Nowadays with lots of companies which produce new architectural design softwares every now and then, students are facing with the question:
which architectural design software should I learn?
should I learn all of them? ( Yea, right:) )
The point is learning all of those softwares is not the answer because of two reasons:
- There is no guarantee that there won’t be any new software anymore.
- There won’t be any guarantee that all the softwares which are usefull today, will be the same in future.
So in order to find the answer, we tried to ask this topic from the experts of the field who have been working in practice for years. The answer is to choose a software for each criteria and work on that until you become an expert. To do this you have to recognize the different stages of architectural work. from the very basic levels of design like sketching to the very final ones like presentations there will be be lots of stages for you to work on and in each of these stages there are tons of softwares which you can use. After you did that it’s time to get to know which softwares are useful in order to reach the aim of that stage. Now all you have to do is to become the master of that software! easy, huh?
Here we’ve listed all the softwares that are useful for different stages of architecture work:
Nearly all the experts we’ve interviewed with, said the best tool for sketching are your hands! ya,it’s right. The process of sketching is so much related to the process of thinking and the easier it is for you to use the tool, the better the result will be. Don’t think that sketching needs excellent drawing skills, it’s just needed for you to draw something that you would remember and understand what you were thinking about. Drawing beautiful is not that important. There are tons of sketching tutorials n the web for you to start learning.
- Turning sketches into forms
This part of design is a little bit tricky, because you are about to turn your ideas into forms and solids in a more exact dimension. For this part it’s better to use a software which allows you to easily modify the forms you build. There are many, many softwares to use but the most of our interviewed experts were using Skethup or Rhinoceros in this stage simply because these two allow you to build abstract and pure forms really simply and with the least effort.
- drawing design documents like plan, sections and etc
These days with the help of BIM softwares it’s really simple to have everything from perspective documents to 2D drawings in one place and they really help you
if you are working on large scale projects. One of the most useful tools to use in this part of design is Autodesk Architecure Revit. It’s actually really simple to learn and very very very useful as it’s very intelligent! There are lot’s of other softwares that you can draw your projects using them like Autodesk Autocad or Rhinoceros and some others. The point is to know what you want to do really.
- Building 3d models
If you’ve used BIM softwares, congratulations! you don’t need to read this part. If not! Then experts recommend you to use either Rhinoceros, 3ds max, Sketchup or Autocad 3d modelling. My advise would be for you to learn to use Rhinoceros cause it’s really easy, real fast and also with the help of so many useful plugins like Grasshopper there won’t be anything to be worried about.
The most tricky part is to choose and to learn the rendering engine for your projects. Most of them are actually not easy to learn and with so many bad tutorial on the web, it gets harder and harder to learn until you decide to use a good structured tutorial to get the job done. There are lot’s of rendering engines that you can get their names simply by searching “rendering engine”. Most of the experts recommended to use Vray rendering engine. As it results in real high quality renders and it has been built to be compatible with the most of modelling softwares.
Hope this post can help you to choose which software to use. Please let us know your opinion and your own experience with this topic by writing comments.