Contract - December 2016 - 69

RENDERING/PHOTOGRAPHY: COURTESY IA INTERIOR ARCHITECTS

The firm IA Interior
Architects has used VR
in more than 30 projects.
Guy Messick (pictured above)
is a principal and director
of design intelligence for
IA, overseeing the firmwide
implementation of VR tools.
For IA's MGA Entertainment
project in Los Angeles (left),
immersive VR walk-throughs
have helped the designers test
the distribution of amenities
throughout the building,
which will be complete in a
year. Here, a first-floor atrium
will be a major circulation
node and gathering area
for the company.

Not so long ago, virtual reality (VR) was a curious novelty in the
architecture and interior design professions, employed by a handful
of firms to dazzle clients at the end of a long process. But as the
technology has become more usable, accessible, and ubiquitous,
architectural VR has become something entirely different-a common
sight as a valuable tool for designing, marketing, collaborating with
clients, and more, right from the beginning. As it continues to evolve,
VR is becoming a must-have, and it's changing how architects
and designers go about projects with their clients. The possibilities
are transformational for design practice.
Designers are communicating their work through VR and
increasingly implementing it as a design development tool. "It used
to just give us a pretty picture," says Paul LaBrant, associate principal
at Austin, Texas-based STG Design, which employs Lumion 3-D
software with various hardware to convert its Revit models into virtual
ones. "Now, it helps us make key decisions, and it helps our clients
understand why we're doing these things."
STG is not alone. Many firms are embracing VR not only for
its cool factor but also because it is incredibly valuable. They're using
software such as InsiteVR, IrisVR, and Visual Vocal, along with Lumion
3-D to convert Revit files into virtual images; and they're working
directly in game engines, like Unreal Engine, creating virtual buildings
that users can walk, float, and zap their way through. In addition,
augmented reality, particularly Microsoft's HoloLens, is another
emerging frontier for design firms: Gensler has partnered with
Microsoft and digital-rendering company Trimble on their MixedReality Pilot Program, making virtual architecture mingle with
actual physical spaces.
Keeping it real with VR
When designing a new campus for tech company National
Instruments, STG's designers used VR to enliven the design, getting
a sense of how materials, scales, and forms would feel in the real world.
As the project developed, the designers invited the company's director
and CFO to virtually stand in the center of the future courtyard.
Within two minutes, the project was approved.
"The biggest difference is allowing someone to really experience
what it will be like to be inside a space," says Russell Thomman, project
manager at the Austin office of Stantec, which partnered with STG on
National Instruments. "The client finally understands what all this work
is about. We can solve their problems more effectively."
Getting clients genuinely involved with workflow immediately
makes them partners in the process, not removed outsiders, according
to Guy Messick, a principal at the San Francisco office of IA Interior
contract



Contract - December 2016

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Contract - December 2016

Contract - December 2016
Contents
Editorial
Industry News
Designers You Should Know: Assembly
Columnist: Process Tells Our Story
Designers Select: Office
Designers Select: Healthcare
Designers Select: Hospitality
Designers Select: Education
Product Focus: Living Walls
Product Focus: In the Shade
Editors’ choice
Uber Advanced Technologies Group Center
IIDA best of asia pacific design awards 2016
Feature
Brand report 2016
Ad Index
Exhibition: Pierre Chareau: Modern Architecture and Design
Contract - December 2016 - Intro
Contract - December 2016 - Contract - December 2016
Contract - December 2016 - Cover2
Contract - December 2016 - 1
Contract - December 2016 - Contents
Contract - December 2016 - 3
Contract - December 2016 - 4
Contract - December 2016 - 5
Contract - December 2016 - 6
Contract - December 2016 - 7
Contract - December 2016 - 8
Contract - December 2016 - 9
Contract - December 2016 - Editorial
Contract - December 2016 - 11
Contract - December 2016 - Industry News
Contract - December 2016 - 13
Contract - December 2016 - 14
Contract - December 2016 - 15
Contract - December 2016 - 16
Contract - December 2016 - 17
Contract - December 2016 - Designers You Should Know: Assembly
Contract - December 2016 - 19
Contract - December 2016 - Columnist: Process Tells Our Story
Contract - December 2016 - 21
Contract - December 2016 - Designers Select: Office
Contract - December 2016 - 23
Contract - December 2016 - Designers Select: Healthcare
Contract - December 2016 - 25
Contract - December 2016 - Designers Select: Hospitality
Contract - December 2016 - 27
Contract - December 2016 - Designers Select: Education
Contract - December 2016 - 29
Contract - December 2016 - Product Focus: Living Walls
Contract - December 2016 - 31
Contract - December 2016 - Product Focus: In the Shade
Contract - December 2016 - 33
Contract - December 2016 - Editors’ choice
Contract - December 2016 - 35
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Contract - December 2016 - Ad Index
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Contract - December 2016 - Cover3
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