ANTIREALITY is taking architecture to a new level with gravity-defying structures, dreamlike settings—and peacocks. They tell us how V-Ray for Rhino helps bring the impossible to life.
A frequent topic of conversation in the CG Garage podcast is virtual architecture. Thanks to modeling, design, and rendering software, architects can be freed from the earthly constraints of gravity and materials and create abstract forms that challenge our relationship with the built environment. Architects and arch-viz artists are only beginning to explore this limitless real estate—but ANTIREALITY has already staked a claim.
Combining a deft understanding of architectural forms with inspiration from the natural world, ANTIREALITY uses V-Ray for Rhino and Photoshop to create playful visions of make-believe structures. A purple house, supported by a spiral staircase, floats dreamily above a desert outcrop; a geometric pool shares a jungle environment with curious peacocks, and a spa-like villa—complete with a corkscrew waterslide—hugs a rugged coastline. With 129,000 Instagram followers and counting, it’s clear that ANTIREALITY’s work is turning heads outside the architecture community.
Join us to find out how V-Ray for Rhino helps ANTIREALITY turn surreal ideas into reality.
Although ANTIREALITY has always been interested in fantastical environments, their adventures in architecture began over ten years ago when they studied at Poznan University of Technology’s Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning. ANTIREALITY has also gained professional experience in Poland, Norway, Denmark, and Switzerland.
What do you have against reality?
ANTIREALITY: Good question! I think that, just like everyone else, I have moments where the option of a mental escape from the world becomes quite tempting. In my case, this is often closely related to architecture. Such moments provoke fantasies about moving into another dimension; spaces where gravity is ruled by different laws and construction materials are as simple to make as in a virtual 3D world. Although we will most likely not overcome gravity anytime soon, it is exciting to explore possibilities that technological changes may bring. I think it is safe to say that, through my works, I am celebrating the reality of the future.
How did you come up with the idea of ANTIREALITY?
ANTIREALITY: As far back as I can remember, I have always been fond of creating imaginary alternative scenarios of reality. My mental excursions into the realm of fantasy and utopia have been in me since childhood. I have a weak spot for daydreaming until this day; however, over time, the form of these dreams has evolved. Over the years, a passion for arts, graphics and architecture has emerged in my life. In hindsight, I see that creating ANTIREALITY was just a matter of time.
When I started studying architecture, I developed a need for artistic exploration of the field. Solutions of this sort, both when studying and in professional life, are not necessarily effective (this is not a rule, but I take a pragmatic approach to reality in the majority of my projects); hence, the idea of creating an imaginary world of architectural fantasies. For me, this is an escape from reality and a place where I can unleash my creative energy.
What kind of reactions do you want to provoke with the ANTIREALITY project?
ANTIREALITY: It definitely varies depending on the project. Each of my works has its own purpose and brings up a different subject. Generally speaking, through my work, I wish to capture different possibilities for interpreting space and architectural forms. It is also an invitation to explore and expand boundaries of imagination and seeking new means of expression. I always hope that this slightly naive way of approaching architecture helps unleash and awaken creative energy in other people. My goal is to show reality from a different perspective, breaking away from a standard outlook on architecture and nature.
All your work achieves a nice balance of being surreal but also plausible. How does photorealistic rendering help you achieve this?
ANTIREALITY: I think that the graphic expression of my works combines realism and abstraction. I try to seamlessly blend non-real elements (both in design and graphics) with a realistic approach to visualizing architectural structures. Photorealistic rendering combined with less-realistic architectural solutions and fantasy-like elements forms a mixture resulting in often quite unobvious illustrations. I like to observe the reactions of recipients who are the first to engage with ANTIREALITY with interest and joy. Some of them question these works, unable to determine whether the illustrated architectural object exists in reality. These reactions reassure me that I have reached the correct balance between realism and abstraction.
Could you give us an overview of your creative process and the software you use to realize it?
ANTIREALITY: I always start my work by formulating the main idea or theme that will lead my further exploration. This process is usually initiated under the influence of an external stimulus that triggers my imagination and entices my designer’s curiosity. At this stage, I create preliminary sketches, diagrams, and notes focusing on the function and geometry of the object while considering the visual content I want to convey.
ANTIREALITY’s Photoshop techniques
Want to know how ANTIREALITY seamlessly melds V-Ray for Rhino renders with stock images to create stunning images? Check out this in-depth video guide on YouTube.
In Rhino, I model variations based on previous drawings while experimenting with the form and materials. Having made final decisions, I create renders using V-Ray. The last stage is to work on the atmosphere, surroundings, and visualization content, which I also make in Photoshop.
Where does V-Ray fit into your pipeline? What do you like about it?
ANTIREALITY: Using V-Ray helps me create the final illustration and further develop my design ideas. Thanks to IPR, working on the concept has become significantly quicker and easier for me. This allows me to ensure ongoing monitoring of changes and results, which substantially shortens both the design process and the work on the final rendering.
I think that a great advantage of V-Ray lies in its simplicity and intuitive interface. It is easy to learn quickly, but you can discover more and more new possibilities and functions that facilitate and improve work.
What are you working on next?
ANTIREALITY: At present, my attention is drawn more to less abstract architectural forms and I think these are the type of projects I will explore in the immediate future. However, I will likely find another interesting subject that will spark my imagination; I am always ready to radically change my direction. Since it is quite difficult to foresee, I do my best to keep my mind open and react to what my intuition tells me at a given moment.