This blog is devoted to my architectural sketching adventures and musings about the integration of architecture and sketching.
I hope not only to share my own on-location architectural sketches but provide tips and methodologies for sketching and understanding architecture.
Also, most importantly, I wish to explore ways in which, in a digital age, we can not only defend but
promote freehand sketching within the architectural profession.

Friday, September 28, 2012

White house on the corner

My morning sketches are great training exercises as I have so limited time 15min max and just got to go for it.

This morning I followed an impulse to sketch this house. Didn't bother setting up perspective lines but I did start at the top and get those main roof forms first.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Analysis of what I did this morning

120911 Analysis of what I did this morning 1

120911 Analysis of what I did this morning 2

Further to a few comments - here is an analysis of what I did this morning.
I don't have time to write a detailed description but hopefully these notes make sense- please ask questions... (I suppose some people want more details about the eyeline???)

in summary - always establish the main proportions of the building and the space between you and the building (if you are draw that) BEFORE you get distracted by details. Then work within this guidelines. If you make a mistake either- reinstate or just run with it (most people will not know it is slightly wrong...but you have learnt from it)

Context vs Object Explorations

120911 Context vs Object Exploration2
I am stealing my own thunder a little but I just can’t find time to complete my post about the Jefferson Library. However I have decided to use my morning walk and sketch to explore a few ideas.
In summary (also refer to notes above)
Context sketch
– START sketching the foreground first so not distracted by building details, and the space between you and the building is more convincing and more of the focus of the sketch
- focus more on the 3D form //massing of the building.
120911 Context vs Object Exploration1
Hopefully my notes make some sense and explain further... These were really rushed this morning....(as you can see I am enjoying scribbling working drawings in my sketchbook these days!)

Please ask questions....

Monday, September 10, 2012

Monday morning sketching at St Leonard's

I am really getting into groove with my morning walk and sketch before work and have realised that this church, St Leonard's is a great subject to come back to. Since its form is very complex. Another favourite is the big brutalist concrete building. So I am going to plan a few specific sketching exercises for myself.

At the moment I am still exploring markers. And today was an object based sketch.

So nice sitting on a kerb in the sun this morning.

Friday, September 7, 2012

This Week: 7 Sept 2012: Mad about markers

120905 St Leonards Naremburn

I feel like I have been so busy lately and haven’t had any time to re-visit my Jefferson Market Library sketch as I promised. I am just so hopeless at sticking to a plan...and doing two things at the one time.

This week almost out of the blue, I have gone mad about markers. Most of you will have noticed this on my blog/flickr/facebook.

120831 Morning markers

120903 Old CBC bank

The inspiration is Eduardo Bajzek and his great workshop that I did at the Urban Sketchers Symposium. While I am not using the markers the way he uses them, I have been exploring them Liz style and am constantly referring to his stuff.

120904 St Thomas Rest Park(5 mins there, 2 mins later)

So here are all the sketches I have done in 5-15 minutes before I started work for the day. Most have some kind of architectural theme. Because my time was extremely limited and my focus was experimenting with the markers and the best colours (how to mix colours), my sketches are very loose. No real thought about composition or perspective, just ...see, respond, sketch and THEN think about how to tackle the colour with markers.

120906 FULL colour markering

I am mainly using Copic markers and will be posting my selection of colours soon. It is amazing that a succession of 6 mornings in a row, sketching on location with a new medium is a great way to get a feel how to use it.

Friday morning: markering from the gutter

I posted this elsewhere...but just for the record on this are my thoughts after first few days.

What I love
- so easy to get clean fresh colours (no messy, dirty mixes)
- very little drying time (I can sketch more as can almost instantly turn the page and start sketch no. 2 or 3 or 4!) Also nice not to have to walk the streets holding my book open and checking to make sure I have not unexpected runs of wet watercolour paint
- it is the same action as when I am drawing – ie. I am using a pen. it is the hand/ head dialogue that gives me great joy in exploring an object. I don’t quite get the same experience when I painting- I love splashing pigment and water around, but it is the drawing side (as an architect) that is my foundation
- solid block colour rather than linear/stroke based colour of a wc pencil... Easy to colour a large area quickly and can produce a perfect solid uniform wash
- overlaying of colours is very exciting ... No murky mixes!
- blending opportunities to explore
- I am loving using these markers in a loose way (rather than the traditional polished manner) and seeing how my personal watercolour style is translated to a different medium
- I am really want to explore the massing of colours that Eduardo does – so amazing his work – and using markers I think will be a great way to explore more painterly work which I can then translate back to watercolour

What is not so good
- They are expensive and you need a lot of them as there is a limit to how much you can layer.
- The colours are so nice... That I want MORE... I have bought more than I need already and still need to go to my art store to get a rose/magenta colour... Will I come away with only one ...or more?
- Good to have wet and old dried out pens for some effects – =more markers...
- They bleed through the paper... Almost any paper
- Not as convenient to hold many colours when on site (vs my little watercolour kit that I can create unlimited colours from) and you MUST put the lid back on immediately after use. Of course I am working fast (very fast) and constantly changing pens (sketching like a mad woman even more than usual!). This adds a little to the adrenalin rush that I get from sketching (so this is a positive, I suppose... I come into work pumping as a result!!!)
- Need a range of light.mid and dark colour... = More markers....and be careful with the dark ones... Once on the page you are stuck with it!
- Fumes? Not an issue outside but could be an issue inside (the old yoken pens were far worse)

Ok.. That's all that I can think of after a few days of using them ( only 5 days worth...seems longer than that!)
I am NOT trying to convert everyone to rush out and buy a heap... I am not sure that they would work for many of you....but I just can't help sharing my excitement with you all!

Please let me know if you have any questions and I will try to answer in a later post.