Author Topic: External Rendering Workflows  (Read 36805 times)

I tried, once.

My conclusion:  Use Maya.

I don't have Maya, and let me tell you, it was a deep, deep, deeeep dive into areas I haven't been in for a long time.

Outside of the Maya/Renderman interface, it seems to be targeted toward actual studios (no surprise) that have actual technical teams who support a rendering pipeline.  Also, it is heavily biased toward Unix/Linux (which I haven't used for nearly 20 years).

I thought it would be fun to be the first person to use Renderman to render an iClone movie, just to say I did it.  But it was way, way too much effort.  I exported an Alembic file from iClone and imported it into Blender.  I asked a few questions on the Renderman forum, questions I thought were basic, but nobody there could help me since I was taking my own path.

I did eventually get a render, but getting the textures in there was a royal pain too.

TIP -- If you read about people having trouble with it, or how to get it working...  "IT" is actually a preview tool of some sort.  I can't remember exactly what it stands for ("Interactive Tool" maybe?).  But they don't always put it in caps, so it is often unclear what they're talking about when then tell you to "start it."

Good luck.




(Edited days later - Merely corrected a typo.)
Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 02:44:03 am
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Hey Viking, you're not alone. Renderman's implementation in Houdini is the poor stepchild too, esp w/r/t textures. BTW, IM is Image Tool (well, 90% sure).

I have pretty much came to the same conclusion re using Substance with Mantra, Houdini's renderer, even as much as I love Painter. I'd love to get them to sing but right now, they're way out of tune.

BTW, IM is Image Tool (well, 90% sure).

Yeah, that sounds right.  It is an "interactive" quick-rendering preview tool, mostly, if I remember correctly.

It was a fun adventure, though.  It is good for the geeky soul to take a deep dive into new waters once in a while.  But I think I have plenty of other places to go swimming for now.

Thanks for sharing your experiences.
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Hi,

I'm setting up the following workflow:

modeling in 3ds Max(sometimes only high poly model for CG)>export fbx >baking&texturing in Substance painter>render in 3dsMax with VRay.

- I assume that when I export the fbx from Max to Painter I have to export Tangents & Binormals and Smoothing Groups. Is that correct?

- Do I have to triangulate the fbx or is optional? (I 'll render in Max)

-  When I set a new project in Painter do I need to check "Compute tangent face per fragment"? The model will rendered inside 3ds Max, not in real-time engines/Marmoset, etc. The same questioon applies to a similar Maya workflow.










"IT" is "image tool" :D They have a tutorial series on it over on their community page (and Vimeo), seems pretty strong!

You should work with this guy!  In some apps he can even pack textures..
Once you make the first link of material all updates happen at a click of a button!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktLgR6QCPJE&index=2&list=PL0Y5mOfvERUljZXO0RaEZ1ECUFm8GA_3H



Here you can find information about how to setup common renderers using textures exported from Substance Painter.

V-Ray

Arnold

Mental Ray

MODO

Keyshot

Toolbag 2

The workflow for RenderMan 21 is actually pretty straightforward.

Some things to keep in mind:
  • Use the PBR Spec / Gloss shader in Painter. The default maps (Diffuse, Spec, Glossy, Normal, Height) should be enough for most assets. PRMan does not support metal rough outside of the PxrDisney shader which is deprecated. The PxrSurface is much more powerful and very flexible. It uses Specular Roughness
  • Paint in OpenGL space. You're not painting for a game engine, every 3D DCC and render engine uses OpenGL, why make life more difficult by having to remember to invert a channel?
  • Double check that the normal map you are outputting is in OpenGL, the default Spec/Gloss preset uses DirectX. RenderMan supports both, but again, keep life simple.
  • Export your textures as OpenEXR files. Yes they will be larger than other formats, but everything is linear. Screw dealing with Gamma adjustments and get with the industry :P
  • I recommend converting all of your textures to RenderMan's .tex format using txmake before rendering, but this is optional. If you decide not to, it doesn't matter. RenderMan will do it for you the first time you render. Doing it yourself allows you to organize them into different folders and select other specific options you might want. I would also recommend using PxrTexture for ingesting files, it has some nice functionality. If you can stick to using the render engines nodes, do it! Keep in mind that PxrTexture does not support relative paths.

In your application of choice (Maya, Katana, Houdini, or Blender):
  • Create a PxrSurface (PxrLayerSurface if you are working on a more complex shader network. I expect you know how this works).
  • Create a PxrTexture node for each texture (or DCC texture sampler node) and load in your texture. Adjust gamma if necessary (but seriously, use a linear file).
  • Setup: (Diffuse = RBG, Spec = RGB, Gloss = Scalar, Normal = RGB, Bump = Scalar)
    • Diffuse.RGB -> Diffuse Color
    • Specular.RGB -> Specular Face (and/or edge)
    • Glossiness.RGB -> PxrInvert.RGB | PxrInvert.R -> Specular Roughness
    • Height maps are where things get fun:
      • Normal.RGB -> PxrNormalMap.RGB | PxrNormalMap.N -> Bump Normal ... or
      • PxrBump.N -> Bump Normal
      • You can use a texture sampler for bump maps, but doing so will be 3 times slower during rendering than putting the texture map directly into the PxrBump filename slot. So what is in the image is not the recommended option. The PxrNormalMap and PxrBump can also take another PxrBump or PxrNormalMap as an overlay in order to stack/blend maps. This will allow you to chain textures together. If you use the PxrNormalMap node, make sure to set the orientation to OpenGL (or DirectX if you're crazy). You can also customize flipping X/Y in case things look wrong.

And there you have it! If anyone spots any glaring issues with this, please point them out! This is the methodology I've been using and I haven't run into any issues yet. Other than height/normal map seams, but that's not for this thread ;)



Cheers,
Mike
Last Edit: April 05, 2018, 06:13:26 am

Hey CJ Adams i don't know who you are but after  checking the forums im going to find you and Thank YOU! hahaha one thing is that you liked my plugin... but to promote it!!!! im your fan... i have more updates on the plugin in the oven!  and more new stuff... hope to keep your hype up

You should work with this guy!  In some apps he can even pack textures..
Once you make the first link of material all updates happen at a click of a button!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktLgR6QCPJE&index=2&list=PL0Y5mOfvERUljZXO0RaEZ1ECUFm8GA_3H



Here you can find information about how to setup common renderers using textures exported from Substance Painter.

V-Ray

Arnold

Mental Ray

MODO

Keyshot

Toolbag 2

Hello,

It is Very useful information. please tell me how to V-ray set up ?
http://www.yantramstudio.com/3d-interior-rendering-cgi-animation.html
Yantram architectural design studio
http://www.yantramstudio.com/

This is a question regarding exporting to Keyshot.
I read the documentation, but there is no mention of how to use the "Emissive Map" from Substance Painter in Keyshot (PBR workflow). The Material Graph shown in the tutorial doesn't mention it as well.
Can someone please tell me how to do it?

Clarisse Substance Painter workflow is worth it to check it out. Standard and Disney Principled Shader use a different approach but It gives you a little inside about the usage of the materials for pbr metallic and in general workflow.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95sfHIngAYI
CG generalist at @digi_fix animation studio located in Osaka, Japan.