View Full Version : My First Architectural Work -- Comments Welcome

08-30-2010, 04:02 AM
Hey All!

So a friend of mine started an Interior Design business and I told her that I would love to take some of her drawings and try and make a 3d version that she could present to her clients. She finally took me up on the offer and gave me a drawing and some pics to work from.

The project is to remodel a youth room for a church. The current feel of the room (see below) was quite ... lame. She plans on putting some new paint on the walls, doing a cool design with carpet tiles on the floor, and tossing some Ikea chairs and tables in there. It was fun and a lil tricky to get the room and the furniture modeled.

This is my first real architectural type work, that didn't come for a tutorial. I would love to know what you guys think of it. Any comments and suggestions in the way of my modeling, texturing , lighting or rendering would be greatly appreciated and would help me get better. :)



08-30-2010, 08:48 AM
Hey there Wittywop,

Its definately a great job for a first time, I am still a beginner aswell having only just started learning again, so hopefully a bit of my advice comes in handy.

I will list the suggestions I have, dont take it as saying your work is bad, as it is quite a good job. :D

Also, being a newbie commenting if any of the pros think I am suggesting something wrong, please say so. Would hate to be giving useless advice. :)

Firstly, with the table, the bevel on the top service seems a big big, with the edges of where it goes from the side to the flat top being just a sharp edge. Would recommend doing a very small bevel there so it doesnt look as sharp. A nice bevel will just catch the light, however wont be very evident unless looking really close.

Texturing wise, right next to the wooden door on the left (lovely texture by the way) on the wall there is the two shades of gray. The lighter shade of gray in the middle, is that paint or glass? If paint, I would recommend lowering the reflection as you can see the whiteboard being reflected. :)

Thirdly, cannot see the roof. I am rather unskilled with lighting at the moment so cannot offer many suggestions. Do you have radiosity on? What colour is the roof?
The lighting where it suddenly fades off on the wall just seems a bit unrealistic, with typical real life would see light be reflected off the table, walls etc onto the roof.
Radiosity as far as I know would help with that, however does have the potential to add a fair bit of time to renders.
Even if the roof is black, I would still expect it to be visible. :)

Seems to just be a flat white texture on the table, which is getting washed out by the lights. Generally there is always a slight pattern on the tables (at least here, different countrys, different styles), and the surface is typically not smooth either. Generally a very small amount of bump may help with that surface.

On the wall mounted cupboards, not sure if they are designed that way but missing handles.

Very minor, but the hanging projector screen does not seem to have a shadow and seems to look like its part of the wall because of that. Not sure if that screens designed to rest directly against the wall. :)

Apart from that looks fine, the pattern on the wall really adds something to the image, the carpet blends well with it, the black frame on the window and door looks fine aswell.

Good work. :)

08-30-2010, 08:25 PM
Thanks Ashley for your comments and suggestions.

I noticed the bevels on the tables being a bit big too, I will have to go back and redo the table top. I didn't even think about putting a lil bump n them, that will help give the tops a lil character.

The strip on the wall she kinda wanted t have a metallic paint feel so I put a lil reflectivity in to try and make it feel like that. Not sure how to give it a metallic paint feel since I can't remember the last time I saw metallic paint on a wall. :(

The cupboard is just something I made up from the top of my head. Most of the cupboards around here don't have handles.

I will have to go and look at the screen thought I did have it away from the wall a lil.

The ceiling is a charcoal drop ceiling with a black grid. I tried to use Radiosity but it killed me with render time. I tried to fake it with an area light putting up but still didn't have the desired effect. Maybe I just need to render with radosity when I go to sleep.

Thanks again for your comments. I will try and tweak it and repost the changes

08-31-2010, 12:04 AM

Cool job! A good first indeed:) What I see immediately is that there is a lot to be gained from applying a correct linear workflow here. You should check out some of the info on it on these forums. Everyone says it's a complex subject but the core of it is quite simple, really. And it will make your lighting job much easier, and make your pictures much more realistic. Just like that!

Also, I can't see the reflection in the strips on the wall right now. Are you sure you have turned on raytrace reflections in the render parameters?

08-31-2010, 02:06 AM
I could write a long list of things to do or try but in essence it comes down to observation and how you recreate the objects and environment in the scene. Architectural projects are generally pretty easy to get reference for as we're surrounded by the things that we're creating, there's a wealth of information surrounding us and brochures, catalogues and magazines full of design ideas and measurements to work from. The hard work comes from learning how materials react to light and how light reacts to materials and reproducing the results in 3D software.

As an example, the lights would reflect off the glossy white desks and chairs and illuminate the environment. Look at the reference photo, the ceiling isn't black, it has been illuminated by the light bouncing off the walls and objects...that's what radiosity simulates. Personally I'd try using the luminous polygons with radiosity and then fill lights where needed.

As an extra step to realism use true reflections rather than specularity and adjust the surface texture and reflection blur to soften them.

The chair backs don't seem very smooth or comfortable, are they really like that?

The metallic paint probably uses small metal flakes, each of those flakes will be in a slightly different position causing the reflection to be blurred and diffused rather than flat and mirror-like.

Most importantly you need to 'sell' the image. It needs to be fairly accurate from a clients perspective but primarily it needs to look good otherwise the client won't like it.

It's getting there though, it just just looks unfinished.

08-31-2010, 02:49 AM
It needs more light-much more!
Using final gather radiosity can be just as quick as not using it. If you're struggling with settings, post yours and we can help.

Everything else is very competent looking. Just concentrate on billiousfrog's last comment and sell the image with some 'wow' effects like well placed blurred reflections.
(Add that and a fresnel reflection gradient to your metallic paint and it should work perfectly.)

08-31-2010, 04:00 AM

Your first attempts are good.

The guys are right, but let me add just couple of things.

If you want realistic renders you need three tings:
1. object real world dimensions-proportions
2. real natural lightning (sun-studio lightning)
3. real natural textures-materials

You have first thing.
You can achieve second by using radiosity or using multiple light setups. For example you could break your walls, floor and ceiling and use additional lights to illuminate them. This trick can be used on others objects in a scene. You have problem with a ceiling, so you could add little Luminosity in Surface Editor just to make it more visible, or you could use additional lights in case like mentioned above.

Put the texture on all surfaces, these means also put a little bump on table surfaces, table legs, chairs, floor/carpet, walls-ceiling.

And at last you should consider using Photoshop or free software like Gimp to improve your final renders look if needed.

Here's a little tweak in Photoshop.

08-31-2010, 11:23 AM
It needs more light-much more!

gamma correction! ;)

08-31-2010, 11:44 AM
gamma correction! ;)

Adjusting the gamma/exposure will just wash out or blow out the image. You mentioned linear workflow but that needs to be implimented from the start and involves far more than just tweaking the gamma afterwards as I'm sure you're aware. Just throwing in comments like that is more likely to confuse than help and distracts from the underlying issues.

There have been some amazing works created before the whole linear workflow thing took off, similarly before the introduction of fast, multi-bounce radiosity. The basic principles of lighting and surfacing still hold true and a mediocre image cannot be saved by GI and gamma correction.

08-31-2010, 11:53 AM
gamma correction! ;)

Nope, more light :hey: