Autodesk dominates the 3D modeling and rendering landscape with its exclusive array of hallmark software, prominent among which is 3DS Max. This software makes the process of architectural and rendering of interior and exterior spaces a cushy job. The fact that 3DS engine blends seamlessly with other AEC and architectural rendering software offered by Autodesk enhance its appeal as frontline 3D package.
Rendering Interiors in 3DS Max
You can render the interiors of a room in 3D impeccably with 3DS Max. The process of interior rendering in 3ds max starts with conceptualizing the model, creating it, enhancing the scene with right lighting and strategic texturing, and getting the scene rendered.
Working with .dwg files
.Dwg format is widely used for storing elevation drawings encoded from line diagrams. The dwg file uses a single view for displaying top, left and front elevations along with additional information. To render 3D interiors, you have to import the dwg file carrying the needful imprints into 3DS. Prior to that, invoke AutoCAD for opening the dwg file and eliminating redundant details except the fundamental layout of the building. You need not import trivial drawings related to furniture, household items, plants etc. into 3DS. Trimmed down dwg file is easy to work with as the absence of excessive number of shapes keep the Max viewport optimally functional. You can drag the pruned dwg file and drop on the viewport.
Setting up 3DS Max Interface
To streamline the workflow in Max, the system units should be set in millimeters. Navigate to ‘Customize Menu’ and click on ‘Units Setup’ to accomplish this. The Display Units can be set as per your convenience. You need to turn on ‘Use Real-World Texture Coordinates‘from ‘Customize Menu’ under ‘General Preferences’ for using commonly used measurement options for defining texture dimensions. .
Modelling using 3DS Max
To illustrate in 3D the room well-appointed with diverse furniture, you need to great geometrical shape that resembles a hollow structure whose shape can be modified as required. Even a novice can create interior designing using 3dsmax because direct and non-complex shapes are used for depicting interiors. You would need an L-shape punched with holes on sideways and ceiling to model kitchen, its doors and windows, and connectivity to other rooms using stairs. Within a simple 3D box, you can set back an area in the rear for window and then add it. Further, the furniture to be placed within the room are mostly box shaped and are represented in pretty straight-lined manner.
The complexity arises when you have to place different furniture and object in perspective across the room. 3DS Max provides tools for creating complex models but you have to master their use and learn how to sync their usage with other tools for spectacular outcomes. You can use Boolean and lofting tools for making provisions for undulated shapes in trim. Revolve profile tools have to be used for creating complicated profiles for spindles. Other tools need to be used for creating different shapes of varying complexities.
You can get around the demanding task of learning the usage of all modeling tools for architectural visualization and the like in 3DS by importing models readily available as free download or for a price.
Importing readymade models
You can optimize your time while designing interiors by importing models of different furniture and room elements. Available as paid products or free downloads, you would just need to scale up or down the models to render them compatible with your room’s settings.
www.archive3D.net is a site that offers free access to many superlative models. Digimation.com and turbosquid.com as well as other sites offer high quality models for sale. You can also order prefabricated room set that only needs to be rendered or animated.
Building the scene
To build the scene, you need to strategically deploy procured models across the room. The models have to be scaled and put in appropriate place prior to texturing.
To apply appealing and suitable textures to the models, you can import pixel based pictures which have been retouched in Photoshop for mapping to the models. Floor can be applied a texture of hardwood, for example. The hardwood image is rendered suitable for floor texturing using flat projection map or ‘planar’ surface. For shapes which are non-planar, you can apply the texture maps in cylindrical or spherical modes.
Procedural application of textures is an alternative method for mapping them on models. The procedures stand for patterns which the 3DS generates on its own. The textures can be modified to a large extent using attributes which can be tweaked to accomplish the desired look and feel. The procedural patterns enjoy distinctive advantage over pixel based textures as the former can be animated for striking results. 3DS comes loaded with standard textures of wood, marble etc.
Taking care of room lighting
Once you set proper lighting for the room, the bulk of scene building activity would be over. You can better master the intricacies of lighting in 3DS using various illuminating perspectives and shading if you have worked as a photographer. Lighting specialists who have worked for films or environmental and stage illumination too enjoy this advantage. You would be amazed to find that the lighting options available in 3DS resembles real world lighting types in uncanny manner.
Major lighting types you can work with are sun or directional lighting, point lighting as achieved through bulbs that can be accompanied by lampshades, fluorescent lighting, and other illumination modes. You can also import IES lighting data which facilitates simulation of illumination types used commonly around us along with all their peculiarities.
You would have a pleasant experience while working with scene lighting. Whatever you could accomplish in real world with various types of lighting sources can be simulated in 3DS to the same extent and even can be stepped up for heightened appeal. Subtracting lighting sources from selected regions or creating multiple passes with vivid lighting for rendering is a breeze. You can also create a composite canvas of renders using Photoshop.
When you give the command for rendering, what actually happens is that all the custom 3D modeling and scene building decisions you have taken till now are spontaneously actuated. The accumulated information base is used for creating the eventual rendering. If you feel that the render has not come across in the exact fashion you had wanted, you can always go back and tweak the lighting, geometrical models, textures etc. for renewed rendering. This step can be repeated till the flaws are fixed and perfect look is pulled off. You can exercise various rendering options such as Mental Ray, Radiosity or third-party V-ray engines.
Finalizing the production
In the post production phase, you need to swiftly fix any discrepancies in the final versions which would be delivered for publishing. Still images are refined through Photoshop whereas animated versions are tweaked and packaged through software like After effects. You have the flexibility to get you scene rendered in numerous passes within 3DS. This helps you gain insights into the slow rendering decisions which are encumbering the swift publishing of posts. Just weed out those slower sections and substitute them with faster variations for optimal results. You can accomplish this by separately rendering each element like individual or group lights within the scene. The resultant pictures can be stacked in Photoshop with the help of Lighten Blend Mode for dynamically fine tuning the lighting of the room’s interior in final post. The appeal of interior renderings is effectively enhanced with segregated renderings.
Never ignore the depth of field (DOF) when venturing into 3D interior renderings. The efficiency of computer graphics can be optimally tapped into with limitless DOF which allows for shaper and crisper images. Your final image would look more realistic with carefully rendered depth map pass.