Page T2.1 . 24 April 2002                     
ArchitectureWeek - Tools Department
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  • Visualizing Architecture

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    Visualizing Architecture

    by Elizabeth Bollinger

    In just 18 months, Andrea Starkey has revolutionized the way she creates architectural visualizations. For years, she had relied on pen-and-ink and watercolor to create renderings for builders, architects, and local home shows. But as computer technology improved, she began looking for ways to speed up the rendering process.

    After a few months of experimenting with various digital design tools, her firm A.L. Starkey & Assoc. settled on DesignWorkshop by Artifice, Inc. and Art*lantis by Abvent, Inc.

    Starkey reports that the old, manual methods had become monotonous, "especially at times when a homebuilder wanted six variations of the same house or an architect would change their mind about the view they wanted to show. I'd have to redraw the perspective, which could be very time consuming." Digital 3D modeling seemed like the perfect alternative.

    Starkey said that at first she would make rough models and use them only to determine the best perspective view before rendering in watercolor. But then, after once using both 3D modeling and rendering for a commercial job, she became hooked. "I have only had to unpack my art supplies twice; that was to match previous work I had done."

    Searching for Digital Alternatives

    In the beginning, Starkey tried several 3D modelers. Her previous computer experience had been exclusively with 2D graphics, and she felt overwhelmed by the interface and technicalities of almost every demo package she tried.

    Then she discovered DesignWorkshop and was able to jump right in. She began making rough models after spending just an hour or two going through the tutorial. From the beginning, the process of building a model and viewing it from every perspective felt gratifying.   >>>



    ArchWeek Image

    A. L. Starkey & Assoc. created publicity renderings of buildings being rehabilitated by Rogero Buckman Architects on the occasion of the annual "REHABARAMA" of the Dayton, Ohio Home Builder's Association.
    Image: A.L. Starkey & Assoc.

    ArchWeek Image

    Images of neglected properties after renovation were used to publicize Dayton's REHABARAMA.
    Image: A.L. Starkey & Assoc.


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