An Architect Making a Model of a Building

Finding architectural inspiration might be difficult sometimes. For many experts in the field, it becomes especially challenging when they have just finished a huge project. At this moment, they might get anxious about whether or not they can create something as great again. How to avoid this anxiety? For this, architecture experts should make sure they have powerful sources of inspiration. It will guide their mind in the right direction when working on new brilliant designs. So, it is vital to find such sources. But where to look for them?

We can share some great insights into this matter. As a professional 3D architectural animation company, we work closely with architects and understand their workflow. Moreover, many of our 3D artists have architectural education and background. That’s why we know for sure where the professionals in the field should search for inspiration. Read on to discover 7 best ways to get inspired for new designs!

#1. Keep up with trend forecasts in the architectural industry

An Architect Searching for Architectural Inspiration

Trend forecasting is predicting the future of the industry. Such predictions are based on the analysis of the current situation. So, trend forecasts are literally the lists of the freshest ideas. They might be about the usage of new technologies like VR and AI in architecture, about the newest trends in ecodesign, etc. 

By studying such forecasts, architects can find out how the approach to commercial and living spaces is changing. Also, they can get to know how architectural design integrates with other fields, such as anthropology and environmental science. Architecture specialists can learn about the innovative types of buildings that are gaining popularity. These are passive houses, vertical villages, 3D-printed homes, and much more.

Trend forecasting is the perfect trigger for architectural inspiration. It can help architects come up with a new approach to the things they are used to or decide to try something absolutely new. All in all, trend forecasts of the architectural industry are a breath of fresh air for a creative mind.

#2. Attend architecture lectures

Architects Attending a Conference

Probably, all architects have favorite authorities. These are masters in the field of architecture who they admire and look up to. Also, any architect has peer colleagues whose works impress and evokes their interest. Learning from these people and exchanging ideas with them can become a great source of architectural inspiration. So, what is the best way to do it?

Oftentimes, well-known architecture experts give lectures at different industry events. These can be expos, conferences, etc. In the course of lectures, they share their experiences and stories behind their greatest projects. Such events are a true source of inspiration. Attendants can not just learn much valuable information during the lecture but also ask questions to the lecturer. This sort of communication and exchanging ideas with the best professionals in the industry will definitely inspire any architect. And after such events, the inspiration for new architectural designs won’t be long in coming.

#3. Listen to TED talks

An Architect Watching a TED Talk

Unlike specialized online magazines like Dezeen and Archdaily, the TED platform is not devoted to architecture only. Here, one can find videos of experts from many industries discussing a wide range of topics. However, this source is totally worth any architect’s attention. If an architecture specialist wants to widen horizons and learn about the most unusual and groundbreaking projects, TED is just the right choice for that. 

The main goal of TED is spreading worthy ideas. They’re doing it for free by posting talks online for all interested viewers. But how to get inspired for creating new designs here? After typing the word “architecture” in the search bar of the website, one will find a goldmine for architectural inspiration. Now, there are over 500 talks and blog posts in which architects tell about their works. Apart from more or less regular projects, there are the most unique, unconventional ideas. Here, one can get to know about a museum wing in a giant bubble, or about the Seed Cathedral in the UK. Or even about how to turn the sands of the Sahara desert into architecture objects with the help of a … bacteria!

Also, TED talks bring up completely out-of-the-box topics that can become a great source of inspiration. For example, here one can find talks about the relation between architecture and war in Syria, or about the influence of architectural design on music, etc. Some of these ideas might be disputable, some   mind-blowing, or hard to agree with. But all of them can definitely pave the way for a new vision and inspiration.

#4. Get inspired with architectural 3D visualization

Just like all creative personalities, architects have a vivid imagination. This means that before crafting a new project, they visualize lots of variations of the future design in their mind. What a pity that no one can see it at this stage. But wait. There’s a technology that allows doing exactly that! It is called architectural 3D visualization. 

Just imagine: now any project can be visualized in photoreal quality months before its construction starts. What’s more, CGI can realistically depict those projects that will not be built at all for some reason. These might be the most fantastic, futuristic designs, shown in any environment. Isn’t it a precious source of inspiration? Photorealistic 3D animation and imagery can show non-existent buildings at various angles, in any lighting, weather, and season. Which makes CGI a perfect trigger for architectural inspiration. So, it is a wise move to regularly check architectural CGI communities such as Cgarchitect. 

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#5. Practice bisociation

Lightbulb Symbolism for Ideas

Bisociation means linking two previously unrelated notions. This practice usually results in coming up with completely novel approaches and ideas. Bisociation can work wonders in any field including architectural design. To illustrate this, here’s a story about how a pack of cigarettes helped to design a skyscraper. 

Two architects met for lunch in Chicago to discuss the concept of Willis Tower. It was supposed to become the tallest building in the world at the time. The architecture experts discussed that a series of tubes with shared walls is a good way to support a very tall building. But this would make the structure too heavy compared to its steel frames. Suddenly, one of the architects looked down at his pack of cigarettes. Then he started pushing and pulling them out of the pack at different heights. He suddenly realized that if all tubes were staggered vertically, their slenderness and structural integrity would be kept. This way, by linking two unrelated objects, a skyscraper and a pack of cigarettes, a completely novel design was born.

This story proves that architectural inspiration can hide in unexpected places. But those who practice bisociation are always able to find it. 

#6. Get a Pinterest account

An Architect Using Pinterest for Inspiration

Pinterest has become a source of inspiration for thousands of people working in absolutely different fields, including architecture. This platform is the best image sharing service and is perfectly designed for creating mood boards. Why is it important for architects? Inspiration is a fragile thing. So, architects should save every beautiful picture that evokes their creative spirit. And a Pinterest mood board is a great tool to do that.

On this platform, users can pin the visuals they like on separate boards depending on their category. This way, architects can get easy access to a well-organized library of inspirational images. They can save inspiring pins in any category, be it eco-friendly construction materials, ancient architecture, sustainable houses, or whatever else. It is also recommended to set some boards that are not related to architecture. These can be ones with artworks, fashion looks, nature, and so on. Maybe such boards will not help to find architectural inspiration but they will help to stay inspired and creative. Which is crucial for working on new designs. 

#7. Start a blog about architectural design

An Architect Reading a Blog

Of course, getting to know the thoughts and opinions of others is useful. But real work starts when one processes this knowledge and then creates something new on their own. For example, they might write an article about architectural design. Running a blog helps its author to structure their thoughts and to share valuable experiences with others. In a blog, an architect can write about their work, keep a record of inspiration, and communicate with an engaged audience. And it is no secret that a new understanding of old things might come in a discussion. That is why blogging is a really good way of discovering fresh ideas.

Architectural inspiration comes from new impressions. To get them, architects should study trend forecasts, attend architecture lectures, and listen to TED talks. Visual inspiration can be found in 3D architectural visualization communities and on Pinterest. Practicing bisociation and running a blog about architectural design are also great ways to get inspired. All in all, inspiration comes to those who have an open mind and never stop learning. 

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