3D architectural walkthrough animation helps architects, developers, and real estate agents further their business interests. The use of CGI allows these professionals to improve their marketing efforts and enhance project presentations. The ultra-effectiveness of 3D animations is especially important given that the competition in architecture and real estate industries is tough and grows day by day. Architects, developers, and realtors need to stand out in the crowd and show that they have something special to offer to their clients.
And a 3D animation allows them to do exactly that. This tool helps them demonstrate how future properties, that are currently under construction or exist only on drawings, will ultimately look. CGI makes it possible to showcase them in photorealistic quality and motion to completely dazzle and amaze the audience.
But to achieve this effect, a 3D architectural walkthrough has not just to be visually stunning. It should also be based on a compelling story. For this, an architect should develop an interesting scenario for CG footage and include it in the brief when submitting it to a CGI company. But how to make sure that the script is written properly and will perfectly convey the CG video’s message? Join us to learn 5 steps of creating a great scenario for 3D architectural animation!
#1. Define the purpose of a 3D video and build a story around it
A 3D architectural walkthrough animation needs to have a clear purpose. Usually, the latter is attracting the attention of the target audience and convincing that the presented property is the perfect fit for them. To fulfill this purpose, CG footage must send the right message to the viewers. The most effective way to achieve it is to craft a unique story that will evoke an emotional response of the audience. What’s important, their emotions have to be related to the solution of some problem that they are facing.
So, how to build such a story? Here are some examples. If the presented project is a residential complex, a 3D architectural walkthrough animation can tell a story of a family. They have been looking for a perfect home for a long time and could not find the right fit. So, they had to live with their parents or rent an apartment. And suddenly they see the presented property and realize that they have found what they had been looking for. This complex has everything for them and their kids to live a happy life. Another example is a 3D architectural walkthrough of a resort. The ideal narrative for this CG footage would be about a businessman tired by the day-to-day monotonous work. But now he has found the solution to getting rid of stress and exhaustion. An animation can show him driving to the comfortable resort and finally resting easy, with feet up, facing the sea, with a refreshing drink in his hand. Such stories make viewers recall their own challenges and problems, and they become engaged and excited to get a solution to them.
#2. Draw sketches for the storyboard
Now that the story for a 3D architectural walkthrough animation has been built, it’s time to decide on how to visualize it. For this, it is needed to define the camera trajectory. It is the path in which the camera will travel in the CG video, the sequence of scenes it will present to the viewer.
To develop a trajectory properly, 3D artists need an architect to draw sketches of the required views of the building to be shown in a video. It is reasonable to choose angles that allow to demonstrate the property in full splendor and highlight all its benefits. Using these sketches, 3D artists will use camerawork techniques to create a 3D architectural walkthrough that will wow the audience.
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The next step in the creation of a scenario for a 3D walkthrough presentation is selecting the setting. It must be a context in which the benefits of a future building are highlighted most effectively. Though the location of the construction is predetermined, a 3D animation still leaves room for creativity. The author of the project can ask 3D artists to show season and time of the day in which the house will look best. Also, it is possible to add some special effects to a 3D walkthrough to make it more interesting for the audience.
For instance, if the project is a rural family cottage, the perfect scene for it would be a sunny spring day, when the flowers are in bloom. And if a 3D animation shows a ski resort high up in the mountains, it should be presented in the middle of winter when there is much snow. If necessary, a 3D architectural walkthrough animation can showcase the building in different seasons and times of the day through time-lapse technique.
#4. Choose secondary objects for the footage
One more essential step in crafting a scenario for a 3D architectural walkthrough video is choosing secondary objects to be shown in scenes. These can be 3D models of people, animals, furniture, decor, books, food, plants, vehicles, and others. Such contextual elements add atmosphere and believability to the footage. They help to convey the right message and give a client a clear view of the future life in the property.
For instance, a 3D architectural walkthrough animation can show a house’s terrace with a comfy chair and a table with a steaming mug of hot chocolate on it. Such a scene will instantly help the viewers grasp the feel of the place and fell its cozy, homely vibes. This way, they will connect with the presented design on an emotional level. Which will make them more likely to sign the deal with the project’s author.
So, where to get appropriate 3D models for creating the right context in the CG video? An architect can choose them in a CGI studio’s database. Professional 3D visualization companies usually have a large collection of assets to select from. If there are no suitable 3D models in the database, it is possible to ask 3D artists to create unique ones from scratch.
#5. Select the right soundtrack and subtitles
The final step in crafting the perfect script for a 3D architectural walkthrough animation is to decide on music that will help strengthen the message. To give the location the right feel, a soundtrack should resonate with the purpose and vibes of the place.
For instance, if the presented property is a shopping mall, it will be reasonable to accompany the footage with lively pop music and other sounds such as the voices of bustling shoppers and ring of cash tills. While in the case a 3D architectural walkthrough shows a children’s entertainment center, it might include a lovely heartwarming melody and sounds of kids laughing and running around. Adding voice-overs and subtitles in the footage can be also a good idea. When done right, they can make the message of the 3D video more convincing and clear — just like in the CG animation above.
To create a great scenario for a 3D architectural walkthrough animation, it is needed to follow 5 steps. It is vital to clearly define the purpose of a CG video and build a story around it. Then, it is required to draw sketches of the building’s best views for a storyboard. After that, it is needed to pick the right setting and choose the proper contextual elements. Finally, it is essential to select the perfect soundtrack and subtitles that will strengthen the CG animation’s message.
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