I may be dating myself with this headline — “Is it real or is it Memorex?” — but Live Furnish is bringing a realism to photo rendering that Memorex claimed to impart to sound back in the 1980s.
As 3D photography becomes ever more important to the home furnishings industry, for everyone from makers to retailers to designers, solutions such as Live Furnish are becoming ever more critical. This technology company has designed a platform that simplifies the creation of 3D content. The company’s SaaS cloud-based rendering technology is wrapped into an easy-to-use web interface, allowing customers to create 3D images in a fraction of the time and cost associated with studio photography. With applications that span ecommerce to the metaverse to renderings that help a design client visualize a space more clearly, it’s been proven that 3D content can increase sales and profits.
“Live Furnish is the first self-service, on-demand 3D content creation platform of its kind for the furniture and home furnishings industry,” says Preet Sahil Singh, Co-founder and Product Head. “The whole idea is to make 3D simple and accessible enough that people who aren’t photographers can actually use a 3D program with a small learning curve and replace photography that looks realistic.”
While Live Furnish is already helping home furnishings suppliers and retailers, Singh sees it as a tool that can also make designers jobs more streamlined and efficient.
The company started with a focus on materials, ensuring that texture and lighting helped to make the products come to life photographically. Not only does the platform provide renderings so realistic, put to a test, people couldn’t tell the renderings from the real photos — it streamlines processes that can help companies get products to market faster and more efficiently.
“Every product journey begins with a sketch,” Singh says. “That goes into CAD or Photoshop or Illustrator and from there you produce samples. Those samples are then shipped and tweaks need to be made, and then more samples and more changes. Once you finalize the samples, they go to a photography studio, and eight to 10 weeks later you see your final imagery. With Live Furnish, you can do digital prototypes instead of physical. You have access to high resolution during the design phase. On average, sampling time gets cut down by 90 percent, and the product can be made correctly the first time instead of doing multiple prototypes. That can then be used for market research as well to gauge the pulse of the market.”
According to Singh and anecdotal evidence, those using Live Furnish are finding it easy and helpful. Memphis-based Great American Home Store increased product views and click-throughs on its website by 62 percent and boosted online sales by 46 percent after adding Live Furnish-enabled 3D imagery to its site, the retailer says. And it took just two weeks to train its six-person content team to use the platform to create quality lifestyle images. “They were not graphic artists or photographers,” Great American eCommerce Manager Justin Bowen says.
Singh adds that, as with Great American Home, anyone in the home furnishings industry can learn to create 3D photography with Live Furnish. The cloud-based program incorporates more than 6,000 3D assets that are easily customizable, and that library is growing all the time. You can take any chair frame, for example, and update the fabrics or finishes.
For retailers, it takes some of the pain out of adding lifestyle photography to an e-commerce site, important for a customer who wants to imagine what that chair will look like in their living room. For designers, the program goes even deeper, as it coordinates with other programs, allowing renderings to become full 3D room designs with finishes in place, replacing sketches and mood boards that may not resonate completely with some clients.
For any company with a digital strategy, 3D photography is important going forward. “The adoption of 3D is changing the way we do business,” Singh says. “3D is the gateway to images, video, lifestyle configurators, augmented reality and fully immersive 3D environments.”
As the company continues to improve its technology — taking the platform from desktop to cloud-based, for example — it is also working to move from a technology platform to a community-based environment. “We want to create a community of digital stylists, interior designers and more,” Singh says. The goal is that this community can all grow together and learn from each other, enhancing 3D photography’s uses along with the Live Furnish technology that makes this process easier.
“We want to build a community that understands a beautiful aesthetic and knows what looks good, so we can level up the experience they provide to their customers.”