Starting completely fresh in 3D interior design can be overwhelming. It may seem that your colleagues are already way ahead of you and you have a lot of things to cover before you can catch up. You’ll be happy to know that this isn’t the case because, thanks to all the online resources, you can speed up your learning process.
But among all the resources we’ve stumbled upon so far we couldn’t find many that were designed to help newbies. This is why we have put together a list of six 3D interior design tips to help you kickstart your career as a 3D interior designer. Let’s start with the most important one.
We are aware that you invested a lot of time to become an architect or interior designer, but you have to understand that learning to use interior design software is an absolute must. The good thing is that you are at the start and you can make a smart decision. We are sure that you’ve already Googled these tools. But let us elaborate on the options you have in front of you.
SketchUp – although this software tool may appear attractive to you due its ease of use, we suggest that you don’t invest too much time in it. This software is pretty basic and you will have problems wowing your clients with your designs.
Unreal Engine 4 – at first, Unreal Engine was developed by a gaming company to be used for building only in-game stuff. But, UE4 broke its chains and started conquering the architecture industry. While it is not one of the easiest tools you can learn, it comes with a lot of flexibility and possibilities once you master it. Besides, it’s VR ready, which means that you can take your clients on virtual tours through your designs.
Autodesk 3Ds Max – this software is a bit easier to learn than UE4. On the other hand, it doesn't fall too far behind UE4 when it comes to functionality. Autodesk 3Ds Max comes with great tools that can help you visualize, simulate, and render interiors. The plugins are there to support even the most sophisticated ideas you want to implement in your designs.
Autodesk Revit – if you intend on becoming a pro in this line of work, learning Revit is an absolute must. You have to know that using Revit has to do with mastering a highly technical aspect of designs as much as it has to do with creativity.
As a novice interior designer, you will be eager to create your own objects and play with your new tools. But as your projects become more and more complex, you won't have the time to spare on making each object by hand. This is why we have .SKP files.
Although it is a SketchUp file format, these files are very handy as they are supported by both Revit and 3Ds Max. Keep in mind that 3Ds Max can import these files from version 6. They can help you speed up your design process.
Here are some great resources for SKP files:
● SKPWizard – is a great source of office furniture and electronics models.
● 3DWarehouse – it stores a great variety of models, definitely worth checking out.
● GrabCad – it could also be one of your stops when you are looking for furniture models.
● TurboSquid – it has a lot of free models, most of which are related to home decor.
As a novice 3D designer, you should know that every interior design project should be broken down into assets. This will give you a real picture of how many assets you will have to create. From this point on, you will have to make some of them your priorities.
Why is this important? Committing yourself completely to making each of the assets found in your scene look excellent is borderline impossible, especially if you have a deadline. This is why you have to make the list of asset priorities. These assets are vital to your design. As these may vary from project to project, we advise that you start making your priority lists early on.
Lighting is one of the most vital parts of any 3D interior design. It brings textures to life and gives the entire scene a unique feeling. Lighting can help you make your designs unique. This is why you shouldn’t be a law-abiding designer and stick only to the natural lights.
What are your options? Beside using windows as the entry points of natural light, you should add spotlights and directional lights to your scene. Spotlights are great for shadows and they can add that vivid feeling to the setting. On the other hand, if there is something that you would like to highlight in your scene, directional light is a great way to do it.
Apart from lighting, there is one more thing that is essential for a beautiful interior design – high-quality textures. If you really want your scene to have that realistic vibe, you have to pick materials and textures that are realistic. To achieve this in high-quality 3D renders, you have to use high-quality textures.
Before leaving your design for what it is, make sure to tweak your textures. Which options should you play with? Gloss and reflectivity are very important, but you can also check out the roughness of your materials. This is very important if you have wood, metal, and stone in your scene.
Learn to Take Magnificent Shots of your Designs
Interior design photography is a real thing. You should incorporate its best practices in your routine if you want to create magnificent presentations for your clients:
● Shoot your scenes from an optimal height, usually half the height of the room.
● Adjust the camera angle so that your shots appear natural with a slight angle downward.
● Take shots from the entry point of the room or a corner.
● Combine wide angle shots with close-ups to add the storytelling momentum to your presentation.
These six tips will help you make priorities in your workflow and make it more efficient. Mastering the lighting and textures is also important but not as hard as it appears. In the end, don’t forget to play with camera angles to capture the most magnificent shots of your 3D interior designs.
Interior design is an intriguing field that requires a unique mix of skills. On the one hand, you need to be a creative professional with an artistic eye. Here's another great resource for an interior designer to read: How to Become an Interior Designer - A Complete Guide