Frayed stylization

3D rendered text using MNPRX and the Hatching stylization

The Frayed Stylization brings real-time frayed edges to 3D objects and animation within Autodesk Maya.

3D Frayed animation in real-time.

The Frayed edges style emulates the slightly distorted edges found when painting with traditional media. Inspired by the styles of short films like Feast and Age of Sail, the frayed edges will stick to objects under animation. It also inherits many pigment-, canvas- and edge-based effects from the watercolor stylization.

Mech Droid with frayed edges, 3D model by Willy Decarpentrie

Main Features

  • Frayed edges stick onto animated objects
  • Control the frequency and amplitude of frayed edges
  • Pigment-based effects such as pigment turbulence
  • Edge-based effects such as edge darkening and gaps & overlaps
  • Canvas-based effects such as paper granulation and lighting
  • The stylization is also available in Nuke for Indie/Studio subscribers for frayed edges in offline renders (i.e., Arnold, Renderman)

The style can be art-directed at each level of control with MNPRX and its uber material.

Short film for Airbnb by Taiko Animation

Style attributes

To refine and customize the frayed edges style, a series of global frayed attributes are provided within the style configuration node.

Style attributes
Style attributes in the configuration node


Creates inflated noise instances of objects in the scene to be used for the frayed edge stylization within Maya. You can disable this attribute if you don’t want to see the noise covering all scene elements in Viewport 2.0.


Amount of inflation of the noise objects, default: 0.05. Inflation is required to keep the frayed edges outside of the geometry.

Inflation between 0 and 0.5


Frequency of the frayed edges, default: 50.0.

  • Higher frequency ⇒ smaller distortions
  • Lower frequency ⇒ bigger distortions Note: if the frequency is too high and the noise enters the sub-pixel size, it will flicker.
Frequency between 0 and 200


Determines the amount of distortion on the frayed edges, default 1.0. Note: Increasing the Amplitude will also require a higher Inflation amount.

Varying amplitude between 0 and 10

Pigment Density

The concentration of pigments, giving the render either a diluted or a more saturated and darker look.

Pigment Density between 0.5 and 2

Paper Granulation

The accumulation of pigments on the valleys of the paper (canvas). Concentrates the pigments on the valleys and creates a more saturated and darker look.

Paper Granulation between -1 and 5

Edge Darkening Intensity

Strength of the edge darkening effect. A higher intensity will concentrate more color on the edges.

Edge Darkening Intensity between 0 and 3

Edge Darkening Width

Width for the edge darkening effect. Note: A wider edge darkening will require an increase in intensity, as well.

Edge Darkening Width between 0 and 30

Drybrush Threshold

Sharpness of the drybrush application.

Drybrush Threshold between 0 and 20

Drybrush color

Color of the drybrush application.

Different drybrush colors.

Max Gaps Overlaps Width

Maximum width of the gaps & overlaps effect.

Gaps and overlaps width between 1 and 5


Nurbs surfaces

Nurbs surfaces can’t save any data in vertex colors, so frayed edges won’t stick onto the objects and it won’t be possible to use PaintFX on them.

Parenting of mesh objects

Parenting of mesh objects (a mesh object paranted to another one) is not supported, as Maya won’t know what mesh to render where. Use parent constraints instead.


  • Vertex normals in objects that are not sub-divided will need to be averaged for hard-edged objects. Otherwise, each face vertex has its own normal and inflation will leave gaps between each inflated face, creating uncoherent frayed edges.
  • Thin objects should have faces on both sides for the object to inflate correctly.


...due to multiply-instanced child Whenever you get this warning, uncheck the Enable attribute in the frayed stylization, make the edits that you previously wanted to do and re-enable the frayed stylization.