VISUALISATION AND V-RAY
V-ray is an integral part of visualisation. Lon Grohs, CCO of Chaos Group, explains why that is
YOU’VE BEEN AROUND FOR QUITE SOME TIME. HOW HAS ARCH VIZ CHANGED OVER THE COURSE OF THE COMPANY’S EXISTENCE?
For the longest time there was a push towards photorealism. Once achieved, the next wave became real-time and doing more with your design interactively. We are finally at a point where both tracks are operating in tandem, so artists can get immediate feedback through real-time without giving up the ability to call up photorealistic rendering whenever they need it.
IF YOU COULD PICK ONE DEFINING THING ABOUT CHAOS GROUP AND V-RAY, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IT WAS THAT HELPED TO MAKE IT SUCH AN INTEGRAL PART OF ARCH VIZ?
V-ray is really a Swiss Army knife. When it comes to designers and arch-viz artists, they are generalists at heart. They are asked to do a lot of things: build the model, make the materials, set up lighting, do the rendering… and that’s where V-ray comes through for them because it was designed to be a jack-of-all-trades. As part of that, it also offers artists the best path to photorealism. It gives you all of the things you need to be successful in that regard: accurate GI, ray-traced reflections and materials, and massive data sets. So you have generations of artists who grew up knowing that no matter what you throw at V-ray, it would always be dependable.
HOW DOES V-RAY ASSIST ARCH-VIZ DESIGNERS?
In addition to being a Swiss Army knife and being able to create stills, animations and VR, it’s also your bridge to getting to real-time visualisations simply and easily. For example, with the launch of V-ray for Unreal, anyone who creates a V-ray scene inside their favourite V-ray application, can now import that scene into Unreal using V-ray Light Baking to display the most realistic real-time version of that scene as fast as possible.
DO YOU DEVELOP YOUR TOOLS AND SOFTWARE WITH ARCH VIZ IN MIND AND, IF SO, HOW?
Absolutely. Architecture has been a driving force for us for over 20 years, so we are highly dedicated to the community and its interests, whether that’s through V-ray or Corona Renderer, which we acquired in 2017. By offering both, we can tailor our solutions to two different needs – versatility and simplicity – and artists can pick the one that works best for them. Simplicity is a common theme in arch viz regardless of the product, which is one reason why we completely simplified the UI of V-ray for Revit, Rhino and Sketchup.
WITH THE INCREASING POPULARITY OF VR IN ARCH VIZ – AT LEAST ON THE CLIENT SIDE – CAN YOU ENVISION A TIME WHEN REAL-TIME ENGINES LIKE UNREAL WILL DOMINATE THE ARCH-VIZ INDUSTRY?
Real-time and architecture belong together. It’s one of the main reasons we developed V-ray for Unreal – there’s a lot of power in a joint workflow. It’s also one of the reasons why we’ve invested in R&D for projects like Lavina that will continue to develop real-time ray tracing, which can solve additional problems like scene complexity and the need to create UV maps.
IN WHAT WAYS DO YOU THINK THAT THE ARCH-VIZ INDUSTRY WILL BENEFIT FROM FUTURE TECHNOLOGICAL ADVANCEMENTS?
As tech advances and you make the creative or visualisation process easier, the benefits will be more available and approachable to everyone. It’ll also be a more intuitive creative expression for the artist.