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Top Tip: Rendering Complex Scenes

03 July 2018

Chris Scubli our awesome Senior Generalist has yet another Top Tip. This week he’s got some advice to help make rendering complex scenes a little easier.

When rendering complex scenes, you want as much control and freedom as possible, to allow for faster iterations. I find that one of the best tricks for achieving fast iterations is to render objects separately from their environment and then to put everything back together in the compositing stage.

Take this example:

To render the teapot separately from the surrounding environment; right click the teapot, go to Object Properties and then tick off the Visible to Camera option. We are not simply hiding the object, but we’re telling the camera not to see it instead. As a result, the teapot is still casting the correct shadows, GI and reflections on its environment.



Then we render the teapot on its own, with the environment set to be invisible to camera, or a matte object if there are any elements occluding the teapot. Now we can adjust the teapot or make render tweaks to desired assets only, without redoing the entire scene. This also gives more freedom to effects integration and when trying to avoid alpha fringe artefacts.