Tuesday 26 October 2010

Design without Drawing?


I had a discussion with a design professional the other day. He was saying that he overheard a seminar of designers talking about the act of drawing and how it’s attached to the design process. One designer in the crowd said that they don’t draw, and never have, and didn’t see the importance of it. The rest of the room disagreed, and lumped the skill of drawing directly to the process of design.

I personally, don’t know many designers that can sell a concept to a client without some type of drawing as part of the presentation. It’s a designer’s chance to look at the details, work out standard dims to address budget issues, and check proportion. I depend on my hand, experience and intuition, which comes from putting pen to paper.

When you hire a designer, please appreciate all of the hours that go into lining things up perfectly, into appropriate specifications of FF&E (furniture, fixtures and equipment), and perspective drawings that show you how the surfaces will work together.

So, I would say WHAT? Design without drawing? How did you arrive at the design plan? How do you get your client to sign off…and where is the joy in the process? I have just seen too many filler panels between bathroom vanities and bathtubs to be convinced otherwise. Work it out on paper first.


Design and Renderings by Michelle Morelan Design, 2008

Sunday 17 October 2010

Schematic Life’s Holiday Card Collection


Design and Renderings by Michelle Morelan Design, 2010

Stationery package of 40 cards with envelopes- $85.00….mix n’ match or choose all three!

Have your space custom rendered in a holiday theme…(all orders in by Nov. 15  for Dec. 1st delivery) Contact me for details … typically priced from $299-$499, depending on size and detailing (includes 40 notecards)


Best, Michelle

Saturday 16 October 2010

Be Messy

pergola_MMDcroppedukee kitchen_MMID   r lesson cropped leah cropped

Cynthia writes and asks “How do you get your lines so straight and the rendering to look realistic?”

My answer is “be messy”. Remember when we learned how to type, way back? My Office Procedures 11 teacher had us type as fast as we could, not worrying about mistakes…that’s the same advice I would give to Cynthia…be loose and messy to start, go over each line quickly with purpose…go over that line until it excites you in it’s intent…it’s fun…and how you get better.

These are some looser 1hr renderings, each  from an existing space, where I added or changed almost everything…come out of plan and elevation world, where you get to see all the surfaces and how they work together.

Renderings and design by Michelle Morelan Design, 2009


Best, Michelle

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Her Bath, His Bath

powder_room2Her bath features the Cartwright vanity from Restoration Hardware…His bath has hints of Craftsman, but they look like they belong in the same house… powder_room3

Design and Renderings by www.michellemorelandesign.com


Best, Michelle

Monday 11 October 2010

View with a Room

wc dining room

wc dining room 2 


A room with an amazing view and floor to ceiling windows is a dream of mine..and this one was a lesson in proportion and restraint. With the family dog taking his chances!

Which rendering appeals to you the most? My intention was to insert a view, and wasn’t as happy with it as I thought; sometimes a simple line and a bump can give the gesture of landscape, and not become the focal point. Not that I would complain about this view!

Design and Rendering by Michelle Morelan

e-design available through michellemorelandesign.com

Thursday 7 October 2010

Reader’s Choice…the next rendering video



Please tell me what you would like to see in the next rendering video!

1. sketching simple one point perspectives  OR

2. small rendering snippets, showing techniques like texturing hardwood, creating dimension with shadows, convincing fabrics, etc.

It’s your call. This could be the last one for a while, as my production crew have other work :(


But…after some emails from readers…soon I’ll be announcing my first rendering workshop…and you are the first to know ;)

These days of “how fast can you get it done” and “I don’t want to pay for presentation drawings (though, I do want you to magically show me what the space will look like)” present new challenges for the designer, and I have learned some tricks leveraging what you already have, into beautiful presentations, which your clients will have no problem visualizing and approving.

…if this is something of interest to you or your firm, please email me…I’d love to hear from you. Private, Corporate or Educational. And please, let me know what city you are from :) NYC and Toronto both on my radar, as that’s where the majority of the interest has come from. More news soon.

Rendering Portfolio


Best, Michelle

Sunday 3 October 2010

Interior Design and a Deep Sleep

bedroom 2 seven inch 

I like to walk in and see the bed when I enter a room. It’s a security thing, I guess…plus I don’t like having my head on the same wall as the door…and I have to be able to see out the window and the door. Pretty picky…but without this vantage point, I can’t sleep. Do you have any design/sleep habits?

Design and rendering by Michelle Morelan

e-design available through Michelle Morelan Design; did you know that every e-design project includes a rendering like this?


Best, Michelle

Saturday 2 October 2010

New Painting - September Willow


“September Willow”, 18 x 24,  Mixed Media (acrylic, ink, sand), Michelle Morelan, 2010

City lights from a friend's place on the North Shore made for an interesting perspective of the city, and I couldn’t get the glow of the skyline out of my mind.


Best, Michelle