The official Photoview 360 book by SolidWorks ( @robrodriguez @solidworks )

Amazon Affiliate link to Photoview 360 guideAmazon Affiliate link to Photoview 360 guide
I’ve been wanting to write an article about the book Photorealistic Rendering Using SolidWorks and Photoview 360 for almost a year now.  Between that time and now, I’ve become employed by SolidWorks, which makes writing reviews about SolidWorks related products somewhat self-serving.  As such, I’m not going to do a full length detailed review.  That being said, it is a great guide to learn the ins-and-outs of making photorealistic images from SolidWorks.  One of the main consultants for this book is Rob Rodriguez, infamous for his photorendering skills.

The book’s approach to the subject is refreshing, in that it is written from the perspective of a photographer.  Topics include basic elements, such a lighting, to more complex visualization settings for illumination.  Also discussed are OpenGL, RealView, Surface Finishes, hardware, performance, scenes, decals, user interface, display states, configurations, mapping, output options, etc, etc.  It does include a DVD-ROM!

It’s a great guide with a lot of detailed images as it takes you step-by-step through the process of creating photorealistic images with SolidWorks and Photoview 360.

The book is available in the SolidWorks Store.  It is also now available from (image link above is via

PhotoView 360 research

PhotoView 360 is the new rendering software available in SolidWorks 2009.   SolidWorks Corp is now getting some feedback from users about PhotoView 360 and is also asking what features future versions of the product should incorporate. Upon finishing this short survey, there’s a webpage that features some renderings created by the PhotoView Community.  See the link here: