CGI, The Best Kept Secret of Interior Catalogues

Who doesn’t love looking through furniture catalogues? We certainly do! Within the past few years people have started to notice that many of the images we love to look at in furniture catalogues are actually CGI 3D renders – and not photographs.

To some of us, mainly those who work within the CGI world, this may seem obvious, the cost and timeframe to physically photograph each different product, in each of their fabrics, in multiple room-sets is not realistic nor feasible. Unless you have all the time in the world and an endless pot of money! But for many of the general public who do not work within the furniture world it is not so obvious, unless you’re in the industry you may not realise how much time and effort goes into producing these catalogues, CGI or not, each image’s journey can be a long process. 

Many furniture and fabric manufacturers have delved into the world of CGI within recent years for many reasons, CGI is less time consuming, more cost effective and overall adds value to your individual assets. If you have CGI assets you are able to use them time and time again, if you have individual, transparent PNG versions of your images you have the editorial freedom to edit your imagery to match trends, seasons and client briefs. As well as this, having CGI assets with fabrics means that you essentially have an endless roll of ‘digital fabric’, which you can use again and again, which can be sent over to clients and you can have access to them forever. This means that you have more creative scope with future projects – with photoshoots you end up leaving with a couple of shots but that’s it, if you want to revisit or restyle the fabrics or furniture, you need to do the whole process again. 

Many people don’t realise that catalogue images are CGI because the technology is so good that they look like photographs! If you’re flicking through a catalogue for some inspiration you’re not likely to nitpick the finer details of an image and if you have great CGI (like we produce here at Orbital) then you wouldn’t notice the difference. 

With furniture giant, IKEA, using CGI for over 75% of their catalogue imagery it comes as no surprise that many other brands and companies are following in their footsteps. Especially with recent events surrounding Covid-19, many photography studios and factories are not open. This may seem like a spanner in the works for many fabric and furniture manufacturers, but here at Orbital we are able to work with you to overcome these problems. As we specialise in fabrics and furniture we are heavily familiar with the trade, our process means that we are able to provide you with your 3D assets which can be used time and time again. We are able to photograph and render fabrics for you, giving you more flexibility, and at a much lower cost. 

Many magazines have said that although they often prefer photoshoots to CGI imagery, they have often published CGI imagery without them noticing that it wasn’t a photograph. With the recent advancements in CGI this comes as no surprise to many of us as it is becoming increasingly difficult to tell the difference between real and fake. 

Get in touch today if you are looking to take the leap into the world of CGI!

View other projects

How can we help?

Our services

Opening the Studio for Long Point 2020

“The Long Eaton Guild of Furniture Manufacturers hold a bi-annual trade show which sees the opening of a number of showrooms around the town of Long Eaton. The show is open to all and is known to host over 25 exhibitors showing fine high-end upholstery and manufacturers across the historic town.”

Autumn Long Point 2020, has returned for another fantastic showcase of exhibitors in and around the Long Eaton area. Taking place between the 21st and 23rd September 2020, Long Point encourages the many upholstery manufacturers in the area to come together to enable buyers to visit them in their own spaces to offer inspiration and insight into the furniture capital of the UK.

In an intimate and relaxed setting, we will see manufacturers open their doors once again for this fantastic trade show. The team here at Orbital is no different! We will be opening our studio doors and encourage many of you to come and see what we’re getting up to! 

We have our own exhibition space that is available for all to rent out and use for their own product exhibitions and showcases. We welcome all visitors to The Exchange, it’s in a great location for one, so you are able to check out all of the surrounding exhibitors. Not only that, you can come and have a sneak peak and a nose around our fantastic CGI and design studio to see the magic take place before your very eyes!

The Exchange is a hub for the furniture industry, based in the heart of Long Eaton, Nottinghamshire. Long Eaton itself is the UK’s centre of upholstery and is the home to many long standing and successful furniture manufacturers such as Harrington Mills. Within our own space at Orbital, we have a meeting room available to hire, which has hosted many meetings for Long Eaton Guild and other professionals such as Sofa Workshop. We also have a showroom which is available to all for showcasing new products, holding launches and hosting presentations. Our spaces are incredibly light and welcoming due to The Exchange being a converted mill. 

Our studio is an incredible space and we welcome all who we know and are yet to meet. We invite you all to come and see what incredible work we are currently doing, meet our creative and experienced team and come and have a natter over a coffee. We regularly encourage clients to come to the studio to learn our processes and, when desired, have a first hand say on their future imagery. We hope to see some of your lovely faces soon!

 

View other projects

How can we help?

Our services

How Sales & Marketing Strategies Are Drastically Changing in 2020

2020 has shown us how popular online shopping is. With the world of furniture and interiors being one of the last to turn to majority selling online it has become apparent just how important it is to have an online presence, and a successful one at that. 

In March 2020 there was a worldwide average of 1.7 billion web traffic views to furniture and home decor websites increasing from 1.5 billion in January 2020. Years ago, many of us would buy a sofa and keep that sofa for 20+ years, with the increase in focus on trends and fast fashion that is no longer the case. Many of us will change our furniture and home interiors every few years to keep up with trends and changes in lifestyles. The way we buy is definitely changing, but so is the way that we are selling products and reaching out to potential clients and customers. 

Within the furniture and fabric industries we have seen the same sales methods used for decades, many still employing sales representatives to travel up and down the country. It’s safe to say that Covid-19 has changed the system we all know so well. With travel restrictions and individuals focusing on their health now more than ever, travelling to showcase your newest products seems near enough impossible. With each retail industry slowly moving online, especially the world of fashion, it has become apparent that those methods used for sales of furniture and home decor are becoming dated. Traditional sales methods are now looking to be a thing of the past, and in a time of uncertainty many companies are looking to get online as fast as possible.

With this sudden surge in interiors wanting to have a better presence online, many companies are now finding that they need to increase their digital strategies. A lot of brands use simple fabric flat shots on their websites, with an image of their product only available to view in one colour. This is because photographing products in each variation of fabric would take so much time and money. The demand by consumers to see products in every available fabric is becoming increasingly important. 

E-commerce home decor businesses such as Wayfair have seen consistent growth since they were first founded. Not only this, but many e-commerce interior retailers have struggled far less during Covid-19 than those who have a lesser online presence. Focusing your attention on your brands online presence has shown many companies two things, they don’t have enough imagery to populate their website and their websites are lacking in ease and interest. Within sales one of the most crucial things is to build consumer trust, especially when selling products that consumers are expecting to last them years. With many companies only working with photography this results in a lackluster website which often doesn’t give potential clients any idea of how a product would look, feel or behave. 

Here at Orbital we are able to solve these issues for you! Online shopping for furniture and for clothing is often seen as the same, customers want to see each product in each possible fabric, at different angles. By just having flat shots on your website you may be increasing your website bounce rate, with customers not being able to visualise how your products would look in their spaces they are less likely to shop with you, and more likely to turn to your competitors who use CGI. We are able to build your furniture in 3D and then upholster your products in every possible fabric combination you could dream of! At a fraction of the price too! We are then able to place these products in photo-realistic room sets at different angles, creating multiple visuals to put across your stunning websites and social media pages. With an experienced and creative team, we are also able to create stunning new websites and update your branding, meaning that you will have the overall package. You will have all of your assets in one place, working with one team, resulting in a cohesive, creative and engaging marketing strategy and branding as individual as you are. We are able to meet your demand, meaning more happy customers for you! 

If you are interested in working with us and increasing your brand’s online presence then get in touch today! Don’t forget to keep up to date with us on our social media to see what exciting work we are releasing!

 

View other projects

How can we help?

Our services

The Importance of Animation within Interiors & Marketing

Over the last few years the use of video has become increasingly popular within the world of interiors and marketing. Video is proven to drive web traffic and push sales within any business, with over 60% of people more likely to purchase a product or service after watching a video. Video may seem like another creative avenue that you now have to learn and perfect, however, here at Orbital, we can do all of the work for you.

The videos that you often see in marketing campaigns aren’t necessarily made from real footage. CGI technology is developing rapidly and we are now at a stage where we can make photorealistic animations in 3D that look like filmography. All of the imagery on our site, including the animations on this blog post, are all CGI!  

Many of our clients come to us looking for hyper-realistic CGI shots of furniture and fabrics. With these products built in 3D we are able to turn these CGI assets into films. Using our virtual photography expertise, we have stepped into the realm of filmography, and not just your basic shots. We have animated full scenes. Having beautiful stills is no longer necessarily all you need to sell your brand. We can capture your branding in a CGI animation that can’t be done with web design or imagery alone.

Our team is a mixture of experienced designers, photographers and CGI specialists. Combining their creativity and skill sets result in showstopping filmography that costs a fraction of the price, and takes a fraction of the time, compared to its ‘real life’ equivalent. There is no need for location scouts, expensive camera equipment, drone licenses… just Orbital’s Unreal Creatives and our Studio.

If you thought we could only tackle furniture, you’d be wrong! Although we separate ourselves from most other CGI agencies by perfecting our photorealistic textures and fabrics, we are focused on interiors. From kitchens and bathrooms to Georgian townhouses and Scandi inspired living rooms. If it’s virtual, we’ve got it down. Although the grand stylised animation above may not be suitable for every brand, a simple but stunning slow pan of a product at the top of a web page could be the difference between your customers spending more time looking at your products or going elsewhere. 

Animations are a versatile way to encourage more consumer engagement, they can be used on social media channels, websites, sales pitches and presentations, trade shows… the list goes on. 

 

For Warwick Fabrics UK, we are creating animations for each incredible range they produce! These animations will go along with the lifestyle imagery and fabric shots that we already produce for them. Working in this way is a great way to have all of your digital assets in one place as well as having imagery that not only looks fantastic when standing alone, but is cohesive with every aspect of the project.

If you are interested in learning more about animation and video work then don’t be hesitant to contact us! Check out our social media channels to see more animations as we release them.

View other projects

How can we help?

Our services