We use video to explain the plan.
Why? Because it’s the easiest way to understand.
Freedom Architects’ first presentation video looks like one is actually moving through the finished building. You watch the video and then can decide whether or not to go ahead with the project.
Most presentation videos get submitted after a plan has already been somewhat finalized, because they are usually outsourced and are expensive to produce. But at Freedom Architects, the architects create the videos themselves. This means no outsourcing costs, and since the videos are produced directly by architects who understand client needs, there are no discrepancies between it and the final product.
“Buying a building worth tens or hundreds of millions of yen based only on the exterior and floor plans puts a client at great risk.”
“The architect must kick off the design process with a detailed explanation of the final product, and with the client’s full understanding of it. We believe this is the architect’s responsibility.”
Presidential House office clients can choose to custom-build or purchase a finished high-end residence. Residences can be previewed and obtained immediately. In order to launch the President’s House office and attract wealthy clients who purchase custom-built homes, Freedom Architects had to devise easy-to-understand presentations and upend the preconception that custom-built homes are complicated and time-consuming. To this end, Freedom Architects introduced
The BIM system, which can simultaneously produce realistic walk-through videos with VR, drawings, and computer graphics.
We are often asked, “Isn’t it hard to make videos?” Normally, the architect draws the drawings and an assistant creates the CG perspective, but the BIM design system used by Freedom Architects lets us create the CG perspective and drawings simultaneously. Replacing the conventional workflow of “drawings and then CG perspective” with one of “drawings along with CG perspective” allows the architect to be more deeply involved in the process.
Since the designer directly creates the CG, he/she can handle changes quickly.
When a request is made, perhaps to change a wall to stone or make a ceiling a little higher, we respond by uploading a revised video on the spot or the next day. This kind of speed is what today’s business executives want.
Freedom Architects’ walk-through videos aren’t mere perspective images. Since the data is linked to the actual drawings, there are no differences from the finished building.
When people see the finished building, they say, ‘It’s really just like what I saw in the VR.’ This is the highest compliment an architect can receive. We get together countless times in advance and make thorough improvements to areas that were not working well. This is the advantage of the meetings in the President’s design office using videos and VR. Many executives have already built their own residences several times before. Few of them say that the project was completed exactly as they envisioned, and many say they even had to redo a project many times after it was completed. Tearing down a finished structure and rebuilding wastes client time and money. At Freedom Architects, we believe it is crucial for the client and the architect to come to a clear understanding of the vision for the home so that the client can begin a new life after the building is completed, and that it is the responsibility of the architect to make sure this happens. The walk-through video and VR are crucial toward this end.
The VR system provides an experience of spaciousness and openness
Using a VR head-mounted display, you can even go inside the planned building. VR let you experience spaciousness and a sense of openness that are hard to feel in a walk-through video. “In particular, the height of the ceilings and the way the sun shines through the courtyard make you feel as if you are actually inside the building.” “Some of our clients have muttered, ‘It looks like the electric bills are going to be high’ as soon as they put on the VR.” This is the advantage of VR – the experience it gives you is that realistic. Especially with a mansion or other large building, the living room is wide, the ceiling is high, and the furniture is large, so video won’t really give you a sense of the space. When you actually enter a space is when you get a sense of how big it really is. Providing this kind of experience during the design period means that when the building is actually finished, the client will be able to appreciate that it is exactly as they had envisioned. To Freedom Architects, this is what design is all about.
We can simulate not only how the sun hits a building, but also how the setting sun and the moon appear 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Freedom Architects’ BIM system incorporates site latitude and longitude and surrounding buildings in its modeling, providing an advance look at how the sunlight will hit and how the building will look from the surrounding area when it is actually completed. “Once, we had a request for a courtyard-type plan that let sunlight penetrate deep into the living room. At first, we thought that putting in windows reaching to the ceiling would let in the sunshine, but when we ran a simulation, we found that the sunlight wouldn’t make it to the back of the room. So, we revised the plan by taking out the original ceiling and replacing it with a vaulted ceiling and higher windows, and realized a living room where the sunlight penetrates all the way to the back.” At Freedom Architects, we can do this kind of verification in advance. For villa projects, we also investigate sunset location and window positions needed to view the harvest moon. In short, Freedom Architects uses the latest tools and our experience in design to “create the ultimate product for the client.”