Carey House by Henry Goss: "Visualisation
played a vital role in design decisions"


London architect Henry Goss has revealed how photo-realistic and 3D visualisations helped shape his design for this house in Hertfordshire, England, which is also the first output from the renderings studio he recently launched with fellow artist Peter Guthrie (+ slideshow).

Carey House by Henry Goss

Henry Goss, who has produced life-like renderings for many of his projects, designed the two-storey Carey House for a couple planning to build a home themselves.

The architect said that three-dimensional modelling helped him to work out the lighting and proportions of the property.

Carey House by Henry Goss

"As an architect I have always considered 3D visualisation as an important element in my armoury of design tools," said the architect, whose current projects also include a concrete and glass house on England's south coast.

Carey House by Henry Goss

"This project is a classic case where visualisation played a vital role in early design decisions including daylight studies, sunlight position at different times of day and year, and material and spatial quality," he told Dezeen.

Carey House by Henry Goss

The house is conceived as a lightweight timber pavilion in a woodland setting, made up of two volumes that overlap to frame a south-facing courtyard.

A concrete plinth will anchor the building to its site. Above this, a system of Douglas fir louvres will offer shading to the facades, particularly the glazed southern elevation that will allow the living and dining space to open out to the courtyard.

Carey House by Henry Goss

In the renderings, these surfaces are shown in the early morning and late afternoon. Goss said these times were chosen to show off the light and shadow qualities of his design.

Carey House by Henry Goss

"Every project we do is different and requires visualising in different ways," he explained. "With our new company, The Boundary, Peter Guthrie and I aim to develop this approach of visualising architecture in a manner appropriate to the design and setting."

Carey House by Henry Goss

"It can be a challenge convincing sunshine-worshipping developers and marketing departments that utopian imagery isn't always what will portray a building, or indeed a 'lifestyle', in its best light, but it is something that we feel has provided some extremely fruitful results over the past few years," he added.

Carey House by Henry Goss

As well as a generous living space, Carey House will feature a dining space for up to 12 people, a home cinema and games room, a top-lit swimming pool and a gym.

Upstairs, a master bedroom suite will sit at the east end of the plan, opposite a library and two smaller bedrooms.

Carey House by Henry Goss

"There was no stipulation regarding materials or forms, just an indication of spaces required," said Goss. "How the clients live and use space is always the most important aspect of the brief."

Carey House by Henry Goss

"This can then be explored though design with an aim to capture and enhance the essence of a lifestyle in ways which could never have been documented in any bald recitation of a written brief. Similarly, the visualisations aim not so much to record fact but rather evoke feeling, i.e. how a space might feel rather than what a space might look like," he said.

Carey House by Henry Goss
Ground floor plan – click for larger image
Carey House by Henry Goss
First floor plan – click for larger image
  • The two most handsome men in Architectural visualisation have started a studio together? AMAZING.

    • Pr Gumby

      Luxigon & Mir?

    • P_Guthrie

      Andy, how many times do we have to tell you, complementing our looks is not going to get you that promotion you’ve been angling for.

  • Rafel

    Architecture for the super rich. Not bad as an exercise, but a provocation to most people.

    • scot sims

      Most people won’t pay the architects rent.

  • madbarka

    Just wondering what ballast is?

    • Ralph Kent

      Something to weigh things down. Think gravel.

      • madbarka

        Yes quite. My original comment was “Just wondering what BALLUST is?” – joking on the obvious typo on the drawings. Thanks for the moderation Dezeen… obviously no place for humour.

        • Hi,

          Sorry about that! Please keep the humour coming. We’ll spot it next time ;)

          Kind regards,


          • Pr Gumby

            Don’t you think it would be more appropriate to not publish a comment you don’t approve of rather than turn it into something else?

  • Elliot Morgan


  • Dreamer

    Who needs reality when we have hyper-realistic renderings such as these? I think it’s time I purchased Google Glass and sat in my sh*tty flat in London, looking out to the beautiful countryside from an imagined mansion with my beautiful wife who goes by the name of Scarlett Johansson.

  • Strom Architects

    Nevermind the CGI; it’s a good piece of architecture too.

    • Matt

      Agreed Mags, lovely stuff.

  • fred

    Proof will be how this item looks when complete; the dialogue between abstract and real. At least that’s what was presented as this method’s initial premise.

  • Hi,

    I thought it was a
    simple spelling error.

    Kind regards,


  • marc

    The Tesla ad pic is also a render. Pretty and better than these ones.

  • It’s Nearly Spring

    Great visuals, but it is a shame that the architect is spending less and less design time without using his or her hands physically to actually make something with either drawing or model.

    Visualisation can come in too early in a project in my opinion, which can restrict much of the design despite what it does offer.