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What is 3D Architectural Visualization? A Complete Guide (2023)

What is architectural visualization?

Architectural visualization refers to visual representation of buildings created by the architects and designers to enable the owners to visualize the buildings before building them. This blog details the steps involved in architectural visualization and it’s benefits. 

No matter how you visualize the design in your mind, it eventually needs to be converted to a shape or form that can be visualized by the owner. Architectural visualization reduces the amount of effort on your end to capture your vision and communicate it to others

what is architectural visualization

When and why do we need architectural visualization?

It is an easy and cost-effective way to convert the ideas to realistic 3D visualization models. 

Architectural visualization serves as a medium with two main purposes:

  • To communicate the owner’s requirements to the architects/designers. 
  • To provide a visual representation of Architect’s creative ideas to the owner

Visualization models developed are digital clones of the assets that will be built. The visualization models can further be used after building the structure for interior designing.

How is the architectural visualization achieved?

Architectural visualization is achieved by building three-dimensional (3D) models of the structure and the environments using advanced visualization software. Building a 3D architectural visualization model is an interactive process and involves several steps. In every step, the designer/architect will seek input/feedback from the owners and periodically update the models.

The developed 3D models can be viewed in virtual reality applications, which will enable the owner to walk around the virtual 3D model and view the structure from any angle. 

Interior design components such as flooring, carpet, furniture, wall decorations, paintings, and lights can also be added to get the “full realistic picture” of the asset before building it.

What software are used for architectural visualization?

Two common industry-standard software used for the architectural visualization are 

  • 3D Studio Max: This is a computer graphics program that allows you to create 3D animations, models, games and images. Video game developers, TV commercial studios, and architectural visualization companies frequently use it because of its modeling capabilities and flexible plugin architecture.

Lumion  – 3D rendering software designed specifically for interior and exterior rendering and visualization.

Here you will get all tips and resources for 3D Architectural Visualizations & Renderings

Software used for architectural visualizations

3D Studio Max and Lumion software have all the required components to support architectural visualization needs. This software is compatible with models built in CAD file formats, thereby enabling quick model import. Architects use this software routinely to convert their 3D models to beautiful renderings.

What are the key aspects to create a photorealistic rendering?

Some of the key features to create a photorealistic rendering are – lighting, realistic shadows, and material textures. These features breathe life into the project, but they are often overlooked.

Creating images in their natural setting along with the environment is essential to get the overall feel of the project. Trees, shrugs, flowers, and other landscaping objects will show the building in a lively setting. Other features include changing the sun and adding rain or snow.

All these features will create a beautiful interplay of light and shadow and make your design come alive.

How do you convert your thoughts to photorealistic visuals?

Architecture visualization feeds the imagination of what has been and what could be – be it humble single-story dwellings or million-dollar modern high-rises. 

Architecture as such is a complex blend of designing and building structures for uses that vary from a single inhabitant to crowds of thousands. Every architectural design is unique and builds on the knowledge that’s come before. Most of today’s skyscrapers are reminiscent of tall, ancient mud buildings in the East.

Conversion of thoughts into photorealistic CGI

The skyscrapers in New York are the result of hundreds of years of progress from the building’s architectural historical roots of Ancient Greece. The drawings and designs before 1965 were done manually on paper.

What did CAD help in advancing engineering?

  • Precise and to Scale Modeling – The designs are accurate and are done faster than previously possible. This allows designers to easily create a rendering to scale.
  • Automating and Streamlining – Manual drawing is extremely difficult and is not practical in most cases. CAD + Rendering allows architects and engineers to build the model and render with relative ease. Also, the work can be shared instantly with stakeholders.
  • Incorporating Design Changes – Revisions are something that occurs in essentially every project. If something does not go according to plan, a 3D architecture design can be modified much more easily than a manual drawing.

How can our team help with your architectural visualization needs?

The architecture of many cities reflects the cultures of their residents, whether it’s new buildings or interior design featuring antique area rugs and carpets. Walking into some buildings changes your mood. 

Changing your whole world is as easy as walking through the halls of an old library or standing in the stands at a stadium. Take a look at these articles to get know about importance of architecture 

Example for architectural cultural heritage

You might not just gain a new perspective on today’s architecture when you see some of these amazing designs—they might just change your whole outlook on life as a whole. 

Through architecture, a culture can express its values through its people, its language, and its customs.

 This whole process revolves around visualizing these architectural designs. These days, we are seeing more eco-friendly, green buildings with solar panels and recycled materials, reflecting our society’s goal of achieving sustainability.

What are the latest advancements in architectural visualization?

The latest techniques in visualization have revolutionized the art of architecture. As techniques in creating 3D models, rendering post-processed images continually evolve and innovate, the realism that these images depict is quite astounding.

Artists now have become more creative by adding features to these images that make them look like they are from a dream, a painting, or a science fiction movie.

Residential Architectural visualization & Rendered Image

Traditionally, in architectural photography, leaving people out is quite common. Many visualizations today have become more dynamic. Designers add people, pets, and cars because these add scale that make the scenes alive.

What is the future of architectural visualization?

It is perceived that many architects around the world believe that augmented reality is the future of architectural visualization. This will also open up a lot of opportunities for owners, builders, designers, and architects.

It will be interesting to see how much the technology involving architectural visualization will advance exactly five years from now but, we are definitely going to see more computer-generated architectural visualizations that perfectly imitates reality you will not even be able to think twice.

Future of 3D Architectural visualization

We are in a digital age where available computing power has not only caught up with the design tools but has also surpassed them.

How can our team help with your architectural visualization needs?

Our team has extensive experience using CAD and rendering software and has experience working on a range of projects all over the world. The wealth of our experience enables us to bring out the artistic diversity that we gained over the years.

Today, architects and designers all over the world are able to create renderings that are so close to reality, you absolutely cannot believe the images were computer generated and not taken from actual buildings.

Let’s get started now if you are in need of architectural visualization & rendering services. Request a free quote now.

Recommended Reading:

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Our Services:

3D Exterior Rendering Services
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3D Architectural Viusalization FAQ's

Visual representation of buildings created by the architects and designers to enable the owners to visualize the buildings before building them.

It is an easy and cost-effective way to convert the ideas to realistic 3D visualization models. Architectural visualization serves as a medium to share the ideas between the owner and architect.

Owners who are looking to build custom houses with specific requirements. 

Architects and designers who are trying to share their creative ideas and thoughts to owners or clients.

Creating photorealistic images is essential to communicate the architectural designs to owners. Such images are created through rendering.

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