Top 3D Architectural Rendering Books, Magazines, and Blogs for Companies to Follow

Top 3D Architectural Rendering Books, Magazines, and Blogs for Companies to Follow

If you think you already know everything there is to know about 3D architectural rendering services, you might want to think again. The thing about this unique field is that discoveries pop up daily, which means you also have new things to learn. Whether you want to brush up on your team’s existing knowledge or your company is poised for growth, here are some of the top 3D architectural rendering books, magazines, and blogs you should follow.

Brian M. Crisp’s Architectural Rendering with Mental Ray

Brian M. Crisp’s “Architectural Rendering with Mental Ray” is a book that covers almost everything that might interest you, from proper setup of lighting to texturing, rendering, and more, with lots of helpful tips on every page. This is the best 3D architectural rendering book for someone who wants to master using Mental Ray for 3DS Max or Maya architectural rendering.

Brian M. Crisp’s Architectural Rendering with V-Ray

This is another book by Brian M. Crisp, but V-Ray is its primary focus this time. This literature covers various topics, just like the first book on mental ray. The key difference is that it reviews more details on the capabilities and features of V-Ray that set it apart from its predecessor.

Sarah Jones and Michael Secrist’s Architectural Visualization: Its Relevance to the Unbuilt World

Sarah Jones and Michael Secrist’s book, published in 2018, is not a technical book written as a tutorial and guide for 3D architects, artists, or designers. Instead, this book delves into 3D architectural visualization services and their importance for any renovation or building project.

The authors explain how the success of a project is dependent on the communication between the 3D architectural rendering designers and architects. It also uncovers the secrets behind effective communication with CGI artists, making it a fantastic read that benefits architects and employers alike.

Readers of the book will better understand 3D architectural visualization and rendering and all the essential steps it involves. This way, architects lacking 3D architectural visualization proficiency can refer to this book to learn how to communicate more effectively with visualization companies to ensure a smoother project. Employers can also use the book to understand their projects better, learn why some things should happen, and participate in the process if needed.

RELATED: What are Architectural 3D Visualization Costs, Service Fees & Rates for Companies?

Light: Science and Magic


Light: Science and Magic is mainly meant for professional photographers as it discusses a comprehensive analysis of various options for photographic lighting. But don’t worry because the book works wonders even for architects, particularly in 3D architectural rendering and 3D architectural visualization. The book captures the very essence of the effect of various lighting conditions on the quality of the final image. No matter how expensive the equipment you’re using might be, it won’t provide excellent results if you are not knowledgeable about appropriate lighting.

The same rule applies to 3D architectural rendering because even the most state-of-the-art tech software and advanced tools will never produce amazing 3D renders independently. You still need to have a certain level of expertise and knowledge, especially regarding lighting.

Adding this book to your must-read list can drastically increase the 3D modeling skills of an architect, which is critical to come up with eye-catching and appealing 3D renders. Whether your company is looking to elevate your team’s lighting proficiency or refine your architectural 3D modeling services to produce standout 3D renders, this book is a valuable resource not to be missed.

RELATED: What are Architectural Rendering Costs, Rates, and Pricing for Companies?

Real-Time Rendering

Real-Time Rendering is a collection of four editions and is an amalgamation of different experts who combined their forces and joined together to come up with this work. With three books already behind it, this newest edition delves into the most modern methods for exemplary results in rendering. The book is also written in a way that is easy to understand, complete with helpful examples and references to other examples.

You don’t need any prior 3D rendering knowledge to understand this book because it starts with the basics of mathematics and slowly progresses to more advanced techniques typically used in the finest quality games. While its primary focus is video game rendering, only a few architectural books can match this book as it details the 3D rendering field. All the methods that the book covers are universal and are also applicable to different rendering purposes.

Featuring 24 chapters, the book’s authors go into great detail as they describe every single step of the complicated process. After reading this book, you can expect to learn more about 3D rendering, transformation, processing, illumination, light, colors, texture, shading, AR, VR, and other elements. Real-time rendering is your best choice to learn more about detailed rendering.


Eric Wing’s Revit 2020 for Architecture: No Experience Required

Revit 2020 for Architecture: No Experience Required is precisely what its title suggests. This is a must-read book for any beginner without experience using Revit for architecture. With Autodesk Revit considered the top architectural BIM software, it’s no surprise that many architects use it for 3D visualization. If you plan to use Autodesk for your 3D renders, this book, written by Eric Wing, a BIM Services Manager, is something you should read.

The book will guide you through the world of Revit and help you develop high-quality architectural renderings and visualizations. It opens with critical elements like familiarizing yourself with the interface of Revit and using its fundamental features as an example. It begins with model creation, progressing to door and window placement and various perspectives, views, plans, angles, and 3D perspectives. After you finish this book with 17 chapters alongside your project creation, you will soon master all the essential tools for high-quality and detailed 3D architectural renders.

RELATED: Architectural VR/AR 3D Rendering Costs, Rates & 3D Modeling Pricing for Design Firms

The RenderMan Companion: A Programmer’s Guide to Realistic Computer Graphics by Steve Upstill

Steve Upstill’s book covers everything, including the fundamentals of materials and lighting, to more advanced subjects like global illumination, motion blur, and depth of field. This also includes several chapters that discuss procedural modeling techniques and generating textures. The book is also a helpful resource for those who wish to learn and master techniques for computer graphics programming to create photorealistic images in different 3D applications such as Cinema 4D and Maya.


Michael Brightman’s The SketchUp Workflow for Architecture

3D architects, 3D landscape architects, and 3D interior designers worldwide use the premier 3D design software SketchUp. Michael Brightman, the man behind this guide on SketchUp, is a successful architect and is now the Lead Instructor and President at a SketchUp Authorized Training Center based in Denver.
This book tackles modeling buildings, design visualizations, and developing construction documents using LayOut and SketchUp Pro. Published in 2013, this guide rose to popularity as one of the best books about software. The high demand for this book resulted in its recent update in 2018.

It also teaches field professionals how to harness the program’s power for all project sizes, types, and styles. It provides step-by-step guidelines on using the software at different stages of the architectural design process. Those who buy the volume will also gain access to tutorial videos on several advanced methods of architectural rendering. The guide teaches how architecture professionals can take advantage of SketchUp in different stages of their work.

RELATED: 3D Interior Design Costs, Modeling Pricing, and Rendering Rates for Buildings


CGarchitect is an online open community that caters to enthusiasts and professionals in architectural rendering and visualization. This blog boasts a constantly growing showcase gallery of more than 100,000 renderings. They also regularly promote the newest job openings in the architectural visualization field.

The blog also features an impressive selection of articles that include insights from experts in the industry and the latest news about the constantly changing field of architectural rendering. You can also check out the bustling online forum where readers can share tips, raise questions, share their work, and ask for advice from other community members.

Enscape Blog


The Enscape Blog, launched in 2017, has quickly become the leading blog on architecture and architectural rendering. It contains top-quality feature articles on various topics for AEC students and professionals and renders tips straight from visualization experts. It doesn’t matter if you’re an architect, 3D architectural rendering specialist, 3D designer, or just a 3D architectural visualization fan; this blog is something you should check out.

Ronen Bekerman Architectural Visualization Blog

The Ronen Bekerman Architectural Visualization Blog is directly relevant to people who work on architectural renditions. Aside from the available tutorials and resources to advance your skills in rendering, you can also explore different projects, showcase your work, and even follow weekly podcasts to learn the latest industry trends.

How Cad Crowd can help

Aside from these top 3D architectural rendering books, magazines, and blogs, Cad Crowd is another platform where you can find a blog section filled with helpful articles to gain more insights about the 3D architectural rendering industry.