Cool Video: See How Rendering Works in Games

Found this video on the HappieCat YouTube channel. This video is focused on rendering in games, but it does a great job of explaining the basics of 3D modeling including the different technologies and math behind it.

I work for a 3D rendering and visualization company, but my background is in marketing. While I’ve learned a lot working with FluidRay, this was actually a great video for me to learn a little more about the concepts behind modeling.

I definitely suggest this video to anyone looking for a very straightforward explanation of what goes into modeling, especially if you like video games.

How Rendering Graphics Works in Games!

Awesome Architectural Rendering Animation by Studio Aiko

Found this on the CGBros YoutubeChannel. It’s an animation of a Hilton Project in Poland. I don’t know if it’s going to get built, but I’d stay there if it looks anything like this.

Studio Aiko is an Israeli outfit that works across TV, movies and games. This project shows their skills.

CGI 3D Animated Short: HD "Architectural Rendering Project"- by StudioAiko

Notice the light reflecting off the of buildings and the streets. You also have to appreciate the realistic textures of the wet ground and metals like the streetlights. The interior shots of the hardwood, glass in frames, windows, and furniture all speak to an eye for detail.

Weekly Rendering Roundup 09062015

Another week, and we’ve seen a lot of cool rendering and design related content come out. Here’s our picks:

20 Futuristic Transformers-Like Furniture Designs by Jane Clark

Honestly, Jane had us at “Transformers”. This collection of animated gifs highlights 20 furniture designs that save space, save time or give you flexiblity.

Our favorites:

#6, The Fusillo Bookshelf:

A modular shelving system that doesn’t have to take up a lot of space, and can be re-configured depending on your needs. One of the big problems with apartment living is finding a way to store everything with limited closet space. I could configuring the Fusillo to hold my bike, a few jackets, a my mail by the entryway.

#15 Trick:

This convertable, table/desk/bookshelf combo looks good and gives you 3 essential furniture pieces in one. I can’t seem myself switching between all options regularly, but it would definitely be cool as a desk and bookshelf.

#18 Chuck:

Chuck seems like something straight out of a sci-fi movie. The flexible plank system lets you configure a number of different shelf sizes and lengths based on the weight and height of the items. I could see this being a great conversation piece, though I’d be very nervous about putting more than a few books on it.

The Black Desert House by Oller & Pejic Architecture via

You’ll need to visit the site to see more because they’ve got some image DRM thing happening, but here is a peak.

If you like desert landscapes and ultra-modern design, then you’ll fall in love with this house by Oller and Pejic Architecture

That’s it for this week. Yes, there was a lot of other stuff out there, but these are what caught our attention.

Where to Find .3dm files

You can build your own .3dm files but it takes time and you may not get the best results. If you’re like us, then you’ve probably got a few spots you check for models, and you’ve also probably bought some sets over the years. But you always end up needing something you don’t have, and having to look around.

I did some snooping through my lists of sites to find ones that offered a good mix of .3dm models. Not all the sites are free or have large selections, but they are all dependable. Take the time to browse through a few of them when working on a project and you should be able to find what you need.

This site has a good selection of models, but they range in quality from high-end to beginner. You can find anything from full buildings to Black Hawk helicopters to a T-Rex. Prices vary a lot, and you need to be careful to check which license is available for each model.

A library of free 3dm models, heavy on automotive but you can find some animal, environment and product models if you look around for a bit.

Not a very large selection, but there are some nice ones here & the site has good search functionality.

This is a free collection — available for both personal and commercial use (but not reselling) — from Aleksandar Dimitrov. Mostly furniture models, but some exteriors like fields thrown in.

Honestly, it’s only 4 models here but its worth going to pick up the Audi TT model.

Not many here, but they are all decent quality. Click the links labeled “Rhino” to get the .3dm files.

You’ve probably come across this site before. Big selection of models. You can search subject and then filter to get models compatible with Rhino. Pretty much everything here is high-quality, but you’re going to pay for it: prices range from US $5 – $500. Fortunately, you can filter by price. If you need a model for work, then this is a good place to look, but not sure its the right place for a student.

If you’re looking for free geometries and pattern 3dm files, then I’d check here. Nothing to fancy is available, but you can use these models for things like fencing, icons, wall art without too many problems.

Yobi3D –
It finds 3D models on the Internet with simple keyword search. The models can be previewed in 3D right on your browser.

This list is a work in progress. If you’d like to have your model site, set or file added, then leave a comment.

Weekly Rendering Roundup 08232015

Another week and another batch of cool rendering-related content from around the web. Enjoy!

Stephen Hill’s big list of SIGGRAPH 2015 links

This list is awesome! Hill provides a single stop for links to papers, courses, talks and more that went on at SIGGRAPH this year. It’s a great resource. Here’s his 2014 list as well.

Volcano Mapped by Drones and then Rendered – Wired

There is so much to love in this story: futuristic technology, a passionate geek, Mother Nature reminding us how badass she can be, and some really amazing renders.

Ambrym Volcano with Pix4Dmapper

Apple Files Patent for “Depth Rendering” – Patently Apple

I’m not sure how much to care about this. I’m an Android guy, but the technology patent filed with the U.S. Patent Office describes taking 2D images and video and creating the illusion of 3D depth.

Not sure when this will come into the market, and it sounds a lot like RealSense that was unveiled by Intel recently. But I’m all for advancements in how images and video are rendered. It would be cool if this technology made it to phones and tablets in the near-future.

That’s it for this week. If you’ve got something you think should be covered, the add it in the comments.

Weekly Rendering Roundup 08162015

As always, there was a lot of cool stuff on the web this week. Here are our favorites.

APPLE FLIPPHONE – by Martin Hajek

An interesting project by one of the designers we love to follow. Hajek’s renderings of an Apple Flipphone may seem retro, but the design is very much in-line with Apple design sensibilities.

I like this because it seems to simultaneously look both forward and backward for inspiration. As always, Martin provides some great renderings to help us really understand the concept. Pay special attention to the use of materials and lighting. His work always offers lessons for product design rendering.

FluidRay 1.1.6 is Released by FluidRay RT

I don’t usually include our content in this roundup, but v1.1.6 is a big deal. It includes our first ever integration for Mac. Sketchup for Mac users now have a built-in FluidRay integration allowing them to easily import, edit and render. Checkout out the blog post to learn more, then give the demo a try.

3D Topographical Renderings by Lee Griggs

I came across this on Friday and had to share it. We have to give credit where credit is due, even if they aren’t made using FluidRay. Griggs uses Maya and Arnold to get these amazing multicolored, extremely complex renderings. On his site, Griggs points to several tutorials and offers a few points about his process.

Many of the images look like something from a sci-fi novel. You’re not sure if you’re looking at nature or someones interpretation of a Heinlein novel setting.

That’s it for this week. Check back next Sunday for another roundup. If there’s something you’d like us to cover, then share in the comments or on social.

Weekly Rendering Roundup 08092015

Here’s the rowdy, relevant, relentless & rare rendering we rounded up for you this week. Enjoy!

SIGGRAPH 2015 Calendars

Going to Siggraph? Lucky you! If you’re going then you should be there right now & probably aren’t reading this. But if you’re still en route or don’t have a plan, then check out these calendars of courses, papers and other events here

A Machine Learning Approach for Filtering Monte Carlo Noise (SIGGRAPH 2015) by Nima Khademi Kalantari

The video discusses a new method for handling render noise via machine learning/AI. The process is well diagrammed in the video and I can see this having huge potential, though I can’t imagine the processing power required. Please watch the video and let us know what you think about this process in the comments.

A Machine Learning Approach for Filtering Monte Carlo Noise (SIGGRAPH 2015)

HT to Seghier Khaled for posting this to our Facebook page.

Counterpoint: CGI is not bad, you just don’t notice when it’s good by Joe Berkowitz

Joe takes his cue from a video posted on YouTube showing how good CGI is essential to creating the best scenes in the movies we love. You might immediately want to disagree, but I think there is a lot to this.

It’s easy for us to think of bad CGI like this:

But the great CGI effects in movies like Avatar, Terminator 2 (for it’s time), any of the LOTR movies or Mad Max: Fury Road doesn’t come to mind very quickly. Those movies worked so well that the CGI never stands out, and so we praise the movie instead of praising the effects. That is the point of the article by Joe and the video essay that he cribs the idea from.

I cited the Fast Company piece here because that’s where I learned about the video essay. But here is the actual video essay:

Why CG Sucks (Except It Doesn't)

and the video its (sort of) replying to:

The WETA Effect, or, Why Special Effects Peaked in the 90's. - StoryBrain

That’s it for this week. Thanks for dropping.

Weekly Rendering Roundup 07262015

Here’s some cool things we saw, read and heard online this week.

(Unofficial) 3D render of Stamford Bridge – HT SBNation

If you’re a Chelsea fan, then you’ve probably already seen this rendering video since it was everywhere in the Chelsea-verse this week.

New Chelsea Stadium - Animation 1

Thanks to Neil Vano for creating this.

Digital Watercolor Painted in Photoshop by Thanet Chanasakul –

Experienced architectural illustrator, Thanet Chanasakul, gives us an awesome 17-step tutorial on rendering watercolor images in PhotoShop. The final work is vibrant and something you’d be happy hanging on a wall. The tutorial is detailed enough to help you create your own work, but still accessible for anyone with a basic knowledge of PhotoShop.

Watercolor architectural image

8 Minute Eminem Freestyle – Sway’s Morning Show

Slim Shady dropped by Sway’s radio show and dropped an 8 minute freestyle that touched on enough pop culture to qualify as a TMZ post. Good to know he’s till got it.

Weekly Rendering Roundup 07092015

Good or bad, we’re always online and we spend a lot of time looking at 3D rendering-related content from around the web. Of course, we also look at cat videos and the other weirdness that’s out there.

Here’s some things we liked this week:

Making of Meadow Mountain –

Ronen gives 3D artist Dominic Maslik a chance to shine by walking us through his process for building the beautiful Meadow Mountain render. I really like this because he starts with some discussion of his preparation before going into modeling, lighting, camera setup and more. It’s a concise, easy-to-follow but deep explanation of how he gets such beautiful renders. Sadly, he didn’t do this in FluidRay, but you still have to appreciate the work and Dominic’s care in explaining his process.

Checkout this video timelapse to get a better idea of his work, then read the article.

Timelapse making-of "Mountain meadow" mattepainting tutorial

Windows 10 v Windows 8 Performance Benchmarks –

Here’s a good read for anyone planning to take advantage of the free Windows 10 upgrade later this month. Gordon Mah Ung at PC World ran the new OS through performance testing against Windows 8, and shares his findings. Oddly, Gordon didn’t see much a difference between the two operating systems. I (and he) think we should wait before making any declarations, but it’s interesting to see some data.

Gamers should check out the section where he looks at Tomb Raider & BioShock: Infinite performance. In the gaming tests, Windows 10 did outperform Windows 8 by a bit.

SWTOR: Sith Lord Kallig’s 3D Printed Helmet –

What happens when a gamer, avid cosplayer and talented designer gets excited?

This happens:

RuthlessFX loved Kalling from the popular MMO game so much that he built a real-live version of his helmet. The modeling was done in 3ds Max, and printed using a MakerBot Replicator 2. Checkout the article on 3D Print to see more images of the models and final product.

Featured image from

Jewelry Designs by Manuel Angel Piñeiro Solsona

Check out some Jewelry designs by Manuel Angel Piñeiro Solsona, rendered in FluidRay RT.

Rendered in FluidRay RT, design by Manuel Angel Piñeiro SolsonaRendered in FluidRay RT, design by Manuel Angel Piñeiro SolsonaRendered in FluidRay RT, design by Manuel Angel Piñeiro Solsona