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Sketching and Drawing in Design


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Intro lecture on sketching and drawing. Aiming to link theory & practice for undergrad design students

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Sketching and Drawing in Design

  1. 1. Sketching and Drawing Introduction and departing points
  2. 2. Study Drawings •Herbert, Daniel M: 1993, Architectural Study Drawings, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York.
  3. 3. • Medieval drawings – Before 1500 AD, mostly geometric layouts derived from and functioning directly within the construction process or even with the building itself • Renaissance drawings – After 1500 AD codes for design drawing and construction drawing no longer coincided – The study drawing was invented – Study drawings made it possible to set out graphic conjectures portraying innovative and not yet existing architectural forms
  4. 4. •“Designers in the twenty-first century continue to use study drawings much as architects did in the fifteenth” •“Today’s designers use study drawings much as Leonardo and
  5. 5. “A designer uses study drawings to conduct an internal graphic dialogue about the design issues at hand” • However, designers use drawings mostly by custom – Without an adequate understanding of their essential role in our thinking about design – They continue to use study drawings just as they learned them – As part of a taken-for-granted background for the foreground issues of design
  6. 6. Public Private Less More abstract abstract Types of drawings – Least abstract to more abstract: • Perspective, elevation, plan/section, analysis, adjacency, matrix, graphs – Private to public: • Study sketches, presentation and construction drawings
  7. 7. • Study Sketches – Exploratory – Unpretentious and focused – Developmental – Thinking-aids – Short-lived – Replaced by the next sketch – Ultimately superseded by presentation drawings “The size of a drawing indicates its role in
  8. 8. “Study drawings are idea-sketches: the designer’s principal means of thinking.”
  9. 9. Dibujo Goodman, Nelson: 1976, Languages of Art, an Approach to a Theory of Symbols, Hackett, Cambridge.
  10. 10. Notational drawings – Conventional signs - meanings – Useful to document and communicate ideas – Example: music scores and construction plans – Allographic drawings: transferable – Self-explanatory – Easy for computational information processing
  11. 11. Non-notational drawings – Intersecting and ambiguous – Extremely powerful and productive – Important role to play in human cognition – Autographic drawings: with an identity – Open to interpretation – Very hard for computational information processing
  12. 12. • Early drawing has the function of allowing communication between the designer and himself (internal dialogue) • Late drawing has the function of enabling communication between the designer and other people (presentation, documentation, production)
  13. 13. • Sketching is an aid to represent problems into dimensional, topological and geometric relationships • However the benefit of drawing is different for different subjects, partly dependent on their drawing skills • The use of sketching does not guarantee a more creative result • Some people are able to generate and manipulate new concepts solely through mental activity • Henri Christiaans
  14. 14. • “The Role of Sketching and Imagery in Conceptual Designing” • This thesis indicates that constructing mental representations can be a strong tool for designing • The use of mental representations can satisfy some important purposes that sketching serves • Zafer Bilda