Studio Esinam’s Limited Edition Prints Capture Elevations from Around the World

Courtesy of Studio Esinam

Swedish firm Studio Esinam‘s new print series depicts “Elevations” of architectural landmarks across the globe. Using minimalist line drawings, the illustrations attempt to “capture the unique feeling of various cities around the world”.

Meticulously recreating the facades of landmarks in Berlin, Brooklyn, Copenhagen, Gothenburg, London, Paris, Stockholm, and Tokyo, the growing collection of prints reframes technical drawings as works of art. By distilling iconic facades to their barest and most essential elements, Studio Esinam aims to direct “attention to details that mostly pass unseen.”

View selected prints from the “Elevations” series after the break.

The Computer vs The Hand In Architectural Drawing: ArchDaily Readers Respond

Designs for Truro Cathedral, 1878 Artist: William Burges. Image Courtesy of Victoria and Albert Museum, London

In the architecture world, there are a handful of persistent debates that arise time and time again: the challenges of being a woman in the field of architecture is one of them, for example; the problems of a culture of long hours and hard work is another. But one of the most enduring arguments in architecture - especially in the academic sphere – is the battle between hand drawing and computer aided design. Both schools have their famous proponents: Michael Graves, for example, was known as a huge talent with a pencil and paper, and came to the defense of drawing in articles for the New York Times, among others. Patrik Schumacher, on the other hand, is famous for his commitment to the capabilities of the computer.

To advance this heated conversation, two weeks ago we reached out to our readers to provide their thoughts on this topic in an attempt to get a broad cross-section of opinions from architects from all walks of life. Read some of the best responses after the break.

What Is The Role Of Hand Drawing In Today’s Architecture?

Update: We have now published our follow-up article of readers’ responses – see it here.

All the Buildings in Sydney Drawn by Hand

Courtesy of James Gulliver Hancock

From James Gulliver Hancock, author and illustrator of the All the Buildings in New York book and blog, comes All the Buildings in , a vibrant guide to Hancock’s home town.

Packed full of idiosyncratically meticulous and colorful illustrations, the book provides a whimsical account of Sydney’s architecture and history. From icons such as Utzon’s Sydney Opera House to lesser known gems like Mark Foy’s building opposite Hyde Park, to the terrace houses of inner city suburbs, All the Buildings in Sydney presents each building with care, detail, and an abundance of charm.

See more images from All the Buildings in Sydney, after the break…

Hand vs. Computer Drawing: A Student’s Opinion

Drawing by Chris Wilkinson (Wilkinson Eyre) for Article 25′s 10×10 charity auction. Image © Chris Wilkinson Courtesy of Article 25

In the debate about how architects – both present and future – represent our ideas, it is easy to find a lot of articles supporting both sides. One can read as many arguments as they want and find valid points supporting both hand-drawing and computer production. One could argue that there is nothing prettier than a well done hand-rendering of a project. Another could say that, although hand-drawing is something that catches the eye, it is not practical at all, takes longer than doing it on the computer and does not allow architects to easily modify it.

There is however another facet that does not come up as frequently as it maybe should: how does this discussion affect students? I believe we lie in a cross-fire, between the idea of what architects do and what they actually do.

Astropad: Use Your iPad As A Professional Graphics Tablet

: use your iPad as a drawing tablet for your Mac. Image Courtesy of

Astropad, an app for and Mac, transforms your existing iPad into a professional graphics tablet without the need for additional hardware. Having been developed by Matt Ronge and Giovanni Donelli – both former Apple engineers – the app allows for the iPad to act as a extended trackpad as well as work with most third-party styluses.

The Architecture of Product Design: Cross-Disciplinary Sketching Tools

Courtesy of Percolate

A version of this article originally appeared on the Percolate Blog.

In spring of 2009, I graduated from architecture school. At the time, the post-recession economy was rough and not much was happening for architects. With an interest in entrepreneurship and technology, I took a risk and decided to try working at a tech startup. Much to my surprise, I fell in love with the industry and 5 years later, I’m now a Product Designer at Percolate in NYC, a company which produces web and mobile marketing software.

Since my career pivot, I’ve noticed many interesting parallels between architecture and . Although the mediums are different, it’s amazing to see how many of the design principles and processes are the same. To some degree, even the tools can be applied to both design industries. In this post, I will discuss hand-drawing, and learn how we apply architecture tools to at Percolate.

Drink Like an Architect: Pair your Cocktail with the Perfect Building

Seagram Building by Mies van der Rohe / Manhattan Cocktail. Image Courtesy of Kosmos Architects

To paraphrase an old adage, “behind every great building is a great architect.” According to Swiss-based Kosmos Architects, a less familiar version of this might say “beside every great building is a perfectly mixed cocktail.” The firm has revealed a scientifically (un)proven link between alcohol and architecture: ramps, for instance, are often built at an inclination of five to seven degrees, a statistic that correlates to the alcoholic percentage of an average beer. Furthermore, a steep forty-degree roof incline designed to throw off snowfall matches the forty percent alcohol content of vodka used in Arctic climates to keep out the winter chill.

Kosmos Architects has published a series of twelve illustrated postcards, linking iconic buildings with their appropriate drink. A Manhattan for Mies, a Blue Blazer for Zumthor, and a Smoky Martini for Herzog & de Meuron all belong to the series ‘Good Drinks & Good Buildings,’ a booze-soaked comparison of architecture and alcohol, just in time to ring in 2015.

What’s inside SOM‘s martini? Find out after the break 

Meet the Film Industry’s Most Successful Architect in Deutsche Kinemathek’s Latest Exhibition

Design of "Fort Knox" for Goldfinger, GB/USA 1964, Directed by Guy Hamilton. Image © Sir Ken Adam, Deutsche Kinemathek – Ken Adam Archive

Although his name may not appear in most architectural history , Sir Kenneth Hugo Adam has influenced architecture for over fifty years. Better known as Ken Adam, he has been responsible for the production design of over 70 films in his career, most notably for his work on the James Bond franchise. The architect of Fort Knox in Goldfinger, the Zero Gravity Satellite in Moonraker, and Super-Tanker Liparus in The Spy Who Loved Me, Adam has shaped architectural design in film since the 1940s.

Adam is the recipient of two British Film Academy Awards, including one for Dr. Strangelove, and in 2003 became the first film production designer to receive a knighthood. He has been at the helm of some of the world’s most well-known and influential films – from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang to Crimes of the Heart – and his drawings are now on display for the first time. In 2012, Sir Adam donated his entire body of work to the Deutsche Kinemathek in his home city of Berlin, where the first retrospective of his work is now on display, entitled ‘Bigger Than Life: Ken Adam’s Film Design.’ 

Find out more about Adam’s vast body of work after the break

Cybertopia: The Digital Future of Analog Architectural Space

2. Cybertopia. Death of analogous cities. Image © Egor Orlov

“Cyberspace, filled with bugs and glitches – the components of its natural habitat – will form a completely new and previously unknown location when released into a real city  – Cybertopia,” says Egor Orlov, a current student at the Strelka Institute in Moscow. According to Orlov, the physical world is on the brink of a major technological breakthrough that will revolutionize the way architects conceive of space – closing the gap between analog and digital.

Cybertopia - completed while he was a student at the Kazan State University of Architecture and Engineering under tutors Akhtiamov I.I. and Akhtiamova R.H. and nominated for the Archiprix Madrid 2015 - exists as another dimension for Orlov, where fairy tales come to life and science harmonizes with engineering and architectural design. “Future of an Architecture Space. Cybertopia. Death of Analogous Cities,” delves into a fantasy world where the “possibility to fly or walk from one planet to another” becomes an illustrated reality using a combination of drafting-based techniques and a wild imagination.

Enter the hybrid technological-analog world of Cybertopia after the break

Artworks by Architects to be Auctioned for Maggie’s Centres

For its annual Charity Christmas , this year London‘s Anise Gallery is planning to raise money for Maggie’s, the cancer care charity which has commissioned high profile buildings from architects such as Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid, OMA, Richard Rogers and Snøhetta. The Anise Gallery’s auction features works by both artists and architects, including four architects who have contributed Maggie’s Centres themselves: Ted Cullinan, Chris Wilkinson of Wilkinson Eyre, and Piers Gough of CZWG, responsible for the Newcastle, Oxford, and Nottingham Centres respectively.

Others featured in the auction include architects Alison BrooksPeter Murray, Jack Pringle, Christophe Egret, Rab Bennetts Je Ahn and Stuart Piercy, alongside artists including Ben Johnson, Norman Ackroyd and Jeanette Barnes. Until the auction on December 6th, all the works are on display at the Anise Gallery, however online bidding opens on November 26th here - alternatively, check out a selection of the available lots after the break.

In Honor of Michael Graves, The Architectural League Revisits 200 Years of Drawing

Denver Library, South Elevation, 1994, pencil and colored pencil on yellow tracing paper, 14 x 26 inches. Image Courtesy of Michael Graves & Associates, photo: Ken Ek

With their “Past as Prologue“ symposium – a day of lectures celebrating fifty years of Michael Graves‘ career - approaching tomorrow, the Architectural League of New York is taking a look back at one of its seminal exhibitions which heavily featured Graves’ work. When “200 Years of American Architectural Drawing” launched in 1977, New York Times critic Ada Louise Huxtable said “By any definition… a major show,” adding “here is architecture as it comes straight from the mind and the eye and the heart, before the spoilers get to it.” In memory of the show, the Architectural League has published a selection of essays and images from the accompanying book, including the work of Graves, Peter Eisenman, John Hejduk and Richard Meier.

Check out the Architectural League’s collection of 200 Years of American Architectural  here, and don’t forget to tune in to the livestream of the Past as Prologue symposium here at 9.30 EST on Saturday.

V&A and RIBA Present “Architects as Artists”

Designs for Truro Cathedral, 1878 Artist: William Burges. Image Courtesy of Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Drawings have long been used as a method for architects to represent their projects. However, architects sometimes make drawings to communicate a sense of space in a deeper and more meaningful way – in a manner that begins to venture into the realm of art. A new exhibition opening at London‘s V&A Museum this Saturday entitled Architects as Artists examines the overlapping relationship between architecture and art, and documents the many ways in which it is used and created.

Pier Vittorio Aureli to Exhibit 30 ‘Non-Compositional’ Drawings in London

Untitled 22 (from The Marriage of Reason and Squalor, 2001-2014) Ink on paper, 50x50cm. Image © Pier Vittorio Aureli

Pier Vittorio Aureli’s collection of thirty ‘non-compositional’ drawings, exhibited as part of a series entitled The Marriage of Reason and Squalor, will open at London’s Betts Project architecture gallery tomorrow (8th October 2014). The drawings, in development since 2001, are part of an ongoing investigation into “what, in the absence of a better definition, Aureli has described as ‘non-compositional architecture’.” This term, referring to the work of art historian Yve-Alain Bois who was himself prompted by the ambitions of the constructivist artist Alexander Rodchenko, is used to describe works that “aspire to the abandonment of composition and even the self of the artist.” This will be Aureli’s second recent exhibition in London following Dogma: 11 Projects, which was presented at London’s Architectural Association in 2013.

Giveaway: Introducing the Moleskine Tool Belt

Courtesy of Moleskine

Moleskine notebooks go as hand-in-hand with architects and designers as the color black. Over the years, these creative individuals have hacked and personalized the simple design of the Moleskine notebook, turning it into wallets, key chains, pen holders, and more. In response to this culture, Moleskine recently came out with their own hack called the Moleskine Tool Belt. 

The Tool Belt is an add-on that attaches to the cover of their notebooks. It contains several compartments for storing pens, smart phones, business cards, eye glasses, and more. We also have two Moleskine Tool Belts to give away – check out the article after the break for your chance to win! 

Artist Mark Lascelles Thornton On His Completed Masterwork: “The Happiness Machine”

All 8 panels of The Happiness Machine. Image ©

Over a year ago, we shared a work-in-progress drawing project that captured our imagination with its combination of huge size and meticulously small details. Now, “The Happiness Machine,Mark Lascelles Thornton‘s 8-foot by 5-foot, three year long drawing project is complete, after over 10,000 hours of painstaking work.

Lascelles Thornton, a self-taught London-based artist who describes himself as “one of those kids that was drawing before I was talking,” created the artwork as a response to the global financial crisis, focusing on themes of socio-economics, consumerism, globalism, resource shortages, urbanism and architecture. We spoke to Lascelles Thornton about his artwork, discussing the themes of the piece and the commitment – or, as he describes it, “emotional engineering” – required for such a colossal undertaking.

For the full interview – and detailed images of the drawing – read on after the break

Ken Roberts Memorial Delineation Competition 2014

Courtesy of KRob Memorial Delineation Competition

The 40th Annual Ken Roberts Memorial Delineation Competition, the longest running architectural drawing competition, is now accepting submissions. Entries can be conceptual or final elevations, sections, perspectives, or renderings and may be produced digitally or by hand – or a combination of both.

Frank Ching, the acclaimed author and illustrator responsible for teaching countless students about basic architectural elements, principles, and relationships, is one of the three jurors this year. The jury panel will be attending the awards presentation and lecture, which will take place on Thursday, November 20th in Dallas. This event will be hosted by the Dallas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, who have been organizing the competition since 1974.

The competition is open to both students and professionals and there are $11,000 in prizes to be won. Entries are due Monday, October 27, 2014 at 5pm CST. For more details, click here.

VIDEO: Daniel Libeskind on Drawing, Architecture’s Forgotten Fundamental

In this video from our friends at Spirit of Space, Daniel Libeskind talks about his installation for the Venice Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Biennale, entitled ‘Sonnets in Babylon’. The installation deals with drawing, an act that Libeskind believes is “the foundational , and the mystery and the magic of all buildings and cities.” To Libeskind, drawings are akin to religious materials, communicating meaning without the use of a fixed language and each with its own power to shape the way we understand the world around us. At the end he gives a hint as to why he is so attached to drawings: ”I drew for many years before I even built a building. But I based those buildings that I built on the drawings I made… Every drawing is also a tool for the future.”