Case study: Why are 3D visualizations for your products better than traditional photography?

Story in By Magdalena Szydło, Posted November 18, 2022

About the client

The following interesting case study is about our cooperation with Heliatek- a solar manufacturer based in Dresden, who has developed an innovative flexible solar film with a new technology inside, which is called organic photovoltaic. It enables the production of ultra-lightweight, flexible, and ultra-thin solar films. Thanks to their integrated backing adhesive, the solar films can be easily stuck to various surfaces and easily integrated into a solar system with their solar connectors.


This product is not as simple in terms of presentation as it might be seen. The main idea was to prepare the product materials for the solar panel to publish on the website. Firstly, our client’s choice was photography, however, it could not fulfill the goal 100%, and here is why:

-The panel is covered with a transparent layer of the film – so every scratch or air bubble inside is very visible in the pictures. 

-The surface reflects everything around, including the lamp lights or flashes. 

-The panel does not have just one color, depending on the light and angle the coloring changes slightly. So the camera can not show the product as it is. 

-What is more, while making a photo shoot, it was challenging to put the product in a good position for a shot, and touching it every time caused additional fingerprints on it, which were visible in the pictures. 

-The product itself was developing and looked different afterward. So the new photoshoot was necessary.

Together, all those factors required a massive time for Photoshop to fix visible disadvantages, more photo shoots to make it better, and consequently, more time and money to invest. Here are the results of the photoshoot (you can notice the reflection of the line on the panel surface and the bright flashlight in a second photo):

Our solution

All the above seem quite inconvenient, but why product CGI could be a good strategy? Product 3D render is a more flexible solution, as there is no need for photo studio rent, photographer, and product transportation costs. Thanks to 3D, we create the 3D model of the product once and then create as many render variations as needed. Furthermore, if the product changes in the future, we can easily update the initial model and produce new 3D visualizations. This process requires fewer steps, time, and finances to realize. In 3D, it is very simple to avoid all the imperfections of the product, that are visible in reality, making it clean, and photorealistic from the very beginning, placing it in any position (folded or unfolded). No reflections and perfect color grading.

It is worth mentioning that Heliatek already came up with such an idea and made it with another 3D team, but the biggest challenge was to show the real color grading, so the result was not successful. On the results below, you can see that the panel looks green, but in reality, it is not. So one of the main attention marks for our team was to show the color of the surface as close as possible to the real one. Results

We successfully fulfilled the goals and currently, these visualizations are published on the main website that presents the product. Here is the result delivered by our team: We got the next feedback after the project was done: “From my side, I think it all went very smoothly and well organized. It was super nice to work with you. Efficient and successful, that is what matters. Thank you, and the team very much” (Stephan Kube, Head of Marketing)

The images featured in this post are taken from Viscato’s projects, and you can see all of them in our Portfolio section. If any of the projects are inspirational for you, feel free to contact us at contact@viscato.com

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