DIG : Rhino models/scene setup for Architectural Illustrations

Very Cool.

So, if I understood correctly all the models are modeled in Rhino (converted in mesh) and imported in 3DS Max for visualization?

hi djordje,

thanks – the scenes are mix of meshes and breps (architecture) - depending of if it was modeled in Rhino from scratch or imported from some other software (Revit, SketchUp) and detailed. But the entourage elements (cars, people, trees etc.) are all meshes, most of them block instances/vray proxy objects. That definitely helps with the speed and keeping large scenes manageable.


hi Uros,

Yes, all is modeled and populated in Rhino (mix of meshes, curves and nurbs) and then exported as mesh into Max just for rendering in Vray. The Vray for Max has always been ahead of Rhino version and also Max has some more advantages with managing the complex scenes output files for postproduction.


Hi Jarek.
I agree with you, V-Ray in 3DS Max is always ahead. And it is also easier to texture models in Max. I use the same approach also. But I have problems with the camera. How do you set-up camera in the same position as in Rhino?


Hi Uros,

for the camera match, technically you can just type the same camera/target/lens values from Rhino Vport Properties to 3DSMax camera. But - it is tedious, and will not guarantee a ‘perfect match’ if certain conditions are not met (I mean: the camera angle will be exactly same, but rendered/capture image from Rhino and Max may not overlap pefecty).

See this thread for some more explanation of how to make this work (my last post):

I am also attaching a rhp of just the Rhino to Max camera exporter that was a part of the RATTools I released very long time ago, in case anyone finds that useful.



RhinoViewsToMAXCameras.rhp (36.5 KB)


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Really nice work Jarek. Could you post some raw renders? It would be useful to see how much work goes into post.

Thank you for the reply Jarek.
Keep up the great work!

Hi @Murren,

Sure, here are 2 raw renderings before post work from the samples above:


Thanks @Jarek. Those raws look good too.

Tremendous work, congratulations !

Is there a need to learn 3D Max in order to use it for V-ray purpose ?
What kind of file do you export from Rhino to 3DMax?
What is Breps?

great work!
just a question, the tree used in the model are from a library? have they got a material texture already map on?
I’ve used for a little job Land Design (a wip freeware plugin for rhino) but if I insert many tree the file became early too heavy to set and render in maxwell render…

thanks for any answer and sorry for my english :slight_smile:

Hey illo,

From memory you can copy the tree and you get an lighter ‘instance’.

Please test it yourself; it’s been a while since I used landsdesign but I recall testing it with Octane and observing that tree’s placed using the tree placement tool added several MB memory consumption for each additional tree placed whereas each copy & paste tree added almost no additional MB memory…

Let me know if it doesn’t work and I’ll find my project file and confirm the workflow…

For Maxwell render, use scene references.
See for example: Instances with Maxwell Render and Rhino - from about 9 min into the video.

hi Prehabitat,
I’ve try every way to reduce the weight of the file but over all the usage of the scene and the speed of render for example to do a simple hedge but without any good result

I’ve try copy and past, the instance of maxwell also but the problem seem to be the library of LandDesign that is too refined…

this is why I’ve ascked about the model of tree used in the render posted here… they are very simple but very efficently mapped with the texture…

Last suggestion: Lands Design has a conceptual mode which has a low poly tree similar to the first rhino image (stadium) by OP… do these help in Maxwell?

Also, does Maxwell have a system like Vray/Octane proxy?

I have had some success making basic trees by hand and applying a shader (rather than image based texture)…

good luck!

Hi Rachel,

Thanks : ) I would say you would need to learn at least basic level of 3DMax to use it just for Vray purpose, to be able to navigate the scenes, materials, create lights and adjust your general rendering settings. 3DMax is a complex and powerful tool on its own and apart from the Vray version being always ahead from Vray from Rhino, it has very good render and post-production oriented features and plugins. There is really nothing about the above images that could not be done in Vray for Rhino; Max version may be just a bit faster, stable and have better UI.

I have written a custom exporter for better Rhino<>Max exchange, but it is mainly to keep the files organized the way I need. It uses 3DS or OBJ format for geometry export. Whenever curves are needed, DWG has been working pretty good for that.

Breps: In general I would say Rhino NURBS surfaces and polysurfaces (as oppose to Mesh geometry), but check this out:



Hi Marco,

The trees in the model views are a Rhino Blocks that are simple representation of a highly detailed trees 3D models. They are in fact Vray Proxy objects - in render time they get replaced with the detailed geometry, but only the ones visible in the render bucket are loaded, so you can have 1000’s of them with no modeling or rendering slowdown. The original detailed 3d models of trees are from various commercial libraries converted to Vray proxies.