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CGI vs. Photography

Which option is better? Using CGI or innovative photosystems? Let's look deeper at the advantages and the possible hidden disadvantages of these new technologies.

Nina Merkushava
Nina Merkushava

Most people today would not guess how many images and videos are actually CGI (computer-generated imagery.) After all, it is often very difficult to distinguish a photograph from an image made using software, even for professionals in this field. Today, the development of innovative technology makes it much more difficult to distinguish a CGI image from a photograph or even a picture painted by an artist. Therefore, more and more companies are leaning towards CGI for its versatility.

However, the photography industry is also not standing still. A large number of different photosystems are presented on the market today, which are focused on in-house photo and video content creation. They promise to produce a finished result including built-in image processing in just a few minutes. Furthermore, these photosystems offer 360° recording.

What are the advantages of using new CGI technologies? Does a 3d render even compare to a real photograph? And can creating a 3D model of a product instead really save money and time?

Let's look deeper at the advantages and the possible hidden disadvantages of these new technologies.

Photography can give really fast results and all you have to do is choose the right photosystem for your purposes. If you have a small business or are working with a startup and you have a small range of products, you can actually make a high quality photo as well as a 360 degree spins by yourself. This is made possible by simply purchasing a camera, using your smartphone or renting a photo studio. This gives a lot of creative freedom, saves time as well as money and you don’t have to go to a CGI studio and wait for a 3D model to be created.

A company that owns their own photo studio would have initially high costs however they gain the complete control over the working process and the final result. Companies for example selling used items or clothing, photosystems are the only way to go. Used items have too many specific details and damages and this would be too difficult to individually re-create as a 3d model. This also likely doesn't make sense for their budget. Promotion with celebrities or influencers can also only be done through photosystems. This gives the consumer a real life feeling.

CGI studios are simply not able to offer such a fast service. However, using photosystems requires every big company to have not only employees who will do this on a regular basis but also have access to all the necessary products in the warehouse. This could greatly complicate the process for companies that have warehouses in different cities or for some, even countries. It is also necessary to have samples of everything for the photo, which will inevitably also wear out with time. In this case, CGI definitely comes in handy.

If you have one prototype of a product made using CGI, you only need to change a few parameters in order to introduce a new and improved model of a product to the market. You can even do this before the product itself goes into actual production.

Many furniture and interior design manufacturers have interior designers and stylists in their staff. Interior photography requires long and detailed preparations when working with complete interior milieus rather than with individual objects. Here, the task is to show interior items in real life, adding decor and building the necessary lighting. Generally, special large studios are needed for such filming. All these are additional costs and time, especially with regards to large-sized pieces of furniture. None of this is needed to create a CGI image. This is especially convenient when you want to change elements of the decor or expose the light in a different way. CGI can do it in a matter of minutes. It also does not matter what size your subjects are for shooting - it does not incur additional material costs and time.

In order to present any product in the image format of 360° spins and video, you will need to re-shoot it each time. Once created, the 3D model can be used to create images, 360 ° spins and video, AR, WebGL and even mobile phone apps.

A huge advantage of CGI is that you have the opportunity to show your product from a perspective that is unrealistic or difficult to implement in real life. For example, launch your product into space, or lower it to the bottom of the sea. You are only limited by your imagination.

So which option is better? Using CGI Software or a photosystem? Both options have their advantages and their pitfalls. It all depends on the specific goals and objectives you want to set.

Think you can spot the difference? Take the test and find out!

World of Design

Nina Merkushava

Nina comes from Belarus and is working as the in-house recruiter for RenderThat Creatives in Berlin. She is a photography and design lover. She likes to travel and try new things.