Paraview to Blender

By: Ronald Baker

Paraview has two ways of exporting visualization content (aside from saving screen shots and animations), the first is exporting the scene, and the other is exporting data.

Paraview Open

Locate the data set in question on your file system and import into Paraview. Paraview is able to accept .las files, but is also to accept the following data types:

  • .vtp - VTK Polydata

  • .vti - VTK ImageData

  • .stl - Stereol lithography

  • .obj - Wavefront

  • .pdb - Protein Data Bank

  • .glyph - Custom/Internal

  • .skybox - Custom/Internal

Exporting a scene saves everything that’s been turned on, including things like the lighting and camera positions. Exporting data only exports the selected element, which, if you look at the above image, is currently the 3D slice in my visualization. (NB: The file types available for exporting scenes and data will change depending on what elements are available or selected.)

As far as exporting scenes, Paraview can export .x3d files, which blender is able to import. For exporting data, two options are .stl and .ply files. The nice thing about .ply files are that they can carry extra information aside from just the output mesh such as color.


*For this section of the tutorial, I decided to use a different data set for visualizing in Blender. Before exporting data ensure you are able to set the origin point within Paraview. I wasn't able to figure this out with the initial dataset, but I was then able to generate data center at the origin point of (0,0)

Moving over to Blender, I’m going to start with a clean slate by selecting all (a, maybe a a second time) objects and deleting them (x).

You can import both .x3d and .ply files from the File -> Import menu. Below shows the import menu entry for .x3d files, and you can see the Stanford .ply file import on the same menu.