The practice of defining architectural form involves a multitude of talents; primary among these is the ability to communicate ideas, whether it is a presentation before a client, a public meeting, or a charrette. Design ideas should be clear and accurate, and promote useful instruction.
The drawn line responds to the “changes of rhythm and feelings of surface and space” that are created by the work of architecture. A hand drawing can thus become part of the narrative of a building project, and it can be the starting point for the conversation on a project, or help that discussion to move forward.
My work feels the most authentic when I am wearing my design + illustration cap.
This creative act is thus part of a process, coursing across the synapses of the creator, gradually taking and changing form through exploration and a back-and-forth process that layers and contributes to the narrative of the final work.
Working within various architects’ offices, I have been placed in a new role (besides that of illustrator), that of the architect as a design illustrator. Advances in computer-aided drafting have been a great time saver for many offices—a rendering can now be done with the flick of the wrist and a few clicks—but my clients are also learning, or re-learning, the power of hand drawing.
The process is iterative. As I work alongside the design team, we discuss the nature of the project. I ask questions. I begin to draw by hand. The day flows. My sketches and drawings produce depth, tone, and texture, distinguish hard from soft, and imbue the rough project with a spirit or soul. These sketches inform the team as we continue working through issues, and focusing on the project’s goals.
At the end of the day, our team, working through my hand, has created beautiful, solid illustrations, conveying solutions and options to present to the project’s key players.