Exhibition Stand Visualisation using Blender 2.8 (assistance/tips required to be more efficient)

This is a scene I build to quickly visualize my exhibition stand designs. In office we generally 3ds max but after experiencing the capabilities of blender 2.8 I’m thinking to use blender for the visualization.

Please feel free to criticise and share your valuable insights so I can achieve more realism as it’s the main goal for now. Also any tips regarding improving the render time, efficient workflow will help also.

short description about the workflow:
Primarily I prepare concept from reference image or description shared by the client. Generally use sketchup and then export as obj into blender and then apply/adjust materials and then setup the camera angle and render. I use two area light just above the stand which I setup earlier. also there’s a HDRI for more accurate illumination. This is just to clarify my process so experienced users can share their insights.

As this is my first post in this forum please consider and notify If there’s any mistake I made.
Kind regards.


Shout out from a fellow exhibit artist!
Here are some of mine:

Some general pointers from my experience:
-Clients don’t care about the show hall, and white/neutral backgrounds print out nicer
-Clients love to see their product populating the booth (if they sell products)
-People outlines help to ground the scale and make it feel more approachable. I’m not a big fan of textured photoscanned people, as it tends to draw too much attention away from the design. Lately I’ve been using some photoscanned 3d ‘shadow’ people that look good from all angles, rather than the flat ones in the older renders I shared above:

Overall, yours look pretty good, I don’t have any real critique. Exhibits are hard to get photorealistic because everything is new. Most clients don’t want their booth to look weathered and beat up, but that makes such a big difference when looking at things.

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Thanks for your inputs. I can surely relate to the facts you mentioned. I’ll definitely try the silhouettes in my next project also the point about the product displays.
Is there any way you can share some example of the photoscanned element you mentioned. I think it’s a very good and unique idea.

BTW, your designs looks very nice and unique. Kudos for that. Most of the time I have to finish the designs within 2-3 hours as it’s a very competitive field. But I wish to know the design thinking process you generally follow. How do you come up with new ideas etc…
I’m very glad that you took the time to reply. Also, as we have similar work interest If possible let’s work together sometime if there’s any opportunity.
Kind regards.

For my shadow people I used this free collection of scanned people:

They are textured, and the textures aren’t bad, but they aren’t great either, so I decided to strip out all textures and leave them as silhouettes. I set up a series of nodes to trick cycles into doing simple silhouettes without extra darkening where the arms overlap the body, etc:

without the node tricks, you get some nasty overlap artifacts that really break the effect:

in eevee, it’s easier to fix the self overlap artifacts:

but I haven’t found a way to remove the overlap from multiple people:

If I join them together as one object, it works, but that isn’t exactly ideal.

I’ll send another message shortly about my design process.

Thank you for the complement! I am pretty proud of a lot of these renders, though I can only take credit for some of the designs.

The Oboz and Lifestraw designs were provided by the client, I took the time to render up their sketches and make them into something more tangible. I also work as a drafter, so I spend a fair bit of time turning renders into construction drawings. That is where I feel I get most of the realism in my renders, as a lot of them are pulled directly from the CAD files and then rendered.

I feel for you only having a few hours to turn around a project, thankfully I often have several days to refine a design, in between working on other projects. it gives me time to refine concepts in the back of my head while I am working on other stuff. Since I will also be the one responsible for drawing it up and making it feasible later, it really informs my design process and keeps it grounded.

My first round concepts will typically be a little fuzzy on details, but as we get closer to production, the details come more into focus. Being able to visually communicate how those details integrate into the design is really helpful for selling the ideas to our clients. For example, this is a render showing how a welded support bracket would be attached for a specific project:

Our clients tend to be fairly high-end, with a typical budget being in the $100k - $250k range. so almost everything is custom built. I will often spend some time on the clients website and instagram to get a sense of what their brand looks and feels like.
Some clients are more rugged, and look good with reclaimed rough wood, and raw steel brackets:

Some clients are more clean and refined, with lacquer paints and fully laminated surfaces:

Some clients are really into creative use of materials, this booth was made out of cardboard tubes:

I’d love to work together on any future projects, even if you just need someone to bounce ideas off of. Feel free to contact me vis PM here, or if you’d rather email, pm me first and I’ll send you my contact info.

You created the whole structure in sketch up and rendered using Blender??

The hall is from sketchup warehouse. But I have to re-modify it to match my needs. The exhibition stands are modeled by me.

And to comment on my projects, most of the main structural components were modeled in Autocad and then exported to Blender.