At Animagrafx, where I work, we are in the process of redesigning our website. It is a task that was long overdue. If you dont believe me check out the old one while its still there.
Naturally we will incorperate a blog, and I have taken the plunge into WordPress template design. After some initial frustraion - animator meets php - I had a bit of fun messing it up.
Not too much has changed. Previously there was a modified version for maya 7.x but now the same script works in maya 7.x, 8.0 and 8.5 By way of improvement I now group all the follicles and clusters under a single transform to keep things tidy. You can download it here.
Ever since presets were introduced to the maya attribute editor I have found the "replace/blend" menu that hangs off each preset to be mostly redundant. I've never used the "blend", always used "replace".
Thanks to yashu I have discovered that the replace/blend menu can be disabled, allowing me to simply select a preset.
You just need to add a few lines to the presetMenuForDir.mel that gets installed in the D:\Program Files\Autodesk\Maya8.5\scripts\others folder (your install may be different, but you get the idea).
Don't edit the original; make a copy into your own scripts folder and change that one. Here's my modified version. I have commented my changes (the code was lifted from one of yashu's scripts). In this version the replace/blend menu is disabled for the mia_material, but you could disable it for everything if you wanted to.
Problem: Rig using the standard subdivision proxy method where you bind the proxy to the skeleton and you render the smooth copy. If the skeleton is animated and you try this using a mentalray-for-maya render you will probably see this error
// Error: (Mayatomr.Geometry) : pCylinderShape2: mesh has no faces, ignored //
Solution: Put the following code into render-settings PreRenderLayer MEL
UPDATE: Maya 8.5 service pack 1 (released in June 2007) fixes this problem.