October 12th – 13th, 2018 – Italy. Lectures on the Architectural Visualization, photography and CG.
October 11th – workshops

SoA Academy is organising the 9th edition of the Academy Days: a two-day workshop for professionals and passionate architectural visualisation artists. By combining the knowledge and expertise of international and renowned Artists, the Academy Day is meant to let people in the Arch-Viz world meet and share their esperiences on recently completed projects.

The Academy Day is the right place where you can exchange views and learn from the best Artists how they’re growing to always keep up with technologies’ big changes.
During the 2 days, speakers will hold workshops and interactive tutorials to highlight the latest techniques in the Architectural Visualisation field and share their secrets to achieve effective and impressive results.

AcademyDays#9: what is it about?

In the huge chaos that nowadays is invading our industry, the AcademyDays#9 wants to go back to the origins and find a direction to follow. We’ll go back to the format based on the making of with technical information to improve our daily work.

This year the event will involve Visualizers and Architects in a face to face debate because we think that a confrontation is essential between the two players. We’ll also enter the world of photography and talk about Virtual Reality to clarify the new real time ray tracing techniques. We’ll finally consider GPU renderings related to offline and online renderers and last but not least, we’ll also talk about business, cinema and special effects.

The organization and the schedule are still under development but new topics will soon be presented.

AcademyDays#9: the workshops

In the day before the event (on October 11th), we’ll have workshops with our Academy’s teachers.

The full day of workshops is completely free for all SOA AcademyDays#9 attendees. Bookings for the workshops are managed separately from the AcademyDays. Remember to make two bookings: one for the event and one for the workshops.

When booking your seat in the workshop day, you will be asked to choose two workshops to attend.


We would like to give a special thanks to our sponsor for the AcademyDays #9. Thanks to their participation we will have the opportunity to learn more of their powerful software used by great artists during specific lectures. The AcademyDays#9 is covered by our media partner Ronen Bekerman. So be ready for news and interviews which will be pusblished after the event.








Andrei Dolnikov is an Interior Architect and Founder of BINYAN – a leading Architectural 3D Rendering & Animation Studio specialising in the creation of bespoke, considered and memorable architectural films & images. He started the business in his Sydney living room after working as a visualiser in the U.S. and has since guided Binyan to its place as a leader in the field. The team of 110 + artists and producers is currently working on projects all over the globe from its 4 studios in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and New York. Binyan is focused on driving the Arch Viz Industry into the next phase of its development by engaging with the wider educational and artist community to bring our industry to greater recognition. Collaboration has always been a key Binyan trait and Andrei has built a team of world-class artists who work together to bring originality and sophistication to their clients’ projects. Andrei is passionate about giving back to the community and is a Rabbi in his local synagogue – he lives in Melbourne with his wife and four beautiful children… and his vespa scooter.



Over the past 6 years Chris has been instrumental in turning Binyan from a small start up to a leading international studio of 100+ team members, working on projects all over the globe. Ha​ving held several senior roles within the company such as Creative Director – on the shop floor – and Director – establishing the Binyan brand Internationally.

Chris’s focus centres on creating new creative opportunities for the Binyan team. ​Chris writes that “​Nurturing and helping establish such an amazing studio of creative geniuses from all corners of the globe has been the most exhilarating experience of my life. Realising that every person that comes to work each day is a small piece of the puzzle – and if one piece is missing then the puzzle is never complete.​”​

Chris gets his greatest satisfaction walking round the studio and seeing people grow/hone and develop their skills and craft. Be it Modellers, project managers or artists – growth is what gets me truly excited. The happiness as a leader when your staff become better then you at any given task – means that the company is ​on the right track.


Renzo Piano Building Workshop

Born in Athens in 1975.

Visionary and always in search of new technological innovations, in 1993 driven by his love for architecture and design, Dionysios decided to move in Italy and to study at the IUAV University in Venice. In a few years his vision, his passion and dedication to digital art took shape. In 1999 following his instinct, he realized his dream and founded Delta Tracing, which from the very beginning got positioned in the high-end visualization market, producing quality and evoking emotions. At the same time, from 2000 to 2012 he worked for Autodesk and TechData covering the role of 3ds Max Specialist & Application Engineer.

In January 2016, thanks to his professional background and production quality, he moved to Paris and proudly started working for Renzo Piano Building Workshop as “Responsable d’Imagerie”.




Simon Che de Boer is a renowned photogrammetrist and virtual reality content creator on the International stage. The founder of an R&D real-time VFX company known as – His real-world digitization of sites of cultural significance have spanned the globe. Such notable photogrammetry to VR experiences such as Nefertari’s Tomb and artifacts across Egypt. Local experiences for indigenous Maori as well as Heritage projects.

Simon has personally received much recognition abroad for the level of quality in his experiences and such works have been commonly sighted as being the gold standard of photo-realistic real world encapsulations. NVIDIA / HTC / Epic Games have all featured the work of and many notable players of the VR industry commonly refer to such projects to demonstrate the potential of this new immersive medium.


Bartosz is an architect, arch-viz artist and CG enthusiast that tries to constantly escape his comfort zone in the personal work. Driven by the innate need for creation, he often struggles to take a necessary break. However, when he eventually stops, he finds his deliverance in the world of quantum mechanics and home brewing.


Epic Games

Fabrice is part of Epic Games’ Enterprise team. He takes care of business development and technical marketing for Architecture, Engineering and Construction in Europe. Qualified Architect, his career in 3D visualization began in 1996. Having worked for the likes of Google, Bentley, Kapoor, Heatherwick and Nouvel, He now teaches UE4 online and offline, supports Enterprise customers and helps with Epic’s marketing efforts in the Archviz industry.



Vincent is a R&D Project leader and a CG supervisor, render expert after being a true 3D mercenary as an artist, he is specialized in computer graphics and digital media science. For several years, he has been putting his skills to the service of the 3D industry. He is also a CGI teacher for CIFAP school and has created plenty courses about the domain including project management and fundamental knowledge for specific jobs like TD, CG artist, technical artist including tech as Houdini/Substance/3ds Max (SME & ACI) etc… Through his position as Vice Chair of the French ACM Siggraph association try to make the bridge between art and science in CGI and bring back science into CG visualization.



Christophe Bicchierai is a computer graphic designer but also a trainer in photorealistic rendering. For several years, he has been a technical expert and consultant in rendering for Ranch Computing.


Render Legion

Tom is the Marketing Specialist at Render Legion a.s. – the creators of Corona Renderer. Prior to joining the team in 2016, he has been a freelance 3D artist, a programmer, and worked for 10 years in marketing for 3D software companies.


Chaos Group

A CG professional with over 10 years’ experience in the field of 3D modeling and rendering, including CG supervisor positions at some of the biggest animation studios in Bulgaria, Simeon is one of Chaos Group’s top CG specialists. Following the start of the V-Ray for Unreal development, Simeon headed the project as V-Ray for Unreal product manager and is currently responsible for developing the product, its integration in various workflows and its deployment with key customers



Teddy is the founder and CEO of Quixel, creator of Megascans, the world’s largest library of physically based scans. Having played an active role in the CG industry for over a decade, he has developed a range of groundbreaking scan based tools for artists, significantly impacting modern computer graphics production. Teddy was recently responsible for inventing the scanning and processing technologies behind the vegetation scans used for Disney’s The Jungle Book, and is passionate about developing user friendly and artistic production tools for photorealistic computer graphics.



Christophe Robert is a french 3D artist and entrepreneur who graduated from illustration and 3D schools in France and more recently from the Stanford Center for Professional Development. He has spent the last 15 years working in the archviz and in the last 10 years, he ran an architectural visualization company as co-founder and CEO. He was given the chance to manage a fantastic 3D team and work with top-notch architectural firms all around the world (incl Zaha Hadid Architecture, SOM and HOK among many others).

3 years ago, he co-founded Obvioos to focus more on Real time and VR applications for Architecture and Real Estate. The company ramp up in the industry and they are now working on amazing projects around the world. They’re also members of the Unreal Developer Network and proud to be focused on Epic Games and Allegorithmic’s showreels.
Recently they launched FURIOOS, a B2B cloud gaming web platform allowing anyone to store, share and stream their 3D apps regardless their hardware capabilities.



Pierre is  Market Strategy Director for Architecture & Design at Allegorithmic. Allegorithmic has been reimagining the process of texture creation since 2003. Today, over 95% of AAA game studios use Substance in their production pipelines, making Substance the industry standard for PBR material authoring. Substance is quickly spreading to the fields of VFX and animation, design and architecture, allowing a growing number of artists and designers to harness the power of rapid, efficient texturing and material authoring.


Polymachine + iToo Software

Dean Niskota and Hrvoje Čop are the CEO/CTO pair of Polymachine, an archviz studio from Zagreb, Croatia. Dean and Hrvoje have known each other since childhood, and share an interest in all things where art and technology meet. Both industry veterans, best known for their no post-work approach to achviz, they love exploring how advancements in technology can supplement and advance their art


Polymachine + iToo Software

Dean Niskota and Hrvoje Čop are the CEO/CTO pair of Polymachine, an archviz studio from Zagreb, Croatia. Dean and Hrvoje have known each other since childhood, and share an interest in all things where art and technology meet. Both industry veterans, best known for their no post-work approach to achviz, they love exploring how advancements in technology can supplement and advance their art


SOA Academy

The passion for architecture and computer graphics took Gianpiero to look for new ways to represent through images designers and archtects’ ideas. After some work experiences in Italy, in 2007 he started working as Project Lead Artist for the well-known English Studio Hayes Davidson. There, he created images for Renzo Piano Building Workshop, Kohn Pedersen Fox, John Pawson, David Chipperfield, Hamiltons Architects and West8. In 2009, together with Roberto and Manuela, he set up State of Art and became Managing Director.


SOA Academy

Roberto’s passion for graphics shaped his personal education and led him to become Web Designer and then 3D Artist. In his work experience, he moved on working in the Computer Graphics for Architecture. Together with Gianpiero and Manuela, in 2009 he set up State of Art. Roberto is now working at State of Art Academy as a teachers specialized in the use of Adobe Photoshop, which recognized him as a certified expert.

Media Partner

With more than 15 years of professional experience in the Architectural Visualization Industry Ronen is currently heading Polytown Media providing visualization solutions and training for architects and designers looking to better thier skills at visualizing their designs, founded and running the popular ArchVIZ Blog at since 2009 and is a co-founder of The Craft established in 2015.


***NEW*** THURSDAY OCTOBER 11th, 2018

09.00 – 18.00


8+ hours of workshops

SOA Academy presents a day of workshops: three different topics free for all attendees who request a seat to learn new tricks to improve your skills on the software.



9.00 – 10.00


10.00 – 11.00


The role of the design stage in a commercial and personal work

What influence can a 3d artist have on an architectural project? Does the future of the industry lie in the growth of this contribution? How the design choices in a personal work can help in crafting one’s career opportunities? Bartosz will talk about his experience, delving into some extreme cases from his past. He will also run through his personal development routine and how it has changed over the last years.

11.00 – 12.00


3D scanning

Simon will cover many fields of the 3D scanning industry and the advantages of digital cultural preservation. In addition as to how Simon came to find himself in this emerging industry. Past, present and future.

12.00 – 13.00


ARCH-BIZ: The business of arch viz – what architectural visualisation studios can learn from other industries and creative service

Architectural Visualisation is a young and constantly evolving industry.
With few precedents to look at in our own industry about how to build & run a successful Arch-Viz business, we need to look at adjacent industries such as advertising, architecture, photography and VFX for ideas and inspiration. This presentation will survey the best – and worst – practices of inspiring adjacent industries and discuss how the Arch-Viz community can incorporate them into the way we run our businesses, nurture our teams and collaborate with our clients. All while constantly raising the profile and esteem of our Art!

13.00 – 14.30


  • RPBW copyright

  • RPBW copyright

  • RPBW copyright

14.30 – 15.30

Renzo Piano Building Workshop – DIONYSIOS TSAGKAROPOULOS

Moving from an individual high-end VIZ business to RPBW Paris.
What’s the experience of working in one of the biggest architectural firms on the planet?

After 20 years of holding his own company and successful business in the arch-viz industry, Dionysios decided 3 years ago to take on his shoulders the whole viz production of the RPBW headquarter in Paris. Moving from an extreme photo-realistic production, to the daily needs and international big scale projects in RPBW, turned out as expected, a unique and successful experience. Why did he make this decision in his life? How is everything started? Which are the key tools and necessary skills for such a job position? How the viz workflow is managed? Is it possible to achieve photo-realistic results considering that this year, in 6 months, are produced already 570 images? All this and more will be explained and answered in this presentation.

15.30 – 16.30


Substance usage in ArchViz

Particular reference to both Offline (with 3DSMAX plugin) & Real-time renderer (Unreal and Unity). Christophe will present the use of Substance Designer, Substance Painter and Substance Source on some of their latest projects including: Highrise Residential Tower. He will also describe a pipeline with both RealTime & Raytraced imagery.
Last but not least, there will be some space for a VR project made with Unreal Engine and a massive use of Substance on the Millennium Falcon.

16.30 – 17.00


17.00 – 18.00


How to render glass? Case study of Glass Pro from Saint-Gobain Glass

Choosing the right materials can be tricky for architects because it is not always easy to compare the aesthetic differences on the final building. It’s even more difficult with glass. For this reason, Saint-Gobain Glass has developed some tools such as Glass Pro Live or Glass Pro Application to help architects select efficiently their glazing. Indeed, Glass Pro Live allows its user to create physically based images that you can directly affix to the rendering of the facade. However, the physically based rendering (PBR) engenders some specific constraints: among them, the design of the image but also the rendering in itself. Case study on the collaboration between Saint-Gobain Glass and RANCH Computing for the creation of Glass Pro Universe images.

18.00 – 19.00


How Corona Renderer 3 and Corona Renderer for Cinema 4D will change up architectural visualization

Corona Renderer for Cinema 4D is coming soon — and in his presentation, Tom will show you how it’s shaping up. You’ll see the awesome features that we’ve added so far, as well as the final touches required before the first commercial release. Tom will also delve into what to expect from Corona Renderer 3 for 3ds Max, the groundbreaking features you’ll already find in Corona Renderer 2, and the team’s ambitious long-term research projects.



The dinner is offered by our main sponsor Epic Games


9.00 – 9.30


9.30 – 10.30


The influence of photography on modern images

Through the years our image practice has evolved from illustrative to more and more photographic.
I’ll review how we integrated the photography in our process, how it influences the way we model, texture, light, and « shoot » a project.

  • Dream Garden Shed by Ewelina Lekka

  • The Spanish by Michael Fedichkin

  • Northen Wisps by Bartosz Domiczek

10.30 – 11.30


An adventure in Megascascans

Quixel founder Teddy Bergsman summarizes the past few years of scanning adventures, shows what’s coming up next for Megascans, Bridge and Mixer, reveals a few secrets, and gives a glimpse into the future of Megascans for ArchViz.

11.30 – 12.00


12.00 – 13.00


Unreal Studio Datasmith and realtime ray tracing

Fabrice will talk about Epic Games, Enterprise a few words about what the company is and does in Film, digital humans and automotive. He’ll be showing Unreal Studio Datasmith Stories and example of working with Vray, Corona. Then, if time permits, he’ll talk about Lighting, and Roadmap and will conclude with a view on realtime Raytracing in UE4 with Nvidia.

13.00 – 14.30


14.30 – 15.30


From Photoreal to Unreal: Rendering Ray Traced Images with V-Ray for Unreal

No one knows more about V-Ray for Unreal’s features and potential than Simeon Balabanov. The head of Chaos Group’s CG specialist team has overseen the development of V-Ray for Unreal from inception to advanced beta. Simeon will demonstrate how to transport V-Ray photoreal scenes into the Unreal interactive environment and render directly from Unreal. You’ll learn about materials, light baking, and get an idea of the workflows we’ve tested.

15.30 – 16.30


Developer vs Artist: Two paths, one destination

Toolmakers – from medieval blacksmiths to hi-tech software developers – create new features with a pretty clear idea of how they think they’ll be used by the end user. At iToo Software we’re no exception. Sometimes our expectations are met, more often though, users will take the features we offer and use them in ways that are completely unexpected, and often much more interesting.
To explore how this happens, this year for the first time, we’re stepping back and passing the reins to Croatian Forest Pack and RailClone power-users Polymachine. Using a project created especially for the event, Polymachine will explain how they use Forest Pack and RailClone in production as part of their no post-production workflow that allowed them to product over 427 images, 11880 frames of animation and 3 VR experiences last year with just 3 employee. Along the way you’ll learn several time-saving tips, encounter interesting and unusual uses for Forest Pack and RailClone, and find out how iToo’s expectation of how their tools are used is met in reality, and what could, or should, be done to bring developers and artists into closer alignment.

16.30 – 17.00


17.00 – 17.30


Marineris City

SOA presents the winning project in the category Civil Engineering / VR at the Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. Learn how the team dveloped the project and worked in Unreal Engine to put it in the VR world.

17.30 – 18.00


Chasing the great beauty

You will be taken on a journey through the history of ArchViz, from the great masters of the past to today’s cutting-edge visualizers. Gianpiero will move from traditional composition to something completely different and modern. He’ll also investigate our perception of the images that surround us every day and explain why some of them grab our attention. You’ll find out why it’s important to define your own style, and why technique is only a tiny part of this.

18.00 – 20.00


Beers and wine offered by our diamond sponsors Chaos Group V-Ray and Corona Renderer


Double Tree by Hilton hotel Venice – North ****

The AcademyDays#9 will be hosted in the conference hall at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Venice – North in Mogliano Veneto, which is situated 15 minutes from Venice – Mestre.
The conference hall is equipped with 6 HD projectors, free wi-fi connection (after registration), tables and power supply for your laptop.

Single room – € 101.00/day w/Breakfast
Double room – € 117.00/day w/Breakfast

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Venice – North

Other places where you can stay close to the AcademyDays#9 Venue. When booking, remember to tell them you’re attending the AcademyDays#9 to get the special price.


Villa Braida is set in an aristocratic Venetian manor in Mogliano Veneto, city of art, ideal for holidays and meetings. The hotel is also near to Venice and Treviso. Villa Braida offers a stay in the quiet Venetian countryside. The premises feature spacious traditional Venetian interiors, with exclusive Italian Renaissance furniture and upholstery. Suites and superior rooms are situated in the main building, overlooking the paddock and recalling ancient atmospheres. Enjoy a really exclusive stay amongst Renaissance style fabrics. Villa Braida also offers modern accommodation in the annex building.
Prices in the annex building (tourist tax not included)
Single room – from 70.00 to 85.00 €/day + Breakfast
Double room – from 80.00 to 100.00 €/day + Breakfast


Duca D’Aosta Hotel features modern-style décor, free Wi-Fi and elegant rooms with a TV. The hotel is 200 m from Mogliano Veneto Train Station. Rooms at the Duca D’Aosta have air conditioning, minibar and private bathroom with a hairdryer and toiletries. Some also have a balcony and wooden floors.
Single room – 65.00 €/day + Breakfast
Double room – 75.00 €/day + Breakfast


On the fascinating Via Terraglio, the 4 star Hotel La Meridiana in Mogliano Veneto is only 10 km from Treviso and less than half an hour from enchanting Venice, in the heart of an area rich in history and art, the economic center of the region.
Spacious and welcoming, our rooms await you in a modern building, complete with restaurant and meeting rooms, a comfortable solution for business clientele as well as those seeking marvelous cultural and naturalistic itineraries.



Event duration: 2 days
Attendees: professionals, CG lovers and artists in the Architectural Visualization field.
Dates:  October 12 –13, 2018.
Seats available:  240 seats.
Timetable:  09.00 am / 1.00 pm – 2.30 pm/ 6.00 pm.


Location:  DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Venice – North, Mogliano Veneto, TV – Italy.
Price: the Early-Bird Price is available till June 1st (€ 219). Then, the Price is € 250.

The registration Fee includes: attendance for the 2 days conference, 2 light lunches, the AcademyDays#9 gadgets (1 T-shirt, 1 block notes, 1 pen, 1 bag).

Accomodation not included.