6 Steps to Architectural Visualisation | Verified Views

Posted by in Frequently Asked Questions on 28th September 2020

Verified Views, also known as accurate architectural visualisations or visually verified montages combine architecture, data, 3D modelling and CGIs to bring a design to life. As highly realistic and accurate images, architectural visualisation is a key component to contemporary property development. Our team specialise in the creation of architectural visualisations in the UK and we have extensive experience on both large-scale strategic developments and small-scale detailed designs. Our most recent architectural visualisation work includes London mixed-use developments, historic estates and high-sensitive residential schemes. The method used to create hyper realistic Verified Views involves six steps and today we’re going to go through each stage, to highlight how much time and effort is required to ensure accuracy and quality in each architectural visualisation that we produce.

Stage 1 – Photography and Survey

To begin creating an architectural visualisation we first must take a baseline photograph. This means our team visits the site and takes a high resolution, full-frame photograph. This process in itself takes a lot of time and planning to get right. We use ground points in order to ensure that any future images are identical in terms of position and height. It is also necessary to use a prime lens when taking AVR photography so that it replicates what the human eye would see and is not distorted in any way. Usually a 50mm prime lens is the best to use for architectural visualisation photography, however some projects require panoramic photography to capture the whole scheme in one image. During this stage our experts also record the time of day, date, weather conditions and season in order to create an accurate model match later in the process.

This phase also includes a site visit from a qualified surveyor in order to gather data from all the viewpoint locations being used to create the architectural visualisation. Usually this includes GPS readings and ground point data for any objects captured in the photographs such as lamp posts, railings, street signs and other buildings. These control points help to ensure that the final image is no more than 20mm give or take in accuracy. The data recorded by the qualified surveyor is then cross referenced with topographical surveys and OS data.

6 steps to architectural visualisation

Stage 2 – Modelling

The second stage in the process of created highly accurate architectural visualisations is modelling. Our team will create models of the architectural designs and plans so that our interpretation of the design is as accurate as possible. This is an important part of the process and guarantees that there is no room for error or miscommunication between our team and the architect or property developers. Models can be created from hand-drawn plans provided to our team, 2D AutoCAD drawings or Revit models. This model is then positioned in the real-world model space occupied by the virtual camera.

6 steps to architectural visualisation

Stage 3 – Lighting

The third stage is lighting, which illuminates the building as it would be in the real world. As you may well know, lighting plays a big part in property design and development and natural light flooding a building can give it a light and spacious feel. Lighting can also help to set the mood and highlight key design features. However, the lighting in an architectural visualisation must be realistic and show how the building may look in the real world.

6 steps to architectural visualisation

Stage 4 – Materials and Textures

During the planning and design stage of a property development, an architect will likely take great time and effort when choosing materials and textures and this is why we must also ensure that these design features are part of a Verified View. An architectural visualisation will show brickwork, tiles, windows, wooden beams and any other additional features of a design.

6 steps to architectural visualisation

Stage 5 – Rendering

This stage combines the data, photography, lighting and modelling to create a final representation of the design. Depending on the level of detail needed by the client, our team will use a render farm, which is a number of computers networked together to meet the processing power needed to create a highly accurate and detailed final architectural visualisation. This illustrates how Verified Views are the future of CGIs. The process of putting together the final components to create the image can take a few hours to a couple of days. Therefore rendering is quite time consuming.

6 steps to architectural visualisation

Stage 6 – Post-Production

The final stage in the process of creating architectural visualisations is the post-production phase. This is where the render is blended into the baseline photo. Elements such as colour, lighting, and vegetation can be added to the image to show how the building may be used and experienced in the real-world. By adding these final touches, Verified Views really comes to life and allows you to visualise how the building will look when finally built.

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Verified Views & Architectural Visualisations

So, as you can see, creating architectural visualisations or Verified Views is quite an in-depth and complex process requiring the combination of data, technology and artistic interpretation, unlike standard CGIs. Our experts strive to provide architects and property developers with hyper-realistic images of planned projects in order to gain planning permission, attract investment and showcase a contemporary and impressive design. If you would like more information about Verified Views please feel free to contact our team today.