Robert Rowe
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House of the Future

The Monsanto House of the Future (also known as the Home of the Future) appeared at Disneyland from 1957 to 1967.  This plastic marvel was visited by more than 6 million guests in its ten-year run.

The rendering, produced in SketchUp, was a challenge due to the compound curving nature of the structure.  What is easily molded in plastic can be somewhat more difficult using computer aided drafting.  Much of the interior is completed on this 'work in progress' as can be seen to the left.  The logo was added using Photoshop.  Still to come is the garden of the future that surrounds the house.

McDonald's Classic Walk-up Stand

This is classic McDonald's walk-up stand with its towering golden arches.  The inspirational 'Googie' styling allowed the entire building to serve as a marquee to passing motorist.  The original was perfectly suited to California highways, but the lack of indoor dining was not as well suited to the growing franchise as it moved across the country.

This rendering was produced in SketchUp.  The text was added in Photoshop.

The Haunted Hotel

The 'Haunted Hotel' was created for a client in the hotel industry as office decoration during the Halloween season.  It was created in SketchUp with lightening and lighting effects added through Photoshop.

Lost in Space

This is the interior of the spaceship as seen in the unaired pilot for 'Lost in Space,' 'No Place to Hide.'  Although the spaceship would later be christened the Jupiter 2, it was called the Gemini 12 in this version.  Only the most die-hard of fans can tell what's different.  It was created in SketchUp with the logo and some highlights added through Photoshop.

The Munster’s Home

The Munster’s Home was originally constructed at Universal Studios on Stage 12 in 1946 for the feature ‘So Goes My Love’ starring Don Ameche and Myrna Loy.  In the film Don Ameche’s character, Hiram Maxim, lives next door to Myrna Loy.  The façade is therefore referred to as the Maxim home.

In 1950 a new Universal backlot street was created near the Los Angeles river and the Maxim house, slightly redesigned, was one of four homes hiding the river’s edge.  In 1964 the house was greatly redesigned to act as the home of Herman and Lily Munster.

This image was created in SketchUp using studio drawings as reference to main details of the original Maxim home.  Many of the additional details from the Munsters conversion needed to be estimate from reference photos and television episodes.  Although this image focuses on only two sides of the house the model includes the other sides of the house and a garage.  The lightening strike and the logo have been added in Photoshop.

The Stephens’ Home

The home of Darrin and Samantha Stephens used in the television show 'Bewitched' is located on the backlot of the Warner Brothers ranch.  Just down the block from this house (not across the street) is the home of snoopy neighbor Gladys Kravitz.  The Kravitz home also became the home of the Partridge family.

This image was created in SketchUp using dimensions that were either field measured (off the backlot set), or estimates from other reference photos and images.  This entire model was created in just three days.  The logo was added in Photoshop.

Gotham City Plaza

The Gotham City Plaza was originally constructed on the 20th Century Fox studio lot in the mid 60s.  These
façades stood in front of existing studio facilities and created a modern ‘Century City’ like area referred to on drawings as ‘New York Street,’ although this area was very unlike New York at the time.

Gotham City Plaza was featured in the ‘Batman’ television series, the ‘Batman’ movie released in 1966, and in ‘The Green Hornet’ television series.  In ‘The Green Hornet’ the entrance to the Daily Sentinel newspaper office and television studio was through the door shown at the rear of the Batmobile.  Britt Reid (aka The Green Hornet) was the publisher and owner of the Daily Sentinel and DSTV.

This SketchUp drawing was created using original studio drawings for dimensions.  Color comes from limited reference photos.  To add additional life to the image a ‘Batmobile’ was found in Google’s 3D Warehouse.  The Batmobile, or Batmovel was created by Marcelo Negrão and it appears to be quite accurate.  The highlights on the car were added in Photoshop along with the logo.

Disneyland Hotel

The Disneyland Hotel began a series of two story motel-like units.  In 1962 the first eleven-story tower building was constructed.  This building would later have an extension doubling the width and number of rooms, before two more towers were built.

The SketchUp rendering is based entirely upon published dimensions and guesswork.

Way… Way Out!

This Moon Station was designed for a 20th Century Fox Jerry Lewis comedy co-starring Connie Stevens.  In the film the newlywed couple is sent to the moon to watch the Earth’s weather and get to know each other all at the same time.  Soon after production ended Irwin Allen found use for the various parts of the station in his television series ‘Lost in Space’. 

This SketchUp illustration was created using studio drawings for the details. Sadly, drawings were not available illustrating the exact positioning of the various modules.  In SketchUp the modules were overlaid onto photographs of various angles in order to estimate the module orientation.  The starfield and Earth were added in Photoshop.

UPDATE: Way… Way Out!

This is an updated version of the Moon Station.  New textures have been added and an entire lunar landscape is here too.  Even the Earth is a cutout shape suspended in front of a backdrop.  Other angles even show how a hanging miniature was used on the stage to film landing and takeoff scenes.