Space-age 3D stadium developed for Tokyo 2020

London-based 3D agency Minmud breathes life into Zaha Hadid's design for Tokyo's Olympic centrepiece.

It was announced earlier this year that Tokyo will host the 2020 Summer Olympics. As part of the Japanese capital's bid presentation, British architect Zaha Hadid created this striking, space-age stadium design, which was brought to life by London-based 3D agency Minmud.

We spoke to Minmud creative director Joshua Newman about the project.

Q: How did you first become involved with the project?

Minmud was approached by Zaha Hadid Architects to create images for their design of Tokyo National Olympic Stadium. It was a big deal and the centrepiece of Tokyo’s bid to host the 2020 Olympics.

Q: What was your company responsible for?

Minmud was responsible for delivering six top quality marketing images, huge day and night aerial views and four interiors with the stadium configured for different uses.

Q: How long did the project take to complete and how many people worked on it?

We had three weeks from the start of the project but we weren’t going to receive the design of the scheme until the last week or so. While we waited, we set about researching the location and looking for photo reference of stadiums and Tokyo to get us ready.

We started by building a model of the surrounding city

We started building a model of the surrounding city and creating façade materials that could be applied randomly. Key buildings such as the Meiji Memorial Picture Gallery and the Gymnastics Academy were added, and then other key buildings along the horizon to enhance the sense of realism. For the night view, we made a matte painting of the Shinjuku horizon. Four people were involved in the project with a range of 2d and 3D skills.

Q: What 3D software was used to create this work?

3DsMax, VRay, Multiscatter and Photoshop.

Q: What was the most useful piece of software that you used and why?

V-Ray’s fast and powerful renderer really came through for us. We also used Multiscatter to quickly populate the scene with trees and people that could be updated easily as the design and scene developed.

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3D