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One day i visit this Denmark based architectural firm website, i see those clean presentations, which got me wonder what kind of software did they use to creating such illustration? it seems like a 3D graphic with all those shadows and stuff.

I think Illustrator is added to create those colorful 2D part, but what i want to ask is what software is used to built all those 3D white blocks?

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    It could be Sketchup. It could be Solidworks. Could be AutoCAD. It could be any one of dozens of CAD or 3D rendering apps on the market. – DA01 Jun 18 '15 at 11:12
  • Could also just be a skilled user of 2D software. These could pretty easily be created in Adobe Illustrator. – Scott Jun 18 '15 at 11:17
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    It is impossible to say from the picture. It could be any 3D app, ive done stuff like that in Maya and Creo. It could also just be a 2D drawing ive done stuff like that in Illustrator, sketchbook and AutoCAD. It could also be any combination of software including just notepad and printrer – joojaa Jun 18 '15 at 12:58
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You could do it directly in any 3D program. I've done something like this in the past with SketchUp (previously by Google). But then refining it through Illustrator.

If I were to do this I would most likely find a 3/4 view satellite image and trace a chunk of buildings in Illustrator. Then modify accordingly for the overlays.

  • The illustrations in your images closely resemble SketchUp and Autodesk software. But the list of 3d software for architecture design is quite lengthy from really expensive commercial software to some open source software. Some examples are listed in this GDSE thread – bbh Jun 22 '15 at 9:01
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rhino for modeling and extracting linework, illustrator for line weights and color.

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    We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer; explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed. – Zach Saucier Jan 6 '16 at 0:38
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Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) from whom these images were taken, has used SketchUp, Revit, Rhino and ArchiCAD - most recently they bought a lot of seats of ArchiCAD.

They will have produced the 3D massing models in one of these tools, and then placed the rendered output into any vector illustration program of choice - could be Adobe Illustrator, could be Affinity Designer, could be InkScape and done the outer spatial boundary heavier line as a vector drawn line there. Similarly, the colour elements, arrows and other diagrammatic elements were probably added then, in the vector program.

If these came from ArchiCAD originally, then they could have saved the views as pure vector PDFs first, then rendered a white model look for the shadows, and this would mean that when the PDF was brought into Illustrator or Designer, they wouldn't be ANY re-drawing - the lines along the spatial boundary would be selected and a heavier lineweight chosen. It's a super-simple, effective workflow, and gives incredibly clear diagrammatic output.

This kind of work is exactly the sort of thing I've been doing myself over the last decade.

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