback is very welcome at this stage.

:thumbsup: Thanks josh that network code worked a treat


Hi Ken,

Great idea. Script looks good to. Have you considered using the mental ray ambient occlusion as another pass? it’s amazing how good this can look multiplied with a flat diffuse (texture) pass.
You can use render elements to get your shadow, diffuse, and reflection passes, but remember this must be done with scanline renderer!

I’m glad the network render script helped.


I’ve been using final render so I haven’t really touched mental Ray. But if the ambient occlusion pass is as good as you say I’ll definately add it as another pass.

any other requests?


As far as I can remember FR is pretty good with it’s render elements. this would enable you to get pretty good reflections. You might like to have an option to create masks for objects or materials so you can adjust things like reflections on one particular object only. This can also be done through render elements.



great idea. after reading this tutorial on occlusion shaders, I had the idea to make the same thing you’re making…but I have enough projects!

take a look at this tutorial on occlusion


any hope to get MR runnin on it


josh – I’m in the processes of writing a material manager which quickly allows you to assign a standard set of useful masking materials to objects in the scene. Also it allows you to store and recall various material setups, so you don’t trash the scene in the process. It will also hide and unhide objects for you…actually thats the easy part, the hard bit is designing a nice clean interface for the user.

eric – I’m going to use the standard max material first. Then enable final render and mental ray. Like i said i don’t know mental ray so i might need a bit of help…

stuh505 – Thanks for the tutorial link. It makes a lot more sense now. And you’re right the process should ideally be automated. I’ll see what i can do…


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