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AUTHOR: Anna Liza Montenegro

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Tips to Get Started with 3D Architectural Visualization

What is 3D visualization?

3D visualization is the process of creating graphics and rendering designs using 3D software. Many industries benefit from 3D visualization ranging from architecture, film, and games, to engineering and manufacturing. A number of products and visions are created in 3D visualization prior to execution, saving both time and costs for producers, manufacturers, and customers.

What is 3D architectural visualization?

Visually communicate your clients’ proposed designs and beautifully tell their story with realistic elements and details. The future of architectural design and 3D architectural visualization allows for projects to be designed, revised, and refined in real-time prior to building. This helps eliminate unnecessary costs and time spent on project changes and also helps customers marketing their designs to potential buyers. Adding fine-tuned embellishments such as greenery, lighting, and people, bring an enriched and engaging experience to architecture and its surrounding landscape through 3D visualization.

Benefits of 3D architectural visualization

Technical to Visual

3D visualization software translates technical drawing into a visual story, helping you communicate the project to customers, architects, and engineering teams.

Marketing a Vision

Whether you’re attracting investors or buyers, architectural visualization allows your marketing material to convey an aspirational vision and attract prospects.

Test & Validate

3D architectural visualization helps you to identify design flaws overlooked through conventional 2D techniques. Build life-like models, validate designs, and scale in real-time.

What do you need 3D architectural visualizations for?

Produce High-End Imagery

Advanced modeling, texturing, and lighting tools in 3ds Max give you the freedom to create and deliver photo-real imagery, giving your customer a better experience of their future environment and investment.

Accommodate Changes Instantly

Project timelines are becoming increasingly shorter, and clients want everything faster. 3ds Max gives you the speed and flexibility to perform fast iterations and countless variations without starting from scratch.

Immerse Clients in their Space

Invite your clients to experience their designed environment both virtually and emotionally. 3ds Max 3D building visualization tools embellish down to the smallest detail, and when used with Unity, allows you to create real-time arch viz walkthroughs with ease.

V-Ray for SketchUp

Workflows for Architectural Visualizations

Many immersive visualization tools plug directly into your 3D model, providing fast, immersive access to the project design to anyone, at any time, and on any device.

Start with a sketch, drawing, physical model, scan data, or only an idea.  This new McNeel Rhinoceros 7 can create, edit, analyze, document, render animate, translate NURBS (Non-Uniform Rational B-Splines), curves, surfaces, solids, point clouds, and polygon meshes.

Many tools offer a simple workflow from a 3D modeling tool, like Autodesk Revit, that serves as a hub of information to document everything from schematic massing to construction detail. For photorealistic 3D rendering in various Autodesk products, Autodesk 3ds Max software helps with modeling, animation, rendering, and workflow updates.

V-Ray rendering software is built for architecture — from early massing models to photorealistic imagery, VR, and animation. V-Ray connects seamlessly with the top 3D modeling and design applications including 3ds Max, Revit, Rhino, SketchUp, and Unreal.


McNeel Rhino

McNeel Rhinoceros

To be an effective designer today, you need tools to quickly develop your designs and accurately communicate them to everyone in the product research, development, marketing, and manufacturing or construction process. Start with a sketch, drawing, physical model, scan data, or only an idea.


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Autodesk Revit

revit 2021Use Revit to drive efficiency and accuracy across the project lifecycle, from conceptual design, visualization, and analysis to fabrication and construction. Revit features tools for architecture, engineering, and construction professionals.


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For photorealistic 3D rendering in various Autodesk products, Autodesk 3ds Max software helps deliver improved productivity so that users can work more efficiently and creatively with modeling, animation, rendering, and workflow updates.


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V-Ray for 3ds Max

V-Ray 5 for 3ds Max

V-Ray 5 for 3ds Max Scene Intelligence delivers faster ray tracing, cleaner sampling, and more accurate rendering.


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V-Ray for Rhino

V-Ray Next for Rhino offers visualization professionals a state-of-the-art solution that generates high-quality images of unparalleled realism.


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V-Ray for Revit

V-Ray Next for Revit lets architects render professional-quality, high-resolution images directly from their Revit model and helps them make critical design decisions.


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V-Ray for Sketchup

With V-Ray 5 for SketchUp, Chaos Group has dramatically expanded the capabilities of rendering software — so your customers can do more without leaving SketchUp.


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V-Ray for Unreal

V-Ray for Unreal introduces the fastest, simplest way for architects, product designers, and pre-vis specialists to bring V-Ray scenes into real-time and render ray-traced images directly from Unreal Editor, supporting both V-Ray scenes and native Unreal Engine scenes.


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V-Ray Collection

VRay Collection

V-Ray Collection is the ultimate 3D rendering and simulation toolset. Designers looking for total creative freedom and flexibility, get instant access to 15 Chaos products all with one license.


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Combined with the power of visualization, you’re able to explore your design model and get a much more accurate understanding of the final product before moving into construction.

If you have any questions or need additional information about these visualization tools, feel free to reach out to our team.


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Tips to Get Started with BIM

Implementing building information modeling (BIM) into your architecture practice should be undertaken with a well-thought-out plan that considers the many factors and individuals involved.

If you are still wondering what is BIM, check out this article on BIM 101.

If your business is ready to make the move, consider first giving BIM a test drive with a pilot project to discover how it works and what it can offer your firm. These resources will give you a framework to help guide you to a successful first BIM project.


How do you use BIM?

Moving to BIM can seem like a daunting task. This guide provides a simple framework that helps you get started putting BIM into practice in your organization.

Successful implementation of BIM requires a careful and structured approach that takes into consideration the many integrated components of a firm’s business, starting with a vision and leadership extending to individuals who will apply BIM in their day-to-day execution of projects.

Pilot projects are one component of a well-thought-out BIM implementation plan. This article outlines a framework to assist organizations in planning for the deployment of BIM pilot projects based on your industry.

Integrated BIM tools for building design, civil infrastructure, and construction will equip you to meet any project challenge – now and in the future.


Getting Started with BIM for Building Design

Learn how BIM (building information modeling) workflows automate the ordinary and can help you unlock new levels of creativity. Download this report on how to get started with BIM for building design.



Getting Started with BIM for Civil Infrastructure

Enhance planning, design, and delivery of more scalable and sustainable civil infrastructure with a full range of tools. Download this report on how to get started with BIM for civil engineering.



Getting Started with BIM for Construction

Visually explore project constructability, manage your project cost more effectively, and better predict project outcomes. Watch these videos as we explore how builders use BIM data for better collaboration.



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What is the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) Collection?

The Autodesk Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) Collection provides designers, engineers, and contractors a set of BIM and CAD tools that support projects from early-stage design through to construction.

  • Create high-quality, high-performing building and infrastructure designs with conceptual and detailed design tools.
  • Optimize projects with integrated analysis, generative design, and visualization and simulation tools.
  • Improve predictability in the field with tools that maximize constructability and project coordination.

Why a collection?

Autodesk has expanded the list of products included in the AEC Collection in order to provide customers with a better range of industry-leading solutions.

Be ready for anything with a full set of tools

Collections simplify access to software that manages the demands of today’s complex projects, giving you the flexibility to tailor your tools to each project’s unique needs, all in one package.

Access the latest and previous releases

Stay up to date with the latest releases and control when you deploy updates. (Don’t worry. You’ll retain access to previous versions, too.)

Easier software and license management

Eliminate the headache of managing multiple product licenses. Get insights on product use. Easily download, install, and use as many products within the collection as you want, whenever you like.

Choose access for individuals or teams

Choose a single-user subscription, or give teams permission to share licenses with multi-user access.

What is included in the AEC Collection?

Autodesk industry collections offer an integrated set of tools to help you create more imaginatively and fluidly, solve complex problems, build smarter and faster, and make better design decisions. Each collection includes the essential products for your industry at one great price.

With the collection, you get these top design products plus 12 additional products for analysis, visualization, reality capture, detailing, and automation.

See all products in the collection

By adding these products at no extra cost, Autodesk now provides its customers with a better value for their subscription, which makes it easier for teams to implement the different workflows – from design to construction.

Want to switch to a collection?

If you already subscribe or have a maintenance plan on individual products like AutoCAD or Revit, you can switch to a collection. Annual or multi-user subscribers to most individual products or suites can switch to a collection.

Why buy from us?

Need expert advice?

Our team is happy to help. You can also place a purchase order by phone by calling (888) 768-7568.


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