Tag Archives: Photoshop

Photomerge the Missing Years

It has been close to two years since I posted anything of recent relevance. 

Since I went on that epic trip overseas I have sort of rested on my laurels and continued to post images from a trip I took two years ago. Since then life has continued to roll on. I finished school and got a big boy job. And other important life things happened (wink wink). So what happened during those missing two years??? Well… here they are in photomerge form. 

Salt Lake City, Utah;


Chicago, Illinois;


Washington D.C.;


Shoshone Falls, Idaho:


Heber Valley, Utah;


Houston, Texas;


This is only showing places where I remembered to take photomerge style photos… much much more happened. But I don’t have time to talk about that now.

When one challenge is overcome, its time to face the next one… Wish me luck.


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Communication Breakdown

I like making pretty pictures.

In every good architecture presentation (specifically in an academic setting) there are a few key drawings that help communicate the design of a building/landscape/object/whatever. Site plans, floor plans, sections, elevations, axonometric drawings and diagrams all help to communicate what the building looks like and why it looks like that. But architecture is much more than just looks. Architecture also feels a certain way.

With all of that said, my favorite part of the architecture design process is creating renderings that express how a building should feel. So, I’ve decided to use examples from my summer studio to share three different renderings of (essentially) the same building done in three different styles.

Midterm Rendering

This first  rendering was made for the studio midterm. It is left purposefully abstract because… well… I didn’t know much about the building yet! It is essentially a Sketchup massing model with some light overdrawing and material overlay. Some things are strategically detailed while others are strategically covered by women on horseback or sheep in the pasture. At this point in the design process, the important thing to show was how the building sat in the landscape and the major design moves I was making (a long gabled structure intersected by projecting volumes).

If you think that is abstract, then hang on…

Abstract Exterior

I am a HUGE fan of very abstract renderings, though I will admit I am no where near a master. There is a very fine balance between what should be illustrated and what should be left out that I find very difficult to manage. This illustration is again attempting to show the major design decisions I’ve made while leaving out any design details I have yet to consider. Someday I would love to do an extremely abstract, collage-like rendering and proudly pin it up for my final presentation… but that didn’t happen this summer…

Instead, I went with my go-to rendering style:

Exterior Rendering For Portfolio

The above image has become a pretty typical rendering style for me: a basic Revit rendering for the building followed by a fairly intensive layer of Photoshop love. 

My portfolio is now filled with renderings that look like this, which receives mixed reviews. Some say, “Wow! Look at that chipmunk!” Others exclaim, “Ooh! Nice! That is the kind of meadow I want to be in! It just looks like it feels nice!” Some even say, “That looks pretty goofy…”

The point is, it doesn’t matter really what the image looks like. There are a dozen ways to represent the same project, and everyone will like a different style. What matters is what the image is communicating

In this case: This wool production facility is the most heavenly most over-rendered place on earth. If you are good, when you die you will go here.

Design Work



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Manual Panorama

Manual Panorama_Willamette Hall


adjective; (of a machine or device) worked by hand, not automatically or electronically.


noun; an unbroken view of the whole region surrounding an observer.

Manual Panorama_Franklin Boulevard

In these modern times, there are many ways to create a panoramic image. Many digital cameras have a panorama feature built in, including cell-phone cameras. Photoshop has a “Photomerge” feature that allows you to easily take any series of photos and combine them into a panorama. However, very frequently panoramas are a very wide strip of horizon that show a fair amount of lateral information, but don’t necessarily show “an unbroken view of the whole region surrounding an observer.” So, every once in a while I like to take the time to make a manual panorama.

Manual Panorama_Cave of the Winds

When manually placing and distorting images in Photoshop, you can start to build a suggestion of dimension within a flat image.

Manual Panorama_Orange Sky

Manually creating a panorama requires you to make decisions about what you want to present as important within the image. Photo color and exposure can be adjusted and layered in a certain order to create a hierarchy of elements within the image (ie foreground vs background, shadow vs highlight, etc.).

Manual Panorama_Just outside Portland

The density of placed images can make a sense of importance within the panorama. Also, excluding parts of the panorama can be just as effective.

Manual Panorama_Crater Lake

Distortion is inevitable, but again helps you to illustrate what you think is important (and should not be distorted) and what is unimportant (and can be skewed or covered up).

Manual Panorama_Crescent City

If done very carefully, manual panoramas can give a viewer an idea of what it is like to be in the image.

Manual Panorama_Gold Bluffs Beach

You can even use this technique to illustrate where the viewer is standing within the image.

If you have the patience and the time, try making your own Manual Panorama! (or whatever other name you know this technique by)

Try not to get lost in the pixels though… It is a challenge…

Design Work

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Last term I took an electric lighting course in which we were required to design and fabricate a luminaire. My Professor, Virginia Cartwright, also offered to sponsor students to participate in the Robert Bruce Thompson Annual Student Light Fixture Design Competition. I had never participated in a design competition, so I decided to give a shot:

Lightscape_Omar Hason_Chandelier Design_Mock Up

You can see the entire design brief and requirements by clicking here, but to make a long story short, the design competition required that you make a chandelier for a high-end hotel chain located in the mid-west using LED or OLED technology. The following are the boards I submitted for the competition which quickly summarizes my design and ideas:

The main concept was to use local topography to inspire a form that could be repeated regionally but still be unique/different in every hotel.

Lightscape_Omar Hason_Chandelier Design

Using the geographic form to provide flexible lighting for an inherently flexible space was achieved by using OLED’s and LED tape in tandem to create a variety of lighting experiences and qualities.

Lightscape_Omar Hason_Chandelier Design2

To allow the chandelier to be easily constructed and cleaned the structure was designed as a modular system.

Lightscape_Omar Hason_Chandelier Design3

Lastly, a mock-up was constructed to illustrate ideas about how the light may affect space.

Lightscape_Omar Hason_Chandelier Design4

After countless soldering iron burns and a little sleep deprivation, a little good news came my way:

The Lightscape Chandelier received second place in the design competition!

You can visit the competition’s website and see Lightscape alongside some beautiful entries from other participants.

Very special thanks to Virginia Cartwright for helping me throughout the process and for turning me on to this competition. Also, thanks to the design competition’s panel for selecting my project. Lastly, thanks to my pal Betsy for being the “Vanna White” of the 1/2 scale mock-up. 

I’d also like to thank the academy…

Design Work

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Fire Station 2: The {Un}Finished Product

One of the perils of attending an architecture school that operates on the quarter system is that I never have enough time to refine my studio projects. Even in undergrad, I used to always take time to re-polish my projects after receiving vital feedback during my final reviews. After some refinement, the project I completed this past term will likely find its way into my portfolio. Currently, I have no time to make any adjustments. However, my lack of free-time presents a blogging opportunity:

A moment to share a project in a semi-polished state.

It is raw. It is unresolved. It is a snapshot of the design process that is rarely documented (the “almost done” phase). 

Fire Station 2:

Night Render

The city of Medford has plans to re-design many of their current fire stations, with the exception of Fire Station 2. The site and facilities as they exist are far too small for this station to function properly and serve its civic duty. So, Fire Station 2 is receiving a totally new site and calls for a totally new building.

Exterior 2

For this new site and new building, three design goals were developed and pursued:

Community: Supporting the fire station’s role as a civic building.

Home: A place where fire fighters will spend 1/3 of their lives should provide opportunities for social interaction, work, rest, and solitude.

Light: To avoid re-creating existing conditions, an emphasis should be placed on day-lighting solutions to create a gradient of spaces with different qualities.

Final Boards.indd

After organizing the program into “Public”, “Private-Live”, and “Private-Work”, they are arranged into masses as follows:

Final Boards.indd

This arrangement of masses creates a plan that orients all of the volumes from a central atrium.

Final Boards.indd

Lifting the building upon a civic platform creates a separation between the public parking and the private live/work spaces, creates opportunities for controlling or capturing storm-water run-off, and creates moments of compression and release in the public entry.

North Elevation:


An angled louver wall allows the building to become transparent from the main entrance, but closes off full-direct views of interior spaces when viewed from closer vantage points.

East Elevation:


In section, the various volumes of the building feed off of daylight from the central glass atrium that acts as a stitch between the different masses.

Section 1

The variety of sloped roofs allow opportunities for water collection, natural ventilation, and day-lighting.

Final Boards.indd

Combing the above factors and massing strategies creates quality day-lighting in spaces that would benefit from it and also creates a gradient of volumes conducive to a variety of live/work tasks.

Final Boards.indd

This spatial grain is designed with an idea about “moments of pause” in mind. This simply means that a fire fighter’s daily routine should be filled with opportunities for a kind of meditation or mental/emotional rest.

Work Space/Office:




“The Dock”/Outdoor Circulation:


Laundry Room:

Laundry Room

The entire building’s structure is designed in two parts. One part is structural walls that create space and support sloped roofs. The other part serves as structure and a day-lighting device simultaneously.

structure diagrams

The second structure, or “Fin Structure” occurs in both the apparatus bay and the central atrium. Deep, x-like forms help to diffuse direct light.

Apparatus Bay:

Apparatus Bay

More importantly, the structure has the ability to reach above the surrounding volumes and pull in-direct light down into the space.

sun study

And it helps to create this money-shot rendering:

Central Atrium: 


This project was fun and small scale, but was rushed as usual. I am pleased with what I created, but received a lot of great feedback (praise and criticism) that I think will help me to make a much stronger final product.

Since I do plan on altering a few things, feedback is encouraged and appreciated! Don’t be afraid to hurt my feelings a little bit!

Or a lot if you think I deserve it… *Gulp*

Design Work


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Happy Holidays

It is the time of year for family, snow, merriment and other terrible things. 

HAH! Only joking.

Holiday Card

This Buff has flown south (technically southeast) for a small piece of this winter and it is good to be home, even if only for a moment. Regardless of what you do or do not celebrate, I hope the season brings you closer to your loved ones and is filled with happiness.

^^I know that sounds cheesy, but I’m being genuine. Zero sarcasm, I promise!^^

I’ll be back in 2014.

Design Work

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Shotgun Boredom

I’ve settled in Oregon rather quickly and decided to post some of my passenger seat photos as well as a re-cap of the journey. I promise I’ll stop writing with photos soon…












In Oregon, safe and sound, with more trip photos to come (whether you like it or not).

I can’t wait to start school!


Design Work

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Hulk House

A little while ago I saw a design competition that’s premise was to design a residence for a single person of significance to you (ie a historical figure, family member, fictional character, etc.). Shortly after seeing this, I decided to fuse two of my passions: ARCHITECTURE + COMIC BOOKS.

I decided to start designing homes for super heroes. As time passed, I made very slow progress on the project and jumped from one hero to another. Realizing that I was running out of time before I left to attend grad school, I decided to give myself one week to design and complete final production for this project. May I present to you…



The Hulk is an incredibly destructive force that is fueled by anger. However, inside this monster is an incredibly established scientist, Dr. Bruce Banner, who specializes in gamma radiation. The main concept behind this home was to provide a place for Dr. Banner to retreat to after a Hulk episode. The home should provide adequate facilities to keep Dr. Banner away from civilization until he has fully recovered physically and mentally from his outburst. This means that the home should provide opportunities to continue a normal life without human interaction, spaces to pursue hobbies and kill time, spaces to continue research, areas that provide sustenance, and spaces for meditation/relaxation. The programmatic requirements are as follows:


As Dr. Banner moves through his home, it should become progressively more removed and private so that he may avoid sudden fits of anger and is able to retreat to spaces that allow for different degrees of rest and solitude. The shape/form of the building is derived from the very gamma waves that created the Hulk:


Glazing that is continuously less transparent allows each wave to take on different light qualities and levels of privacy. As Dr. Banner progresses through his house, each wave is more removed from the outside world than the last.


The design elements and functions of each wave are described in the following image:

Hulk House AXON

For a one week design process, I think this project turned out rather well. Perhaps it isn’t portfolio worthy, but it was a good warm-up for returning back to school. It really forced me to think about what aspects of the architecture are most worth my time to present in order to convey the overall design ideas and concepts. Although I didn’t produce any plans or sections, I think the above diagrams show why the residence looks the way it does, the axon shows how it functions, and the rendering shows how the home will feel.

Some fun things to note: If you look closely at the above rendering, you will see that the Hulk is actually standing in the flex space, possibly trying to calm down and prevent a destructive episode. Also, in the living space, you can see that The Avengers film seems to be playing on a loop. 

Design Work

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Print Media Madness

After about a year and a half of working, waiting, and re-working, I finally managed to get my studio 4 book, Internal Conversation, printed. You can see the whole book by clicking here.

It was actually the first book I ever designed, and I’m very excited to add it to my collection. The premise of the book was that inside my head were two different people: Left-brain and Right-brain. Left-Brain is rational, measured, and strict. Right-brain is creative, extravagant, and fun. Throughout the design process, the two parts engage in a conversation of checks and balances to create an end product that is both beautifully unique and sensibly realistic.


The cover was re-designed to better match the theme of the book. It depicts the two sides of my brain and is printed on a reversible dust jacket. That way the reader can decide which side to side with!

You know? Come to think about it, the whole concept behind the book makes me seem rather troubled… No it doesn’t… Yes it does… Shut up! What do you know?… Ssshhh! People are staring!…

Perhaps the nicest thing about finally having a printed version of this book is that it depicts a large amount of work that never really made it into my portfolio. Here are a few select spreads:

sample pages

Another thing I’ve worked on recently is campaign posters. I happened to have two younger cousins running for office at their respective schools at the same time, and was asked to help them out the very same weekend. So the results are very similar. Lots of Helvetica.


Lately I’ve been a big fan of writing with images. It makes the text more aesthetically interesting while emphasizing the message.

house council

I’m also very happy to say that both cousins won the positions they were campaigning for!

Now, I’m not saying that it was because my posters were so amazing. Buuuttt I am expecting a call from future presidential candidates in 2016.

Design Work

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Making Moves Part Trois: Re-imagine the Brand

It has been well over a year since I started free-lancing as a architectural/graphic/photographic design person, which means that the company (if you can call it that) is over a year old as well. As I have grown as a designer and gained experience in the real world, my brand has grown with me. 

I also recently ran out of business cards, giving me an opportunity to re-imagine the way I present myself. Rather than a range of colors with grid-like, sketchy lines behind them, I thought I’d attempt to share more about myself as I make first impressions on people. Since I operate as a sort-of jack-of-all-trades, I used moo.com and a series of images I’ve created over the past year or so to create these new-and-improved business cards.

business cards

Annnddd… Since I like to over-do everything, I decided I’d also create a bunch of iPhone wallpapers for myself.


Annnnddd…. Once I made a series of iPhone wallpapers, I paused for a snack. Then made more.

iphone 2

Gotta represent, right?

Design Work

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