SOA Archviz

The Architectural Visualisation Masterclass is the most complete training course at Academy. Your Artist career starts here.

The course is addressed to those who want to know all the tricks of the trade (both technical and artistic) to enter the Archviz world with strong and steady methods. The course is meant for people who have a basic knowledge of 3dsMax and want to enhance their skills in the creation of Architectural images.

SOA Archviz

The Architectural Visualisation Masterclass is the most complete training course at Academy.
Your Artist career starts here.

The course is addressed to those who want to know all the tricks of the trade (both technical and artistic) to enter the labour market with strong and steady mehods. The course is meant for people who have a basic knowledge of 3dsMax and want to enhance their skills in the creation of Architectural images. 


Recent updates


Learn how to build a project from zero

One of the most significant changes in the Masterclass is that every lesson will lead you to complete a full project, step by step. You’ll go through 3D modeling, composition, lighting, shading, from rendering to post-production. Once this first project is done, you’ll work on the final one in the fourth week.


Longer lessons, more pratice

We continuously improve the Masterclass, listening to feedback from every former student. That’s why we decided to give more time to lessons like 3D modeling, Unwrap and Railclone. We also dedicate one more day to materials, working with Substance Designer on the final project shading.


The last week, we go big

From January 2020, the Masterclass final-project is going to change. We are leaving the small houses in the middle of a forest for more significant buildings on a bigger scale. SOA teachers are going to help you along the process to support your creativity. Are you ready to create an epic image?


Looking for a job after the course?

Hundreds of former SOA students are now working in the best companies around the world. We are now trying to simplify the process even more. If you need, we’ll help you to write your Official SOA CV, and put you in contact with our partner’s archviz studios. The recommendation letter is on us.


Our students now work for…

Are you looking for a job? Join the SOA Archviz Masterclass, get a SOA Official CV and we’ll put you in contact with some of the well-known Archviz studios around the world.

Are you an Archviz studio looking for new talents? Contact us!


Week #1

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Archviz and the search for beauty

The search for beauty and the knowledge of ArchViz origins is crucial for the education of every artist who wants to leave their mark and be recognized. At SOA Academy we give great importance to this aspect because we strongly believe that the success of images depends on the people who create them rather than on the tool they use.


3D Modeling techniques

A great 3D model makes the difference on the final output. Learn how to model your building in 3dsMax with our workflow, granting you flexibility for any client change and perfect results in the shortest time possible. During the class you’ll be able to understand how to model the right way and how to fix wrong 3d models imported from other software.


Learning Unwrap once for all

Unwrapping is the process we use to establish a connection between a 2D space and a 3D model in order to project textures on our objects in the correct way. To know how to unwrap is a key factor in every CG Artist career to push results to the next level.


Parametric modeling

RailClone by iToo Software is the world’s most powerful artist-friendly parametric modelling plugin for 3ds Max. It allows you to build complex models in a smart and dynamic way, allowing quick one-click changes and awesome results without efforts.
SOA Academy is an iToo Software Authorized Training Center.


Ground modeling

During week #1 you’ll work on the environment surrounding the project, starting from the ground creation. Thanks to a new workflow with 3dsMax and Gaea, you can achieve great looking results in a few simple steps. Materials for the landscape will be provided by Quixel Megascans.

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Workshop: Model your project

In the Masterclass you’ll be able to work on a special project, from the beginning to the end. During the first week you’ll use the aquired knowledge to understand how to model your building, constantly guided by our teachers. Remember, you’ll have classmates to share experiences with and grow faster!


Week #2


Architectural Photography + Workshop

Photography means first of all mastering composition, but also knowing the theory of colours, the physics of light and representing spaces and visual depth. Since the Masterclass is a complete educational course, it’s important to start from strong foundations.

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Rendering: V-Ray & Corona

During the Masterclass you will be accompanied in a parallelism between V-Ray and Corona to be able to choose which one is the best for your pipeline.


Time for Lighting

A key aspect for creating an effective image is certainly lighting. An artist can spend a lot of time creating a perfect model full of details with realistic materials and high-res textures, but without the adequate lighting, everything is nullified. During the Masterclass we analyze all types of lights and study different lighting schemes to enhance our 3D model.


Final Workshop: Image-planning

What’s behind a great image? What are the most common composition mistakes? How does our brain work when we look at a picture? Image planning will force you to take the right decisions even before turning your workstation on. Because nothing should be left to randomness in your artworks.


Week #3

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Realistic Materials

To make convincing shaders you need to understand how the real world works. This long lesson on PBR materials will give you the tools to translate what you see into realistic shaders. We’re going to study Architectural references to get an in-deep understanding of every common surface.

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Workshop: Substance Designer

Substance Designer is the Ultimate 3D Material Authoring and Scan Processing Tool and It has become the standard in the entertainment industry for PBR material creation. Learn how to produce your own textures from scratch with a simple workflow that will let you start with Substance Designer in the right way.

SOA Archviz Masterclass

3D Vegetation & ForestPack

Create photorealistic results with the combined power of ForestPack – the well-known scatterer plugin from iToo Software. Get an in-deep understanding of the software and discover how to optimize your scene to recreate very complex scenarios by avoiding problems.

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Postproduction 32bit & 16bit

With the help of Photoshop, you’ll be able to work in the 32-bit format to achieve better results with your photorealistic render. You’ll learn how to develop your own style with an in-deep study of exposure and color control. The classic 16-bit Postproduction is, on the other hand, something that needs a proper pipeline of work to run smoothly and to let you change the ouput depending on your client request. This lessons will focus on improving a very simple render using render passes, photos from the internet and from our asset library.


Week #4

Workshop: your personal images

A week entirely dedicated to the creation of your images followed by SOA Academy’s tutors. It is the moment in which the know-how acquired in the previous days is put together to give space to your creativity and create your own artwork. It’s a very important step because it will place you in front of real production problems that every professional has to deal with (and solve) every day. More than a workshop, it’s a window on your next job.

SOA Archviz Masterclass




  • Arch-Viz foundations
  • Presentation of the Masterclass’ project
  • Chasing the great beauty

Autocad & Revit

  • Project reading
  • CAD cleaning
  • CAD export
  • Revit import – best practises

3ds Max

  • Introduction / Interface
  • CAD import
  • CAD alignment

3D Modelling – Project blocking

  • Introducton to SOA modelling for achitecture
  • Creation panel, vertex, segment e spline
  • Edit poly and modifiers
  • Modelling methods
  • Modelling of windows
  • Modelling the building maquette

3D Modelling – Details

  • Parametric modelling: iToo RailClone
  • Multi-texture map and floor shading
  • Exercises


  • UVW Mapping base
  • Unwrapping
  • Multi-mapping

Environment: ground creation

  • Intro to Biomes, Ecoregions
  • Workflow: Ground shape --> Materials --> Scattering
  • Ground shape modeling in 3ds max with different approaches (displace, vertex paint, push/pull, soft selection)
  • Gaea workflow
  • Displace vs Displacement
  • Mesh optimization
  • Materials for ground with Megascans
  • Exercise



  • Composition and photography rules
  • Analysis of rendering and photos
  • Understanding how a reflex works
  • Photography workshop
  • Discussion on the students’ photos


  • Analysis of the interface in Chaos Group V-Ray and Corona Renderer
  • Calculation methods for the global illumination (pro and cons and their settings)
  • Workflow to optimise the scenes for a faster rendering
  • Rendering for animations
  • Settings and memory management
  • V-Ray / Corona Renderer Proxies
  • Distributed rendering
  • V-Ray RT (CPU and GPU)
  • VR Creation Content


  • Linear workflow
  • Sun & Sky
  • Physical camera
  • Frame Buffer
  • Daylight
  • Image Base Lighting (HDRI)
  • V-Ray lights / Corona Lights
  • Corona LightMixer
  • Interior and exterior lighting (night version with artificial lights)
  • Camera Effects
  • Atmospheric Effects
  • Render elements


  • Introduction to the imageplan
  • Photo research / reference & Image-planning
  • Presentation and discussion in class


  • Introduction to the Material Editor
  • Introduction to the material physics
  • Correct workflow to replicate real materials
  • V-Ray Standard Material and Corona Material
  • Creation of basic architectural shaders
  • Tricks and tips to simulate snow, dust, sand, dirt


Advanced Shading

  • Creation of complex architectural shaders (Multi-level shading)
  • Creation of textures
  • Material optimisation

Substance Designer

  • Introduction to Substance Designer
  • Interface of Substance Designer and its settings
  • Advanced shading with Substance Designer
  • Creation of shaders for the Masterclass project

Environment: vegetation

  • In-depth intro to Forest Pack
  • Understand Forest Pack errors
  • Randomization for transforms and color
  • Different types of distribution (procedural and manual)
  • Forest Pack optimization (viewport and rendering)
  • How to use Forest Pack Library


  • Image depth theory
  • Tips for 32 bit postproduction in Photoshop
  • Exercise for 32 bit
  • HDR and LDR
  • Understanding histogram stretching and operators
  • Camera effects for photorealism
  • Iris settings
  • SOA 16bit Workflow
  • Render elements
  • Cut-out techniques
  • Sky replecement
  • Custom brushes
  • Material improvements using render elements
  • How to paint lights
  • Smoke, glow, rain and other Fx
  • Final Color grading
  • Matching people into renders
  • Exercises on interior and exterior



All images will be rendered with Corona Renderer

“Amazing teachers but most of all amazing people. An experience I will never forget. Thank you for all that knowledge and the amazing time we had during the masterclass.”

Odysseas K. / Masterclass #40

Next Courses

(ITA) SOA ArchViz Masterclass #47
Jan 18, 2021 - Feb 12, 2021
Seats available: 12


(ENG) SOA ArchViz Masterclass #48
Mar 01, 2021 - Mar 26, 2021
Seats available: 11


These dates don’t fit your needs?

Next Courses

(ITA) SOA ArchViz Masterclass #47
Jan 18, 2021 - Feb 12, 2021
Seats left: 12


(ENG) SOA ArchViz Masterclass #48
Mar 01, 2021 - Mar 26, 2021
Seats left: 11


These dates don’t fit your needs?

Course Details

Course Title

SOA Archviz Masterclass

Software used

Autodesk Autocad, Autodesk 3dsMax, Chaos Group V-Ray, Corona Renderer, Substance Designer, Quixel Megascans, Forest Pack and RailClone, Quadspinner Gaea, Adobe Photoshop.


Basic knowledge of Autodesk 3dsMax

Available seats

12 seats.

Course Length

~ 160 hours.

From Monday to Friday
from 9.00 to 13.00 + from 14.00 to 18.00

Bonus contents

  • More than ~100 Gb of assets
  • 2 Free months of subscription to Substance
  • Customized SOA Academy T-shirt / Notebook / Pen
  • Special SOA Goodies
  • Discounts on software


SOA Official CV + Reccomendation letter
SOA Official Attendance Certificate
Corona Renderer User Certificate
Chaos Group V-Ray Attendance Certificate
Autodesk Certificate of Completion


€ 3,930.00 +VAT

Price for students and individual
bookings (10% Discount)

€ 3,537.00 +VAT




Here are some questions related to our courses and facilities that SoA Academy students frequently ask. If you
can’t find an answer to your doubts, send us an email and we’ll give you a reply soon. There are no silly
questions but only clever answers.


Novice courses are for artists who are moving the first steps in the Architectural Visualisation field and need the basic knowledge to start from scratch. If you want to start learning without losing further time, these are the courses for you.


The Advanced Courses are for artists who have some kind of experience in the 3D world and they want to improve their productivity and skills on specific areas. If you want to reach the top in a short time, these are the courses for you.


The workshop are advanced courses meant for artists who have experience and want to prove themselves through a set of practical exercises. Space to practice with the advise of the teachers.


Masterclasses are the most complete courses at Academy and are meant for artists who want to learn an efficient workflow to create images and architectural videos. From 10 to 100 in few weeks.


How can I know which is the course that most suits me?

The choice of the course depends on you, your skills, your interest and the time you have at your disposal. For example, if you don’t have much time and want to develop specific topics, look at our Advanced courses (the ArchViz is the best if you want to improve lighting and rendering, the Post-production is the best choice if you want to work with photoshop). Anyway, we remind you that the Masterclass is the most complete course we offer because it covers important topics in the Architectural Visualization.

I’ve chosen the best course for me, what do I have to do now? How can I apply?

Go to the “calendar” page in our website, click on the course you want to apply and fill the form. As soon as we receive your request, we’ll send you an email with the instructions for the payment and the contract to complete your registration. Once you’ve made the payment, send us a receipt of the bank transfer and the contract signed. This is the only way to book a seat.

How long does the Masterclass last? What is the timetable?

The Masterclasses last some weeks (2 or 4) from Monday to Friday with the following timetable: from 9 am to 1 pm / from 2 pm to 6 pm.

How long do the Advanced courses last? What is the timetable?

The Advance courses last 5 days from Monday to Friday with the following timetable: from 9 am to 1 pm / from 2 pm to 6 pm.

In your website I see that all the Masterclasses are fully booked, do you have a waiting list? How can I subscribe it?

Yes, we do have a waiting list for each course. If you want to be added in a waiting list, send us an email. Attention: the name listing doesn’t grant a seat in the course.

Where do the courses take place?

All courses take place in our Academy in Via Monte Popera 4/6 in San Donà di Piave (a city close to Venice – Italy).

Do you offer any online courses?

No, we don’t. The Academy team likes being in contact with the students to instantly solve any kind of problem that might arise. We also think that a face-to-face course is the best way to establish a good relationship with the guys who, in the end, become part of the Academy family. This is the reason why, we don’t have any online courses.

What time are classes?

Classes are from Monday to Friday, from 9 am to 1pm and from 2 pm to 6 pm.

What is the language of the courses?

Some courses are in English and some in Italian. Next to each course listed in the “calendar” webpage, you’ll find the abbreviations ITA or ENG to specify the language used in that course.

How deeply do I need to know English? Do I need Italian?

The English level used doesn’t require a deep knowledge of the language. The software interfaces are in English and the terms are strictly related to the Architectural Visualization field. Although the teachers are Italian, you don’t need to know Italian to attend a course (unless it is an Italian one).

After the courses, do you organize any internships?

No, we don’t. Anyway, we are often asked by Italian and worldwide Companies for talented Artists to insert in their Studios. We always pass these offers on to our (ex) students and if they’re interested, they can contact the Studios directly.

Can a course be cancelled?

Yes, it can. If we don’t reach the minimum number of registrations necessary to make the course start (4/5 people), the course might be cancelled. The people who have already registered will be contacted and they will be able to choose among other options.

How much do the courses cost?

Please, look at the “course” page in our website to get the costs (link alla pagina corsi). VAT is not included in the prices listed (+ 22%).

After the classes and in the weekends will we have homework?

No, you’ll have the time during the classes to exercise, so you won’t have any homework after the classes or in the weekends.

What do I need to take for the course?

Academy will provide all the materials necessary to attend the courses: notepad, pencil, pen, workstation with the relevant softwares, graphic tablet, keyboard and mouse. We suggest you to take a hard disk with you to save the files you’ve been working on in the course.

Do I need my laptop?

No, you don’t. During the course, you’ll use our workstations. Anyway, if you want to exercise in the night hours after class, take it with you!