Archi-Doodle, an Architects Activity Book

Book Review

By Eliana Voutsadakis, on 30th Jun, 2014 18:09



Archi-Doodle, an Architects Activity Book , turned up in the post the other day with the inscription “To Eliana, Keep on Doodling, All the Best Steve B”. Architecture but also life in general involves a great amount of doodling. I have been involved with architecture for 20 years and confess that I have not always had the best relationship with my doodles. As soon as I flicked through Archi-Doodle, I immediately felt the urge to interact with it. I got my pencil out and to remain truthful to my doodle ability phobia, I grabbed some tracing paper to give archi-doodling a go. This was perfect.

Archi-Doodle is the ultimate doodle confidence booster which simultaneously invites you to explore the world of the built environment but also invites your hand to let go and simply explore ideas in doodling fashion.


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I first met Steve as a design tutor at Southbank University back in the late nineties and more recently as external examiner for the University of Wales at the Architectural Design Technology course I run in Athens for BHC-AKTO. I highly associate Steve with architectural inspiration & education. His book reflects on his passion to transmit design ideas & skills to others and helps you become involved with the amazing world of Architecture by being inspired by what you see and know from your surrounding environment.

Archi-Doodle is an activity book, like the ones I was given by my Dad each summer before I went to summer camp to amuse myself during the yawningly long afternoon rest times. It begins by letting you know how to use it, equipment, techniques and types of drawings are described. The Doodling journey begins.


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Each page explores a different thematic entity on the subject of architecture. Sketches drawn by the author explain types of building, building elements, environments, spaces, famous architects, their quotes, architectural movements and so much more, in no particular order. You are invited to create your own ideas on partly drawn pages with enough available space to make you feel obliged to finish off the drawing. You are asked to “Design your own underwater community”, then “to come up with a roof type”. You can “Populate Planets”, “Design a new zero-gravity community for the surface of Titan” or “a kiosk to sell the De Stijl magazine and express the spirit of the movement”. From windows to beach huts to surreal houses and duck sheds, this book promises to tantalise your imagination and provide you with an extremely broad introduction to the magical but complex world of Architecture in a very informative way.


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The best thing about the book is that you can begin it without knowing anything about architecture and finish it by designing an actual “award you would be happy to receive” because “you’ve completed the book and won an award for Architect of the Year”.


Architectural education is all about inspiration and ideas. Students are encouraged to use a sketchbook, to draw their ideas, and to analyse them. More often than not, in the first year of architectural education students darkest secret is that they feel they cannot draw. Whether you are a child fascinated by the exploration of buildings and space, a student eager to indulge in endless hours of fun sketching exercises or a professional wanting to escape construction sites and dive into the wonderful world of imagination, this book is an excellent addition to your library.



Archi-Doodle 

Paperback
200 illustrations
160 pages
8⅜ x 10¾ ins
ISBN 9781780673219
Published September 2013