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Illustration: The Latest Architecture and News

Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Helps Visualize Design Concepts

Drawing as an architectural tool serves not only as a means of communication, but through drawing we can also gain a deeper understanding of the subject. To this purpose, Alessandro Luporino has created the Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture. The series of beautiful and evocative illustrations serve as companions for the book “Dictionary of Architecture,” by Nikolaus Pevsner, John Fleming, and Hugh Honor.

© Alessandro Luporino © Alessandro Luporino © Alessandro Luporino © Alessandro Luporino + 43

re:design Celebrates Bauhaus 100 with Illustrated Posters

Graphic designers Eurydyka Kata & Rafał Szczawiński from re:design have shared with us some of their most recent designs celebrating Bauhaus' 100th Anniversary. Inspiration for these posters was taken directly from Bauhaus' most iconic designs. "For this poster, we researched some of the most famous designs from the Bauhaus school: furniture, toys, appliances, and recreated them isometrically. Both the drawing style and colors are inspired by Bauhaus art and style. This was great fun to work on and we're glad we could pay tribute to one of the most important institutions in the history of design."

The Many Faces of Hudson Yards' Vessel

Hudson Yards’ Large Honeycomb… Hudson Yards’ New Shawarma Sculpture…”
Call it what you want, but the Vessel has created quite a buzz over the past couple of weeks, and it is not just because of its impressive architecture, or the panoramic view at the top (to which some claimed that getting there was an uncalled for work-out).

After coming across different nicknames of Hudson Yards’ now-famous point of attraction, architectural designer and illustrator Chanel Dehond selected some of the most amusing ones and transformed them into sketches.

Tell us, ArchDaily readers, what do you call the Vessel?

The Hoberman . Image © Chanel Dehond The Basket . Image © Chanel Dehond The Beehive . Image © Chanel Dehond The Faberge Egg. Image © Chanel Dehond + 11

Explore the Potential of the Human Figure in Architectural Representation

© Frances Edith Cooper
© Frances Edith Cooper

© Mariacristina Agnello, Mariarosario Bruno, Massimiliano Cafagna, Inés Martín Roldán, Luca Gnisci, Irene Laulo © Fala Atelier © Bakavou Vasiliki Cortesía de PKMN Architectures + 24

The human figure is fundamental in order to understand scale in illustrations, hyper-realistic renders, collages and three-dimensional representations. However, it often seems to be one of the last elements to be incorporated, when it should be a thoughtful decision, intrinsically related to the project. What do human figures transmit beyond the scale of a project?

Architecture Transcends Time in New Architectural Illustrations by Xinran Ma

As imaginative and hypothetical as their work may seem to some people, many visionaries have created admirable artwork that look beyond the ordinary and rethink architecture and urban spaces. Xinran Ma, the New York-based architectural designer and illustrator has visualized his architectural fantasies, and created numerous series of drawings, two of which were entries for Fairy Tales 2016 and 2017 by Blank Space."

Drawing inspiration from Italian artist Giovanni Battista Piranesi, known for his imaginative etches of Rome, and the collaborative works of Alexander Brodsky and Ilya Utkin, who produced avant-garde depictions of cities and landscapes, the illustrator has once again shared his creations with Archdaily, expressing his passion “to vision architectural fantasies that transcends time through graphic narratives”.

© Xinran Ma © Xinran Ma © Xinran Ma © Xinran Ma + 10

Travel Through History with this Interactive Timeline of Chicago's Tallest Buildings

Mud City, the Windy City, the City of the Big Shoulders... If there is one thing we are certain of, it is that Chicago is the birthplace of exceptionally tall buildings.

To celebrate the city's ongoing innovations in soaring skyscrapers, Orbitz has illustrated 20 of Chicago’s most iconic sky-high architecture.

View the republished content from Orbitz' list complete with an interactive timeline of Chicago's tallest buildings.

This Instagram Celebrates a Unique Style of Architectural Illustration

via Zean Macfarlane (@zeanmacfarlane)
via Zean Macfarlane (@zeanmacfarlane)

Instagram and social media are fundamentally changing the way we design in the 21st century. There is an inspirational component to the content we see and cite on the internet, but beyond the pretty pictures lies an opportunity for growth and learning. Zean Macfarlane (@zeanmacfarlane) has found his niche on Instagram somewhere in the middle. The "daily architecture" posts feature process sketches, articulated elevations, and graphic design; but the fun doesn't stop there.

Macfarlane's account also includes a link to tutorial ebooks where you can learn his unique graphic style and begin to apply the effects and techniques into your own drawings. The entire grid of posts acts as a digital artboard, rich with playful forms and careful composition. See for yourself why he has amassed a following of nearly 50k people.

 You can see more of Zean's work after the break. 

Tishk Barzanji's Illustrations Envision Complex Universes Inspired By Surrealism And Modern Architecture

It is rare to find artists who can instigate critical reflection on architecture by combining references such as 'The Red Wall' (La Muralla Roja) by Ricardo Boffil, with the complex illustrations of Giovanni Battista Piranesi and pop culture icons. But Tishk Barzanji, a London artist, is one who does.

Through his digital illustrations, he explores elements of modern architecture from a filtered view by using references that create a dreamlike and surreal universe, producing compositions that express an austere and somewhat disturbing atmosphere.

These Delicate Illustrations Turn Images of Urban Density into Art

The Layered City. Image Courtesy of Alina Sonea
The Layered City. Image Courtesy of Alina Sonea

Trained in Architecture, Urban Design, and Theory, Alina Sonea illustrates the complex and often paradoxical nature of the cities we inhabit. The Feldkirch-based artist and architect has, since 2013, completed a series of detailed illustrations that employ graphic yet delicate black lines to render dense images of fantastical metropolises.

Density. Image Courtesy of Alina Sonea ArchiTEXTURES - The Renaissance. Image Courtesy of Alina Sonea Feldkirch. Image Courtesy of Alina Sonea Illusions. Image Courtesy of Alina Sonea + 9

The Arc de Triomphe as an Elephant?! These Illustrations Reveal What Famous Monuments Could Have Been

A city’s monuments are integral parts of its metropolitan identity. They stand proud and tall and are often the subject of a few of your vacation photos. It is their form and design which makes them instantly recognizable, but what if their design had turned out differently?

Paris’ iconic and stunning Arc de Triomphe could have been a giant elephant, large enough to hold banquets and balls, and the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. could have featured an impressive pyramid.

GoCompare has compiled and illustrated a series of rejected designs for monuments and placed them in a modern context to commemorate what could have been. Here are a few of our favorites:

Cities Intricately Captured in Thin Line Illustrations

Architect and illustrator, Marta Vilarinho de Freitas has yet again enchanted us with her intricate drawings of cities in thin-line-pen on paper. The Portuguese architect has been exercising her passion in drawing through a series of drawings entitled, Cities and Memory - the Architecture and the City.

Fascinated by cities, Marta’s illustrations express her connection with architecture while still capturing the romantic and qualitative aspects of each city, its patterns, colors, atmosphere, and light.

Marta Vilarinho de Freitas combines fantasy with detailed accuracy in her compositions of stacked building facades, roof pitches, plans and sections along with elements distinct to the city depicted such as Dutch windmills, boats, books, and instruments.The process of creating these drawings is cyclical in that they continue to inform Marta of the spirit of each city as she draws each art piece.

Courtesy of Marta Vilarinho de Freitas Courtesy of Marta Vilarinho de Freitas Courtesy of Marta Vilarinho de Freitas Courtesy of Marta Vilarinho de Freitas + 12

Monumental Minds: Illustrations of Scandinavia’s Design Legacy

Not just meatballs and Vikings; Scandinavia has always been the epicentre of design across the world - just look at the growing impact of Bjarke Ingels and Ikea's future living lab SPACE10. To showcase their significant influence, Expedia has illustrated the works of four famous architects from Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden and how they shaped international architectural movements of the 20th and 21st centuries in a collection of posters called Monumental Minds.

EF Headquarters, Massachusetts. Image Courtesy of Expedia Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland House of Sweden, Washington. Image Courtesy of Expedia Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland St Paul's Church, Estonia. Image Courtesy of Expedia Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland King Abdulaziz Centre for World Culture, Saudi Arabia. Image Courtesy of Expedia Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland + 21

Explore These Digitally-Created Abandoned Islands by Brazilian Designer Fabio Araujo

Abu Dhabi-based Brazilian designer and artist Fábio Araujo has a fascination with abandoned places – the mystery of where the man made clashes with the natural to create unique colors, textures and compositions.

These places are the subject of his series, aptly titled “Abandoned Places,” in which he uses a series of digital manipulations to create small islands floating within and contrasting with their clean, solid backgrounds.

Other works by Araujo include “Favela,” where the Brazilian housing typology has been reimagined as located within the sky, and miniature models of scenes and buildings including the Burj al Arab hotel in Dubai.

Abandoned Park. Image © Fabio Araujo Abandoned Train. Image © Fabio Araujo Favela. Image © Fabio Araujo Burj Al Arab. Image © Fabio Araujo + 6

12 Offices that Use Collage to Create Architectural Atmospheres

“An image is a sight which has been recreated or reproduced. It is an appearance, or a set of appearances, which has been detached from the place and time in which it first made its appearance and preserved – for a few moments or a few centuries. Every image embodies a way of seeing.” - John Berger / 1972 / Ways of seeing

Digital tools have given architecture the ability to manipulate information, allowing architects to interact with existing information and reshape it in a different way according to the author’s ideals or thoughts about architecture.

Representation becomes a project itself; it is a graphic manifesto of what the author wants to deliver, a critical vision of a design intervention in a particular context.

In this path, collage has become an active tool to facilitate the reproduction of multi-layered atmospheres made by the curated assemblage of different forms to create a complex stage for an architectural idea.

A collage engages all senses to define the experience of a space. The symbolic and tactical associations between fragments of images provide a way to understand all the stories behind a space, transgressing the limits of perception to reach an intuitive process that exhibits the atmosphere of a project. 

Here we introduce 12 architecture offices that describe atmospheres by using complex collage compositions to express social, cultural and political environments for their designs.

"Architecture of the Portrait": Illustrations by Francisca Álvarez Ainzúa

Chilean architect and illustrator Francisca Álvarez Ainzúa created "Architecture of the Portrait": a series of illustrations of renowned architects drawn with the precision and accuracy of a fineliner. In order to choose the protagonists of her geometrical analyses, the architect states a preference for strong character and the presence of imperfections, which imparts a certain richness to the representation.

The architectural construction of the face is done using lines to create a hatch effect. Next, she adds color that pays tribute to the traditional default CAD shades: yellow, cyan and magenta.

Tadao Ando. Image © Francisca Álvarez Ainzúa Zaha Hadid. Image © Francisca Álvarez Ainzúa Teodoro Fernández. Image © Francisca Álvarez Ainzúa Mies Van Der Rohe. Image © Francisca Álvarez Ainzúa + 6

The Humble Vernacular of the Undecorated Shed

John Redington, a Texas-based illustrator, documents abandoned rural sheds and their modest architectural impact. In this visual essay he reveals this unseen, underrepresented vernacular arguing that the "shaky charm of the abandoned shed could offer a look into a more humble form of inspiration for architects."

The car rattles on a loose road as thick white dust rises from the back of its tires. On either side seas of sunburned grass just barely keep themselves from breaking onto the path. The sky sits heavily on the horizon, as the fragrance of both wild and cultivated plants fill the air.

© John Redington © John Redington © John Redington © John Redington + 15

Italo Calvino's 'Invisible Cities', Illustrated (Again)

Lima-based architect Karina Puente has a personal project: to illustrate each and every "invisible" city from Italo Calvino's 1972 novel. Her initial collection, which ArchDaily published in 2016, traced Cities and Memories. This latest series of mixed media collages, drawn mainly using ink on paper, brings together another sequence of imagined places – each referencing a city imagined in the book.

Invisible Cities, which imagines fictional conversations between the (real-life) Venetian explorer Marco Polo and the aged Mongol ruler Kublai Khan, has been instrumental in framing approaches to urban discourse and the form of the city. According to Puente, "each illustration has a conceptual process, some of which take more time than others." Usually "I research, think, and ideate over each city for three weeks before making sketches." The final drawings and cut-outs take around a week to produce.

Zaira. Image © Karina Puente Frantzen Diomira. Image © Karina Puente Frantzen Dorotea. Image © Karina Puente Frantzen Fedora. Image © Karina Puente Frantzen + 16

These Watercolors Capture the Unsung Architecture of Tokyo's Eclectic Storefronts

© Mateusz Urbanowicz
© Mateusz Urbanowicz

A renowned symbol of the modern world, Tokyo is a city commonly associated with bright lights, innovative technology and sleek buildings. So when Polish artist Mateusz Urbanowicz first moved to Tokyo, he was taken aback by the number of old, architecturally eclectic storefronts that continued to flourish within the city.

“When I moved to Tokyo, more than 3 years ago I was really surprised that upon my walks I encountered so many shops still in business in really old buildings,” Urbanowicz explains. “Differently to Kobe, where the earthquake wiped out a lot of these old downtown houses and shops, in Tokyo they still survive.”

Inspired by the buildings’ resilience and their unique architectural features, Urbanowicz set out to document the storefronts in a series of watercolor illustrations, capturing the process through making-of videos.

Kobayashi hair salon from Sanbanchyo district. Image © Mateusz Urbanowicz Chinese food restaurant from around the Takadanobaba district and Miyake bicycle shop based on shops from Kagurazaka and Kichijyouji. Image © Mateusz Urbanowicz Noike sushi restaurant from Yanaka district. Image © Mateusz Urbanowicz Nakashimaya Japanese sake shop from Mejiro district and Kitchen Kuku restaurant from Kichijyouji district. Image © Mateusz Urbanowicz + 7