Sketching workshop for architects on Cockatoo Island

April 12, 2024 | 5 Comments

On Monday I had the great pleasure of teaching a sketching workshop at Cockatoo Island for the wonderful team at Campbell Architecture. This workshop was originally planned for December last year but rain meant that it was postponed. I was super thankful that we had perfect weather on the day.

Here is the gang with their Seawhite concertina sketchbooks open at the end of the workshop.

I chose one of my favourite spots on the island and this provided us with a great variety of subject matter for all the workshop exercises.

Using a combination of tools (permanent Uni-Pin pens (0.4 and brush tip), watercolour pencils and tombows) we explored how to sketch using edges and shapes. Yes, the key concepts from my Foundations course!

Here is one of the edge exercises…

and here are two of the shape exercises.


And then I showed them how to mix it up and combine shapes and edges in the one sketch.

I was blown away by the work of the group! Very inspiring! Half of the group occasionally do a bit of sketching and they latched on really quickly to these new ideas.

It’s always super special  for me to teach architects because even those who are new to sketching have:
1. confidence and comfort with using a pen
2. an underlying sense of balance and composition
3. understand what they are looking at when drawing buildings.

I didn’t mention perspective once during the morning but yet if you look at the sketches in the photos below you will notice a great sense of 3-dimensional volumes and angles going in the right direction! So these workshop exercises were a good example of how focusing on edges and shapes is ultimately more important than perspective.

Here are a few photos from the morning…

It was great to develop some new edge and shape exercises and I was really happy with the sketching kit that we all used. Thanks to LarryPOST for helping me put the kits together.

And it was wonderful, as always, to be out on location teaching!

And finally… here is the warmup sketch I did beforehand.

Thanks to everyone from Campbell Architecture for such a wonderful morning of sketching!


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