Understanding Architectural Drawings

Types of Drawings

This section show the different types of architectural drawings there are and what they are for. It shows the main four kinds of drawings: elevation, plan, section and perspective; together with more specialised kinds of drawings: bird’s-eye view and floor plan with laid-out wall elevations.

Some important buildings are shown: The Pantheon in Rome, one of the greatest Roman buildings to survive; Soane’s own country House, Pitzhanger Manor in Ealing and Lady Williams Wynne’s Room, St James’s Square, designed by Robert Adam, whose drawings Soane bought for his collection.

Perspective: Pitzhanger Manor

Perspective: Pitzhanger Manor

Vol. 90/1

This is a perspective of Soane’s own country house, Pitzhanger Manor in Ealing, built from 1800 onwards. It shows how the building would look if you were really standing in front of it. Perspectives are probably the most difficult to draw as you have to work out the way the building will appear before it is actually built – but there are ways to do this using the plans, elevations and sections.

This is the original drawing for plate V (five in Roman numerals) in Soane’s book Plans, Elevations and Perspective Views of Pitzhanger Manor-House. There are other sorts of drawings, elevations, plans and sections in the book as well.