3D imagery and walkthroughs are a ubiquitous part of the architectural and real estate fields these days. More often than not, every real estate kiosk or booth one comes across nowadays will have a 3D walkthrough of their respective properties on display. In fact, more and more parties are relying on 3D walkthroughs as means to represent the final product in lieu of physical models and model rooms or units.
Still, simply putting together a representation of a soon-to-be built architectural project requires more than just using a computer to slap together something hastily. Other factors have to be taken into consideration. One such factor is lighting.
Good lighting can do so much to help convey a certain mood or emotion even in a simple animated 3D walkthrough. The practice of using lighting to define scenes is pervasive in all forms of visual media. From paintings to movies, comics and even videogames, all use lighting to varying degrees as an integral part of how they express certain scenes.
For example, soft, off-white lighting can be used in walkthroughs of certain rooms can be used to convey a relaxed, mellowed-down atmosphere. In other cases, natural daylight can also achieve the same effect. Softer and dimmer lights are usually placed in scenes that want to portray a more intimate or personal atmosphere. Ambient or indirect lighting mixed with ample shadows portrays both mystery and high class.
Used in conjunction with textures, mapping, and the right camera angles, proper lighting can greatly improve the way a 3D walkthrough is presented. It gives audiences a greater feeling of “actually being there” and also provides a more accurate representation of the final product and the kind of atmosphere it wants to achieve.