Loft Apartment by Giorgos Zaha

The loft apartment project was designed for a young couple in Crete. They have an old wood workshop area and they decided to transform it to an apartment. Let us read on and see some of the 360 view of this project. Enjoy!

Part 1: Architecture
At the beginning of the design process the geographical position of the building and the sun orientation was studied carefully to achieve maximum light levels and make an energy efficient apartment.
This is the first loft apartment we design in our office so we had to do a lot of research.
We developed a structural analysis for the loft and we decided to suggest with proposals to our clients.

– Giorgos Zaha

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The small area (65 sqm) and the short height were two restriction factors that affected the design. The concrete beam in the middle was also a problem for designing a proper house. Noting that in the project area already was a WC for the needs of the wood workshop.

– Giorgos Zaha

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Proposal B was chosen instead of A cause it used the full height space above the living room and the dinner table. As the wood workshop was a family business, wood was used widely in the design. Simple design and functionality were the main targets in this project. We didn’t have any flexibility modifying the externals views so we focused in the interior design. The client needed three bedrooms: a master, a secondary and a third one for storage and service needs. We used the facilities of the previous bathroom and we designed another one above for the needs of the loft.

– Giorgos Zaha

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Part 2: ArchViz
Sketchup is our main tool for digital maquettes. Very simple geometry at the beginning, just to get a three dimensional idea of the project.
As the development goes on we are creating more detailed maquettes which we used as a base model for the CG illustrations. One important note is that every different concept is stored in a different filename so we can make a final review at the end.

The workflow is the most common one, 3dsMax, Vray and Photoshop.
Firstly, the lighting setup. VraySun (daylight system with location data) and Vraylight portals at the openings. Also I created a cylinder with a Vraylight material with opacity map on it to simulate the backgrounda technic I learned that from Evermotion tutorial .
A lot of preview render tests for getting the right exposure and a balanced lighting. Generally all the camera views are finalized and locked in this stage.

– Giorgos Zaha

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​Since my workstation isn’t a state of art computer, organization is a crucial part for an easy-going workflow. Everything is organized in layers and depending the situation everything not needed (or not reflected) is hidden.

Then I started to add decoration objects and furniture from my library. I have bought in past models from Designconnected, Dimensiva (free resources), model+model (free and commercial section) and often use them for buying some time. (and because I am not such a good modeller yet)
Speaking of which i decided to model the dinner table to develop my modelling and texturing skills. The small details were made inside Zbrush.

– Giorgos Zaha

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Material creation stage followed next. Nothing special there, nowdays you can find a lot of resources for material creation but I suggest every ArchViz artist to subscribe Grant Warwick’s Mastering Vray lessons, I have seen huge improvement using his material creation workflow and scene optimisation technics. The only thing to mention here is a fingertip texture map for the glass material at the reflection glossiness slot to create slight imperfections to the material. The only complex material as you can see below was the concrete floor which was replicated following Grant Warwick’s lesson 11 part 1.

– Giorgos Zaha

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The post production stage had the usual steps. Curves, levels (with this excellent tutorial Color Correction Tutorial After Effects [The Right Way!]) and some glare and bloom where needed. I rendered all the camera views with lens effect at VFB enabled to control both glare and bloom effects depending the view. Finally, some experiments with the Color Lookup adjustments gave me the final look.

– Giorgos Zaha

About Giorgos Zaha

Giorgos Zacharioudakis (Giorgos Zaha) is an architect located in the island of Crete in Greece. He finished his studies at 2010 and he is working as an architect at Z-architects which he co-founded. Since the early years at Architecture University, he was involved with CG illustrations or Computer Generated Images for architectural projects. Since then, he is trying to develop his skills and deepening in CG illustrations as it became his passion. His main goal is to create an image that will represent the idea of the project and will help the client to better understand the nature of the concept. You can find more of his artworks on his Behance profile or website.