It was not so long ago that houses like this one were popping up all over urban America. Any empty space, whether forest or old farmland, would suddenly be cleared and instead of crops, would sprout these oversized dwellings which were sold before they were even built. I was part of this for many years, as I worked for people who built these luxury edifices. As an architectural illustrator, I can look at blueprints and then create a rendering of what a building is going to look like when it's done. It's an ideal world without traffic, light poles and wires, other houses close by, or bad weather. The builders commissioned me to do these idealized mansion portraits as both enticements and gifts to clients.
How times have changed, as the saying goes. This mansion was done in 2004, when it seemed that there was no end to the trend. Now the building boom is gone and my builder friends haven't gotten a new commission in more than a year. For the time being, the luxury outbreak is over.
Watercolor on Fabriano paper, 30" x 22", July 2004.