Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Making Marks

Making Marks: Architects' Sketchbook - The Creative Process
Will Jones
Thames & Hudson, March 2019



Hardcover | 12 x 9 inches | 320 pages | 900+ illustrations | English | ISBN: 978-0500021316 | $50.00

Publisher Description:
Making Marks follows up on the highly successful Architects’ Sketchbooks, which presented, for the first time, the rich breadth of sketches being created by contemporary architects following the digital revolution. Taking a post-digital perspective, the sixty renowned architects whose work is collected here show how drawing and new forms of manual presentation have been refined since the reawakening of this basic technique. Notepads, stacks of paper, pencils and fine-point pens are as present in the architect’s studio as phalanxes of screens. Revealing why and how hand-drawing still matters, this global survey presents the freehand drawings, vibrant watercolours and abstract impressions of rising talents and well-known names, including Jun Igarashi and Brian MacKay-Lyons. Will Jones’s introduction reviews the importance of the physical sketch and its vital part in the architect’s creative process.

Spanning diverse approaches, styles and physical forms,
Making Marks is not merely a compendium of the preoccupations and stylistics of current practice, but also a rich and varied insight into architectural creativity.
dDAB Commentary:
Being an architect, I'm rarely without a sketchbook. But being an architect who now writes rather than practices architecture, most of what I fill up my sketchbooks with are words rather than drawings. This situation really came to the fore the other night, when I was at dinner with an architect. I noticed that just about every story he told in words he also drew on paper: plans, details, whatever best conveyed his experiences. It made me a little sentimental for practicing architecture, when I would do the same sort of thing: the proverbial napkin sketch at a bar or restaurant. It also made me realize just how natural it is for architects -- of a certain age, at least -- to sketch as they talk, to sketch as they think, to sketch all the time. Most architects see such quick sketches as throwaways, or at least not as materials ripe for publication, unlike more polished drawings that require more time to produce. But Making Marks is full of, but not limited to, the quick sketches that architects produce as they think, design, and convey ideas to their colleagues. There are also plenty of polished drawings, some models, and the occasional hard-line drawing, adding up to a diverse collection of marks on paper.

Making Marks comes eight years after Architects' Sketchbooks, also by Will Jones. Although put out by a different publisher, the new book is very much a sequel, given that it has the same page size, landscape orientation, and paper quality, and a similar selection of architects. In regards to the selection, I noted in my review of Architects' Sketchbooks that the London-based Jones loaded up the book with UK architects. There is less of that here, but still many UK architects, alongside ones from Canada, USA, Australia, Japan, Scandinavia, and other parts of Europe. The most glaring omission is South America, which has so many good contemporary architects but only one in the book (from Costa Rica). Like its predecessor, Making Marks is packed with eye candy that illustrates just how "architectural" drawings by architects are, while at the same time capturing the uniqueness of each hand. In this sense, the book is most helpful for students, who have yet to find their style but can find it as they absorb the drawings of others.
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Author Bio:
Will Jones is a journalist and writer specializing in architecture and design. His articles have appeared in the RIBA Journal, the Financial Times and Blueprint, and he is the author of several books including Architects’ Sketchbooks.
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