5 Uses of Photorealistic Rendering

For creating a perfect image, photorealistic rendering is a practical option that has found use in several different fields. The first step in rendering is to building a wireframe model, then the outer layers, including texturing, shading, and shadows. This helps you build the image according to your own, particular design. Why would someone use photorealistic rendering rather than photography? Sometimes it’s not possible to get the shot you want or need. Some of the areas that use photorealistic rendering are architecture, entertainment, video games, simulators and design visualization.

1. Architecture

In architecture, renderers were previously used to add the layers, to make a finished picture by hand. Now, it’s done on the computer, and generally it’s much more cost-efficient. Additionally, by building a 3D model and adding animation, clients have the opportunity to see their project from every angle, including overhead and inside. These ‘fly-by’s’ help visualize exactly what the client is in for, and it’s less expensive to make corrections on a rendering than an actual building.

2. Movie and Television Special Effects

There’s hardly a dramatic film or television show currently airing that doesn’t use some form of photorealistic rendering. Sometimes they’re more obvious, like scenes with cars that turn into gigantic robots or thousands of battling warriors. Other times, it’s more subtle, where the effects may simply add texture to the scene, like clouds and shadows. It’s also used for removing things from scenes that shouldn’t be there (like an airliner soaring through the sky behind a Roman period piece or an aluminum ladder from an ancient pirate ship).

3. Video Games

Rendering has made tremendous strides in the area of video gaming. In the last 10 years, the graphics in video games have gone from clunky and slow to smooth and extremely realistic. Driving emulates actual driving (only, generally faster.) The cars look much more like real cars, and the backgrounds often incorporate real backgrounds. Fantasy games display battles where characters and settings look real. Sports games, modeled after real moves and plays, look more and more starkly realistic.

4. Simulators

Flight time can be costly, as it involves expensive airplanes, but potential pilots have a new option in that they can use a less costly simulator. The risks are minimized, too. Simulators don’t have accidents or catch dangerous up-drafts. Another potentially risky area that simulators have helped newcomers is in driving, in particular race driving. The other cars are virtual, as are the threats, and to roll a simulator is far less likely.

5. Design Visualization

One realm where photorealistic rendering seems to be exploding is in design visualization. Just as it’s more cost effective to change a virtual building than an actual one, when companies seek to bring out a new product, it just makes more sense to utilize a computer artist or designer who can give a perfect visual model, available for market testing or in-house research-and-development. This applies to things as small as food packaging to cars, or as large as popular theme parks and their rides.