The Language of Drawings
As architects, we use the language of drawings to translate our clients’ dreams into reality. At each step of the process, drawings are essential in conveying the design concept to clients, consultants and contractors. Here are a few examples of the types of drawings used to illustrate the design, from the initial conceptual sketch to the most precise construction document.
The initial sketch, often done on a scap of paper or even a napkin, illustrates the essence of the design concept. This is a very quick, organic seed of an idea set to paper. Although it may be just a few scratchy lines, it captures the essence of the design.
The site plan looks at the project from the very broadest view, as if seen from far above. The site plan is a valuable tool in creating a master plan for a property. In developing a site plan, environmental factors such as wetlands, topography, major trees, views and sun exposure are all addressed. This drawing illustrates the placement of the house, outbuildings and major landscape features such as swimming pools, tennis courts, terraces, arbors, orchards and gardens. We use the site plan to study the spacial connections between all these elements which in themselves become design opportunities.
Perspective sketches are used to explain the three-dimensional quality of a building or site. This series of simple perspective sketches illustrates the sequence of experiences on the winding entry drive of the site plan above.
The floor plan illustrates the two-dimensional shape of the architecture and the flow between rooms, spaces and exterior elements. We always show furniture in our floor plans to add scale to the drawings and to help the client to envision the spaces.
The elevation is the face of the building; the first impression that foreshadows what is waiting within. It reveals the overall massing, roof profile, arrangement of windows and materials. We often add shadows to our elevations to add three-dimensionality.
Section drawings illustrate the interior of buildings or landscape features, as if sliced through the center. These drawings are often helpful in explaining the relationships and profiles within a building.
Construction Documents & Architectural Details
Once a design is approved, we create very detailed construction documents to insure that the contractor understands each aspect of the project and that it will be built exactly as conceived. The few drawings below illustrate the level of detail and thought dedicated to these construction documents.
Axonometric Drawings & Models
An axonometric drawing is a three-dimensional projection which helps the client and contractor to envision the final massing of the building. We often build a study model to further assist our clients in envisioning their home.