Making of Mediterranean House by nookta

nookta‘s Mediterranean House was chosen by Chaos Group to accompany the launch of V-Ray for SketchUP v2.0 release and rightfully so. nookta managed to produce a highly emotive visual using a simple SketchUP model rendered with V-Ray directly from SketchUP. In this article, Bahadir Ozbek from nookta tells the story behind the image. Enjoy!


Author: Bahadir Ozbek

nookta is a German based Architectural Visualization studio founded in 2012 they have strong focus on aesthetics and style.


First of all, thank you for your time reading this article and a big thanks goes to Ronen Bekerman for inviting me to write it.

The project was a competition entry for CG Record. I actually only wanted to do something for my personal portfolio and was very surprised and happy to see this image among the top 10 at CG Record and also being picked for the launch of V-Ray for SketchUP v2.0 by Chaos Group!

Before I even got going with the work, I tried to imagine what could this house and its surroundings can look like. I knew I want it to be minimalistic, open and cool. I also wanted to convey a sense of comfort.

The overused sunset scenario was quickly dismissed in favor of an early cooler morning look & feel.

For me, the most important goal was to be able to spark emotions when you see the image. Having a super perfect 3d model is not a must for that, therefore I invested more time in post production.

That said, the 3d model needs to hold up to some standard. Using SketchUP I aim for low poly count at all times, but in key areas, specifically in view, I do add details. I make sure that architectural detail work, the edges are rounded and the furniture are precisely modeled.

The 3D Model

The base 3d model was provided for the participants of the contest. I cleaned it up a bit and added some furniture from the 3d Warehouse and some from Vitra imported as 3DS into SketchUP. I highly recommend you check the Vitra site if you need good 3d models.


I worked those furniture models a bit more as the were to rigid initially. For that I used a great plugin for SketchUP called Artisan. Most use it for doing general site work, sculpting terrains and such, but it does magic on furniture too!

See the before and after…


Here are more model views…




and an extra render done – exterior one…



For the Lighting I used a V-Ray Dome Light – One of the great new features of V-Ray for SketchUP v2.0 with HDRI from Viz People.

Viz-People HDRI Vol. 01:

This pack has 10 High Resolution HDRI Sky maps sized at 12000px X 5800px ready to use for commercial work too.

Check it out!

Viz-People HDRI Vol. 02:

This pack has 10 High Resolution HDRI Sky maps sized at 12000px X 5800px ready to use for commercial work too.

Check it out!

I have no other light source in the scene so I choose a bright sky that gave a blueish color to the surfaces.



This is very straightforward… I use a combination of Irradiance Map and Light Cache to save on render time, knowing I do most of the work in Photoshop in anyway.

Here are the setting for the Rendering :


I tried to use low quality textures or just diffuse colors to save on system resources and render time.

Here are the most important materials.





For the bricks map I needed a good displacement and map. So I used the program CrazyBump to help in making these.



Used double-sided material for the light glass…


Here is a cool tutorial about double-sided material for SketchUP users…

I added the dirt map later in Photoshop.


Post Production Stage

So lets see the RAW render first…


And these are my layers in Photoshop before Ronen asked me to do the tutorial… Not that pretty!


This kind of layer structure is not a good example but sometimes you have no time to name the layers (or maybe you’re just lazy).

For understanding I have grouped some of the layers


Adding Background


For the forest in the left corner I have created a collage of different trees from my library and matched the color using different adjustment layers.

The background image also made of several levels.


For the foggy effect I’ve taken a simple brush and painted with white over the background.

I spend a lot of time doing this part, because the sky really sets the mood for the entire image. I think it is important that the colors of background should fit together with the rest of the image.


Added a bit of bluish color on the left-side and on the window. Some glows on the surfaces and made the lights more intensive.


Added a bit of vignetting effect and entourage.


Turned up the contrast.


A little color correction and here is the final result!

Thank you for reading, and I hope you liked it and that it was helpful to you!

Best regards,





who can do it again? i can not do same it ? video tutorial? thanks


Amazing job. Congratulations. I'm sure with vray2 can create much more amazing renderings than with the earlier version. 


Stunningly beautiful!

Can you achieve photo realistic quality using this workflow?

What is the maximum resolution you can create? I would want to reproduce images for brochures- 8.5X11 inches at 300dpi.


Great Job!. Some windows graphics setting are hard to read, could be possible to make  them more neat or readable?



Hi! First off all I want to thank you two for sharing this "simple" and bright work with tutorial. 

I am having some trouble with the render, because with the setup I use according to the provided information all the render is with gray scale color. Any idea of what I might be doing wrong? 

I use default material with bump and displacement. 

If i use vray material the render have color. But i cant use maps on the vray material.

Somebody can help? 

Thank you all again for sharing such good work and tutorials.


AMAZING work the mood is beautiful, fantastic postwork :-)


Cool work... What layer types are you using for the vignette at the end stage of the video? Is it overlay? or a masked adjustment layer (levels or curves) or a combination?!

Looks great anyway...



Amazing! Is there any chance to see all steps, stpe by step mede in PS? 


Very cool to see what is possible with the new V-ray. Amazing work!

Vladimir Ivanoff
Vladimir Ivanoff

casi te etiqueto Pochex hasta que me di cuenta que era tuyo.. cuak..

Quick iT
Quick iT

Tremendous 3D and 2D talent.