THE STEP : Design - Visualization Project : 3D

THE STEP

"THE STEP" IS PROJECT THAT I DID, AS AN ARCHITECTURAL VISUALIZER, TO EXPLORE MY DESIGN SKILLS, MEANWHILE USING THE OPPORTUNITY TO ENHANCE MY VISUALIZATION SKILLS.
THE STEP

The project is about a house / retreat for a couple amidst the forest. It is about the transparency in a relationship between a couple that I tried to bring into this living space I designed; at the same time maintaining personal spaces as individuals! And about the balance between nature and man!

When I started this project, there were several challenges, most of them I never knew, if or how I would solve. I did this work to restore my passion & for updating my skills. As it unfolded I understood the complexity and the effort it would require attending to each detail.
It is to have the patience, to put that effort everyday and to forget the rest. At any given point I had only one step "The Step".


The Concept in a Nutshell


I wanted to come up with a different definition of the space we live in. There are three levels to the building. The lower level is the drive in garage that opens to both sides.  The mid level comprises of the interiors. Here the living spaces are situated on adjacent decks so that every living space can be seen/accessed from every other space easily; except the "His & Her" private space. Every space has some great views to the exteriors and plenty of space, specific areas for each dream corner, you may look forward to having in a house. The upper level is the terrace with an infinity pool with some cozy sitting & relaxing places. A secure elevator at the rear most end connects all the three levels.



When it came to designing the building, the idea was to make it fit as an extension of a natural terrain. The building itself sits with its rear placed against a hill, meaning that you can walk up from the terrace to the hill behind. With spaces for trees to grow inside, openings on the ceiling for sunlight and rain to come in, the pool on the terrace sunken in over the bedroom; several other features I have come up with in the project. So please go ahead and do let me know your valuable feedback, it means a lot to me!

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Contents on this page

1. The right side explained.
2. The left side explained.
3. The front area explained.
4. The Roof Terrace explained.
5. The clay renders.
6. About this project & Work Approach
7. Contact me




THE RIGHT SIDE


The building that is shown above (click for a higher resolution) took shape from a single image, the image was of some steps in open theater kind of area with some vertical bars hanging on one side of the structure, that's where it started.
I  sat there and thought for hours looking at it, about how those steps could be altered to make a living space out of it. What happens to those vertical bars? What happens to the space underneath the steps? where will those steps end and lead to? who would ultimately live in such a place if I made it exclusive? I needed answers to all these before I moved an inch. Seen below is the right side of the building opened up to show how the plan unfolded.

Even though some of the areas like the pool on the terrace were added later; I made sure that everything connected well to each other. Not every space was finalized when I started working, it unfolded by it's own. Many iterations were done while designing each part/element, maintaining measurements, but eventually all the essential areas were included. Every space has a purpose/function. See below a marked view of the section to understand each space.
You can see above how each deck forms an area as a living space. It would somewhat resemble, if you would transform a movie hall into a living apartment.  The big screen at the right end is a movie screen that also plays live content streamed from cameras placed at points dotted in the forest, which you can watch wherever in the house you may happen to be. The door at the right back end of the hall opens to a corridor that splits left and right to "Her & His Space" respectively; each provided with a balcony. A secure elevator at right back end effectively connects all three levels; i.e. the Garage, the Living Area & the Terrace. You may also notice that the floor of the pool from the terrace sinks down right above the bedroom space. The couples while on bed can watch the stars through the water on a starry night; or dive in from above and see what is going on in the interiors.


The rear end of the building is placed against a hill that would connect to the terrace at the same level. One can walk in from the hill behind after a stroll directly to the terrace and and take a drive into the pool. Or use the secure elevator to access any level. See below the top plan that shows the layout of the surrounding areas. (I suggest to have a good look at this; since explanations further below are based on this plan)
The front area of the building is the pergola area shown below, a variety of plants under the shade with pebble flooring; this area sits right next to the Piano Room [the glass you see] seen at right of the image. When she plays a few beautiful song, how lovely would it be to listen to it, looking at her in intervals while reading a book sitting there in the shade? A tree grows in the trench, and goes over the piano room and reaches till the terrace level.
The Right Side Elevation shown below makes it clear how each area is placed, and details of the materials used for construction. You may note the building at its right has vertically suspended bars that can slide to position and rotate to close like a shutter. Just behind those bars are trenches for plants that line up beautifully outside along the edges of the huge glass windows inside. Tall curtains behind the glass panels provide privacy.
Here are a few more sweet areas to hang out that comes to the right side of the building plot.
The corridor leads way to 'His' Balcony, where he can spend time to himself, listen to a song/have a smoke and gaze into the forest for hours. This area is right outside his personal dressing area [that comes behind the glass window]. This balcony is situated above the entry to the Garage.
THE LEFT SIDE & FRONT AREA
NEXT we look at the left side of the building, [please refer to Terrain Top View at the beginning once again if required]. The Front Pergola, the building entry and the Garage opens to this side as well. The backyard here is a very beautiful open but private space surrounded on all sides by trees for miles. Mostly this side of the building is all glass facades. It has some of the most comfortable/private areas in the house; all facing towards this lawn and the beautiful forest that lie at the boundary of the lawn.
At the right end in the picture above [the area at the front of the building] as we saw earlier is the pergola with sitting, here you can see the Piano Room more clearly projecting out towards the pergola. The entry to the building is also visible next in line as we move to left. The high glass panels of the entry area are held in place by drift wood  branches from inside which you can see if you look closely! At mid ground level is the cozy Exterior Sitting Area where the couples can have chat on a chilly night with stars and fireflies around! The view to this open sky clearance on such a night amidst tall forest trees is what dreams are made of! During the day sit idle on those cozy chairs placed in the reading area inside, with your favorite book in hand and the view to the forest. The huge glass facade pieces are held in place by wooden branches that have shelves to hold your favorite books! [see render below]. To left is the steam room which is part of the Master Bathroom that is seen next in line, with water curtains providing privacy when required! The corridor that connects to His & her space runs horizontally from end to end comes next, followed by the bigger balcony sitting which is right in front of 'Her Space'! The cross section below shows all these details clearly!
Find below the marked sectional view of the left side of the house.



​Here in the marked sectional view you can clearly see each area. The detailing of these interiors will be presented as another project [hopefully my next personal project]. Starting from left the rear entry, the reading area, the point of entry to the store, a glimpse of the inside of the Bathroom and Steam Room, the corridor, Her Space etc.... can be seen clearly. The balcony is bigger at this side to accommodate a small get together of your friends who may happen to visit you sometime. The Garage opens to this side to allow an off road driving experience into the forest. Please see 'Terrain Top View' shown at the beginning to see the road connections.

Lets have a close up view on the beautiful Piano Room aside the Pergola Area at the front.
At the Front Area of the building you can see the Piano Room with the piano inside, the rose Ivy's that grow aside, to look at them while playing a note on the piano and the tree on the other side in the trench that has grown over to the terrace meeting the pool. The outside sitting under the pergola on a late night; in the dim light with friends cracking a joke, life here would be a dream! 
The approach road is also visible from here, afternoons would be perfect with shades from all sides.
The Front Side Elevation shown below throws more light on how the structure is and some information on the materials used. 
The exit to the backyard offers more spaces to linger around, like the sitting area that is embedded into the building at mid. Let's have look at it!


To sit here and watch your friends have game in the lawn, or to spend evenings having a drink discussing work, family, politics and what not? Or to go for an off road drive on an impulse the garage is to the left end!
Below the Left Side Elevation is shown, this makes it clear how each area is placed and some information on the materials used. 
THE ROOF TERRACE
NEXT let's explore the terrace of the house. A very pleasant area that is directly connected to the hill behind. Trees slanting slightly into the pool, offers shade and it makes it look like a natural pond. The water is continuously purified as it flows down all three sides. With the forest on all four sides, having a dip in this pool would be an experience!
TO DREAMS is written on the elevator door. Each level to which you take the elevator, it reminds you to GO! pursue your dreams! Go for a stroll in the forest on the hill behind, walk back directly to the terrace pool, sit under the pergola, have a chat, get some cream on you, go for a sun bath... immerse yourself in those clear waters and get cozy in the round chaise lounge sofa, have a nap let the day unwind itself!
The sitting area shown to the right in the picture above is next to the entry/exit of the pool; where you can sit and dry yourself after a bath. There are many such sweet corners, chaise pool lounge chairs on the island platforms to which you can climb from the pool, or take a dive to the base of the pool to see the interior of the house at the sunken area. 
The glass with holes that you can see right above is situated above  trees that are planted in trenches inside the house. This brings sunlight and water drips in while it rains for the trees. Scattered trenches are also found on the terrace. From here you can view all areas around including the house interiors, the rear balconies, the approach road, front round about, forest paths, pergola sitting etc... 
The view above is from the pergola at the rear end of the pool, this is the view you get upon entering the terrace! The main entry handle to pool at further right is situated next to the sitting area where you can dry yourself after the swim as mentioned earlier. The trees line up along the edges of the pool to make it look like a natural pond! Swim around, stand at the edge of the pool with your beloved on your side and look away into the endless forest around, what could possibly replace that feeling?

Seen below is the Terrace Plan to understand how the entire area is planned. It also gives information on materials used.

Below you can find a view of the actual terrain I had in mind, a perspective view from the left side of the building plot before any construction took place. Kindly note trees are not shown here. The place is situated amidst a forest with tall trees and clover growing as ground cover, small bushes and rocks of all shapes and sizes scattered through out the forest!
We have almost come to the end of the project. This concludes only the EXTERIORS of this project. The INTERIORS I am hoping to do in detail as my next project. Here is the detailed Floor Plan of the interiors.
THANK YOU so much for visiting my page here, for having the patience to look through my work. It has been a lot of work and patience making all this come together to this presentation. I have worked for months and months to achieve this, so YOUR SUPPORT means a lot to me. If you liked my work please do share this with your friends, drop a comment, feel free to ask me anything related to this project I would be more than delighted to answer. Thank you once again!
PLEASE DO NOT USE/PUBLISH THE WORKS PRESENTED HERE WITHOUT FULL CREDITS TO THE AUTHOR    
© ASWIN G. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
THE CLAY RENDERS
Presented below are the clay renders. You can see the meshes used in each view. I had initially scattered 3D trees for background forest, which I removed from some renders; since finally for some views I chose to have images as backgrounds for slightly better visual appeal. In fact there are different edit versions that I finally had to choose from.
DESIGN & VISUALIZATION BY ASWIN G
SOFTWARES USED : 3DS MAX, MUDBOX, V-RAY, QUIXEL MEGASCANS & PHOTOSHOP CC
PLEASE DO NOT USE/PUBLISH THE WORKS PRESENTED HERE WITHOUT FULL CREDITS TO THE AUTHOR    
© ASWIN G. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
About & Why

Being a visualizer all these years I felt the need to design something myself and visualize it... taking design to visualization as a complete package. This project is also about re-kindling my passion with a career that I pursued leaving behind my degree as a mechanical Engineer. After working for about nine years in three different architectural visualization firms, I found that I was missing passion with my regular job. Having received no formal training during the period pushed me to dedicate time to work on myself.

What it meant was; exploring my design skills, how much I can push myself and updating my visualizing skills to match up to my design. I had to come up with a new idea of a living space, to think about how to set each space within the structure with logical measurements, giving it a function. This helped me study new softwares, plugins and new work approaches that made me improve my skills and develop new ones in the process! It also contributed to building my capability of how to approach things and crack them making me more open to learning things by my own.

I am hoping to do the interiors of the house as part two of this project during my next break.


Approach

When I first came up with the concept I did not really know how I would do it, instead I dreamed as good as I could! There was not much resources with me at that point of time. I spend days collecting inspirational images over, and weeks learning new softwares that could accomplish what I had in mind, re-doing till my meshes were good to go! Finding plugins that could make my work easier, searching textures refining them and deciding combinations, studying tutorials & new work approaches. I traveled solo in between to refresh myself that too contributed a lot.
The design part really took a lot of thought and time. Final stages when I shared my draft renders with a few close friends, I got some great reviews & critiques and had to put down my feet again to get them done before I shared it with the world! It was quiet a challenge to this last bit of presentation here. And I did this to discover myself, to tell myself a message and to learn new things!
I WOULD Love to hear from you!
PLEASE Write to me at aswing111@gmail.com
www.aswins.com
THE STEP : Design - Visualization Project : 3D
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THE STEP : Design - Visualization Project : 3D

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Published:

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