Michael Secrist

Michael Secrist

Baltimore, MD, US



Michael Secrist, founder of F13 Design Studio, has been active in the architectural illustration field for over 23 years. Beginning, first, with pen and ink as well as watercolor techniques, Michael quickly moved on to becoming highly versatile in his illustration methods, using traditional and highly advanced methods. 

Known for his artistic talent and impeccable attention to detail, it’s no surprise that Michael’s work has been highly recognized by the design community - often being hired as advisors to architects and facilitators of design conception. 

F13 Design Studio works with all types of players in the design industry, from developers to architects, to builders to interior designers, on a variety of projects, including universities, mix-used buildings, entertainment arenas, hotels, and urban developments, as well as residential and retail interior and exterior design. 

F13 has been a game-changer in the architectural rendering industry, where Michael and his team are highly proficient in Sketchup, 3D & 3DS Max, Photoshop, Mental Ray, ArionFX, Corona renderer and much more - creating 3D renderings, animations, and virtual reality experiences. 


F13 Design Studio, LLC, Baltimore, MD, US, CEO/ Visualization Director

We collaborate with architects, home builders, designers, and other industry players to transform their CAD drawings and sketches, into digital portraits of their architectural concepts depicting that which does not yet exist. Because artwork is a universal method of communication that transcends all cultural and language barriers, these architectural renderings are the essential tool in enabling these parties to identify areas of opportunity in finalizing structural, design, and aesthetic characteristics of each project. The renderings also provide industry players with invaluable marketing material with which to present developers and investors.

Apr 2012 - current

n/a, Baltimore, Independent Contractor

Retained by major architectural/interior design firms to generate 3D models and animations for a wide range of university, retail/entertainment, corporate, mixed-use, single-/multi-family, hotel, and urban development projects. Advise architects on design solutions, facilitate conceptualization, and help market/sell designs. Integrate into new company environments seamlessly, quickly becoming a trusted, valued member of design teams.

Key Projects & Results:

 Created detailed 3D models of multi-level, upscale condos/townhomes from sketches and blueprints using AutoCAD, VRay, 3D Max, polymodeling, and other tools/methodologies. Met demanding timelines and accommodated numerous, ongoing architectural changes to deliver models cited as instrumental to “green-lights” from investors on multimillion-dollar projects.
 Praised by PA developer for modeling/rendering work completed with speed and diligence under tight deadline that resulted in client winning a multimillion-dollar hotel/retail project.
 Worked effectively and collaboratively with multiple design teams and diverse personalities to complete complex design and model of retail shopping mall with add-on residential development on time, on budget, and with superior quality.

Aug 2009 - current

Design Collective, Inc., Baltimore, MD, US, Associate - Architectural Illustrator

Recruited as DCI’s only 3D artist. Created 3D models, interior/exterior architectural renderings, sun studies, and panoramic views for diverse commercial, residential, retail, educational, and urban developments. Acquired new clients for company through the development of marketing materials. Advised architects through pinups and design reviews/critiques to optimize designs, maximize client satisfaction, and control costs.

Key Projects & Results:

 Produced 100% of computer-generated renderings for company whose total annual business averages over $20M. Produced all renderings for numerous major projects, earning prestigious awards such as:
 “Sustainable Buildings Public School Award” for West Towson Elementary School.
 “Charter Award” by Congress for New Urbanism for State Center TOD Master Plan.
 “Best New Project” ($2.5M to $5M) from ABC, Baltimore Metro Chapter for Maple Lawn Retail 1 and 2 developments.
 Consistently commended for attention to detail; outstanding illustrative, modeling, and photo-realistic rendering skills; and advanced command of related technologies.
 Taught workshops educating employees on the use of architectural illustration, modeling, and rendering technologies, tools, and shortcuts to increase efficiency, improve presentation effectiveness, and elevate design quality.
 Improved company visibility and reputation for superior quality by creating website images, brochures, presentation boards, and other marketing collateral.
 Credited with enhancing company success as a result of greatly improved renderings. Leveraged high-level 3D rendering and lighting skills to visually communicate with key project stakeholders, eliminate areas of misunderstanding, and accelerate project completions.

Sep 2007 - Aug 2009

L.R. Kimball, Pittsburgh, PA, US, Architectural Animator

Created the means for architects to troubleshoot ideas and market/sell designs by generating: 3D modeling, animations, and panoramic views for institutional, commercial, educational, and civil projects; 3D and 2D feasibility studies; and PowerPoint presentations for procuring work. Worked collaboratively with project managers and teams to create unique products customized to the needs and specifications of each external client.

Key Projects & Results:

 Produced all renderings for Pennsylvania State University’s Recreation Hall and Student Fitness Center, earning the following awards:
 “2008 Citation of Excellence Award” from Learning by Design.
 “2007 Grand Prize Winner” at the College Planning and Management’s Education Design Showcase (recognized for “Outstanding Architecture and Design in Education”).
 Honored with the U.S. Tennis Association’s “2008 Outstanding Facility Award” (private facilities) for rendering work completed on Ebensburg Tennis Center.

Dec 2003 - Sep 2007

Architectural Art, Washington, DC, US, Graphic Artist

Completed 3D modeling, panoramic views, and animations for commercial and residential buildings (interior and exterior), site/floor plans, maps, displays/advertisements/brochures, and digital editing. Established key client relationships to acquire new/repeat business, analyzed customer requests, and prepared quotes. Generated majority of company’s profitability, producing over half of monthly billings for layouts, site plans, 3D work, and renderings.

Aug 1993 - Nov 2003


The Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, US, Interior Design

Sep 1989 - Dec 1991

Areas of Specialization