224.157 space
Exploring how drawing processes can inform a spatial design.

“a graduated range of values forming a standard system for measuring or grading something.”

via https://www.google.co.nz/search?q=define%3A+scale

Using scale lets us draw things at different sizes than they actually are, eg; a map of Wellington fits on a piece of paper. When we draw things smaller than they actually are, we end up drawing less and less detail the more zoomed out we go.


If we draw something life size, eg; tracing your hand on an A4 sheet of paper, this drawing is at scale 1:1.

1 unit of measure on the page = 1 unit of measure in “real life”.

<img of hand and drawing>


Say we draw something a little bigger, like your head, it won’t fit onto an A4 page at 1:1, so we shrink the drawing to half size, or 1:2.

1 unit of measure on the page = 2 units of measure in “real life”.

So 1cm on the page = 2cm on your head


50mm on the page = 100mm on your head.

<img of head and drawing>


What about something even bigger than a head, like a boatshed?

At 1:50 scale: 10mm on the page = 500mm on the boatshed.

<img of shed and drawing>

At this scale, the level of detail in the drawing will be considerably less than the actual thing, eg; a 25mm diameter bolt in the boatshed doors will be 0.5mm on the page, there is no point drawing this and if we did it would confuse the drawing itself.

Scale is inextricably linked to detail level.

The type of information shown in a drawing will change depending on scale.

For example, on this site map we see all the adjacent buildings, streets, that there are 3 different zones with trees and walkways:


via http://mplsparksfoundation.org/2013/08/09/no-bull-superkilen-is-the-next-generation-of-parks-case-study/

However in this plan, we see the pedestrian crossing, the different types of trees, the different seating elements, sculptures, signage etc


via http://mplsparksfoundation.org/2013/08/09/no-bull-superkilen-is-the-next-generation-of-parks-case-study/

This is super tricky to understand, but the main point is: just because a drawing is at a bigger scale (more zoomed out) doesn’t mean it should all the details of a design.

A site map shouldn’t contain information about screws and bolts.

Site design (heavily) inspired by
Frank Chimero: "What Screens Want. Some thoughts on digital canvases" November 2013