I recently read some different designers opinions on hand-drawing client's designs as opposed to using a computer drawing program. To my surprise the general opinion was that hand drawing still has an important place in the design studio, even with all the drawing programs available. I have been doing all my drawings by hand since the inception of my business, in 1968. I draw by hand because of the amount of detail and information I feel I need to include in a drawing. Not that I feel CAD or other drawing programs don't have a place in the design studio. Architectural engineering and room layouts are perfect examples of when those computer drawing programs apply.
But once you get into hand-carving wood and designing art glass, incorporating curves in your work, and adding free-form designs, hand drawing gives me the freedom to rough in ideas, see how they work, and then refine the lines. Drawings done by hand also have a more personal feeling, an artistry, compared to most computer drawing programs that seem almost lifeless to me.
I would like to find a program I can use to draw and change at will my many design styles, not keeping me in a box of that program's functions, but giving me the freedom to use my computer as I would my paper and pencil. Until I find that drawing program, I will continue to do all my drawings by hand.
Below are a few examples of some of my drawings, along with their finished projects.
Here is a drawing of an entry door with side lites. The carving is an Indian with a dog.
Here is the finished door pictured in the drawing above. The Indian and the dog are hand-carved in solid wood, and the glass has carved clouds in it. This was a contemporary Southwest entryway I did for a couple. The wife loved the look of the Southwest, the husband loved modern clean lines. This door was a combination of both of their styles and I think it turned out beautifully.
Drawing for a solid-wood hand-carved olive tree entryway, with art glass side lite.
This is the finished door, hand-carved solid African mahogany. The branch of the olive tree is the door handle. I would never have the artistic freedom shown here with a computer drawing program!
Some variations for the client to choose from for their entry and bedroom doors.
The client chose "door number 2" in the picture above for their entryway. The wood I used here is solid cherry. The design is a hand-carved cherry tree with hand-painted and kiln-fired art glass cherry blossoms.
This is a drawing, and concept, for a solid-wood, hand-carved fireplace mantle along with a hand-forged iron fireplace screen.
This is the finished mantle and screen. The mantle is made of solid walnut. If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen this mantel posted already. I usually stay very close to my original design, but as you can see, I added a lot more carving and refinement to this mantel. Another example of an impossible art piece to create from a computer program!
This is a hand-forged iron chandelier I designed for a client with very high living room ceilings. It's massive!
This picture of the chandelier does not show the scale well - if you look back at the drawing above you can see it is seven feet tall and five feet wide. A beautiful addition to those high ceilings.
A design I drew for the heavily carved solid wood gates you can see in the picture below.
These are the completed gates, hand-carved in solid cherry. Can you see the two birds? I enjoy incorporating nature in my designs.
Here is a tropical design I drew for a client's bathroom door.
This is the finished bathroom door, made of solid jatoba wood. It's carved in filigree to allow ventilation in the room. I designed and made the bathroom cabinetry as well. The wood I used on the cabinets is granadillo.
I literally have hundreds of drawings that I have done for clients over the last 40 years. I hope you enjoyed seeing some of my drawings and their finished projects. As you can see, I have complete artistic freedom with my pencil. One of these days I hope to organize my drawings a little better! For now, they are safely stashed in mailing tubes or folded in with the client files. Maybe I will write a book someday, to chronicle my years of drawings by hand, the only way I know how to creatively and artistically convey the images in my head into fantastic finished designs for your home.