Blurry Pixel posts a look at how to create a Tech Position Pass and normal pass out of Maya, that can be used of course with the newly released Pixel Cloud Plugin for After Effects. Check out the tutorial for Creating a Maya Position and Normal Pass for Pixel Cloud for After Effects here.

Pixel Cloud is available on AEScripts for $129.99 but right now you can pick up Pixel Cloud for $89.99 as a special intro price for a limited time – check out the page at AEScripts for more information on Pixel Cloud.

…this tutorial is a brief overview on how to use Maya to quickly create a position pass and normal pass to be used with the Pixel Cloud plugin for After Effects…

The Pixel Cloud plugin effect for After Effects quite a few uses and features including the ability to relight a 3D rendered scene using separate passes in post, after the fact in After Effects. This will allow you to drastically change the light source, direction of light and mood of a scene as well as the specularity and reflections in an image pretty easily and to taste without a re-render from your 3D program of choice.

For relighting tasks you will need to create a position pass, and an normal pass and also export the camera to bring into After Effects to use as a Pixel Cloud Reference Camera. Michael provides some nice tips as to how to export the Maya Camera effectively to After Effects.

Just a note that this shows how to create a position pass from Mental Ray in Maya, and the underlying core concept is that you need to connect pointWorld XYZ to something… in Mental Ray’s case it can be to the color channel of a shader, most likely a Surface Shader.

This concept is the same if you are using V-ray by connecting a samplerInfo Node to the color channel of a shader and then connecting pointWorld XXY to a V-ray Extra Tex Render Element’s vray_texture_extratexR, vray_texture_extratexG and vray_texture_extratexB.