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  • Writer's picturePedro J. López

Renders in times of COVID: Turning problems into opportunities

Updated: Apr 20, 2021

Overnight we have been caught up in a situation unlike anything we have ever experienced before. An unprecedented pandemic with the name COVID 19 has paralyzed the world. At this point, there are two possible ways to face the reality of these days: defeatism or hope. We are among those who believe that a problem must be faced with solutions and optimism, so this can definitely be a good moment of opportunity and adaptation.

Render4tomorrow, ready to perform 100% from home

In the field of architecture, there are several fronts: on the one hand, could it be a good time to increase the number of teleworking hours compared to face-to-face work?

If there is one thing that is becoming increasingly clear to us, it is that the future tends towards digitalisation and adapting to this reality as soon as possible will make you be at the forefront, and therefore more competitive in all areas.

At Render4tomorrow, as in many other studios, we have had to adapt our way of working to a 100% remotely-based activity.

Two of the problems we had to face immediately were: how to keep the same rendering times, and how to efficiently share both the work material and feedback that each member of the team contributed in the image-making process?

In the first case, we set up an internal network that connects the computers that serve us for the calculation of the images working in series (our particular render farm).

This gave us the necessary speed to be able to get the renderings done in the same time as before, which is indispensable for a studio that exceeds a certain volume of simultaneous work.

Secondly, we looked at the best tools and software to share the material we use in the studio so that it can be immediately available to the whole team. You can check these tools in our previous article, "5 Apps for Architects Working Remotely At Home".

In terms of sharing feedback, we combine Slack (for communication between team members, allowing to create independent channels to work on each project), with Milanote (where it is very easy for each member to make their own annotations on the same image).

We have always believed in the potential of an image and its capacity to transmit, providing us with that dose of emotions that a project needs for its effective communication, but this is not possible without the contributions of the whole team and a fluid communication with the client, so creating an efficient work network is crucial.

This experience has made us adopt many of the strategies and ways of proceeding used during the lockdown in our daily routine. It has given us the opportunity to test in a real way this new, adaptable and effective way of working, and we can say that many of these implementations will stay with us forever.

Greener urban planning and architecture

More and more people are demanding to live in greener and more open spaces. This should make us think about the need that human beings have for two fundamental issues: the relationship with their fellow human beings and with nature.

We have been forced to stay confined within four walls for many weeks, more than enough time to realise how important it is in our daily lives to be able to walk in a garden, a park or a forest.

Cities need to breathe, we need to incorporate nature into cities. The same applies to a smaller unit, the home. At this point the question arises: where should urban planning and architecture in cities be heading to? Perhaps it is time to redirect our efforts towards designing spaces that are much more attractive to our senses and that allow us to reconnect with nature.

What do you think?


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