21 Jul 2024

Esko's 3D packaging design software Studio 16 given a makeover

Esko Studio 16 3D design LFR

Esko has given 3D packaging design software Studio 16 its very own makeover with the launch of Esko Studio 16, part of the Esko Software Platform 16. Studio is a unique set of tools for 3D packaging design made for all packaging artwork professionals. With Studio you are virtually holding the pack in your hands.

Since 2006, Studio has been installed by thousands of packaging professionals, from small design agencies and freelance designers to the largest global brand owners. Studio has helped users produce better packaging designs, whether designers are trying out different ideas and want virtual mockups fast, or prepress operators are checking graphic positioning and reverse print. Creating this artwork for presentations, marketing campaigns or e-commerce is done with the artwork print production data and eliminates the need for separate packaging artwork creation in other software.

Esko Studio adds packaging 3D functionality to Esko’s Adobe® Illustrator® packaging workflow. "Unlike other solutions, designers and prepress operators don’t have to leave their design tool of choice. They are able to make very advanced 3D design actions within Illustrator - a platform they are very familiar with. Since ten years, Studio has been helping trade shops, converters and brands offer their customers a faster route to market for product design - and it continues to be the worlds’ most powerful and popular packaging 3D design and store visualization tool,” states Chris Stowe, Esko’s Product manager 3D solutions. “It eliminates the need for physical mock ups and reduces the approval process via instant online collaboration. Ultimately this means the time from design to production is much faster and cost effective. Creating test versions, new promotions and product variations can be designed and visualized at the touch of a button.”

“The benefits of Studio encourage designers to experiment with different ideas and allow prepress operators to do quality checks on graphics positioning, reverse print and other production critical elements," comments Stowe. "Users can quickly check finishing effects, create realistic visuals, see more details in pack shots and speed up the production of pack shots.”

Over the past year, Esko has accumulated feedback from its large base of Studio users and now has released a significantly advanced version, all focused on higher efficiency and working speed. The new features of Studio 16 include:

  • The ability to create 3D compositions 50% faster, thanks to new user tools such as snap to align while moving, vertical collision edge and detection, and a nudge tool for fast manipulation.
  • Fast artwork application in scenes, so designers can apply different artwork to the same structures in product line ups and multi-product combinations.
  • Studio 16 includes tools to select materials and apply print effects. Users can quickly check finishing effects by using a switch to turn on and off - and compare - finishing, to see how finishing effects apply and perform in isolation.
  • Faster creation of realistic visuals, with the ability to add and adjust realistic floor shadows and light source angles.
  • A faster way to create and output very high-resolution pack shots by adding automated scripting in Adobe Illustrator with new export options. The software is able to display barcodes; pricing and other metadata associated with each of the imported products. Even fine text is legible, and poster-sized images can be created. These are particularly helpful for artwork repurposing such as marketing and campaign use - creating product images even before a single package is produced.
  • Users can view stunning virtual packaging anytime, anywhere, on the web using HTML5 3D Studio Viewer. The mobile and desktop versions of the viewer are free and can be found here.


Studio is available in two bundles: Studio Essentials to create cartons, bottles, trays and displays; and Studio Advanced for agencies or departments that need to handle every packaging shape imaginable, including difficult to create realistic flexible bags and shrink sleeves. Studio is part of Esko Software Platform 16, released in July 2016.