Visualization of a design is an incredibly important aspect of any creative project. From architecture to engineering, the ability to realize the project at hand allows the designer to communicate honestly, accurately, and efficiently with the client and produce a satisfactory outcome.
With that said, a large part of design relies heavily on the designers skill for visualization, in short the ability to listen deeply to your client’s vision and create the physical representation while considering limitations, expansion, and infusing your own creativity and flare. This type of visualization is accomplished in various ways including hand drafted or computer generated renderings. Rendering all comes down to technical drawing and the integral role it plays in the design world.
What is Technical Drawing?
Also known as draughting or drafting, technical drawing refers to visualization of a design project. In this way, a structure and its features and functions are explained through drawings. Technical drawing is an incredibly invaluable skill and oftentimes is one of the main forms of communication between the client and the professional. Many fields, such as engineers, architects and landscape architects, contractors, plumbers, electricians, and even inventors, readily use technical drawing to develop and mediate structural concepts.
One of the most important aspects of technical drawing is the ability to make on-the-spot, immediate modifications to the design. While changes to computer generated renderings are more accurate, they involve the use of a computer or portable device such as a laptop or tablet. Hand drawn renditions are easier to modify on the spot, such as during a client meeting, yet are subject to flaws and miscalculations.
The Artistic Influencing the Technical: Working in Tandem
One of the largest misconceptions regarding technical drawing is its complete segregation from artistic drawing. These two styles, artistic and technical, are aspects that both play an integral role in any type of drawing. With that said, it’s important to differentiate between the styles in order to understand how best to use them.
Artistic drawing is relies heavily on the perceived visualization. It “is generally very subjective and open to interpretation. Where one person sees one thing, someone else might see something completely different or take different meaning from the same piece of art.” When a client reviews a draft it’s not unusual to receive feedback based upon their artistic interpretation.
Technical drawing “is absolutely clear in what it shows and/or represents and there is very little room for interpretation. [It] generally follows very specific rules and guidelines in order to make its intent clear and avoid confusion.”
Therefore, it’s important for designers to understand the artistic element in order to bolster communication with the client and, when it comes to drawing a design, technical skill is surmount
Types of Technical Drawing
- Hand Drawing
Technical sketching is a diminishing skill in the field of design. With the burgeoning use of computerized rendering, the demand for hand drawn drafts is decreasing. Therefore, it’s more important than ever to elaborate the role of hand drawn design.
This begins by understanding the difference between sketching and drawing. Per the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s design handbook, “‘sketching’ generally means freehand drawing. ‘Drawing’ usually means using drawing instruments, from compasses to computers to bring precision to the drawings.” Both are great skills for designers in any field. The ability to freehand means on-hand modifications, while using instruments allows for more precision.
Taking a deeper dive into the skill behind hand drawing illuminates aspects such as isometric drawing, orthographic drawing, and dimension. All of these variations create lead to the ultimate goal of a three-dimensional representation of the project called rendering.