Simple backdrop MEL script

Posted by on Jun 8, 2010 in code, lighting, Maya, MEL, rendering | No Comments

This MEL script will create a simple soft cornered backdrop from a poly plane and bend deformer.



XPM icon for shelf item.

Studio Light HDR images

Posted by on Jun 8, 2010 in code, lighting, MEL, photography, rendering | 14 Comments

Studio Light HDR images, photographed from real studio lights. Download the images below – and PyMEL scripts to automatically attach them to a lighting rig.

These HDRIs can be used as image based lights and reflection cards.

Soft Box

Get the soft box HDR. 1 MB

Umbrella Light

Get the umbrella light HDR. 8 MB

 

Newly revised PyMEL Scripts


Recently updated the light rig scripts here with PyMEL. These should work better for people using later versions of Maya. Please comment or contact me if you have any problems with these scripts. You can locate the old MEL scripts here.

Get a PyMEL(Python) script that will rig the Soft Box HDR to a reflection card with spotlight, shadows, and other controls. Note: for this script to work properly, you will need to download the soft box HDR folder and place it in your Maya project’s sourceimages directory. XPM icon for shelf item.

Get a PyMEL(Python) script that will rig the Umbrella HDR to a reflection card with spotlight, shadows, and other controls. Note: for this script to work properly, you will need to download the umbrella HDR folder and place it in your Maya project’s sourceimages directory. XPM icon for shelf item.

Installation tip: Make sure that the HDR images are placed in the currently set Maya project. These images should also be within their respective folder just as they are when you download them. The folder containing the HDR images should therefore be named either “softBox” or “umbrellaLight”, depending on which one you downloaded.

Usage tip: Select the locator on the rig, called “softBoxLightControl”, to find attributes to control Color, Shadows, and light Intensity.

note: The easiest way to position the light, without affecting the “roll” orientation of the reflector card, is to position (translate) the locator in one plane (ex: the X Y plane) to set the distance from the subject and light angle, then rotate the top node (pick-walk up once) in the Y axis to set the “horizontal” orientation.

If you are using another 3D animation package, download an OBJ, with UVs set up to use with the Umbrella HDR.

Also see my procedural softbox MEL script here. My most useful script, IMO.

Many thanks to Daniel Vasquez of heylight.com for translating the MEL script into PyMEL.

Also please check out my iOS apps.

Softbox Light MEL Script

Posted by on Jun 7, 2010 in code, lighting, MEL, rendering | One Comment

This PyMEL (Python) script creates a rigged light and procedurally textured reflector card, simulating a studio style soft box light. The rig is intended to be used for reflection or IBL when rendering using Mental Ray in Maya.

Usage tip: Select the locator on the rig, called “softBoxLightControl”, to find attributes to control Color, Shadows, and light Intensity.

note: The easiest way to position the light, without affecting the “roll” orientation of the reflector card, is to position (translate) the locator in one plane (ex: the X Y plane) to set the distance from the subject and light angle, then rotate the top node (pick-walk up once) in the Y axis to set the “horizontal” orientation.

XPM icon for shelf item.

If you prefer, you can download the older MEL version of this script here.

Make Studio Lights MEL Script

Posted by on Aug 24, 2009 in code, default, lighting, MEL, rendering | No Comments

Maya MEL script that some may find use useful. It’s called Make Studio Lights, and it does just that. It creates lights featuring procedurally textured reflection cards that simulate softbox and umbrella reflectors. These can work well in combination with indirect illumination in Mental Ray. I want to improve this, and will upgrade the script as I can.

Get the script.


A sample render scene.

makeStudioLightsTestRender

See this link for a new version of the softbox light, the control is somewhat easier to use in this version.

See this link for a newer HDR image based version of this script. May have improved results and easier to control custom manipulator.