There are many ways to build a partnership with an architectural visualizer. Some architecture professionals hire in-house CGI specialists, some find freelancers, and some partner up with outsource 3D visualization studios. But, whatever the case may be, there’s always this burning question: how does one hire the right candidate for the job?
The answer is: by knowing exactly what to look for in the first place. In fact, there are several criteria by which an architect can judge a 3D artist’s competence. A great portfolio is one of them, but it’s definitely not the only thing that matters. And if one doesn’t know the other criteria for making a choice, they risk hiring the wrong person. That is likely to result in low-quality visuals, missed deadlines, inefficient communication, etc. Now, we want to help architects avoid that.
So, what are the qualities that set 3D architectural visualization professionals apart from amateurs? Find out right now!
#1. Proficiency with Specialized Software
Profound knowledge of professional software is the most basic requirement for an architectural visualizer. The main programs in which such a 3D artist needs to be proficient include 3Ds Max, V-Ray or Corona Renderer plugin, Photoshop, and the rest of the Adobe Creative Cloud. To work quickly and efficiently, it’s essential for a 3D visualizer to know every single tool and feature within the software. Also, an architect should make sure that their specialist of choice uses only licensed programs. Because otherwise, there’s a great risk of unexpected technical failures. Overall, one should always ask what software the artist uses.
#2. Possession of Strong Artistic Skills
The next must-have for a CG visualizer is artistic competence. Because architectural visualization isn’t just about technicalities. It requires a solid understanding of exterior and interior design, knowledge of color theory and image composition, and so on. Therefore, to make truly stunning 3D scenes, a visualizer needs to be able to accurately pick up the styles and moods from the clients’ references. Then, a 3D artist must be able to come up with creative solutions and execute them flawlessly. This is why it’s important to know if a 3D visualizer has a background in visual arts.
#3. Perfect Visualization Techniques
Now, this is something that cannot be faked or achieved by chance. Because the knowledge of visualization techniques only comes with experience and practice. It includes skills in texturing, shading, lighting, and postproduction. Those are the things that make CG images photorealistic. So, if an architectural visualizer can handle all those stages of production perfectly, the quality of their work will be consistently high. One can see that an artist has these skills when their portfolio is filled with beautiful photorealistic images.
#4. Knowledge of Architectural Drafts
Architectural drafts are the basis of every realistic 3D visualization project. Therefore, a CG visualizer needs to be able to effectively use AutoCAD, Revit, and SketchUp files as references. Only this way, a CGI specialist can achieve a high level of precision when recreating buildings and structures in 3D. Essentially, that means getting all the dimensions and proportions right. So, naturally, the skills of reading architectural drawings are a must-have for a 3D visualizer. That’s why many specialists in this field have a background in architecture or design.
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#5. Ability to Follow Instructions
The ability to execute a brief and understand the client’s requirements is essential in the job of an architectural visualizer. Such a specialist must keep a delicate balance between following directions and offering creative ideas. That requires a 3D artist to be flexible and competent enough to quickly come up with solutions, as well as alternatives in case the client requests corrections. At the same time, a visualizer needs to maintain the same level of artistic quality in all their works. And, most importantly, a CG expert must be completely impartial and equally good at visualizing designs they like and ones they aren’t quite passionate about.
#6. Excellent Communication and Teamwork Skills
Working efficiently in a team is a crucial ability for 3D artists employed at architecture firms or specialized CGI studios. It allows them to tackle big visualization projects by dividing them into smaller tasks. This way, by doing multiple assignments at the same time, a team of CG specialists can deliver high-quality results very quickly.
Also, it’s important for an architectural visualizer to be able to communicate not only with other specialists on the team, but with clients and project managers as well. And one could say that, in terms of communication and teamwork skills, 3D artists who work at outsource CGI studios are the best due to their constant cooperation with clients and colleagues.
#7. High Level of Self-Organization
Apart from working in a team, a qualified architectural CGI expert must be excellent at managing their own time and workflow. That includes the ability to efficiently organize their work process and to know how much time they need to complete a particular task. Furthermore, a truly professional 3D visualizer will always find time for self-improvement. For instance, they might attend courses and workshops to learn new skills or perfect those that they already have. Such specialists always follow the industry news and are aware of all the latest tools and techniques for 3D visualization.
Well, those are the 7 most important skills to look for in an architectural visualizer when hiring one. Looking at this list, one can say that partnering up with an outsource CGI company is the safest choice. Such studios have many highly qualified specialists that are used to working in teams together. They know all the specifics of architectural visualization and have large collections of 3D assets they’ve created over the course of their work. Moreover, a great number of CG artists is a guarantee that the work will go on even if one of the team members cannot continue due to some force majeure.
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Content Writer, Copywriter
Ana is a content writer for ArchiCGI. She has a passion for design and architecture - and for talking about it. Outside of work, she is a fan of sci-fi movies and a street food connoisseur.