Taking in the Full View
by Jenn Rein
Above:A hand-rendered schematic design for a 2,800-square-foot custom residence.
For Dubbe Moulder Architects, a design win comes when a client’s input has been considered thoughtfully, and an outcome satisfies both the aesthetic and structural needs of a project. With this in mind, the planning process is laid bare, and transparency is a priority.
A 3D rendering of the same home’s entry perspective offers a realistic look and feel.
Part of the advantage to working with Dubbe Moulder Architects (DMA) on a project is the approach to concept-building that takes place during the idea generating process. Partners Kurt Dubbe and Chris Moulder are committed to a classic angle, and will hand-render much of what is expected, while the firm’s supporting team will dive into creating digital schematics. For the partners, it is still considered an integral and necessary part of the process to hand-render a design, giving the client a chance to see the architect’s hand at play in the process. This artful approach lends character and depth to exterior finishes in a way that cannot be accomplished digitally. A marriage of perspectives aids the client in determining what will be best in order to take an idea to the finish line.
In today’s digitized world, understanding what can be achieved with the creative use of technology keeps a design firm such as DMA in a forward-thinking position. With that in mind, using 3D modeling when communicating with a client can often move a project into approval with better efficiency. The manner in which the technology is used allows everyone involved—from the client to the interior design team, to the contractors and subcontractors—to establish realistic expectations around the effort.
The manner in which new construction will be positioned on a build site has to acknowledge the slope of the lot, the height of the structure, and how a home might live in harmony with the view. Using 3D modeling to visualize from multiple angles and perspectives allows the firm to experiment and brainstorm different ideas. This includes the ability to review exterior styling options.
“It’s important to remember that the design is not complete until the build starts, but this software gives us an advantage throughout the whole project. When a client is better enabled to see what we are envisioning, it’s a smoother process,” says Kurt Dubbe.
“We want our client’s input, and any way we can present the concept to them to help answer their questions moves the project along. In the end, we want them to know that we were listening.”
–Chris Moulder, AIA, Principal & Founder
A Regional Reputation
A long-held reputation in the Jackson Hole community has enabled DMA to grow a portfolio of success throughout the region. Exterior finishes on a DMA design tend to be more textural, and a passion for the materials that define the Jackson landscape make their work a reflection of the culture. At the same time, the firm understands the need to prioritize a client’s vision, and the crucial nature of what it means to collaborate to that end.
“We are going to make adjustments based on what a client wants and how to best answer a design question,” explains Chris Moulder. “We want their input, and any way we can present the concept to them to help answer their questions moves the project along. In the end, we want them to know that we were listening.”
Using an ability to draw from each of their clients as far as what is needed for a specific build, DMA focuses on the unique details that have a chance to live within the final harmony of the space. Both partners work from the context of backgrounds that embrace a classic approach, using shared knowledge of what makes a space sing. With the added bonus of having worked in Jackson Hole and Teton Valley for over 30 years, there is special knowledge within this partnership of how a dwelling can gracefully occupy the landscape on which it rests.
3D renderings are helpful in illustrating winter conditions and the slope of a building site.
The high-altitude environment of Jackson tends to lend special light and atmosphere to those astonishing locations that might play host to a home. Once a property owner is able to absorb the potential, it may seem a little overwhelming. Engaging with DMA brings clarity to the decision-making that will bring out the best in a property, resulting in the embodiment of a homeowner’s dream.
A 3D rendering brings to life a martial arts studio with a climbing wall.
A 3D rendering showing detailed spatial relationships and interior finish options.
Honoring the Details
Members of this team get excited about how their work unfolds and is a testament to their commitment to their work. Jolene Moulder, who plays the dual role of office manager and bookkeeper, speaks to her husband’s remarks on collaboration. “Providing as many ways to demonstrate how a project will look in its final stage gives the client a sense of peace,” she says. “They can see it in the drawings, in the schematics, and in the 3D modeling. This gives more space for questions based on visual context, and everyone comes out feeling better informed.”
The firm’s collective drive is based on how rewarding it can be to bring ideas to life, and to be led into an exchange that will result in a tangible manifestation of those ideas. The tools that are kept in play have everything to do with expertise, but also with foresight. Again, the 3D modeling is acknowledged as more than just a fun way to see a project. “We can assign seasonal lighting to this animation,” Jolene says. “The client will know how their property will look throughout the seasons, how the home will catch light, and where to place shade on the exterior.”
Every aspect of what DMA is providing during those stages of idea germination sets a tone for successful project completion. Viewing a project-in-progress using multiple methods is an opportunity to see with greater depth and accuracy the host of details that comprise the whole. This is all meant to give the client a sense of ownership and license over the process.
“Providing as many ways to demonstrate how a project will look in its final stage gives the client a sense of peace. They can see it in the drawings, in the schematics, and in the 3D modeling. This gives more space for questions based on visual context, and everyone comes out feeling better informed.”
–Jolene Moulder, Office Manager
Line drawings are made early in the 3D modeling process.
A final rendering demonstrates evening light on the materials and gives a sense of the depth of the space on its sloped lot.
A 3D model superimposed over a photo of the site gives clients an accurate representation of their final build.
A Dream Home Fulfilled
Once a project is underway at the firm, each interaction reaps the reward of having an experienced team that also understands the value of community. Their own contributions, even in the name of offering the best options for their clientele, can have a positive effect. “Fundraising campaigns for some of our clients have really been helped by the graphics we offer. Our 3D models for Teton Youth and Family Services for the Van Vleck House and Hirshfield Center were used on banners and posters, in newspaper articles, and on social media. This assisted with fundraising and their capital campaign events,” explains Jolene.
“It’s important to remember that the design is not complete until the build starts, but this software gives us an advantage throughout the whole project. When a client is better enabled to see what we are envisioning, it’s a smoother process.”
–Kurt Dubbe, AIA, Principal & Founder
DMA’s longstanding presence in the Jackson Hole community lends deep value to the input they are ready to offer. A well-designed home is the product of multiple voices, all working toward the shared intent to imbue a space with grace, character, and aesthetic quality. DMA’s willingness to go the extra mile in order to make a collaboration work defines their ongoing success.