When it comes to 3D animation for architecture and real estate, there are a lot of tricks to make it more engaging and life-like. One of them is adding people. First of all, seeing a human figure near a building is the easiest way for the viewer to comprehend the scale of that building. It also helps them to imagine themselves in the presented location. What’s more, when 3D people in animation are doing some everyday things, like cycling or talking on the phone, it adds to the general vibe and realism of a scene. However, to create truly realistic 3D videos that convey the intended mood, one can’t just use the same couple of human models in every project and call it a day. There are different types of 3D people in animation, and all of them have their strong suits and can serve different purposes.

To communicate efficiently with a 3D rendering studio, it’s worth knowing what will benefit your project the most. So in this article, we’ve covered 4 types of 3D people in animation for architecture and real estate you can choose from. Without further ado, let’s learn about them! 

#1. Posed 3D People

Some scenes in your animation might need human figures without the actual movement. In this case, posed 3D people are your best option. Unlike all the other types listed here, they are completely static. These models are also the easiest and cheapest to use, so if you’re on a tight deadline or budget, placing a couple of such people in the background in your animation might be the optimal solution. While these 3D people may seem basic, they still add a touch of realism to the scenes. However, it’s best to combine them with other types to enhance overall visual impact. 

#2. Ambient 3D People

For animation scenes requiring a bit more dynamic, ambient 3D people are a feasible choice. These models are similar to static ones but come with slight swaying and minimal movements. With these subtle motions, they will make your architectural animation more realistic. 

#3. Rigged 3D People 

Here, we proceed to the more complex types of 3D people in animation. When you need characters to perform specific actions, interact with the surroundings, or engage in some crowd scenes, such 3D people are your go-to option. They are equipped with a flexible ‘skeleton’. This means that 3D artists can tweak the pose of these people: sit them down, make them run, and so on. It’s also possible to change their clothes. All of this makes such 3D people a great option if you need to show a realistic crowd, for example, moving down a busy city street.

However, these 3D people come with certain limitations. While they are quite versatile in use, the movements of rigged 3D people look a bit robotic, which becomes quite noticeable in close-ups or highly detailed shots. So, when choosing among different types of people for your animation, pick rigged ones for distant or medium-distance views where the artificiality of their movement can go unnoticed.

Immerse clients into your design projects with a 3D animation

#4. Animated 4D People 

For the utmost realism and authenticity in your animation, 4D people are the best choice. These models are created by scanning real people in motion. Using assets like that, one can create animation whose level of realism is hard to surpass.

These people come in various types: in everyday clothes, in work or beach gear, etc. You can also find people representing different professions: doctors, waiters, and others. Their movements and behavior are lifelike, making them ideal for close and medium-range shots where intricate details matter. However, it’s important to note that animated 4D people are less flexible in some ways compared to rigged models. Namely, it’s impossible to change their clothes or poses. A 3D artist will just have to find the ones that are right for your scene from the get-go. 

And now, check out this CG video to see all the above-mentioned types of 3D people in action.

The choice between types of 3D people in animation depends entirely on your project goals and the types of shots in animation you need to use. Posed and ambient human models will work great in distant shots. Rigged people introduce more dynamics, but be cautious about the close-ups as these models can appear robotic in these views. Finally, 4D people will look great up close, although a 3D artist won’t be able to tweak them much. For a complicated and lengthy animation, the most reasonable approach is to combine various types depending on the scenario and the specific shots in your animation.

Looking for 3D rendering services to breathe life into your architectural or real estate project? Contact us at ArchiCGI and get stunningly realistic animation or renders for a reasonable price! 

Stacey Mur
Content Writer, Copywriter

Stacey is a content writer and a CG artist. Outside of work, Stacey enjoys musicals, Star Wars, and art talk. A proud Corgi parent.