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Artificial Intelligence and Architecture

There has been a lot of excitement about AI in the last year, and rightfully so, as it is a great way to generate many ideas very quickly and you can see the results of even just a few words put into a prompt. But the results can vary drastically depending on some of the variables used.

I presented this original rendering to the client to show the new front entryway with stairs, roof overhang with post and beam framing, and new facade with board and batten siding.

Here are the results when I uploaded the picture to with this prompt:

"Create a high-quality, photorealistic architectural rendering of a building. The rendering should feature plants, trees, and bushes around the building, adding natural beauty to the scene. However, ensure that the original structure with board and batten siding on the building are maintained and clearly visible. The surroundings should enhance the visual appeal without overshadowing the building's architecture."

You can see that it followed the overall shape and composition of the rendering, but slightly modified some of the materials. I don't know where it got the vines hanging from the guardrail, as it seems to have "invented" that part. But certainly, the sky and the trees look much more realistic, and the lighting is quite believable.

With the same prompt, I modified the similarity control to 75% and got the below image. You can see it deleted some of the guardrail and blended it in with the siding, and changed some of the shadows and materials.

When I plugged the same prompt and image into Midjourney, it completely disregarded the overall composition and gave me the image below. It maintained the overall style, but invented it's own composition and setting.

I did another one with a different rendering to see the results. Here is the original home and rendering of the extended porch covering I presented to the client.

When I put in the prompt:

"Create a high-quality photorealistic rendering from this picture in architectural perspective, residential villa, Mediterranean style, sunny"

This is what I got:

The results are quite interesting. If the client was open to a completely new look, new clay tile roof, and cladding her home in marble, this would be a great design! However, artificial intelligence renderings must be viewed closely using real intelligence. The cost implications of this design would have been astronomical, and any rendering produced using AI should be reviewed closely by an architect so you can understand and interpret the results.

If you are interested in pursuing any online-generated designs, please consult with a qualified architect before undertaking the project!

David M. Kelley, AIA

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