Architectural visualization has been around for centuries, with drawings and paintings depicting finished structures before they were built. In the 1990s, the movement of the industry from paper to CAD saw video added to the mix, with the new ability to produce walk-throughs and fly-throughs from design.
It was only a matter of time before architectural visualization professionals discovered real-time rendering, which can produce finished videos in a fraction of the time of traditional rendering processes. Initially intended for game development, real-time render engines have now reached a level of quality and photorealism that makes them ideal for presenting architectural designs.
With real-time rendering comes an unexpected bonus: new types of presentations for clients. Architectural visualization can now include immersive experiences like virtual reality tours, interactive, game-like projects, and cave automatic virtual environments (CAVEs) to present design in ways never seen before.
When you see new software that can speed up your workflow, it’s fun to imagine what you can do with it. But in reality, many of us don’t want to be among the first to try it out, especially if documentation is lacking. No one wants to spend countless hours fighting with mysterious features only to go back to the old workflow because you just need to get things done.
Maybe you’ve been thinking about trying out photoreal real-time rendering for your workflow, but you’re concerned that that on-ramp is too steep. Real-time rendering requires you to import your CAD scene into a game engine, and anytime you import to a new piece of software, there are going to be issues to solve. If you have to figure it out on your own, it’s going to be a long, hard road.
An unfortunate fact of the AEC (architecture, engineering, and construction) industry is that, between every stage of the process—from planning and design to construction and operations—critical data is lost.
The reality is, when you move data between phases of, say, the usable lifecycle of a bridge, you end up shuttling that data back and forth between software systems that recognize only their own data sets. The minute you translate that data, you reduce its richness and value. When a project stakeholder needs data from an earlier phase of the process, planners, designers, and engineers often have to manually re-create that information, resulting in unnecessary rework.
Which processor? How many graphics cards? How much RAM? For architects, engineers, civil engineers, BIM managers, and other CAD pros, navigating the computer workstation marketplace can be an arduous task, hindered by unknowledgeable sales reps, inaccurate information, and other pitfalls.
In the spirit of supporting our readers’ design work, the company Velux has shared a series of .DWG files with us of their different roofing windows models. The files can be downloaded directly from this article and include great amounts of detail and information.
Check the files below, separated into 'Pitched Roofs', 'Flat Roofs' and 'Light Tube'.
A recent independent survey of more than 2000 architectural visualization professionals revealed an intriguing trend. More than 20% of these designers and architects are using real-time rendering as part of their presentation workflows right now, with another 40% trying it out for adoption.
As Zaha Hadid Architects’ 1000 Museum residential tower in Miami continues toward its December 2018 completion date (tracked by this nifty countdown clock), the computer drawings for the structure have been revealed, showing the complex structure in section, elevation and detail.
Construction of the 62-story skyscraper is getting close to topping out as it rises past its neighbors on Biscayne Bay.
Check out the drawings below as well as the latest interior and exterior renderings in the gallery at the bottom of the page.
If you visit an architecture office today, you may sense a slight change. The days of bulky desktops, ergonomic mouse pads and tower-high stacks of drawing sets are slowly giving way to digital pencils, tablets, and tons of architects’ hand-drawings—both physical and digital. Architects across the globe are clearing their desks, literally, and utilizing emerging touchscreen tools and software for designing, sharing and collaborating. It seems possible that, for the first time in years, the architecture profession could revisit Bernard Tschumi’s “paperless” studio which formed a key part of his tenure as dean of Columbia University’s GSAPP in the mid-1990s. However, this time, “paperless” starts with a pencil, instead of a click.
Modeling on the computer and physically building scale models are essential modes of iteration for the modern architecture studio. But what if this creative process of digital and physical ideation could be made accessible to everyone: children, hobbyists, and architects alike?
That is the question I set out to answer by designing an entirely new snapping block system, from the ground up, for the aesthetic and experiential expectations of the 21st century. It’s called Kible, and after putting architecture aside and developing it since November 2015, I’ve recently launched the product on Kickstarter.
Currently on display at the MoMA in New York is Zaha Hadid's concept painting for her seminal unbuilt project, The Peak in Hong Kong. The piece was made in 1991, on the edge of the digital revolution in architectural drawing fueled at its heart by the popularization of 3D CAD programs. The painting for The Peak arguably came at the end of the period of architectural drawing for its own sake, and the beginning of a period of scalable, scrollable renderings meant to show the real world. It only makes sense that this new software for image creation would usher in a new style of drawing with a function very different to the previous era: tool and process inherently constrain design by imposing a predetermined agenda for the user's interaction with them.
During this digital period, architects like Lebbeus Woods and Michael Graves, known for their mastery in the art of hand drawing, pushed back against the dominant narrative of hyperrealism in architectural drawing. However, according to Sam Jacob's latest article for Metropolis Magazine, we may be entering an age of "post-digital" representation. In the post-digital, architects return to the convention of drawing, but create new methodologies by reevaluating and appropriating the digital tools of the last few decades. Current techniques within this practice have leaned heavily towards the collage, but research into what post-digital drawing could mean continues in firms and universities.
In order to support the design work of our readers, the company Teka has shared with us a series of .DWG files of its various kitchen products. The files include both 2D and 3D drawings and can be downloaded directly from this article.
Download the objects below, which have been separated into the following categories: drop-in sinks, built-in sinks, undermount sinks, built-in ovens, faucets, stoves, extractor hoods, and refrigerators.
The following excerpt was originally published in Natascha Meuser's Construction and Design Manual: Architecture Drawings (DOM Publishers). With our industry's technological advances, "the designing architect is not simultaneously the drawing architect." Meuser's manual aims to help architects develop and hone their technical drawing skills as the "practical basis and form of communication for architects, artists, and engineers." Read on for ten freehand drawing exercises that tackle issues ranging from proportion and order to perspective and space.
What is beauty? A few years ago, a group of international researchers sought to unravel the mysteries of human beauty. They used state-of-the-art, totally impartial computer technology and a huge dataset to establish once and for all why particular faces are perceived as beautiful, and whether beauty exists independently of ethnic, social and cultural background; in other words, whether it can be calculated mathematically. The scientists input countless photos of faces from all over the world, each described by survey respondents as particularly beautiful, into a powerful computer. The resulting information, they believed, could be used to generate a face that would be recognized by any human being as possessing absolute beauty. But what the computer eventually spat out was a picture of an ordinary face, neither beautiful nor ugly, devoid of both life and character. It left most viewers cold. The accumulated data had created not superhuman beauty, but a statistically correct average.
The best thing about Revit templates is how much time they can save you. The worst thing about Revit templates is how much time they take to create.
It’s a bit of a catch-22. In order to save time, you need to spend time. It’s not easy to find that time when you have billable projects to work on and deadlines to meet. Believe me, I know.
And once you do finish the template, how often do you review it and keep it updated? What if you have a project that’s a new building-type? Does your template still work for that kind of building? What if you need to follow an owner’s BIM standard? Can you modify your template to fit their requirements?
In order to support the design work of our readers, the company Porcelanosa Grupo has shared with us a series of .DWG files of its various bathroom products. The files include both 2D and 3D drawings and can be downloaded directly from this article.
Download the objects below, which have been separated into the following categories: Shower Heads, Toilets, Sinks, Faucets and Tubs.
The key to quick, efficient CAD modeling is to have a solid library of CAD blocks - pre-prepared sets of common objects and details that you can simply drop into your drawing as and when they are required. Fortunately, there are many ways you can build up your own CAD blocks library without having to create all of your own objects from scratch. One of them is to purchase sets of blocks from websites like boss888.net, which has a wide array of CAD objects available for download - and is even offering a selection of their catalog for free.
https://www.archdaily.com/802406/60-free-cad-blocks-and-drawingsAD Editorial Team
After spending countless hours in front of AutoCAD working on a project, you’re bound to have your own set of favorite commands to standardize a few steps. We also bet that you don’t have them all memorized or often forget them. To help you remember, we've made a list of 50 commands that can help you speed up your work game, discover new shortcuts, or come in use as a handy tool for when you forget what the command you need is called.
The following listing was developed and corroborated by our team for the 2013, 2014 and 2015 versions of AutoCAD in English. We also prepared a series of GIFs to visualize some of the trickier ones.
When you’ve finished reading, we would love to know what your favorite commands are (including those that we didn’t include). We will use your input to help us update the article!