3D Design Services
CEC has recently developed its capabilities in 3d computer modelling and visualisations to enhance our design and presentation capabilities.
Visualisations can bring a design to life, adding perspective and realism to 2D plans and enabling a picture to be created of how proposals will look on the ground. Using our library of plants, materials and people, we show how our material choices and planting schemes appear and work together, and how we envisage that people will use and enjoy our landscapes. This provides an excellent way of demonstrating what is planned and help greatly in public consultations, fund raising bids and generally giving a project momentum.
The modelling task itself can also serve as valuable design tool; a process whereby proposals can be tweaked and resolved in response to issues that will only become apparent when working in 3D. We use the computer models to generate sections and calculate the volumes or surface areas of complex shapes, which is a very valuable time saving tool for a huge range of landscape schemes including the design of cut and fill earthworks, ponds and SUDS features.
Photomontages are a specific type of visualisation whereby a visual is incorporated into a photograph, to demonstrate how a proposal would appear within its landscape setting. Photomontages are often required to accompany planning applications but can also be valuable tools for a wide range of purposes, such as landscape and visual impact assessment (LVIA), identifying the need for and benefits of mitigation, or opposing a development.
CEC undertakes photomontages for renewable energy projects (including wind turbines, solar parks and anaerobic digesters) and a wide range of other developments including agricultural buildings, industrial developments or infrastructure projects.
Using our wealth of experience in landscape and visual impact assessment we work with our clients, and if necessary consult the local planning authority, to select the most suitable viewpoint locations. Whilst we would normally recommend that CEC also undertake site photography, we can also use photography supplied by the client so long as it is suitable.
To ensure the accuracy of our photomontages, we will first create a landform mesh of the local topography, which is then used to model the proposal accurately within the site levels and align the visualisation into photographs, using the horizon profile and key locators in the landscape
Using specialist modelling software we will then accurately model each proposal individually, based on the design information supplied to us. The visual qualities of different materials will be accurately represented as are shadows and light conditions from the time the site photo was taken. If required, CEC will also visually demonstrate the benefits of mitigation after certain periods of establishment (e.g screening through tree planting).
This thorough process and attention to detail will ensure that CEC’s photomontages provide an accurate representation of how the end proposals will appear in the landscape, which will stand up to scrutiny from planners, the public, and professionals, and meet the Highland Council’s “Visualisation Standards for Wind Energy Developments” in full.