3D rendering has transformed the way we conceive architecture, with projections becoming much closer imitations of the finished product. But, ironically, it is often real life imperfections that are overlooked in the pursuit of the perfect design.
Nowadays, superior computer graphics have made photorealistic rendering an achievable goal. Yet, there are still many aspects of reality that are forgotten in the process and result, inevitably, in an unbelievable end product. Before you give the green light to any of your projects, make sure you have considered the following techniques.
Take it to the Next Level and Bevel
Nature is very rarely divided by clear lines. The same is true for man made objects, which tend to curve at the join between two edges. Because of this, perfectly linear designs will lack realism and may fall short of what you hope to achieve. Making use of the bevelling tool in your modelling programme can help you bring an authentic touch to your designs. Bevelling will also help you understand how your lighting solutions can be affected by uneven edges.
Capture True Colours
Chromatic Aberration is a fancy name for a fairly simple effect. When a camera lens fails to focus all the wavelengths of light into one place, a thin fringe of blue or red light can appear on the outline of an object. However, CG lighting isn’t set up to mimic this phenomenon, making the computerisation obvious.
If you want to replicate the colour blemish yourself, you’ll need to offset the red and blue channels of your render by a few pixels. This can easily be achieved in Photoshop using the Lens Correction filter. It is up to you how much you indulge in this practise, but remember that overdoing the effect will detract from the rest of the image.
Render in Depth
Photography often focuses on a specific aspect of a scene, distorting the surrounding image. Including this effect in the composition of your render can help isolate your building or structure, drawing the eye of an observer.
By using a shallow depth of field you will notice a marked difference in the focal point. You can either manipulate the depth during the rendering process or use a Photoshop lens blur in post-production.
It’s always tempting to let your computer do half the work for you, but creating a perfectly symmetrical design will seem wholly unrealistic. Introducing asymmetry to your work can help you understand where the flaws in your project might occur, before you are part way through constructing it.
All buildings will vary from one another, even if they are designed to be identical; position, lighting and proximity to other infrastructure will all shape the final outcome. By considering these features early in the process you can save yourself a lot of trouble later on.