December 22, 2012

Photoshop: Transform a Picture into an Architectural Blueprint

Creating a blueprint in Photoshop is fairly easy and straight forward. The following video by Blue Lightning TV outlines all the steps and techniques in order to transform a picture into an architectural blueprint. There are also many interesting tips and trick in this video with layering, brushes and masking tips.

November 13, 2012

Architectural Rendering: Using Scale People

When adding people to an architectural render it is important to keep them in scale so everything about the render looks correct. So how do I keep them in scale and where do I find people to add?

In AutoCAD

The first way is to add people into your AutoCAD drawing before you import them into Photoshop. This is the simplest way to keep people to scale. There are free CAD blocks online with people that you can add to your building drawings. The blocks are generally not too well defined and you can't manipulate the people too much in Photoshop once imported along with your building drawing. If you are doing quick renderings, keeping people in your imported drawing would help you save a bit of time.

November 11, 2012

AutoCAD: Menubar

Even after they created the ribbon in AutoCAD, sometimes the best way to work with CAD is to use the menubar. To show or hide the menubar is quite simple. Type in the command MENUBAR and hit enter or the spacebar. Then it will prompt you to enter a new value for the MENUBAR. Entering 0 will hide the menubar and 1 will show the menubar.

Command: MENUBAR  hit enter or spacebar
Option 0 : will hide the menubar
Option 1: will show the menubar

More AutoCAD Tips and Hints from the Architecture Student Blog

November 7, 2012

Design Help: Dimensions and Colors

I found these links while doing research for studio and I thought they were worth sharing. The following links outline standard closet dimensions, general home and office dimensions like chair and railing heights as well as RGB color codes while working in Photoshop or Indesign.

Closet Dimensions
Standard Dimensions - This link is broken, hopefully only due to website maintenance
RGB Color Codes

August 27, 2012

Tutorial: Hand Drafting

Picking Lead

Everyone has different handwriting styles which creates the need for different types of leads as well as the need for depth in architectural plans and renderings. B Leads are darker and as you get to 9B they become more and more charcoal like. When starting to draft, always use an H, generally 4H to 9H. They are lighter in shade, with a harder lead that erases the easiest. Just be careful not to write/draw too hard, it will indent the paper resulting in issues with paper texture and eraser. You can also get a ghosting affect when shading.

Architecture Student: AutoCAD Tip Compilation

This Post is a Library in process...

Show Lineweights

Lineweights in CAD
To show lineweights in AutoCAD, just click on the icon at the bottom. This can be problematic while drafting in modelspace, though helpful in paperspace. When you can see line weights and the plot style helps you edit your drawings without going to plot preview. To set up a black and white paperspace with plot styles, see Setting up CAD Paperspace with plot styles and line weights.

Top 10 Things you'll never hear your architecture professor say

Need a laugh? Check out Doug Patt's Top 10 things you'll never hear your architecture professor say.

August 19, 2012

Photoshop: How to Watercolor Images

To create a picture that looks like a watercolor in Photoshop is fairly simple once you have learned the basics of Photoshop. Just follow these steps to turn your pictures into watercolors.

August 10, 2012

Architectural Rendering: Adding a Sky in Photoshop

Sky from
There are many ways to add a sky in Photoshop to your renderings. You can add a solid color, a color with a gradient, a picture, multiple pictures, or all of the above. This post goes through the different ways to add a sky in Photoshop.

August 8, 2012

Importing a pdf into Photoshop

The linework in a CAD PDF file is stored as vector data rather than raster data used by Photoshop, so when you bring the file into Photoshop, you will be given options on how want to import the PDF and convert the file. The import window also allows you to input a pixel resolution for the new imported file and double check the file size. Follow the steps below.

August 7, 2012

Tutorial: Learn to Create an Architectural Section Render in Photoshop

Cardiff Bay School Section - David Schnabel

Learning to render in Photoshop starts with Photoshop basics and once you understand them, you can start to learn how to render architectural drawings. It is also important to learn how to use AutoCAD, Revit, Sketchup or other programs that allow you to create architecture drawings to scale. You can also sketch/draft a section and scan into the computer. Once you have a plan, section, perspective or other drawing you can start to render them in Photoshop. In CAD and Revit you can print a pdf to scale, then import it into Photoshop to keep the scale accurate. Double check to make sure it looks to scale when you import it to be sure. I have yet to figure out how to get Sketchup to export to scale. Scale isn't always that important so use your judgement when you start thinking about how you want to do a drawing. The work flow, steps and videos below outlines the the steps to create an architectural section render in Photoshop.

August 6, 2012

Websites to Supplement your CAD Drawings for Free

When working on a drawing in AutoCAD, it is sometimes difficult to find blocks and drawings to supplement your drawings. The list below are websites that I have found that have free CAD drawings and blocks to help give that extra punch to your drawings. Many also have forums and articles to help you with your CAD-ing.

August 1, 2012

How See Plot Style and Lineweights in AutoCAD

Drawing View - Showing Plot Style and Lineweights

The best way to check lineweights and double check your drawing is to set up your paperspace to show your plot style on a white background. To set this up will only take you a few minutes.

July 28, 2012

Section Rendering: Coloring in PhotoShop

Rendering from following video by Dangeroris

The following video visually outlines the workflow in making an architectural section. The initial section can be created by hand, in CAD, Revit, Sketchup or whichever software you are proficient in. I recommend using whichever program you work with the fastest. Follow the workflow from the following video:

July 23, 2012

AutoCAD: Getting stuck in Model View

If you ever double-click in model view in paper space and you can not see the border to double click back into paper space. I have deleted Layouts and re-made them before I found this command. Simply enter


and hit enter (or space-bar) to take you back to paperspace. For more helpful tips on AutoCAD see my AutoCAD Tips Page.

See AutoCAD Tips Compilation for more