Then America had a really bad Tuesday morning in September and all of my fond memories of New York City were resurrected. The cityscape project became much more interesting and conveniently the graphics startup I was working for was soon going to lay me off which meant lots of free time.
I started looking into photos of NYC in detail.. noticing the perspective effects on windows and rooftops of skyscrapers. Part of me wanted to do a realistic model, but at the same time a surrealistic (idealistic?) (stylized?) approach was attractive. Then I found "the one" (see photo right).. a photo online of the view that I had in mind. I wanted a view of midtown Manhattan at the 40-60th floor level. Distant bridges and the street level would be even more difficult to simulate, so this photo conveniently and naturally occluded these troublesome features of the real NYC.
From here on, I had a much more concrete idea of what I wanted to create.