Joanna Petkowska
Role of Free­hand Drawing in an Archi­tec­tu­ral and Urban Design Pro­cess Today

Joanna Petkowska

My PhD the­sis is focu­sed on the role of free­hand drawing in the archi­tec­tu­ral and urban design pro­cess. The time con­text of the work is important, because we are now facing a pro­found change in the very design pro­cess. New digi­tal design pos­si­bi­li­ties like Buil­ding Infor­ma­tion Mode­ling (BIM) and com­pu­ta­tio­nal design have cau­sed an epo­chal shift from drawing to com­pu­ta­tion, from repre­sen­ta­tio­nal way of pre­sen­ting ideas to simu­la­tion. This trans­for­ma­tion chan­ges the approach to the design, making per­for­ma­tive cri­te­ria the essen­tial object of design. It also alters the architect’s posi­tion in a pro­ject where he/​she emer­ges more as a coor­di­na­tor of infor­ma­tion rather than a creator of form.

Does it mean that the free­hand drawing is of no impor­t­ance nowa­days? The the­sis shows the pro­per­ties of free­hand drawing which are uni­que and indis­pensable for the whole design pro­cess as well as the pre-phase of it (edu­ca­tion). The value of this tra­di­tio­nal tool is pre­sen­ted with regard to pha­ses of the design and based on the rese­arch about designing pro­cess its­elf, human per­cep­tion and cogni­tion. The author’s expe­ri­ence in pro­jects based on the char­rette method has been cho­sen as a back­ground for the con­si­de­ra­ti­ons. They end with con­clu­si­ons of the role of free­hand drawing in the archi­tec­tu­ral cur­ri­cu­lum.