How to render Ambient Occlusion pass in Maya?

As I said before, Ambient occlussion pass is a “must” in realistic renders.

When you composite your “beauty render” with ambient occ., reflection occ etc. It will give you a chance to change their values in compositing so you can control your project well..

Let’s do it;

Firstly, in the menu, select [Windows] > [Rendering Editors] and select [Hypershade]

If it is written “Create Maya Nodes” under “Create” tab on left, change it to “Create All Nodes”, If you dont change that, we can’t see mental ray shade nodes.

Select “Surface Shader” under “Surface” section,

Go to “Textures” section and click “mib_amb_occlusion”

When you click shader buttons, it will add them into Work Area.

Mouse middle click and hold on “mib_amb_occlussion” in Work Area and drag on to SurfaceShader1, when you realase your button you will see a menu,

Select “Other…” from the menu,

You will see “Connection Editor” dialog box,

Firstly, from left side, select “outValue” and then from right side, select “outColor”

Press Close, now you have a ambient occlusion shader

Close HyperShade window and press [ChannelBox / Layer Editor button] (CTRL+A opens and changes Attibute Editor and Channel Box)

You will see a layer editor in below, it writes Display Render Anim.. , check “Render” circle

Right click and hold on masterLayer (normal) > Overrides > Assaign Existing Material Override and you will see your surfaceShader in the menu, select it.

And render it with mental ray,

To change its settings, open hypershade again, hold on SurfaceShader with right click and select “Graph Network”

Double click “mib_amb_occlusion” in Work Area and you will see its settings in Attribute Editor

Increasing “samples” value will increase your render time but will give better results.

When you render your Ambient Occlusion pass, you can turn your scene shader back  to old.

To turn it back, in the Channel Box / Layer editor, right click hold on masterLayer (normal) > Overrides > Remove Material Override

That’s all folks,

Keep in Fx,


About Caneration

Check Also

FXFX Maya Real Studio 2 is available now!

After FXFX Maya Real Studio ver. 1.0, i got lots of feedback from all around the CG world and that positive feedback forced me to improve it much much more! And here is 2!


  1. Hello
    I just want to recommend you a ctrl.occlusion shader it’s really boost your occlusion ability) download it from
    Have Fun

  2. Nice and simple tutorial ! THanks bro 🙂

  3. hi…thanks for the tut

  4. Ashish Sharma

    Hi! Thank you Caner For the Great Tip!!!!
    It worked for me. Thank you Again
    Ashish Sharma

  5. Please upload / correct the missing images …

    Many thanks

  6. Hey Tom, missing images were corrected.

    Thank you very much mate!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: