Visualising Inspirational New Workplaces

Posted by Interaction on 14/01/2019

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What goes into visualising inspirational workplaces?

Requiring a mix of technicality and creativity, our 3D office designs are a vital step in the workplace design and build process. We thought we'd give the low-down on their importance and the work that goes into creating them...

Pictured below: St Stephens House Visual vs. Photo

St Stephens Visual vs. Photo

A workplace design tool

Our 3D office designs have two key uses. Firstly, they are a tool for our designers, who are provided with the ability to see the spaces they are conceptualising. In other words, they can see their ideas come together – whether that be the furniture they’ve chosen, colour palette they are working with, or even the atmosphere they are aiming to create.

Secondly, our 3D visuals prove useful for our clients – who are able to see their new space before physical work has even commenced. Not only does this mean they can work closely with the designer to envisage how their new space will look, but by seeing something attainable, clients can get even more excited about the project. Our 3D visuals empathise just how amazing an office transformation will be. 

What steps go into the perfect 3D design?

Successful office design is all about collaboration – with designers, account managers and the project team. Working together whilst the visuals are being built ensures the 3D team can get their head around the brief and the design.

After figuring out how many visuals a client needs, the visuals team start building up the space from a 2D CAD plan. They then work alongside the designer who will be choosing colours and furnishes; this often takes a fair bit of toing and froing as decisions change, but once finalised, test renders can be done.

The last couple of steps involve final renders where the computer calculates the physics behind the visual, such as working out how light propagates within the space. For one render alone, this can sometimes take up to nine hours! Once these are complete, we composite each element together in Photoshop and work with the design team to pin down the final look for the visual.

Pictured below: Rocketmakers visual and finished result:

Thoughts from our in-house 3D team

To delve a little deeper into the world of 3D office design, we spoke to one of our Visualisers, Matt…

Which part of visualisation do you enjoy the most?

“I love that working in 3D requires a varied skillset; to begin to mould the 3D interpretation of a space, you have to understand how things are put together, so on one hand you’ve got technicality. On the other is creativity – we are a part of the design team, so inevitably it’s vital we make things look good!”

What are the main challenges?

“When it comes to adding materials to our visuals, we have to understand how to achieve the specific look we want – this can be hard when you need to work out the sort of reflection that a certain material may have for example. You may not think that every material is reflective, but everything reflects light to an extent so its important to understand this to achieve a realistic result.

“A lot of hard work goes into every visual, because each has its own qualities such as angles and visuals, but this intricate detail and hard work is worth it when we see the finished result. Recently, we’ve been produced some amazing visuals by experimenting with more minimalist shots (of a small corner of a space for example). These specific angles, when combined with wider shots, help to give our clients a truer feel of the space’s atmosphere.”

Pictured below: VWV London visual and finished result:

How do you see visualisation developing?

“Virtual Reality (VR) is definitely going to be the next big thing. It allows a project team, whether that be the designers or the client, to become more involved in the design of the space. VR requires more of a game-based render so it’s a different ball game, but I’m excited to see how it will develop in the near future. Watch this space…”

Keen to get inspired for your own workplace, or simply want to see some of the other visuals we have created? Head to our office design visuals page.