Combine Toon Wireframe And Ambient Occlussion


People have continuously kept asking me how Ive got the effect of rendering a wireframe over the ambient occlusion. and this is what this tutorial is all about.

  1. Add the Wireframe to all the required meshes by using the Rendering Wireframe Using ToonShader Tutorial or the Script.


  1. Select all the polygon objects and make a new layer using the Create New Layer and Assign Selected Objects button in the Render Layers Section (see image below, the button with the blue sphere) . Name it AO_Layer.

  2. Select all the polygon objects and the Toon Wireframe objects and make another new layer. Name it Wireframe_Layer.


  1. Select the AO_layer, If you are on maya 2008, u can right click and assign a preset on Ambient Occlusion, if your on 2009 then here is the Tutorial to make the shader and assign it to the the layer.

  2. Select the Wireframe_Layer. Create a UseBackground Shader, Select all the polygonal objects in the layer and assign them the newly created UseBackground shader.



  1. Make sure in your Render Settings your renderer is set to MentalRay.

Currently one of the problem you will face is that the toonWireframe will only render in MayaSoftware renderer and the Ambient Occlusion will only render is Mental Ray. so to solve this issue we need to allocate which layer should use which renderer.

  1. Select the Wireframe_Layer. Open the Render Settings and right click on render Using and Click on Create Layer Override. Then Select Maya Software from the List.



  1. Now, do a batch render, and both the render layers will render as separate image files, which u can then composite together.

  2. In case you do not have a composting package maya can do a composite of the layers for you. In the Render Layers Tab, Options-> Render All Layers and makes sure that in the render all layers options, the keep image mode option is set to composite layers.



  1. Here is what the final render looks like with the ambient occlusion render overlapped by the wireframe.


This model is something i had made back in 2005, its a computer from fallout2, i was just trying to make props for games. :)