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The RenderMan Companion: A Programmer's Guide To Realistic Computer Graphics

This important book is designed as a tutorial for graphics programmers and provides a strong introduction to using RenderManTM, software developed by Pixar, the computer graphics division of Lucasfilm, Ltd. It provides the reader with the information necessary to start generating impressive images that convincingly compete with photography. 0201508680B04062001

Paperback: 496 pages

Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 1 edition (January 11, 1990)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0201508680

ISBN-13: 978-0201508680

Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1 x 9.3 inches

Shipping Weight: 2 pounds

Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #2,104,180 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #102 in Books > Computers & Technology > Graphics & Design > Rendering & Ray Tracing #1490 in Books > Computers & Technology > Games & Strategy Guides > Game Programming #2424 in Books > Textbooks > Computer Science > Graphics & Visualization

For a long time this was the one and only reference book available to users and without it I would still be trying to decipher the Renderman documentation from Pixar.Much of the content in the book describes the C programming API used to write programs to create computer graphics and animation. It's been my experience in this day and age, that most users skip over all the C stuff and dive right into the Shading Language. After all, we have animation programs to take care of setting up a scene and moving objects around, we just want to make them look pretty.Reading through the entire book will undoubtedly give you a better understanding of how renderman and computer graphics works. And is definitely a must for anyone that wants to program applications to work with renderman, but for most people wanting to use renderman to color and light it's all a bit much to take in. We must remind ourselves and look at the cover to see who the book was written for 'A "Programmer's" Guide to Realistic Computer Graphics'.Overall an excellent and informative companion that I refer to almost every time I write a shader. If it were brought up to date (and included the RIB specification) it would be deserving of another star or two.If you are trying to choose between this book and "Advanced Renderman" don't bother... get both of them. "The RenderMan Companion" is more of a reference book where "Advanced RenderMan" explores advaced topics with some tutorial components and limited reference, picking up where the Companion left off. Even the authors of "Advanced Renderman" recommend that you keep this book handy.

Altough dated, "The Renderman companion" is a mandatory reference for all Renderman users. This book describes and explain all the aspects of the Renderman interface (in a no specific implementation way) and teach the art of shader programming, illustrating it with high quality color plates. Renderman is a very complex system, but this book make it affordable. The big missed item: no reference about the RIB file format.

If you want to work with RenderMan (Pixar's, BMRT, RenderDotC's or whatever) and RIB (RenderMan Interface Binary) while using C, this is the book. It's not only good, it's the one that everyone who already uses RenderMan recommends. Buy it. It's what all the cool kids are doing =)

This is an amazing book about an amazing product and specification. If you want to really learn what computer graphics is all about, you could do no better than read this book. RenderMan was written by the smartest people in the subject, and is the product of years of both insight and trial-and-error.This book is clear, concise, and still extremely timely even 10 years later (a lifetime in CG). A new edition couldn't hurt though, encompassing some more recent change.

For me, a beginner, the book was a little heavy and terse. Although it is written well, some concepts require more explaination. Also, the use of the C binded RenderMan API, is a little old, and makes it annoying when writing a RIB from the examples in the book. Regardless of the level of expertise required beforehand, it is a great reference book, and provides a good reference to all RenderMan users.

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