Introduction to Renderman Studio

Taught by Manuel Kraemer

Course Number:
Software Version:
Original Run Date:
April 2011 
7 hours 59 minutes 
Pixar's Renderman@ is a core rendering technology that has been powering production pipelines since 1985. Leading digital effects houses and computer graphics specialists use Pixar's RenderMan@ because it is the highest quality renderer available anywhere and has been production tested through successful use in feature films for over ten years. RenderMan’s powerful features such as programmable shading language and anti-aliased motion blur allow designers to believably integrate stunning synthetic effects with live-action footage. RenderMan is used for Pixar’s own feature film productions.

The RMS 101 series of lessons is aimed at the beginner user wishing to discover how to enhance a small to medium sized production pipeline with Pixar's professional suite of integrated shading and rendering tools. RMS101 will introduce all the different components of the suite, such as Alfred, Slim and show how these workflows integrate with Renderman Pro Server. The course is structured around a progression of small projects, each uncovering new features and workflows of the Renderman Studio Pro suite, always focusing on practical applications for shading, lighting and rendering.

Manuel Kraemer is currently a software engineering technical director in the Production Engineering group at Pixar Animation Studios. He received a M.Sc. in Computer Science at the University of Teesside (UK) in 1996. In London, he contributed to projects such as the BBC Science documentary “The Planets” and Universal's sci-fi thriller “Pitch Black”. In 2000 he relocated to the US at the Walt Disney Company, working on the stereoscopic ride “The Magic Lamp” and then moving on to the research project “Gemini Man, exploring photorealistic facial capture and rendering technologies. He started at Pixar Animation Studios in 2002, developing the skin rendering software for the Oscar winning “Incredibles” movie and contributing to the shading and rendering technologies of titles such as “Cars”, “Ratatouille”, “Wall-e” and “Up”.
Introduction to Renderman Studio
Watch our overview of the course

Class Listing

Class 1

Installing & configuring the software.

Class 2

How Maya shading interfaces with RMS, an exploration of the RMS render controls panel and highlighting the differences between Maya's and RMS's rendering systems.

Class 3

Technical aspects of modeling. Looking at the different ways to create smooth shapes out of subdivided meshes and how this relates to shading with RMS.

Class 4

Say hello to Slim. Covering the interface and the basic mechanisms of Slim.

Class 5

Introducing the Slim node: AllPurpose, a rendering system that is able to accurately represent most physical materials.

Class 6

Working further on the look development of materials and illumination. Using procedural methods to age and weather materials with the help of composited layers.

Class 7

Exploring light transmission: specular transmission with glass and diffuse transition with milk.

Class 8

Continuing a look into light transmission with discussion of sub surface scattering.

Class 9

Introducing PTex: a new file format standard dedicated to three dimensional texture images.

Class 10

How to use RMS and Slim to bind PTex textures to the geometry through the shader.