Monday, June 27, 2011

Have You Heard of Surya Murali?

If you've ever looked for room models in the 3D Warehouse, you've probably heard of Surya. She's a Kuwait-based engineer who designs living spaces as a hobby in her limited spare time, and she's become quite well-known for her fabulous models and interesting, multi-themed designs.

I contacted Surya to ask her permission to use some of her models in our upcoming book on SketchUp and interior design. Happily for us, she agreed. So not only will several of her room models be used by interior design students, one of her renderings will also appear on the book's cover. "Sunshine Living" is the cover model:

We've also created projects based on "Bamboo Bedroom":

"Modern Living for Two":

"Cantania Loungs":

And several others.

Searching the 3D Warehouse for "surya room" will turn up about 30 of her designs, and these don't even include her gorgeous furniture models. Some of her most interesting models were not included in the book, since we had to keep the projects relatively simple, but if you have some time, look around the Warehouse and see what she's done.

When you download one of her room models, you'll see a rendered image, inserted into the model as a graphic. These are done in SU Podium, where Surya added lights, textures, etc.

I was a little surprised to find out Surya isn't a professional interior designer; she's an electrical engineer. It's a rare person who is both technical and creative, and while I can only assume she's a talented engineer, it seems obvious that her sense of space, lighting, color, and layout are quite amazing.

Here's what she emailed to me when I asked about her background:

This design work (including the visualization in 3D) is just some stuff I do as a hobby when I get free time or when I am in the mood for it. And free time is something I haven’t had for a long while now.

I have done a bit of free-lancing works for a few clients from UK & US… I am not a professionally qualified architect or interior designer so I haven’t really ever carried out a project from design board to construction site on my own. Being an electrical engineer, I have a good enough idea of lighting and such stuff but the civil & structural part of my designs are based on common sense and instinct.

This interest in design started quite early as I loved to make room layouts as a child, but the idea of designing whole structures (not just the interiors) came when I had made a design for a bungalow / villa for my folks in India… and they ran the design by a licensed architect and structural engineer. Those guys would not believe that the design was created by someone with no architectural or civil engineering background. Of course, I had drawn in a pillar too many to make sure the structure won't collapse but all in all it was a structurally sound & uniquely pleasing design according to them. That set me rolling though I still prefer doing the interiors of a house (requires less structural work).

I'm grateful that Surya was willing to lend her models to one of my projects, and I hope she continues to create beautiful spaces.

Anyone can design anything in 3D!

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Eric Schimelpfenig said...

I have seen her stuff in the warehouse before, she's really talented. She should probably just do interiors full time! I have use many of her designs as inspiration, and even used a lot of the furniture in other models. said...

Its really good work. I wish I could it also. But where can I find the 3D plugin tool which is possible to rotate interactivly the szene? How can I do it also?

Bonnie Roskes said...

Andreas - do you mean the tool that enables you to post a 3D model on a web page?

Architectural rendering said...

With regards to Andreas's question, I have used Demicron Wirefussion in the past to create some nice interactive 3D visualisations for the web. Even the free demo version offers lots of functionality and it's really fun to use.