Inspo-Edmar Junior



Above is a selection of work by Edmar Junior. I can’t seem to find any information about him on his ArtStation site, but I really love his approach to digital painting. The perspective is so on point I actually thought these were models to start with! It was just little details in these paintings that inspired me to create some interesting knick knacks for our slums (to come). I especially like adding the greenery and natural elements, brining a little bit of life to the architecture.


Expanding our Horizons-Rio de Janeiro

After looking at the Indian slum of Dharavi, we decided we needed to look at somewhere with a little bit more height and contrast. The flat planes of Dharavi just seemed too simple, and weren’t visually exciting, so we have looked to the Favelas of Rio de Janeiro for inspiration.


Favelas are places increasingly recognized by planners and architects for their:

  • Low-rise, high density development
  • Pedestrian orientation
  • High use of bicycles & public transportation
  • Mixed use (homes above shops)
  • Residence close to workplace
  • Organic architecture (architecture evolves according to need)
  • New urbanism
  • Collective action
  • Intricate solidarity networks
  • Vibrant cultural production


85% of housing worldwide is built illegally. In highly urbanized Latin America, one third of all city dwellers live in informal conditions.


In the city of Rio, close to 1.5 million people – around 23-24% of the population – live in favelas. That’s comparable to the percentage living in affordable housing (public, rent controlled, cooperatives, community land trusts and other models) in major cities worldwide. Rio’s favelas are our affordable housing market. Rio has more favela residents than any other Brazilian city and, all together, Rio’s favelas would comprise the ninth largest city in the country.


There are over 1000 favelas in Rio. They range from newer or more challenged communities with slum-like conditions and a desire to resettle, to highly-functioning, vibrant neighborhoods determined to maintain their qualities and continue developing in their own extraordinary ways.


Rio’s oldest favela, Providência, was founded in 1897 within a decade of the abolition of slavery, next to the Port that received two million enslaved Africans (four times the number taken to the entire United States). 


According to a recent survey of six communities, 95% of favela homes are built of brick, concrete, and reinforced steel. 75% have tile floors. Residents put decades-worth of income and physical labor into the construction and consolidation of their homes. Peek inside and you’ll not only see the basics of electricity, running water and indoor plumbing, but a large-screen television and, in over 44% of cases, a computer. The increased presence of computers and other technologies allow for the fact that, as of 2012, nine out of ten favela residents under 30 could access the internet. 2015 data showed that favela residents are more technologically connected than those living on the “asphalt,” or formal city.

30% of Rio’s population is not connected to a formal sanitation system, which encompasses not only some of Rio’s favelas but also some of the city’s wealthier neighborhoods.


The 12 million people living in favelas across Brazil are responsible for generating R$38.6 billion per year in commercial activity, which is equivalent, for example, to the GDP of Bolivia. In 2001, 60% of favela residents belonged to the lower class and 37% to the middle class. By 2013, 32% were in the lower class and 65% in the middle class. This shift corresponded with a 54.7% increase in the average wage in favelas from 2003 (US$269) to 2013 (US$460). This is significantly greater than the national average wage increase of 37.9% over the same period.


According to a study released in 2013 by the Data Popular Institute, 85% of favela residents like the place where they live, 80% are proud of where they live and 70% would continue to live in their communities, even if their income doubled. A 2014 study by the Data Popular Institute, 94% of favela residents state that they are happy.

- Rio Favela Facts


Inspiration-The Slums

I found this lovely bit of animation that I think really emulates the style we would like to go for in our Slums idea.

^Over the battlefield – 2012 SBS(Seoul Broadcast System) Animation for election broadcast

Director                                                                June Lee
3D Animator                                                       Hyeyoung LEE
3D Modeler & texture                                      JIwoo park ,Yura An .Sunhye Oh
3D Lighting & Rendering                               Daeyong Kim
Compositor                                                         Jiwoo Park
The textures and detail in this piece of animation is beautiful, and I love how they managed to give it a old and battered look. I also love the use of lighting and camera angles throughout the short film, something I would like to incorporate into our own model.

A Change of Plan

After realising that another team was doing Venice as well as us, my team decided to mix things up a little. We have changed our idea to creating a floating city version of slums. Most people instantly think of beautiful and positive places when they can pick anywhere in the whole world to study, so we thought it would be a nice change to focus on an area that has an entirely different way of life to our own. Not to mention, it should be a good bit easier than trying to emulate Venetian architecture…sheesh! In particular, I have been focusing on collecting information about the Dharavi Slums of Mumbai.


A look inside the ‘Biggest Slum in the India’-Dharavi


^google image search ‘aerial dharavi’ 

To get into the right frame of mind for creating our own take of the slums, I watched a few documentaries on youtube about the slums of Mumbai. First, a ‘Dispatches’ documentary following the lives of children living and working on the streets. This film reveals the brutal reality of life on the streets and in the slums of Mumbai, following the daily struggles of four young children to survive.’

YouTube. (2017). Dispatches: The Street Kids Of Mumbai (Documentary) – Real Stories. [online] Available at: [Accessed 7 Mar. 2017].

Secondly, a documentary by Kevin McCloud ‘focused on the extreme day-to-day poverty endured by the local residents. Despite the hardships of life in the area, he discovers an extraordinary sense of spirit and community and reflects on the lessons Western cities could learn from its sustainable society.’

YouTube. (2017). Kevin McCloud: Slumming It (2010) – Ep1. [online] Available at: [Accessed 7 Mar. 2017].

The Stats

  • About 1 million people live within 1 square mile, making it the most densely populated area on planet earth
  • The average wage is between $1-2USD per day
  • Dharavi is the most productive slum in the world. It’s over a billion dollar industry
  • There is an average of 1 toilet per 1,450 people
  • 60% of the families have lived in Dharavi for 60+ years
  • The average life span is under 60 years old, due to disease and health concerns
  • The slum is divided into communities by religion, with 60% Hindu, 33% Muslim and 6% Christian and 1% other
  • Many businesses generate million dollar incomes (USD)
  • Only men are allowed to work in the factories
  • Rents here can be as low as 185 rupees ($4/£2.20) per month. As Dharavi is located between Mumbai’s two main suburban rail lines, most people find it convenient for work.

Images including aerial shots, maps, ideas for modelling and style can be found in the pinterest board below.



Floating City-Census Research

For this weeks homework, we have been asked to collect the information that will play alongside our short animation of the floating city. Originally, we were given good old Belfast to work with, but what’s life without a little diversity? My group have chosen Venice as our city in the sky. We thought the bridges, water, boats and bustling tourist industry could make for a more interesting and challenging project…Not to mention…It’s just bloody lovely.

Below are some images that really inspired me to pick Venice as our location.

David Howell-I love the structure in this image, and thought the reflections and lights would be lovely to replicate in maya.
Joel Zakrisson-This 3D design, with its intricate details and beautiful lighting really displays what we can aim to achieve with our floating Venice.
Jean B Martin-Beautiful colours.

Some Basic Info-

Continent: Europe
Country: Italy
Region: Veneto
Province: Venice
City: Venice
Coordinates: 45:26:15N 12:20:09E
Altitude: 0m / 0ft
Currency: Euro (EUR)
Language: Italian
Time zone: Central European Time (CET)
  • The official resident population of Venice is distributed in a ratio of approximately 22:8:70 between the historic city, the islands, and the mainland.
  • Population of Venice decreased from over 120,000 to 60,000 in the last 50 years.
  • Venice is more than 1500 years old. It dates back to the mid 400.
  • The first woman in the world that graduated was born in Venice in 1646
  • Venice is by now reliant on the trampling feet of 20 million visitors a year.
  • There are 417 bridges in Venice and 72 of those are private.There are 3 major bridges across the Grand Canal – Accademia, Rialto and Scalzi. There is a fourth one, just a few years old. What is interesting about that one is that it already begins to show signs of decay, unlike the centuries old ones.
  • There are about 350 gondolas and 400 gondolieri in the city of Venice.Acqua alta, or higher water, happens when tide is 9 cm above normal height. It mostly happens as a result of an interaction between Sirocco and tides (Sirocco is a warm wind blowing from north Africa)
  • There are 177 canals in Venice.
  • There are over 170 buildings that make the line of the Grand Canal.
  • Venice is sinking at the rate of 1-2 millimeters a year.
  • There are 118 islands, 416 bridges, 177 canals and 127 squares in Venice.
  • The Venice lagoon is 15 meters deep at its deepest point.
  • Some experts say that Venice could be a ghost town by 2030. It would be populated only by tourists that would come at the morning and leave in the evening, something like people do in a theme park.


  1. My team would really like to play on the ghost city idea, and present Venice as a theme park that is slowly sinking. 
  2. Simply focus on the architecture of the bridges in Venice, connecting them together in a maze, kind of like the moving stairs in Harry Potter! 
  3. Animate the sinking of Venice…is it inhabited by fish/sealife?

Edit:A little more research!

While searching about for inspiration, I came across this fab piece by Jeremy Vansnick om Sketchfab. It shows how you can achieve so much in such a small space and I love his use of texture and colour. Maybe we can get somewhere close to this!

More and more as a team we are realising that it is the little details that really make a piece work. Like in this example, we want to make good use of as much clutter as possible, adding an air of realism to our piece. Something I distinctly remember about Venice, and Italy on the whole, is the washing lines hanging everywhere, which is something we are very keen to include.