75% of all IKEA’s product images are CGI

The Computer Graphics Society:

In the summer of 2004, IKEA decided to change the way they produced their product images. They made the first tentative moves toward CG rendered, rather than photographic, images.

Wow. I figured the catalog images were “photoshopped” but I had no idea so many of them were straight up CGI.

  • It makes it much easier for IKEA to re-use the product in various room setups. Much cheaper than building one-off sets.

  • Jeff

    That’s been rather common for product photography for a number of years now. You’ll be hard pressed to find a car photo that’s not CG. Lots of products on Amazon or clothing stores, as you change color, you can see it’s the exact same other than color, but it’s definitely not Photoshopped color.

  • MysteriousRacerX

    The actual stores are CGI too …

  • Moeskido

    I have to say, I’m impressed where the furnished-room images are concerned.

    Can’t say I’m surprised, though. Rudimentary product-image CG goes into a bit of the work I do, having been commoditized down to a level I can afford and easily manipulate.

  • exapple

    Maybe it will also shock you that store.apple.com is no different.

  • I think that now that I know this I could probably recognize at least some of the CGI. But that’s not a bad thing; it’s not like the CGI images show off better or unrealistic products. They’re just subtlety different in a few small ways.

    Be cool to have a quiz on this, Ikea. 🙂

  • Terry Maraccini

    And the CGI will last longer than the products they sell. Now, where did I put that screwdriver?

    • Moeskido

      Not uniformly. I still have pieces of theirs I’ve owned for over a decade that have survived two moves and are still working fine. Some others, not so much.