We'll begin at the end - Here's the final rendering showing the entry bridge/main road into a proposed "new-town" development in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. This project was completed in collaboration with Yong-Woo Lee at WRT Architects in Philadelphia.
I started with this mock-up, supplied by the client, created using photos and Sketchup models.  Since this rendering consisted of mostly foreground "soft" items and the structures were smaller and in the distance, I thought it would be faster to "wing-it" and draw what I needed by hand instead of spending extra time to model and re-create the view in Sketchup.
One initial request was to move the bridge over, "opening" up the water in front of the Boathouse and reinforcing the sense of "entrance" into the area as opposed to the road cutting across the path of the viewer. Traditional boats were researched and sketched into the scene.
Here the buildings are sketched in, as well as some cars which were rendered out from Sketchup to match the angle of the scene.  The various sketches that begin to fill out the scene were layered up in Photoshop, moved and sized accordingly - making changes and adjustments easy as the view takes shape.
Once the building sketch was approved, I painted under the linework to fill out the buildings.  This was done fairly loosely, relying on the linework to define the detail.
Next the trees, water, and landscape were roughed in, and a sky developed based on photos from the site.
Here's a "behind the scenes" look at the base photos used to create the water and landscape.
Revisions to trees and cars.  Mid-level cars were replaced with luxury brands to acknowledge the aspirations of the developers.
Fine tuning to the road and cars, people painted in on the boats, landscape elements added.
Nearly done! - Refinements made throughout the rendering.  People added, birds added, color adjustments, textures.
A few more color and detail refinements and it's a wrap.  Below are a couple of close-up shots of the final image.
Textures are made with a combination of scanned watercolor paintings (added in Overlay mode) and custom Photoshop brushes giving light sprays of dots for color bounce.  Additional watercolor effects are added by using the "find edges" filter on key elements.
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