Kevin Neprud and Associates - Case Study

Buildings and Boats Boston Style using SketchUp and IRender nXt!

Kevin Neprud is the principal and owner of Kevin Neprud & Associates LLC (KNA). He founded the firm in 1987 in Massachusetts, USA, and primarily serves the Metro Boston area, North and South Shores, and Cape Cod. Kevin has extensive experience in design and real estate development, construction management, and industrial design.

Kevin’s unusual amphibious vehicle design caught our eye, so we were happy he agreed to talk with us about this and his building designs, and how he brings them all to life using SketchUp and our IRender nXt rendering extension.

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How has your use of design software evolved over the years?

Throughout my career I have been an early adopter of cutting edge software, realizing that it is a critical component of the success of my business especially since I do all of the design and production work. I began using 2D AutoCAD in the mid ‘90s, and added Architectural Desktop in the late ‘90s to work in 3D. I was introduced to SketchUp in 2001 and immediately began using it on most of my building designs to create 3D models as well as presentation drawings and renderings.

Renderings of a lot of my architectural designs can be viewed in the Projects section of KNA’s website. All renderings are either SketchUp generated or IRender nXt with no additional editing. Here’s several renderings to give you an idea of what you’ll find on the site:

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The renderings of your building designs are very impressive. You’ve also turned your design talents to industrial design, and we’re fascinated to learn more about your vehicles.

In 2012 I launched an industrial design and development company named Nouvoyage LLC, combining the truncated French words “new” (Nouveau) and “voyage” to create an international sounding company name to market a ground-breaking series of high speed amphibious vehicle designs.

Having honed my SketchUp skills designing buildings for so many years, it was a natural progression for me to use it to create these entirely new vehicle designs. An additional advantage of using SketchUp, beyond its ease of use, was the ability to use third party rendering software. After investigating several rendering options, I selected IRender nXt because it proved to be the easiest to learn and I could use it to produce high quality renderings for both architectural and industrial design presentations.

One of the earliest amphibious vehicle designs I used IRender nXt on was a 10 Meter 33’ length amphibious Limousine Tender. As you can see from the following rendered images, IRender nXt helped me achieve an outstanding level of photorealism.

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Do you use any other software to improve your designs?

I often use Photoshop or other software to enhance renderings, however all the SketchUp model renderings included here are shown exactly as they were generated with IRender nXt. I have learned countless tips and tricks since that time that have improved my renderings, but include these images because they show what can be accomplished using IRender nXt right out of the box with minimal experience.

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You’ve used IRender nXt a lot. Is there something you’ve learned along the way that you would like to share with other users?

Yes! Keep experimenting with various settings to find combinations that work. When you create settings that look good, save them using the “Save to File” button in the “Save Option Values” section within the “More” dialog file tab. Then you can apply the .dfl file that is saved to other renderings by uploading it via the “File” button in the “Load Options Values from” in the “More” file tab. Some challenges I had to overcome using IRender nXt, which likely are equally challenging with other rendering software, were creating metallic looking automotive paint colors and realistic looking water surfaces, but again, if you experiment a little you’ll find a combination that will work well for you.

It seems like IRender nXt has performed admirably in handling the versatility of your designs!

In addition to using IRender nXt to create exterior renderings, I use it for sections and details as well as interior renderings like the view below of the VIP cabin aboard the 45’ amphibious yacht, which was the first amphibious vehicle I rendered using IRender nXt.

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Thank you, Kevin, for giving us this insight into your varied journey in design, and how SketchUp and IRender nXt have played an integral part in it!

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Would you like us to profile one of your projects?

Whether you’re a rendering novice or a master, it’s always interesting to see what you’re rendering with any of our renderers (IRender nXt, ArielVision, Allura, nXtRender for AutoCAD, nXtRender for Revit)! Email Render Plus Support Email and we’ll contact you.