3D Printing & 3D Rendering Together Benefit Architects

The expectations developers have for both commercial and residential construction projects have changed drastically just within the last few years. Architects are now expected to offer a 3D Visualization of their complete design for analysis and approval regardless of the size of the project. Flat, one-dimensional designs are rarely accepted, since they do not offer the details and functionality consumers require to make a sound decision. Recently, a new tool has risen which architects can add to their arsenal – 3D Printing.


With this new addition, architects who use them are better prepared to make the most persuasive bid for a building project. By combining a three dimensional printed model with the 3D Rendering of the building and surrounding area, the developer gets the most realistic perspective of the architect’s concept and the architect potentially gets a quicker approval and contract.

There are many ways that 3D Printing and 3D Rendering work together to help architects win the bid; Here are some of our favorites:

Easier to Make Adjustments to a Design

Using 3D printing and 3D rendering together make it easier to experiment with different design ideas by reducing the amount of time spent on making each revision. The architectural plan is created in a highly-flexible virtual world, so there is no reason to toss out a first draft and start from scratch. Design changes are simple in 3D, because every component can be quickly adjusted electronically.

3D printing and 3D rendering allows an architect to present the building in a realistic way prior to construction. This will allow them to test out various design options including décor, landscaping, and structural shaping. A professional 3D print should be incredibly precise and take into considerations all aspects of the final project. This would include things that used to be considered trivial like the way a tree’s shadow may interfere with a home owner’s enjoyment of their swimming pool.

Identify Problems Earlier

Another way 3D rendering and printing work together is by helping architects to identify and resolve possible design flaws that could occur during the development and construction process. For example, using 3D renderings allow the architect to accurately test spacing and lighting elements in a “real” life-like environment. If a problem is found, a 3D printed model can be used to quickly print out a larger scale version of the problem area along with  a few design changes that may help resolve it. The team can gather around a table and pop in or out different solutions to see what works best. Once a solution is found, it’s easy to go back to the original CAD file and make the changes.

Makes it Easier to Sell a Concept

A 3D printed model combined with a 3D rendering help architects in selling and promoting their concept.  Stakeholders are presented with a more holistic view of both the interior and exterior of a project. To have printed models at each seat around the table for people to touch and inspect, and then look at the 3D Rendering to see how it would look in real life is something that not a lot of architects are doing right now. There’s a wow factor to it at a time when the wow factor is needed most.

And because a CAD model is used to create both the rendering and printed model, the developer benefits because they can create marketing and sales materials earlier in the process. Meaning they can go to market sooner. These 3D model files can be sent to a professional 3D rendering company to create as many visualizations and animations as the developer needs.

YouTube Preview Image

Using 3D can improve communication among architects, engineers, contractors, and buyers by creating a realistic proposal within a virtual environment. 3D printing and rendering helps architects save valuable time and money by identifying problems earlier, allowing for easier revisions, and helping them sell and promote a concept prior to its completion.

We’re curious to get your thoughts on using both 3D printing and 3D rendering in your design process. Let us know how you see the two technologies working together.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.