Architecture is the process of designing new buildings or structures for construction. There are several unique jobs in the architecture field, many of which involve drafting new designs by drawing. Because architects can design almost any kind of structure, there are many different types of architectural drawings that they can use, and if you’re considering this career, it’s important to understand them. In this article, we define what an architectural drawing is and explore a list of seven types of drawings that architects can use in their work.
What is an architectural drawing?
An architectural drawing is an illustration of a building or structure that an architect creates in the design process. Architectural drawings can be beneficial when moving to the construction stage of a new building because they show construction workers details about a building that can inform their work, such as where to place windows or doors, how many floors they need to plan for, and what materials they might use based on the structure of the building.
There are also additional types of construction drawings that can accompany architectural drawings and guide a construction team in assembling a new structure. Here are the other types of drawings that architects can use:
Electrical and plumbing drawings
Types of architectural drawings
Here are seven types of drawings that architects commonly use:
A floor plan is a detailed illustration of the layout of a room. When designing a building with multiple rooms or floors, architects can create floor plans for each room to organize the appearance and logistics of the structure once it’s built, such as the placement of doors and windows.
Floor plans can also be used during the construction stage of a building to guide construction workers. To create effective floor plans, architects can use their knowledge of dimensions and installments to understand how much space is in a room, the shape of a room, and more.
A site plan is a drawing that shows an overview of a construction site where a new building or structure is being built. Site plans typically include illustrations of the new building as well as any construction projects that might accompany it, such as creating a parking lot or outdoor seating area. Site plans can be very valuable to both architects and construction workers because they provide a complete view of the construction site and allow the architecture and construction teams to remain informed about the same information.
When drawing a site plan, architects can consider details like how large a building might be, whether there are roads or pavement nearby and whether any other projects might be necessary.
A cross-section is a drawing of a building that provides a view of how tall a building is and what rooms it has inside of it. To picture what a cross-section looks like, it can be helpful to imagine an illustration of a building that has been completely constructed and then cut in half vertically, keeping its shape but revealing the inside.
Cross sections can show construction workers what a building might look like from the outside, such as how tall or wide it is, as well as what it can look like inside by illustrating the different rooms that the building can hold once it’s constructed.
A landscape is an illustration of the entire area where a new building or structure is being constructed. This can include the area surrounding the building, nearby streets and lights, parks and other public structures or amenities.
Landscapes can be especially helpful in residential or commercial construction projects because they show what aspects of the area might make it ideal for a home or business, such as heavy foot traffic, spaces for recreation and accessible roads. A landscape drawing can also display the aesthetic elements of a building’s exterior, like paint colors or light fixtures, which can help clients visualize the new building before its built.
An elevation drawing shows how tall a building is and how its elevation can impact the structure. Elevations can indicate the exact height of a building to determine the size of certain fixtures, like doorways and windows, in order to ensure they can be used and have an attractive appearance. For example, if an architect decides not to use an elevation and estimates the size of the windows, they might be too large or too small for the space.
Elevations can also tell architects about the direction of the sun and the strength of the wind that a building might experience to determine how they can reinforce its structural integrity according to its height.
An as-built drawing is an illustration that compares the current appearance or state of a new building to its original plans or blueprints. This type of drawing can be very helpful during projects where unforeseen circumstances arise that require an architect to adjust their plans. It can show how to achieve the desired results in the current structure by working from the original design.
An as-built drawing can also benefit a construction team by helping them track progress and indicating which tasks they might still need to complete. Most architects create as-built drawings during the construction stage or after construction finishes.
An excavation drawing shows the dimensions of a building’s foundation. This can help to determine how deep construction teams need to dig into the ground and how long and wide their foundation needs to be. Excavation drawings can also include details about the excavation process, such as what materials need to be removed and what excavation methods a team might use. Another benefit to using excavation drawings is that they can inform a construction crew about what specific skills or tools they might need to perform excavations like digging trenches, setting up wall shafts, and creating tunnels.
I hope you find this article helpful.