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Architectural drawing is the foundation for building and construction. It’s the blueprint for creating buildings that meet aesthetic specifications and local code regulations. At its core, an architectural drawing is an illustration of what a final building product could look like. It could show the overall construction or could focus on only one part of the building. The goal is to show as much detail as possible so that architects know if their building plans are accurate. 

Architectural drawings enable architects to tell if they need to rework a design. They also help them ensure the building is durable. While architectural drawings can happen in 3D, many architects still utilize 2D CAD drafting services. There are many benefits to 2D drafting: 

  • Quicker turnaround – Designers can create 2D drafts a lot faster. These designers have likely worked with drafting enough to have an idea of shortcuts to produce drafts quicker and efficiently. 
  • Greater accuracy – It can be easy to depend on 3D views. However, those utilizing 2D drafting have to become better at visualizing layouts, so it’s more likely that they have experience creating more accurate and realistic 2D blueprints. 
  • It is still widely used – According to CAD Analyst, 60 percent of designers involved in a study “mainly” or “totally” use 2D drafting techniques and software. While there has been a push toward 3D drafting, 2D is still widely used. 

2D architectural drawing services are essential for any architectural firm. However, it can be challenging to find the right fit. Cad Crowd has a selection of expert freelancers that can provide experienced architectural drawing services. 

We pride ourselves on connecting freelancers with architectural firms that need them. However, before you hire your next drafter or designer, it will help you to understand the types of architectural drawing options available. This process will allow you to make an informed decision regarding your next freelancer. 

Different types of architectural drawings 

There are a variety of ways to use architectural drawings to bring your plan together for a future building project. The drawings don’t just stop at general building blueprints. Two-dimensional architectural drawings can produce ideas for: 

  • Interior layouts
  • Technical construction drawings
  • Retail space plans
  • Urban planning and design
  • Mechanical, electrical, and planning engineering designs 
  • Drawings for presentations

Architectural 2D drawings can go beyond typical blueprints to reveal a variety of uses. Most of the drawings mentioned above are involved in the layers of architecture. For example, you may have a client that cares just as much about the interior aesthetic as the external foundations. Because architecture can quickly become complicated, it is crucial to simplify when possible. 

Two-dimensional architectural drawings can better explain layouts and more easily display building materials, angles, and construction plans. So, the possibilities of architectural drawings are endless. However, while the past may have included paper and pencils, today designers use digital programs to develop detailed architectural drawings. 

Popular architectural drawing programs 

Before you hire your next architectural designer, it is helpful to know about some of the most popular and highly-regarded architectural drawing programs out there. Being aware of these programs will allow you to factor their costs into your budget, as well as to understand the architectural drawing process better. So, below are four well-known software programs that can be used for architectural drawing (specifically 2D drafting). 

AutoCAD 2D by AutoDesk 

While not created explicitly for architectural designers, AutoCAD comes with a wide range of capabilities that makes the creation of architectural layouts more straightforward. It has 3D and 2D drafting features and is known for streamlining design workflows. AutoCAD comes with computer-aided design (CAD) tools which make it easier to create detailed and precise models. So, there is no use for stencils or technical drawing instruments. 

AutoCAD 2D is known for its complete set of drawing tools, maintaining an intuitive user interface, using innovative technologies that make designing more manageable, and the ability to easily collaborate with other designers. While this program does come with a high price-tag, it brings ease and speed to the architectural drawing process. Architectural drawing companies and freelancers will be pleased with this one. 

SketchUp by Trimble 

If a designer prefers a more traditional drafting experience instead of using only CAD tools, SketchUp is the answer. The program is designed to behave in a similar way to putting pencil to paper and developing accurate yet straightforward designs. While the program’s focus is on sleek 3D design creation, it does have 2D capabilities. 

Most designs can be shown with a 2D layout. Two-dimensional plans can include build details, elevations, sections, and title blocks. Three-dimensional models and 2D plans are connected, so as the document will change in the same way as the model. SketchUp even takes it a step further by allowing designers to display real-world models using virtual and augmented reality technologies. 

Vectorworks Architect by Nemetschek Group

Vectorworks is an excellent blend of the collaboration and CAD capabilities of AutoCAD with the intuitiveness and traditional feel of SketchUp. It is a robust program that allows architects to create detailed and sleek 2D plans. It has a lot of bells and whistles, but Vectorworks shines with their precision drawing feature. 

With it, designers can efficiently adjust dimensions, easily add essential notes to plans, create models using priority snaps, and choose from sets of pre-defined layers and filters. Designers can indeed get a feel for traditional 2D drafting while taking advantage of new and innovative features. Vectorworks also allows designers to create site designs seamlessly, and produce multiple drawing views. With Vectorworks, the possibilities are plentiful for freelance designers and architectural drawing companies. 

Chief Architect Premier 

Chief Architect Premier is an excellent choice for architects that primarily deal with residential or light commercial building projects. The software is intuitive and is known for its ease in designing projects using automation and prediction. Once designers create 3D models, the software produces a materials list, and various construction documents (site plans, section details, and elevations). 

Instead of having to create every item from scratch, Chief Architect Primer has a library of 3D objects that can easily be integrated into the design of the property. An excellent feature for freelance designers and architectural drawing companies with many orders to fill.  While most of the focus is on 3D models, designers can easily switch between working with 3D and 2D views. 

They can quickly move between layers and update multiple construction documents at one time. One of the ways this program shines is through 2D terrain models. Designers can integrate terrain survey data to ensure they are creating plans that work best with the property’s natural environment. 

While there are a variety of other software options available, these are some of the most popular and widely-used regarding architectural drawing services. Their prices may vary, and many programs offer some of the same capabilities. However, each provides a unique experience for designers. The goal is to work with a designer to find out the program that best works for their work style while also staying within your budget. 

The benefits of architectural drawings 

You may already have an idea of why you need architectural drawing services. However, it doesn’t hurt to dig deeper into why this is a much-needed skill. Many times, as you are speaking with clients, they may fail to see the value in the cost of architectural drawings, as well as the reason for allowing time for the architectural drawing process (and potential revisions). So, here are some benefits of working with architectural drawing companies and freelancers to produce 2D layout models that may be helpful to discuss with clients and team members: 

  • Architectural drawings allow for a more straightforward explanation of cost and time needed for construction. 
  • Architects can easily provide multiple building ideas and design options at one time. 
  • These drawings can help contractors easily visualize the time required for a building project as well as the materials they will need. 
  • Instead of just relying on a contract, architectural drawings provide a visual agreement of features and designs. 
  • If a client wants to do a model that is similar to a previous drawing, architectural drawing companies can work from an already-created plan instead of having to start from scratch. 

Architectural drawings are a perfect way to get a sense of a building project’s scope, cost, and labor requirements. Having an idea of this ahead of time will allow you to work with clients to make changes, and receive opinions from experts regarding whether the design will accomplish all the goals clients may have for a building project. 

Allow us to help you find your next architectural drawing freelancer

While architectural drawings are models, you want to ensure you are working with someone who can quickly and accurately capture client needs. So, it would help if you had someone with experience and a talent for turning requests and specifications into detailed 2D drawings. 

Cad Crowd has years of experience connecting pre-vetted and expert architectural drawing freelancers with entrepreneurs and design firms. Our architectural drawing services will help you find the designer that is right for you and your next project. Whether you prefer to hold a contest that allows you to choose from a variety of offers, are seeking specialized help for a private project, or need our services to find ongoing support, we are here to help. 

If you require architectural design services, we invite you to reach out to us today for a free quote. 

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