Tutorial : FUR rendering with maxwell render (en.)
Rendering fur with maxwell render isn’t that hard. Once you understand the basics of Maxwell Render’s technical knowledge, it’s an easy thing to manage. The only difficulty remains in the lighting set of the scene, the fur (or hair) parameters, and the photographic skills of the user. If all these things are mastered, you’ll get the following picture very fast.
NB:This tutorial isn’t only for expert users. I will therefore recall maxwell render’s fundamentals to make it useful for beginners.
Setting Up the Scene
Programs & Plugins to install:
- Maxwell 2.6
- Hairfx (furfx) for 3dsmax
Hair fx is a hair plugin system working on 3dsmax. You’ll need to install maxwell render for 3dsmax plugin in order to manage and preview your renders before going to Maxwell studio.
Start by installing the maxwell render system in render options (common) as showed below.
To optimize render time on fur/hair mesh complexity, start with a default lighting system ( sun ). You can easily control Hair/fur length, density and thickness. Then, load a studio HDRI to get closer appreciation of your final render. At least use the multilight system to perfectly set the lighting values.
Once you loaded the teddy model, you’ll have to carefully check the scene scale. This heavily impacts the hair/fur system.
The hair/fur system has to be loaded in the 3dsmax environment menu.
Hair system environment
Hair fx has 3 parameters mods:
- Hairfx render for specific rendering parameters, mostly set to default.
- Hairfx for hair settings
- furfx for fur settings.
Here, we decided to use the fur system. We’ll soon release the hairfx support guide on our Facebook page (for fans only) in PDF.
NB: I will not give much details about the scene light settings. This is not the subject of this tutorial and we’ll write a devoted post about it. meanwhile, you can have a look at this screenshot to figure out what it looks like.
To properly set the fur, you just pick the desired object. It’s important to have a « clean » modifier’s pile (editable mesh or poly). If you want to have a uniform application, do not make specific polygon selection.
Here are the teddy bear fur settings:
And here is the render result:
Setting up materials
Maxwell render automatically transforms hair to mesh and sets a default material. Don’t forget to consider that both mesh and hair object have to be set with the same material to avoid « holes » in your fur.
Very Important: Appling UVmaps in 3dsmax (or any other unwrap) doesn’t work properly. As I explain it in a further note (see the important note below) the map has to be set in Maxwell render studio.
We can now export the scene in MXS and export it to the studio.
As explained in the official Maxwell render knowledge support :
The fur object can be set with 2 different channels:
- Channel 0, is the default one. It will apply the texture along each hairs from root to extremities.
- texture set with channel 1
IMPORTANT NOTE: unfortunately the previous application of UV set in 3dsmax doesn’t work until now, mainly because the export procedure reset the UV channel affectation when converted to MXS. I will let the readers comment this part and give me a solution.
It seems anyway easier to set the map coordinates in the studio. .
Fur map settings
You can adjust it with the mesh object in order to visualize the result in the viewport on “texture shader”.
In our example, the j&denis texture is set on projector 0 / channel 0 with scale parameters.
you just have to report the parameters on the fur object, with the channel 1 parameters.
I’m waiting for comments.