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Property professionals commission work from us for different reasons and from the very beginning, we like to know what message you want to convey. Placating objectors to a planning application has a different visual treatment to a hero shot for a marketing campaign. The key is getting the composition right and then dressing the scene with visual props or triggers. Occasionally a client might try to achieve too many messages in one view. For those of you who remember painting by numbers, it can produce a tick box visual that may look flat or dull to the viewer. It is always better to consider the whole story and then find the most economical way to visualise, rather than just pick one view.


CGI for Architects

The RIBA plan of work has 5 stages of work before the project reaches the construction stage. From the initial Stage 0 strategic definition, to stage 4 Technical design, 3d modelling and CGIs are now a day to day tool to help any client or individual easily understand the design. Tools like sketch up are easy to use and can produce some simple visuals. To make a more compelling visual the level of rendering, the number of views or a simple flythrough will help move the idea forward. A few suggestions to visualise a difference. 

Winning a pitch; 

  • Explain the inspiration

  • Video the team and practice culture

  • animate the concept design

  • provide one or 2 detailed renders to show close up the ideas

  • keep the design options open - we can build a simple sample board in 3d and animate it to give a flavour of the material selection. 

Design development

  • View angle studies for planning

  • Key spaces design development 

  • Early marketing views for press coverage and teaser campaigns

Final marketing

Before the cleaners leave the building, our  CGIs get early coverage for the developer, but sometimes for the architectural press we remove some of the people, change the light and give produce a more raw and naked image to allow the viewer to focus more on the design, and not, for example, prospective footfall in a retail scheme. 

CGI for Developers

Extracting value from land is no easy task. Whether the developer is at the funding, planning or marketing stage, the CGI presentations help to speed up the planning and design process and reduce funding/holding costs by achieving faster sales. It is easier to develop and adjust a model, from planning through to marketing, to help the developer keep campaigns fresh. Editors love a good picture so a fresh CGI from a different angle can help to secure column inches.


CGI for Planning Consultants

The initial 'coffee table meeting' with the planners is a good opportunity to make an impact and sell the dream. The dilemma is how much detail should be revealed. A massing study in basic block form or powerful montage to show the sympathetic materials and how the design fits in. A few alternative approaches. 

Now that most people have access to a PC or smartphone, they are able to tap in and explore a planning application, google street view, aerial photography and neighbouring developments. So it is better to visual portray your story in a fast and easy to view way than to run the risk that the objectors will make up their own story. It is not uncommon for objectors to make their own photomontage with big red massing blocks to illustrate the damage caused to the neighbouring buildings. Professionally prepared views, reduce the chance of challenges and help to convince the objectors the development is in safe and professional hands.

Animate the presentation, with a professional voiceover and the audience, helps to broadcast a consistent visual identity. The speed of social media is a huge threat to sensitive planning applications and careful media presentations can build the confidence of an audience and avoid 'fake news'.


CGI for interior designers

Mood boards are a great tool for interior designers to excite a client and test ideas. Assembling a mood board takes time, not just waiting for the sample, but then assembling it on a board and carting off to the meeting. We have produced 3d mood boards as CGI, to help designers to tease out the client's thoughts. Ultimately a photo-realistic CGI showing every material and colour matched speeds up the client sign off and saves everyone the hassle of last minute changes. Over the years many clients have passed on the compliment, that the final room or space, looked the same in the flesh as it did on our CGI.


CGI for lighting Designers

LED lighting and sophisticated dimming controls has made lighting design an art form. Scene setting for different times of year can be programmed from a tablet. Along with the HVAC, it is the dynamic part of the design that the end user gets to enjoy. So showing that lighting effect, the warm white lights and the potential to use lighting to create the right ambience, is well worth it at the early design stage, to allow the first fix electrical to be installed to the right locations, prior to closing a ceiling or wall void.


CGI for Marketing and Digital Agencies

Open the Evening Standard, the Sunday Telegraph, Financial Times, Estates Gazette, Property Week and the chances are you will be looking at an H4 CGI. Our work has featured on the BBC, Sky News, Bloomberg and many other media channels. The press loves great visuals and the investment in CGIs is no longer considered to be a luxury. It is a must and one that provides a high return on investment.


CGI for Chartered Surveyors and Project managers

H4 are members of the Royal Institue of Chartered Surveyors, one of the few CGI studios that are. We are also members of the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers the professional body for Mechanical engineers. USed in the right way, CGIs can help to reduce construction risk and provide cost and program certainty. With the end- user client is a residential occupier or office owner etc. they are most likely to worry more about the look and feel, and not the number of reinforcement bars in a column. By visualising the space early on, the client can confidently sign off the finishes, leaving the contractor to reverse engineer and build the structure around the agreed finishes.


CGI for Heritage and conservation architects

We are often asked to work on listed buildings, where ceilings, panelling architraves etc. are to be preserved. We can model from photographs or we will carry out a 3d scan of the space, to capture the structure and then visualise alongside the new design.


CGI for Landscape Designers

The landscape institute publishes a guide to visual impact assessment. Where a proposed development requires views that are verified accurate, we will produce the full set of views, plus the methodology to allow the landscape designer to carry out their visual impact assessment.

Where new landscaping is proposed we will model all new landscaping in 3d matched to the specification. We also do 5 year and 10-year growth forecasts.