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As technology progresses it opens up new opportunities for every creative field but we have to resist the urge to simply use new technology just because it is there.

The most important thing for any designer or 3D artist is to give our work meaning and find a valid and thoughtful or emotive reason for communicating it the ways we do. When we do this the only barriers around our creative output are the limits of our imagination.

Due to this behemoth forward push in software and hardware, many of the obstacles that once stood in the way of designers and creatives are being steadily bulldozed. This brings with it new challenges and learning curves but also new ways to become cross disciplined, combining new techniques and approaches that are the catalyst for inspiration and satisfaction.

We have previously discussed the benefits of architectural visualisation over photography, but it’s not a one-sided arguement. Combing 3D Visualisation and Photography can have a powerful impact on your marketing visuals.

1. It adds realism in 3D renders

The first and most obvious use of combining 3D visualisation and photography is quite simply, presentation of 3D or CGI renders. Of course this is dependent on the purpose of the render and the nature of the object being modelled, however it is worth bearing in the mind the sense of scale and place that can be achieved by combining photography with your 3D render, while very possibly reducing creation time for a poly-heavy scene.

For example, instead of using ‘out of the box’ materials, textures or sky domes (for image based lighting) we can take our own photographs that match more closely to the desired effect. This firstly offers much more control but more importantly result in more personal and unique imagery and with careful thought prior to taking your photographs, an increased sense of realism.

2. It delivers powerful results

This composite approach to combining 3D visualisation and photography can wield some very powerful results, particularly for new product design or prototypes that have been modelled but have yet to be produced.

Staging a real-world setting for your product and photographing it allows us to render product concepts and models, and using Photoshop, place the render in the scene.

This approach is often adopted by advertising agencies in order to market a product that perhaps is not in full public production. Or to place it in a setting that would be of high cost in terms of logistics, transportation, crew and equipment. Or, to simply add a visual aesthetic to an image in post-production.

3. It provides new visual opportunities

Using techniques like image manipulation and photomontage to create custom worlds or settings for your 3D modelled products gives you, quite literally, a multiverse of opportunities.

Using advanced technology and new techniques we can explore new realms, and ultimately, create exciting and fresh new works. It is easy to see the wide possibilities of combining 3D visualisation and photography when it comes to graphic design in general.

4. It pushes the creative boundaries

For example, by using a combination of 3D renders such as abstract geometric forms, and portrait photography, you have a very solid base for a striking piece of album artwork or a promotional poster or flier.

Of course that is just a drop in a vast ocean of creative possibilities, the key is experimentation. As designers we have a responsibility to search for new ways to communicate messages and ideas, and as the technology around us develops we need to embrace it.

5. It will be a key part of VR & AR

Developments such as augmented reality and WebGL will soon allow creatives the opportunity to incorporate 3D visualisation and models more easily and dynamically into interactive space.  Combining these 3D visualisation’s with photography can only serve to push the boundaries and possibilities of visual communication forward.

Thanks for that. Now what?