What's the difference between 3D Rendering and 3D Modeling?

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Here's something I got asked today: What's the difference between 3D Rendering and 3D modelling?

These two terms are often used interchangeably based on loose definitions of modelling and rendering. However, these two pieces of the puzzle are quite different!

3D Modeling

As you know, 3D modelling is the process in which a designer uses CAD software to create a 3D representation of the product or concept. This 3D design allows companies or investors to get a clear-cut visual representation of the product or concept. The 3D visual can be manipulated, moved around on the screen, and scaled to represent how the product or project would look in real life.

3D modelling is often used within the tech industry and the construction industry but can really be used in any field. The purpose is to be able to show what objects will look like based on their scales and dimensions in real-time if the project or product is created.

Example: If using 3D modelling to show a construction company the design of a new home, the model will show what the house would like in a 3D format. The designer can also add furniture, walkways, cars, etc. to the design concept in proper dimensions to show what certain features will look like inside or outside the home.

3D Rendering

3D rendering is often looked at as the last step in the 3D modelling process. 3D modelling is essentially the whole package while 3D rendering is a piece of it. 3D rendering is when the designer takes snapshots of the 3D model and enhances it to better display certain features.

For example, let’s continue with that same house example from above. Once the 3D model is created, the designer could take a snapshot of the front of the house and enhance it. This can be done by adding appropriate lighting to windows, car lights, porch lights, etc. Rendering enhances the existing image to give clients, companies, and investors an elevated idea of what the product or project could be like in the future. Rendering allows for a complete visual representation that looks as if the home already exists.

If you’ve been using these two terms interchangeable, you’re not entirely wrong since rendering is a part of the modelling process. However, 3D modelling is more or less the entire process of creating a 3D image of a product or project. 3D rendering on the other hand is that final step that enhances and improves an image to give investors, clients, or companies a well-rounded view.

Not all designers engage in 3D rendering, but the majority do as it provides clear-cut images and examples of what a product or project could look like, leaving little to the imagination.

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The main difference between 3D rendering and 3D modelling is that modelling is the entire process, while rendering is a part of it.

Here's something I got asked today: What's the difference between 3D Rendering and 3D modelling?

These two terms are often used interchangeably based on loose definitions of modelling and rendering. However, these two pieces of the puzzle are quite different!

3D Modeling

As you know, 3D modelling is the process in which a designer uses CAD software to create a 3D representation of the product or concept. This 3D design allows companies or investors to get a clear-cut visual representation of the product or concept. The 3D visual can be manipulated, moved around on the screen, and scaled to represent how the product or project would look in real life.

3D modelling is often used within the tech industry and the construction industry but can really be used in any field. The purpose is to be able to show what objects will look like based on their scales and dimensions in real-time if the project or product is created.

Example: If using 3D modelling to show a construction company the design of a new home, the model will show what the house would like in a 3D format. The designer can also add furniture, walkways, cars, etc. to the design concept in proper dimensions to show what certain features will look like inside or outside the home.

3D Rendering

3D rendering is often looked at as the last step in the 3D modelling process. 3D modelling is essentially the whole package while 3D rendering is a piece of it. 3D rendering is when the designer takes snapshots of the 3D model and enhances it to better display certain features.

For example, let’s continue with that same house example from above. Once the 3D model is created, the designer could take a snapshot of the front of the house and enhance it. This can be done by adding appropriate lighting to windows, car lights, porch lights, etc. Rendering enhances the existing image to give clients, companies, and investors an elevated idea of what the product or project could be like in the future. Rendering allows for a complete visual representation that looks as if the home already exists.

If you’ve been using these two terms interchangeable, you’re not entirely wrong since rendering is a part of the modelling process. However, 3D modelling is more or less the entire process of creating a 3D image of a product or project. 3D rendering on the other hand is that final step that enhances and improves an image to give investors, clients, or companies a well-rounded view.

Not all designers engage in 3D rendering, but the majority do as it provides clear-cut images and examples of what a product or project could look like, leaving little to the imagination.

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