Fixin’ Mistakes

I love that establishing shot as winter becomes spring in the first film. I didn’t attempt to exactly match the angle and lighting, but it’s pretty close. Fiddle with the slider to show what the POA castle (right) would have looked like from the same angle!

Anyway, my main purpose with today’s short post is to clean up some messes! I was alerted to an apparent error in the last post: the front walkway through the arch doesn’t seem to have connected to the walkway around the Chamber of Reception, after all. The truth is far stranger and less certain…but if I’m interpreting the bits of available reference material correctly, there was actually a staircase that led down below the Chamber of Reception, probably entering through a gap in the rocky hillside that supports the CoR. This is my best attempt at reconstructing it:

I was then alerted to another error – there were windows on the hospital wing where there shouldn’t have been. And I discovered an extra chimney in the SS version of the quad, too. So here’s a new SS/POA comparison slider that fixes these issues:

Moral of the story for me: Always double-check all your reference images!

Moral of the story for you: If you think you see a mistake in my work, please do let me know in the comments! I want to get this right and I appreciate the help!


26 thoughts on “Fixin’ Mistakes

  1. Wow that was some quick turnaround! Nice to see the little changes add up.

    I promised photoshopped diagrams to help illustrate what I was talking about before, and here we are:

    The actual depth of the Quad courtyard itself I think you’ve got correct, but see the apparent height difference between your cloister roof and the large window on the ‘north’ inner side? I think the cloister itself stretches higher, using something like the bare wall section used on the upper windows between them and the crenellations. That’s a pure guestimate though, and it could be any suitably high stretch of bare wall. This is supported by what seems to be a second story of undecorated blank wall I’ve highlighted – see how the buttresses on the cloister don’t seem to start until after that halfway point when on the Gloucester cloister they’re something like 2/3rd to 3/4s or the way up? It could even be a fully functional second story since I’m not wholly satisfied with the extra roof height my mockup achieves – it’s so indistinct I can’t say for certain that’s what it is for certain, and I concede it could well be the trick of the angle. Was your photogrammetry only done on the Quad floor, or on the cloister roof as well?

    Also in assembling the reference image, I noticed that there’s a seam in the roof model in the flyover shot not present in the 3D reconstruction, or Gloucester itself for that matter. Obviously only a minor texture discrepancy, but no harm in noting.

    And finally, I think the buttresses on your Quad cloister are too flat/short – the ones from Gloucester are much deeper/longer:

    Granted Gloucester’s buttresses are a bit all over the place with some being taller or shorter, and some having arches/windows set in them. They all seem deeper/longer than yours though.

    I suppose if you wanted a point for a door, the above scene maybe implies it’s like actual Gloucester with the door 3 sections in from the corner; with an opposide door 3 sections from the diagonally opposite corner, meaning a door 3 sections ‘west’ from the ‘northeast’ corner and another 3 sections ‘east’ the ‘southwest’ corner as they’re the only two opposite corner options. Obviously this part is pure speculative deduction though, so I won’t be surprised if you don’t wanna pull the trigger on that.


    1. Hmmm, the more I look at it, the more I think you may be right about the height of the cloisters. I’ll play around with it! My photogrammetry did include the cloisters but there’s not enough data for it to be SUPER precise in that area.

      I’m not sure which seam in the roof you’re referring to?

      As for the buttresses, I went fairly generic on those, based on what I could see in the COS shot. But as I look again, I’m thinking even those might be a little deeper than I built. I’m gonna mess with those too.


      1. Most likely reference might be the ones we see in the courtyard scene i the troll sequence.

        For the seam, look at the ‘east’ cloister roof in the CoS flyover. See how there’s a line perpendicular to the roof slope bisecting the roofing? It might just be a model imperfection, but it’s so consistent that it seems like it’s an intentional join or seam in the metal sheeting.


      2. what did the “SUPER” unprecise photogrammetry say about the heigh of the cloisters?


  2. I’m still more a fan of using Lacock abbey down there as we already have the gloucester hallways up in the building, but it still looks very convincing. Let’s just hope one day some image will turn up that helps us understand the quad even better.

    About the sloping down walkway leading under the CoS; perhaps it evens out before hitting the wall. Looking at the overhead shot from CoS does leave you wondering.


  3. How big is the Quad´s courtyard compared to Lacock Abbey? is it possible? but I doubt that it would have been done with that intention.


    1. I wouldn’t worry so much about the size – Gloucester courtyard is more than twice as big as the Quad courtyard. A better question is how the scaling of each repeating Quad section fits – can it make the same number of units seen in the overhead shot?


      1. but the gloucester courtyard is shown only by corners, that makes the Quad perfectly recreated even if it is bigger, while Lacock abbey on Film is shown 360 degrees, You can even count the arches from one corner to another. I don’t like to be so exigent between a miniature and the real set, if one arch is missing or left over, no problem for me. After all, it’s about recreating something that not everyone is going to count or to measure.


      2. Actually, I don’t believe the Lacock Abbey courtyard is ever really seen in the films…and I must admit, I’m starting to become convinced about the Lacock thing…


  4. Really interesting to see that marble staircase balcony actually being steps!
    Just wondering, do you use blender in 4k? I was just looking at some of your pictures and wondering what quality they were.
    Great work as always


    1. Thank you! So, Blender lets you choose whatever image size you want before you render. I’d like to be rendering everything in 4k, but larger images take longer to render and I’m impatient, haha. So right now, the majority of my Hogwarts renders are 2880 x 1620, which is basically halfway between 1080p and 4k. Maybe I’ll be able to go up to 4k for renders of the finished project when the time comes!


      1. Ahh yeah that’s great. I can view things at 1440p, so I’ll check some of the renders out again.


  5. Ok, so while I agree that it’s very likely that the quad courtyard cloisters are 2 stories tall, I highly doubt the theory that it’s based on Lacock Abbey.
    First of all, on the blueprints it’s referred to as ‘Gloucester’

    Secondly, if we look at the interior design of the castle (which actually corresponds somewhat with the exterior in the first two movies) you’ll see that the Lacock Abbey courtyard is not facing the big window in the marble staircase room, which supposedly looks out over the quad courtyard.

    And then there’s the fact that we know that the corridors surrounding the courtyard are based on Gloucester, so it logically makes sense that the courtyard would be too and in my opinion the Gloucester courtyard shares more similarities with the quad courtyard than Lacock Abbey does.

    So that’s my opinion on that argument. I did say I agree with the 2 story quad theory though. I think it would be ridiculous to use an entirely separate tracery design for the bottom story of the cloisters. In my mind it would make more sense to use an already existing design, the Durham tracery. I don’t think this is a too far fetched idea either seeing as though this has been done for both the clock tower courtyard and the viaduct courtyard (and entrance courtyard, but we do not speak of that).


    1. It seems as if your second photo would almost support the Lacock theory…seeing as it portrays the only two major courtyards of the model in order of appearance from the great hall…

      Also, do you have any more of those plans? they’re fascinating!


      1. Gloucester does actually fit into the interior somewhere, in this one you can see that the chapter house is supposedly the entrance to the staircases. It’s never specified which of the many corridors shooting of from the staircase room it leads to to my knowledge, but in the books I believe it would be the seventh floor, which would make sense in the movies as well considering that the corridor on the miniature is on a high floor relative to the quad courtyard and in that way I do think it supports my idea. (Though there’s probably some tunnel vision here.)


    2. I’ve never seen that interior floor plan that connected the sets before! That’s fascinating, but, after the Great Hall, it doesn’t remotely fit the model at all. The Grand Staircase is at such an angle that it can’t fit within the Turris Magnus. Lacock being right next to Durham is an interesting choice, contradicted by the exterior model. Maybe they thinking an inside that links in magical ways was appropriate, but the Lacock courtyard would cover the Alnwick flying lesson area.

      On a related note, what is going on with the cloister that leads to Dumbledore’s Office? Weird that it seems to be based on Durham while the actual office is on the opposite side of the castle. Magic, I guess.


      1. My guess is that the drawing was intended to be used as a guide during filming, so as to maintain some continuity. The miniature probably came later in the process.


    3. I don’t think the second story of the quad cloister can be Gloucester’s windows – it’s pretty foggy but it looks like mainly bare wall. First floor is plausible.

      I’m not sold on Lacock itself either though – there’s so many unknowns that it’s hard to be sure and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was more Durham on the ground floor, Gloucester, Lacock, or the portico from Alnwick’s courtyard nect to the main tower porch.


  6. As far as I’m concerned, this plan only supports the idea that they intended the Gloucester cloisters represent their corresponding windows (high up) around the model’s ‘quad’.


    1. I think the same, at that time (6th film) the base of the quad had nothing, only a smooth floor with 4 smooth walls around it. the gloucester indication works to the top.


  7. That staircase between the Quad and the Chamber of Reception is so weird, how did you find out that information? Is it visible on some miniature shots or a plan?


      1. It really is… I think I’ve seen it in a Minecraft map, too bad that there’s little to no information! I guess the first two console games interpretation of the PS/CoS castle wasn’t wrong when it didn’t include a path to the Quad from the CoR.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s