Sketchbook 1.0 / by Judy Dixon

An architect's sketchbook is many things: a journal, a safe place to work through a design, a travel companion, basically an extension of our brain that we carry in our hand.  Above all else, it is a way for us to document our thoughts and mental images to a tangible reality.  The presence of technology in every nearly facet of our lives [computer renderings, BIM, emails instead of phone calls, even our grocery list is an app] makes it even more important for us to ground ourselves by putting pen to paper regularly.  Our sketchbooks aren't perfect - there are a lot of scribbles, notes, emerging and discarded design ideas, fingerprints, ink smudges - but perhaps that makes it better. There is a "realness" inside a sketchbook; an intimate look at process or a moment in time. 

This excerpt from the Sketchbook Curator Blog sums it up perfectly.  

"It’s often the physical act of drawing that artists get inspiration from. It’s the openness of a blank page that gives all the freedom for the artist to draw, paint, paste, and damage. It’s those papers bound together that gives perhaps the disconnected, random sketches a sequence, narrative, or an identity as a whole. Sketchbook, either as private or public entity, is a space of freedom and expression for any artist; it is their companion and reflection of their identity."
Stack of sketchbooks in the RDA studio

Stack of sketchbooks in the RDA studio

One of many layout sketches of competition boards circa 1993, Virginia Tech.

One of many layout sketches of competition boards circa 1993, Virginia Tech.

Travel Sketch, Savannah, GA 2008

Travel Sketch, Savannah, GA 2008

Sketching the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC was a reflective way to acknowledge the dark happenings of our city and pay respect. 

Sketching the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC was a reflective way to acknowledge the dark happenings of our city and pay respect.