29 Sep 6 websites every archviz artist should know (+ bonus tracks)
In the internet era, there is a lot of information available for everyone to learn any tool or to develop a new skill. However, there is a lot of misleading or incorrect information out there as well so it is important to be able to identify those sources which are trustworthy. If you have been in the CG or architectural visualization field for at least a couple of years now I am sure you already know the websites that I am about to recommend, but if you are just starting out this post can help you to quickly direct your attention to what I believe are some of the most renowned and trustworthy sources and start checking them out right away.
The following list states websites which are useful to me to stay up to date with the industry news, to learn and improve by watching video tutorials or “making-of” blog posts, to download free resources such as 3d models or textures, to share my work and get feedback or to solve any technical problems by asking for help in the forums:
Probably one of the first arch-viz websites ever created. Founded by Jeff Mottle, the CG Architect website has many useful areas such as a gallery where everybody shares their work daily, industry surveys, arch-viz job offers, a very participative forum, interviews with top class artists and studio owners from the arch-viz field and the “business in arch-viz” article series. CG Architect is also home of the CG Awards, the first and most important awards for architectural visualization artists.
Making-of articles, freebies section, challenges, a podcast, a job board, software news, a gallery to showcase your work, and more. On top of this Ronen Bekerman´s website has a very nice and modern design and is being updated very often so make sure to check it periodically.
There is no way you can call yourself an Arch-viz artist if you don´t know what ¨Archmodels¨ are. Even though Evermotion is not an arch-viz-only website, most of the content is related. There are many industry and software news articles plus a gallery where you can showcase your work and, if you are good enough, your work can be published on the front page in the ¨Editor´s choice gallery”. Many people know Evermotion because of their huge 3D model shop, but they are also a visualization studio working in production.
For many people (me included) Adán Martin youtube channel has been a great learning material source where you don´t only get to know the ¨how to¨ but also (and most importantly) the ¨why¨ in more than 100 video tutorials covering topics from shaders creation and HDRI lighting concepts to scripts and plugins tutorials to increase your productivity. Most of the site and videos are in Spanish, but google translate and youtube automatic translation do a decent job.
In 2016 Adán Martín and Carla Jovine founded 3D Collective. On their website, you will find a lot of very useful and top quality content. Go take a look!
Co-founder of the D2 conferences, the always-smiling Fabio takes advantage of his worldwide connections in the architectural visualization field and runs a youtube channel with lots of interviews with artists and studios where they discuss business and artistic aspects of the industry. I promise you won´t be disappointed.
One thing most of the websites listed above have in common is that there is a big amount of technical/software or business-related articles. Luckily for us, Pedro Fernandez and the Arqui9 team decided to focus on the artistic side of things and talk about composition, story-telling, and use of colors, among other interesting topics.
Arqui9 is a London based Architectural visualization studio with a great influence from concept-art and digital painting. In the Arqui9Learn website, they share a bit of their knowledge with all of us so make sure to mark their website as ¨favorite¨ in your browser.
A non-architectural visualization related website but yet a very interesting one to learn about composition, colors, and speed painting among others. The best thing about the video tutorials on this website is that most of them are usually really short but they contain very useful information.
- Official software youtube channels and websites:
Lately, it has become a norm for software companies to have their own complete library of tutorials and ¨how to¨ articles. And I am not talking about old mid-age manuals (which are still the fundamental learning source though). I am talking about short youtube video tutorials and making-of articles covering one specific aspect or functionality of the tool. Best examples for this are Itoo software, Allegorithmic, and Blender.
Before we get to the end of this post I would like to give you one small recommendation to be able to easily spot good and bad tutorials or learning sources online. Whenever you get to a new website (this one included) or youtube channel, do the following:
- Do not immediately take what they say for granted. Do some test and experiments on your own to confirm any doubts that you may have.
- Try to check at least one or two alternative sources and compare what they say. If all of them are contradicting each other, then keep looking and researching.
- Run a small background research on the website or the person behind the website or youtube channel: how long have they been online, check the comments on their posts (very important), how many articles or videos they have, where they have worked before, etc.
I know this sounds tedious but once you know that your learning source is trustworthy you won´t waste any more time checking out misleading posts and articles containing incorrect information.
There is no need to say that these are not the only useful arch-viz websites out there. This list could go as long as your interior-with-small-windows-plus-caustics-and-displacement render time, but I had to come up with a small list so that you can complete it by sharing your own favorite websites in the comment section below. Go ahead!