Avrame Case Study

Case: How to Create 3D Visualization from an Architectural Design

When we receive a new customer order for 3D visualization, we always start by telling the customer our guiding principle: 3D should serve a specific objective. For instance, if we are talking about visualization of the architectural design of a house, 3D shows qualities and details to help to sell the house.In order to make visualization work as it should, we need to understand certain project criteria: to whom the house will be sold; the type of homes in which the buyers currently live; and what the customer is, in reality, expecting. That is why, when we only have architectural designs, it is impossible to do a quality job.

We will use a real example to show why it is necessary to know the project objectives and how to satisfy them.

Customer:The Author of the Project - http://avrame.com/en
Back in Estonia, our customer designed homes unlike those that had ever been built before. He created the design and constructions himself. He found investors and decided to enter the home-design market.
Initial Data: Home designs from the customer

Objective:

Our customer realized that it is not realistic for potential customers to buy a house based on design alone. A task was set for us: he needed to stand out from the other developers. That is why he needed something more than the standard 3D-visualization of the designs. He didn’t want to present them in just an average style — “The house, the grass, the sun and the bright sky.”

The customer’s plan was for the first batch of houses to be sold in Estonia, with the others to be sold in Norway and the Mediterranean. That is why our customer wanted something special that would resonate with prospective buyers. A 3D design needs to fit the mentality of the intended audience. It allows potential buyers to look at the houses and to visualize themselves clearly as owners of the house of their dreams.

Stages of Creating 3D Visualization:

1. Modeling:

In the beginning, we had an architectural design-scheme which allowed us to create a 3D model of the house. We used the 3D model to check the construction of the house.

The customer received our drawings.

As it appeared, there were couple of mistakes even in the design of a simple house. By the end of this stage, we had discovered such mistakes and made a correctional 3D model of the house.

2. Determination of Details:

Once the model was approved, it was time to create the houses. We began to experiment with how they would look in different colors.

The customer didn’t have any idea that we would do these experiments. He started to evaluate which way solar panels could be placed. He saw how different options of wood and shades of color would look. There were also different experiments with black and white frames around the windows and horizontal or vertical positioning of the wood.

The fact is that when an architect creates the design, he doesn’t think of such details. That is why it is important to use 3D visualization to analyze all options and choose the best one.

The customer’s impression can change considerably by looking at different options. Our customer chose the most suitable models based on our experimental work, which is why we moved onto the next stage of the project.

3. Choosing Emotions and Atmosphere:

After thorough inspection of the design and customer approval of the details for the houses, it is necessary to place the homes in the appropriate surroundings.

At this point we faced an important question: what surroundings would we use for each of the customer’s three types of houses, which were very similar? The Duo houses were created for Estonia. The Trio houses were planned to sell in the Mediterranean, while the Solo houses was in a separate category.

To answer the question of surroundings, we had several preliminary steps:

The Duo - In the Spirit of Estonian Culture:

The customer did not want these houses to be built in the city, as this type of house is meant for the countryside. That is why we selected pictures where the natural surroundings look the same as in Estonia. We chose features, such as the grass and the evergreen trees, that are common to the Estonian countryside. We also chose different types of sky for different times of the day, such as at sunset. Here is one of mood board examples:

moodboard

Based on customer choices we managed to do such a render:

Duo environment

The customer gave us a mixed review. He liked the style of the house, but it looked to him as if it was built in the middle of nowhere. He expressed concern that it might scare away potential customers! We had made the atmosphere according to the customer’s wishes, but he asked us to add some more houses to create the appearance that the house is part of a neighborhood, and not in the middle of nowhere.

Take a look at final results:

The Trio— The Option for Warm-Weather Countries:

We utilized the same principle while working on this project as with the Duo:

  • We designed the 3D model of the house
  • Checked for mistakes and corrected them
  • Then we chose the surroundings and rendered the final product

The difference was that Trio houses are designed for the Mediterranean. The customer asked to create an option for the people who live in the South. That is why on the picture you can see the sea, the swimming pool near the house, and an open space for patio furniture because people in the Mediterranean are not afraid of a little rain.

The Solo — The Comfortable Guest House:

In the beginning, the customer just wanted a 3D visualization of the house as it was in the previous formats. He mentioned that he lives not far from the lake so it’d be great to make similar surroundings for Solo houses.

But with this project we had to discuss the following: it looked too small, so that one might question if it such a small house is desirable.

That is why we enhanced the design with an appealing setting, which ideally shows the nature and atmosphere of Estonia.

Then we placed them in such a way to make them more attractive. The Duo, the house which was initially planned to be sold in Estonia next to it Solo, the guesthouse.

The sense that the viewer gets is of the main house and guesthouse together. By presenting the houses side by side, the purpose of the two houses and how they could be utilized are made clear.

The customer liked our approach and was satisfied with our creation, agreeing that displaying the Solo on its own was not attractive.

Other aspects:

By customer request, we created a visualization of interiors to fill the potential buyer with a sense of warmth and comfort.

Principles at All Stages of 3D Visualization

At each of the three stages of development, we showed our designs and ideas to the customer. The customer responded very quickly, usually within 1-2 hours, which meant we were working practically nonstop. The customer took an active role in the project, which helped us to achieve very good results.

So how much did this project cost?

Our customer already had experience working with other studios, which is why, in the beginning, he was concerned about one question, “What is the price for one 3D design?” Let’s talk about this issue in more detail.

We are a result-oriented company, and the most important thing for us is meeting the project objectives. That is why we only charge for the whole project, not for each and every design.

In the beginning, it was impossible to predict how many designs would be needed. Looking back at the project, there were night and day pictures, interior and rear views of the house, as well as different color combinations.

The prospective buyer of the house would have a complete visualization of how the house would look in real life, as well as how it personally would feel to live in this house. In some other projects, different amounts of designs might be needed.

We think that it is important to show the house in such a way that someone would want to buy it. The number of designs is not the most important question.

That is why such an approach as “the price per design” can cause the customer, as well as the designer, to think only of money. In that scenario, everybody forgets about quality and final goal - property selling.

When we quoted the fixed price for the whole project, it didn’t matter how many designs were required for the project. The customer relaxed right away, and he took an active part in development of the whole project.

What was done for the fixed price?

  • 3D modeling of the houses
  • Display of the houses in different colors with different details
  • Creation of various surroundings for the houses
  • Designs were showing different times of the day and night

What did our customer receive?

Presentational drawings of different houses, which are used for selling purposes on his website.

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