There are various materials which can be used in architecture models. Their application depends on a number of factors such as the purpose for which the model is made, the budget at hand, the skills of the designer, and the time available.
Architectural Model Design Materials
In the past, things like basswood and balsa woods were very common, but today, architects use the following materials:
- foam boards
- plastics e.g. PVC
- corrugated cardboards
- urethane materials
- plastic-wood composites
Certain structural features of modern architectural models are ready-made like trees and bushes, street lights, people and cars, and beams and girders. These elements add a sense of reality in the urban models. However, the most important thing in modeling is to that an appropriate scale is used.
Paper in the Construction of Architectural Models
Paper is one of the most high-end model construction materials. It takes a high level of expertise to create origami constructions. Designing a model will also consume a lot of time. For these reasons, paper models are quite rare.
Merits of Modern Designs
Contemporary urban architectural models can be produced in 3D prints as well as rapid prototyping thanks to Computer Aided Designs (CAD). This innovation has transformed model artwork and made it more precise, affordable, and quicker than ever.
Through Computer Numerical Control (CNC) carving, model making has become much simpler. Plotters are used to carve out huge high-density foam boards which are used in urban topography building models. On the other hand, small CNC plotters facilitate massive prototyping which is a very economical when used in model constructions and topography buildings.
Architectural model making tests three skills namely concentration, time management, and patience. 3D software makes the work simpler and faster, thus not giving as much importance to the three aforementioned skills. However, for beginners, it is still recommended to start with the handiwork first before advancing to computerized design work. It is like a gate-pass to anybody who wants to join the industry.