RODE Hive Workshop 1: Pandemic Sketching


We became architects because we wanted to create, shape the world around us, and have an impact on how people experience their surroundings. We became RODE Architects because we share a belief in two principles: great design has the power to transform our environment, and working collaboratively is what gets us there.


Our collaborative spirit was challenged when the pandemic hit. Like most firms, we were forced to re-evaluate our old ways of doing things and find new solutions to achieve the same successful outcomes. One of the ideas to come out of this process is the RODE Hive Workshop series, a team-wide, biweekly information sharing session.


These biweekly discussions allow our team to explore a specific topic or task challenged by our current work situation and share solutions, tips, and tricks to improve our individual skill sets and overall practice as a firm. Topics vary from week to week and will cover everything from how we use software to how we convey design ideas to our co-workers and clients.


This week’s topic focused on the transformation of the sketching process and the new approaches and technologies we’ve implemented in both our virtual and physical working environments.


One of the biggest hurdles of working from home is sketching and sharing ideas efficiently. For the past year, we haven’t been able to pin-up trace to sketch out ideas or sit down next to one another to draft details. Whether we like it or not, computer mouses and wireless stylus pens have aided to supplement the familiar pen and paper sketch.


Through our discussion, we learned that everyone was utilizing software programs like Miro, BlueBeam Revu, Adobe Creative Suite, Autodesk SketchBook, and Procreate to sketch from home, but that our methods for doing so varied. Through our workshop, we were able to share little-known tricks, techniques, and workarounds for the software. Workshop 1 was a complete success in helping to enhance our efficiency and collaboration skills while working remotely as well as when we are back in the office together.

The RODE Hive Workshop Series, aimed to progress our ‘set of tools’ as designers, will inspire us, encourage the flow of communication as we continue to learn, and harness the RODE hive mind.

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