Rendering a Motion Pass in Massive with Air

Air includes two surface shaders for rendering a motion pass:

ReelSmartMotion:  This surface shader produces an image compatible with the ReelSmart Motion blur plugin from RE:Vision Effects.

:  This is a general motion vector shader with an optional opacity map.

When using either of these shader, the rendered image should be unfiltered, since it doesn’t generally make sense to combine different motion vectors in a single pixel.  To render an unfiltered image in Massive, use an options rib file with the following text:

PixelSamples 1 1
PixelFilter "box" 1 1

You can also add a Surface declaration to the options rib to apply the desired surface shader without having to create a new rendering pass in Massive:

Surface "MotionPass"
Option "render" "commands" "-Surface"

The options file can be included as the options rib file in the render pass in Massive.  Alternatively, you can include the options rib when rendering from the command line:

air options.rib myscene.rib

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Textures for Massive

For best performance and quality, we usually recommend that all source textures be converted to Air texture files for rendering with Air.  This conversion can be accomplished using either the the mktex command line tool or the mktexui user interface tool.  The resulting texture file contains filtered versions of the texture at different resolutions, each version stored as a set of tiles.  This arrangement allows Air to efficiently load sections of an image on demand at an appropriate resolution to produce high-quality anti-aliased texture results.

During the conversion to an Air texture file, the source image can also be converted from a nonlinear color space such as sRGB into the linear color space that is appropriate for Air’s shading computations.

Now, although conversion to Air texture files is the recommended procedure, sometimes that is not possible or desirable.  In particular, Massive will not automatically convert source images to Air texture files when exporting a scene with default agent materials for rendering with Air.  The latest versions of Air have a couple new options to improve the workflow in this case.

Air 13 has a new option to specify the color space for source images used as textures that have not been converted to Air texture files.  This option can be used to automatically convert textures in sRGB color space to linear color space:

ColorSpace "rawtexture" "sRGB"

Air 13.02 introduces a new option to automatically create an internal tiled, filtered texture  from any unconverted source texture image:

Option "texture" "automipmap" [1]

Either or both of these options can be placed in a small text file, and that file can be specified as the options rib file in the render pass settings dialog in Massive.  Alternatively, the options rib can be passed on the command line prior to the main scene  file:

air opts.rib myscene.rib

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Air 13 Released

SiTex Graphics has released Air 13.  You can read about the new and improved features in the press release here:

Air 13 Press Release

Highlights of the new release include new physically plausible shaders, faster indirect illumination, and a new Retexture tool for interactive editing of materials as a post-process.   You can download a demo of Air 13 including the new Retexture application here:

Download Air Demo

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