Making of : Recom / Schnabel / Evers


We always try to squeeze in personal projects between one commission and the next. When doing them we loveto collaborate, especially with photographers! So when Thorsten at Recom thought to build some stunning CG architecture with a CG car, he contacted photographer and mountain lover Michael Schnabel together with architect Fabian Evers. Excited by the idea, they began to look for a spectacular location in the mountains where it would be possible to virtually build the imaginary home of a car obsessed art collector. After viewing and scanning the mountainous landscape via satellite imagery, they travelled to the San Bernardino Pass in the Swiss Alps, located only a few hours away from our Stuttgart studio.

In the planning phase they first looked at a topographic model of a 20 square kilometer part of the pass to plan and start building up the architecture (see screenshot below). In the meantime architect Fabian started producing some elevation plans and drawings for the building.

Screenshot 2014-11-20 20.34.44 Topography of the San Bernardino pass.

Bildschirmfoto 2013-11-22 um 13.30.02Elevation Plans made by architect Fabian Evers.

MaterialExperimenting with different materials for the surface of the architecture.

screenshot-09_13-25-42Initial pre-visualization of the architecture.

Viewpoint18 viewpoint19 Viewpoint21_SHIFTPositioning the architecture in relation to the topography of the pass.

Thorsten, Michael, Fabian and few other members of the crew went to the San Bernardino Pass and spent 3 days there for the shoot. CG artist Johann also took with them the CAD data of the house-model and they started to scout for the precise place where it should be built. They even sent up an octocopter to capture aerial back plates and then when the locations were decided, Thorsten shot HDR Spheres to recreate identical lighting for the 3D model of the architecture and cars.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMichael (on the left) with the crew location scouting.

CGI_Projekt_Making_Of_087Michael with previs of the car and architecture.

IMG_4043Sending up the octocopter for bird-eye views.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThorsten Jasper Weese shooting HDR spheres.

IMG_4064Our well-travelled 3D calibration cube used to match the perspective of the 3D scene with the photographic back-plate.

CGI_Projekt_Making_Of_082Discussing shots on location.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMichael Schnabel and assistant during final shoot session.

Previs_gridA selection of viewpoints made by our CG artists before deciding the final camera angle and composition.

Below is a computer simulation of the course of the sun throughout the day.


For the interior shots, all furniture and props were modelled by the CG Artists or brought in from the 3D database. Stylist Petra Langemeyer also helped our guys to choose some beautiful design objects. It all looks so real!

Check all the other images here!


Photographer: Michael Schnabel
CGI Director: Thorsten Jasper Weese
CGI Artist: Johann Oswald
Post Artists: Fabian Stehle, Jonas Braukmann. Jonas Disch, Thorsten Jasper Weese.
Virtual Architect: Fabian Evers
Octocoper-Support: Etienne Fuchs
Styling: Petra Langemeyer