How to create an Advanced Maya Skin Shader

Title: How to create an Advanced Maya Skin Shader
Description: A tutorial on how to fuse mia_material_x with misss_fast_skin for better control
Medium: Maya, Mental Ray

Problem: The specularity controls in the default MISSS Fast Skin Shader does not give good control over the specularity.

Solution: Use the specularity controls of mia_material_x with the sub-surface capabilities of the MISSS Fast Skin Shader.

How to do it:
For the MISSS Fast Skin Shader:
1. Turn the “Overall Specular” to 0.
2. Under the algorithm control tab, uncheck “Screen Composite”
3. Go to its shading group
4. Drag and drop mia_material_x into the following shader channels

  • Material Shader
  • Shadow Shader
  • Photon Shader
5. Plug misss_fast_skin.outValue to mia_material_x.additionalColor
6. Almost done! Notice the specular is “blown” due to the additional 0.5 color value by mia_material_x. Turn the mia_material_x.color from 0.5 to 0.
7. Make sure that both shading groups have their lightmaps connected.


Leave me a message if you have difficulty with this! Cheers!