The rooftop image at ‘at38’ was devised after the client gave a fairly loose brief. “They showed me some images they liked, showed some projects similar to what they had in mind,” explained Fraher. “There was no landscape plan as such. There was just a shape of a rooftop. The wide angle lens I’ve used is a tip of the hat to John Golling’s photography where we can encourage the architecture to jump out at you, basically. The direction of the image with the city on the left works well for composition, shows the details of the facade treatment on the right of the image and catches the setting sun. It was originally a bit lower, and we lifted the camera to show a bit more of the features in the image. Any worries about eye-level and scaling were quickly alleviated when we saw the final image.”
The at38 rooftop image was created in Autodesk 3ds Max 2011, rendered out in Chaos Group’s V-Ray with textures and post production and levels corrected in Adobe Photoshop. The pebbles, mulch and such were placed in with Photoshop and the deck chairs were found on an Evermotion library online. The selection and placement of walkways, seats, uprights and natural elements, was all done in 3ds Max, with renders taking about four hours for the final 4992px image.
Roof gardens aren’t particularly unique but the ability of the image to show the unusual architecture and lush surroundings with true natural light was a win. The wetlands appearance draws the eye through the image as though following a creek. “Very often, we have a lot of style guides, reference and such to follow,” explains Samantha Slicer. “For this, we had some pictures, but they left it pretty much up to us. The client was also quite pleased because they didn’t have to employ a landscape architect because David did it.”