Baking allows users to pre-compute or "bake" pattern networks into 2D texture images or 3D point clouds. Baking has several advantages:
Baking is exposed in RenderMan via pass-through pattern plug-ins that allow users to both render and bake from the same scenes. Without heavy modification of assets or scenes, users are able to:
Baking itself is enabled by using the bake hider.
2D baking allows users to bake pattern signals to texture images. Users can bake directly to txmake (.tex), TIFF (.tif), and OpenEXR (.exr) outputs. 2D baking requires users to supply a well formed texture manifold, meaning there should be user created UVs laid out appropriately for their needs. While the most common texture manifold is ST, arbitrary manifolds are supported. Atlas outputs such as UDIM are supported.
RenderMan provides a generic texture baking pattern, PxrBakeTexture
Baking behavior with an overlapping texture manifold is undefined.
RenderMan provides a generic point cloud baking pattern, PxrBakePointCloud. This can be used to generate Ptex images.