Photographer Accurately Simulates Apartment Views Using ikeGPS
This is a guest post by Dean Zillwood, Owner of Dean Zillwood Photography, Ltd. in Wellington, NZ.
On a recent photographic assignment for an exclusive, soon to be built apartment complex, my assistant and I were suspended eleven stories high in a crane’s cage over the building site. I utilised ‘IKE’ to accurately record GPS coordinates and to help position me so I could photograph the stunning views over Wellington’s picturesque waterfront.
The images are to showcase to potential buyers the views from the exclusive apartment living rooms on each level, either as ‘hero’ shots or as backgrounds in the printed, online and video collaterals. The apartment interiors and exteriors were digitally rendered to showcase the potential look and feel along with the building’s relationship with the environment.
I had not previously required such accuracy, so this project was the perfect opportunity to learn about the advantages of using GPS coordinates on my images. I called Leon Toorenburg from Surveylab Group to advise me on the best way to achieve the task. His answer was simple -- “Use IKE” – and it turned out to be the perfect solution; it also helped to impress my client with the most accurate measurements possible.
A 55 tonne crane with a fixed cage was used to hoist me up to various positions which corresponded to the correct GPS coordinates of the centre of all the eleven apartments on each of the five levels. The photographs I took encompassed 360 degrees up to a height of 38 metres above ground level; the trick being to move between ‘invisible apartments’ using IKE to guide me. The images from each apartment were stitched together in Photoshop or dropped into the renders as backgrounds. Through this process I could establish the HEIGHT, LONGITUDE, LATITUDE and COMPASS BEARING for each vantage point and my assistant could add the information into the Meta Data of the images.
Breathtaking Views From a Simulated Apartment
The process of learning to use IKE was easy; a single lesson from Leon and we were up to speed. IKE can be hand-held safely while aloft but for safety reasons it was mounted on a tripod when not in use. It was also tethered to the metal cage, which didn’t cause any inconsistency with its measurements.
Another part of my brief was to photograph from street level and from surrounding buildings facing the construction site on which the building will be situated; the building would then be rendered into the image as if it already exists. The fact that IKE is so portable with its data stored on an SD card meant that the rendering process could be carried out accurately as I was able to pinpoint the position from which every photograph had been taken and supply all details of that position.
The process was simple, effective and accurate. My thanks and appreciation goes to Surveylab Group and in particular Leon Toorenburg.
The project is called ‘One Market Lane’ and you can see more of the images online at www.onemarketlane.co.nz.
Dean Zillwood Photography Ltd.
P: +64 4 9730070
M: +64 0 274 412321