The sketchbook is an artist's BFF. It's a place where artists can most comfortably explore their personal thoughts, practice, maintain a visual history, and keep unpolished sketches that will eventually lead to amazing work.
Denis Mason Jones was a distinguished Leeds architect. Throughout his adult life Denis kept meticulous notebooks, filled with sketches of buildings, family activities, holidays, cartoons and stories for his four children, all in his very distinctive style.
Architecture school comes as a shocker to most people without an art background. All your life you were taught to write and read, but suddenly you are expected to draw and visualize. The first year in architecture school is the toughest.
It may seem strange to champion hand drawing today, in view of the universal triumph of digital graphics—especially when every progressive architect in the world seems obsessed with elevating computerized delineation to new heights of illustrative supremacy. At the same time, as the software revolution has increasingly taken precedence, there appears to be a fresh incentive among many architectural students—actually, a kind of quiet revolution—based on a newfound desire to hone their manual skills and learn to draw in the old way.
The RIBA's collection of drawings, held as part of the RIBA Library Drawings and Archives Collections, is the largest and most important collection of British architectural drawings in the world. Currently numbering over 1 million drawings, it celebrates the achievements of British architects from the Renaissance to the present day. The collection also contains important drawings by foreign architects, most notably nearly 300 designs and sketches by Andrea Palladio which together forms the world's largest assemblage of his drawings.
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