Way back when, when all the drafting functions were done with a mechanical pencil in hand there were many talents that a drafter had to develop in order to make plans readable. The artistic flavor of their lettering was developed over time. The twist of a pencil to make consistent line weights was an artistic talent that did not come easily. The use of splines, templates and triangles to create the exacting angles and curves needed was a learned talent.
Generations of master drafters have marched forward passing on the techniques from one person to another. Each one taking what was learned from the past and adding their own little flare in the nuanced fonts they created by hand. Each one was building upon the process of years of manipulating paper and pencil to document the designs to be built.
And it was not all just the scratching of lead on vellum. It included the wisdom and knowledge of how to communicate what needed to be conveyed. It was learning and presenting on paper the methodology of plan views, enlarged plans, sections, cross sections, orthographic views, diagrams, schematics and so much more. It was using the proper combination of what diagram goes with what plan. It was combining the correct chart to assist a specific view. On the grandest scale it is which plan comes before others and which sheet preceded the next. It was the flow of the information in the set. It is how plans reference a detail. It is how sections support plans.
Are these talents no longer needed? Have you seen sets of plans put together that make little or no sense? Do you see contractors making extensive change orders and generating overwhelming levels of RFI’s because the plans are not clear, or do not match or the references are wrong?
Let me know if you have seen these things happening…
The Art of Drafting – are we losing it? or is it already gone…