Studio Spotlight : Omnivision

Beautifully rendered digital architectural images using all of the power of LightWave to create stunning architectural visualizations

Posted: Thu 08 Oct 2015

Omnivision is a company that specializes in beautifully rendered digital architectural images using all of the power of LightWave to create stunning architectural visualizations.  With great attention to detail and impressively designed interiors, the very talented Italian artist, Alessandro Di Fulvio, granted us a few minutes to answer our questions.

Hi Alessandro! We heard about Omnivision quite recently and we really enjoyed your artwork! Can you tell us a little more about you, your background and the studio?

My passion for 3D graphics was born several years ago. Since I was a child, I've been attracted by anything was technological and interactive, above all video games were one big passion for me. When those started to be tridimensional, I started to wonder how such fantastic 3D worlds could have been created. Since then, I started to collect information and got passionate about anything related to the digital graphics world, and I never stopped doing it. After finishing my studies, I relocated in Rome (at about 200 km from the place I grown up) starting a stage in an animation studio (I met Lino Grandi there, he had just created a LightWave based animation studio and he was training people on how to use the software). I lived and worked in Rome for about 6 years, for both animation studios and as a freelance. Those have been some fundamental time for my professional growth, since I had the change to meet with some exceptional talented people that enriched me a lot, and helped me better understand what my attitudes were in the digital graphics world. Since 5 years, I'm back in my original place (a very quite country town) where I've been working in several fields of 3D visualization, especially archiviz. Now, in Omnivision, I do pretty much anything: looking for new clients, working on the renders, supervising other people work when I need to hire someone to help me with my projects.

You are a big LightWave 3D fan: how have you come to use this software?

It was almost by chance many years ago: when I became interested in the world of 3D graphics, a friend told me about a 3D software ( it was 3D Studio) , and he gave me a CD so I could try it out. In a separate folder, perhaps by chance, there was a LightWave 3D. I had never heard about it , so I tried it and ... I do not know how to explain it,  but I felt immediately at ease, although not yet knowing anything about it. I somehow found it to be close to my way of thinking, a bit like when you meet a new person and for what is objectively a stranger, you feel you have something in common, and that you are going along with him and most likely will become friends. And that's what happened: LightWave and me became great friends, in a friendship that still lasts today.

LightWave 3D seems to play a very important part in your job: what is your experience with the software?

LightWave is my main tool and I use it for anything needed for the production of an image, from 3D modeling to final rendering. It's been now 15 years I've been using LightWave and I'm very happy about it!

Briefly describe your production workflow.

Obviously, it depends on what I need to do. When my aim is to get a realistic result, after modeling the base model of an environment (an interior for example), the first thing I focus on is lighting and the mood it conveys. The mood that an image conveys is as important as the technical problems, that's why it is something I take care of it immediately, just before any other aspect; and once satisfied, I can hardly change my mind while completing the work. Immediately after, I concentrate on the scene staging, adding the 3d models and working on the definition of their materials. At this stage, though if I did not need to model something specific, I resort to my library of templates and materials I have previously defined. Having a well-stocked library is important because it allows you to be much faster and of course for those who work freelance be fast is the key. Especially if we're working in physically correct environments, loading a previously defined material does not require any changes to it and this allows you to be much more productive. Once I get my render done, we go to the post-production stage, where I define the final look of the image.

Why would you choose this software over any other?

Because LightWave 3D is extremely flexible and allows you to be productive in virtually every aspect of production, although you are a small studio or a single artist. LightWave also has an exceptional value for money!

What does make the difference between LightWave 3D and other existing software?

Compared to other tools, I find valuable its extreme flexibility. In LightWave, many times, there's not just only one way to get the result you need and this allows for a very creative approach to different situations. I feel completely comfortable with his philosophy.

Which are your best plugins to use with LightWave 3D?  Is there any plugin that you can not live without?

Surely Denis Pontonnier's Sunsky and the db&wTools (especially their Schlick's Approximation node). As for the modeler, I'm using PLG tools a lot, especially the tools dedicated to the creation and handling of UV mapping.

If you were asked tomorrow to choose 3 functions/improvements of which you would dream of on the next version of LightWave 3D, what would you opt for?

Surely I would find useful some improvements in the OpenGL performances in modeler. I'd like to have some basic sculpting tools available, to avoid having to rely to other software when you need to add very fine details to the geometry. And PBR render engine - but this is coming in the next release!

What do you enjoy the most in LightWave 3D?

VPR: it is a fantastic tool letting you perfectly understand what you are getting while working on the visual appearance of a scene. More generally, I like the philosophy and simplicity of the program in many of its aspects - such as the setup of lights and radiosity.

What are the projects you’re presently working on? Are you involved in some other projects?

Currently I'm working on a series of images for an architectural studio. Often, in my spare time, I work on some personal projects to improve my skills and just for the sake of achieving what I have in mind.

A day with you, how does it look like?

My day is very simple actually: most of the time, I'm in front of my computer, working or looking for new collaborations. While rendering, I'm often reading news about the graphic world, video games and technology. Smart phones in particular are a passion of mine.  For 3 or 4 times a week, I dedicate a few hours to physical training in the gym, another passion I have. The rest of my free time is dedicated to my family and my girlfriend.

We are sure you have great sources of inspiration, can you reveal them?

I will say maybe something rather obvious, but my main source of inspiration is the real world I'm surrounded of. I often lose myself in observing it, I stop to look at how gradients run over an object, or a particular type of material reacts to light and the place around it, or the atmosphere that can create a completely cloudy sky. I think those sharing my same passion can perfectly understand what I mean!

Do you have a favorite artist / movie / book that have been affected your work in 3D?

An animated series that inspired me is definitely Neon Genesis Evangelion. This has not been affecting the type of work I do for a few years now, but in me, there's still the idea to realize (sooner or later) a short film in honor of the series.

Thank you for your time Alessandro! Keep up the good work!

Thank you for this interview, and to those who have been wanting to read it. It was a real honor for me to share my experience and my passion to the LightWave community!