I spent some time creating a shot list for Rocket Dog based on a great one I found online on an animation graduate's website (which has since vaporised!). I found that this was really helpful for breaking down exactly what we needed to get through as a group and what sort of things I would have to think about come lighting/rendering/compositing stage.
I also worked hard on bringing everything that was ready to be lit and rendered into clean Maya files. It ended up being a ton of work, time consuming and frustrating at points, and Lipin helped a lot with things like the rocket textures refusing to work properly (UDIMs... I'm not a fan). Lipin copied the keyframes over from the animated rocket to the one that was already textured in scene, and that's how we worked around it. I also ran into some trouble with the kennel not working properly with textures, which I remedied by following this guide in the Maya documentation.
Our scenes folder started looking pretty wild, and I made a clean new folder with everything I needed for the scenes. Things like cameras, lights (Shot 1 and Shot 4a, 4b, and 4c all have very similar/the same lighting), shader networks (which were a godsend to just be able to cleanly import and apply), and cached animation or FX could all be found and pulled into the new files. I composited a lot on my film in undergrad, and knew that by the time files hit me or Atharva in the compositing stage, everything needed to be as clean as they could get. I felt quite torn about this whole ordeal because it took a long time and I was tempted to ask other people in the group to help, but I was also worried that things might just end up a bit messy or things would break across people's Maya softwares. Having Lipin's help was super beneficial because we were messaging back and forth a ton on Teams as soon as we spotted a problem.
The scenes folder:
The clean folder for lighting! Even it got a little messy towards the end:
The files ready for compositing: