Sometimes you actually have to read rather than see to improve your archviz skills, don't you think?

Hey guys,


As I might have mentioned in the latest update, I've been reading quite a lot of books lately on the topics of composition, image psychology, art and the likes in order to strenghten my knowledge in the area and sort of, hopefully, come up with a comprehensive method.

In the same way that the teardown I do are a way to supply more feedback than a simple like on facebook, I'm aiming at putting together a course that will help you in actually understanding how to use composition more efficiently that using "the rule of thirds" or the "golden spiral" which have become, as I've discovered more and more on the internet, plain, diluted and oversimplified concepts.

But that's for later since I still have to formalize that properly. In the meantime, I wanted to share (because some people asked and I thought why not) a small selection of the books I read that I think will be of interest for you. So if you like books, you'll be happy, and if you don't like books, I still suggest you try to spend some time on them still!


The list is not hierarchical in any way, but here it goes :


Charles Bouleau - The painter's Secret Geometry

The book proposes a pretty extensive approach of all the underlying frameworks used to compose all the major paintings throughout history and all the composition theories that prevailed over, whether music based, nature based, mathematic based, etc. ⠀⠀

Really interesting read, beautifully illustrated that I highly recommend.


Matthew Frederick - 101 things I learned in architecture school

While I wasn't honestly expecting anything from a book trying to simplify 5 or 6 years of architecture in about 101 pages, it actually has some interesting concepts that can be directly translated into visualization. And also, while I notice that more and more people enter the archviz world without a degree in architecture, it can help to at least have an understanding of the basic concepts in order to not appear completely clueless when dealing with your clients.


Rudolf Arnheim - Art and Visual perception, a psychology of the creative eye

This book is definitely one of my must-read when it comes to the psychology of image perception. A thorough explanation of simple mind tricks that we're not always aware of when crafting images. Some concepts are directly applicable to our industry while other need a little bit more research and thought.


Peter Watson - Composition in the landscape, an inspirational and technical guide for photographers

While we mostly work with built environment, most of the concepts described in this book are interesting in putting back into the hierarchy the importance of the context and how to frame it properly.


Robert Gifford - Why architects and laypersons judge building differently

This one is a short read but definitely insightful. I've been trying to find similar research papers in a closer topic from archviz (image analysis, or painting for example) but couldn't find any yet unfortunately.


Michael Freeman - The photographer's mind : creative thinking for better digital photos

Another interesting manual with a strong conceptual approach. Most of it wasn't new for me, but was rephrased in a peculiar way that I think makes it stand out from the rest of available manuals out there.


Reading these books (and all the others) raised many questions for me on how to tackle my day to day job and more profound questions on what renderings are compared with photographs or paitings, or art in general. While these questions might not have a huge impact on the final product I deliver to my client, they definitely have a huge impact on how I approach work and the overall process, which is something I value way more personnaly.

Either way, I hope some of you will find the time to read some of these books. Feel free to get back to me to give some feedbacks, or talk about the readings, or if you have any other relevant recommendations feel free to shoot me an email too!


All the best


Simon