This is a legacy documentation space! Please refer to V-Ray Next for Maya help for most up-to-date information.

The Self Illumination Render Element stores the illumination of any self-illuminated materials in the scene.


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The Self Illumination Render Element isolates self-illuminated materials, including V-Ray Mesh Lights, objects with the VRayLightMtl, and any objects with Self-Illumination enabled in their V-Ray material. This render element is useful for brightening or color-correcting self-illuminated materials in the final composite.

For example, the material VRayMtl has a parameter for self-illumination. If this parameter is set to a non-black color value, this render element will show the results of the self-illumination.




UI Path: ||Render Settings window|| > Render Elements tab > Self Illumination


The parameters for this render element appear in the Attribute Editor under Extra V-Ray Attributes.




Enabled – When enabled, the render element appears in the V-Ray frame buffer.

Deep output – Specifies whether to include this render element in deep images.

Filename suffix – The text added to the end of the rendered file, when saved as a separate file (e.g. myrender.selfIllum.vrimg).

Apply color mapping – Applies the color mapping options specified in the Color mapping rollout of the VRay tab in the Render Settings window to this render element. This option is enabled by default.

Common uses

The Self Illumination Render Element is useful for changing the appearance of self-illuminated surfaces after rendering in compositing or image editing software. Below are two examples of its use.



Self Illumination Render Element


Original Beauty Composite




Self Illumination Render Element with added glow


Tinted Self Illumination Render Element with added glow




Self Illumination with added glow


Color of self-illuminated surface changed in composite






Compositing Formula

vrayRE_Self_Illumination + Beauty = Final Image





  • This element contains only the light geometry itself, not the light emitted from it. Lighting information is contained in the Lighting Render Elements.