Computer Models – not just pretty pictures

It used to be that models were something architects built out of Elmer’s glue and cardboard to help clients fundraise for a new building or show off to stockholders. Not any more… these days modeling is a whole new specialty in the architecture office and nearly every project gets treated to a photo realistic rendering. Not only does it help clients visualize the finished product long before any shovels hit the dirt, it also serves as a wonderful design tool. (Even architects sometimes need help stepping away from the details of wall sections and window flashing to see the big picture.)

In the 3D computer models shown below, you can see how the renderings bring to life the standard 2D plans. Everything from how much sun will hit certain rooms to the height of a site wall be suddenly becomes that much easier to understand. Although none of the models here are the 100% finished version, it certainly shows how even a rough computer sketch can assist in the design process.

Here is that same house as it appears on the architect’s blueprints. — Quite a difference.

A view of the home’s backyard.

Here, again, is another Archiscapes home about to start construction. This one features a much more New Orleans/Caribbean style architecture with its arched openings and tall shutters. Below this first rendering is the architect’s elevation as shown on the blueprints. You will note that on the blueprints, you can see the garage on the right side and only one fireplace stack is visible. This is because the second fireplace stack was added later after we loved the look of it in the rendering. The garage is set much farther back behind the house so while it appears in the same plane on the blueprints, it really will not be noticeable from the street, as shown in the rendering.