Depending on the needs of a specific marketing campaign, brands opt for different CG solutions:
Product 3D modeling;
To understand which one to choose, let’s examine each type closely.
1) Product 3D Modeling
Product CG modeling is a creation of a photorealistic three-dimensional model of a product using 3D modeling software. CG artists build it from scratch or on the basis of a CAD model. You can learn more about product design 3D modeling in a detailed project overview.
There are several types of 3D modeling services, each serving different purposes:
Low-poly 3D modeling is the creation of
three-dimensional models of objects that are true-to-life AND
lightweight. Which is why low-poly 3D models are used
for games and interactive online tools like AR apps and 3D configurators.
High-poly 3D modelingis a process of
creating super-highly detailed three-dimensional
representations of objects, or high-poly 3D models.
Such 3D models are heavier and are used for photoreal marketing materials, such as product CG images, product 3D animation, 360-degree
CAD modelingis the creation of models for 3D printing and rapid prototyping. It allows manufacturing a scale model of a product or its details super
fast and with high precision. You canlearn more in our
article about 3D product prototyping and
how it has changed the furniture industry.
3D retopology is the process of optimizing the surface of
a 3D model that makes it lighter in weight and keeps the
level of detail. Manufacturers need retopology in 3
cases: when the 3D model is to be created based on a 3D
scan, based on a CAD file, and when there’s a need to convert a high-poly 3D model into a
low-poly one. You can find more information in our
article about the use of 3Ds Max retopology for furniture visualization.
The Complexity of 3D Modeling
A 3D modeling project workflow depends on the product design. The more details an item has, and the more intricate these details are, the more complex the 3D model is to create. There are 4 levels of complexity for furniture 3D models:
1. Simple modeling stands for the creation of 3D models
for products that don’t have difficult geometry and lots of details like curves, stitching, piping,
etc. To illustrate, these may be wooden or metal chairs,
credenzas, benches, tables, etc.
2. Medium modelingis a creation of furniture 3D objects
with somewhat more complex geometry. The items may have a certain amount of decorative elements,
reserved fittings, and textures — like tufted ottomans,
reclining loungers, contemporary chaise lounges.
3. Complex modelingis the process of creating 3D models
for furniture with high-end materials, such as leather and silk, and intricate details, like curves,
piping, stitching, knots, etc. Typical examples of such objects are Chesterfield sofas and various armchair models.
4. Highly complex modeling is building 3D models of the
highest difficulty. This is usually the case with custom
furniture that has carvings, weaving, forging, and
2) Still Rendering Solutions
A still render is a static image that a 3D artist creates by building a digital scene and putting a product 3D model in it. The result looks like a photo and is used for marketing and sales materials, both print and digital. Let’s examine the two main types of still renders that marketers use.
#1. CG Renderson a White Background
A white background render, also known as silo render, shows the product against the white backdrop and with no other items in the scene. This way, all focus is on the centerpiece. Above are 13 main types of silo renders to choose from.
#2. Lifestyle 3D Renders
A lifestyle or roomset 3D render is a computer-generated image showing the product in a certain setting, like a room interior or an outdoor scene. Its purpose is to show that the centerpiece will look amazing in real life, fit different interior styles and serve multiple purposes if that’s the case.
In addition, it’s much easier to see the size of the product in a lifestyle than in a silo — for the piece is situated next to other familiar objects. This way, the viewer can understand its dimensions at a glance. You can find out more information and see some examples in our article about product lifestyle rendering.
3) Interactive Rendering
This type of 3D service offers innovative solutions that help capture, hold prospects’ attention online and make them engage with the product. Following are the most widely-used types of interactive CGI for forward-thinking brands.
a) Product 3D Animation
Product animation is a computer-generated video that shows the central piece in motion and aims to inform, educate and entertain prospects. It works like a classic marketing video in all respects, plus has all the benefits of CGI. That is, product animation gives more creative freedom: it allows to generate any camera path, movements of objects and environments without physical limits. And, of course, there’s no need to have a prototype manufactured or go to a location, for everything is created through 3D modeling.
This 3D rendering solution allows a customer to turn the product around and examine it from every angle — right on the website. That’s why 360° view is a go-to option when an e-commerce brand seeks to enrich the online customer experience and make it feel more like real-life shopping. More interactivity results in more engagement, more information, and ultimately — in more sales. Product 360° views come in 2 types:
360° sequence: made with 36 images on a monochrome background “looped” into a carousel mode. It allows rotating the product from left to right and vice versa.
multi-row 3D view: built on 7 rows of 36 renders in each. It allows rotating a 3D model in all possible directions — from side to side, top, bottom, at a 45-degree angle.
This is a digital tool that helps visitors of e-commerce websites customize products till they get perfect solutions. This way, people can see the items they liked in different colors, shapes, sizes, materials, and more. So basically, 3D configurators are aimed at engaging prospects with a product and giving them exactly what they want.
Moreover, with a 3D configurator, users can examine and adjust furniture using an AR app.
It’s fun, highly engaging, and most importantly, leads to a more conscious purchase decision. And the latter is key for minimizing product return rates!
To conclude, there are 3 main types of CGI services. First, there’s product 3D modeling, which includes low-poly, high-poly, and CAD modeling, as well as 3D retopology. Then, we have still rendering, which includes the creation of white-background CG product images and lifestyle 3D renders. And, last but not least, there’s interactive rendering, which includes the production of 3D animations, 360° product views, and 3D product configurators.
Below, you can find an infographic with all the main types of product 3D rendering services. Feel free to save it so that you can always have this list at hand!