Join Paul F. Aubin for an in-depth discussion in this video What is Project Soane?, part of HBIM: Historic Building Re-creation.
- This course combines a few of my personal passions, and is inspired by the internationally crowd-sourced BIM project called Project Soane. In this movie, I will answer a few of the obvious questions. First, just what is Project Soane? Next, I will discuss a few of the aforementioned passions. Including classical architecture, history, and of course technology and BIM. And finally, I will mention how all of this ties in with my book, Renaissance Revit. So, just what is Project Soane? Well, let's start with who Sir John Soane was.
Sir John Soane was an architect working in London from the late 1700s to the early 1800s. He is best known for his work in the Bank of England from the years of 1788 to 1827. During this long tenure at the bank, he completely transformed the facility with several renovations and additions. Sadly, however, despite the fact that the bank is among Soane's most famous work, most of his work there has been lost. Sir Herbert Baker's rebuilding of the bank demolished most of Soane's earlier efforts, and was described by Nikolaus Pevsner as the greatest architectural crime, in the City of London, of the twentieth century.
So, this bring us to Project Soane. While most of the actual architecture of the bank is lost, many of Soane's original drawings do survive, and are in the care of the Sir John Soane Museum in London. So, a group of architects, led by Robert A.M. Stern's office in New York, teamed up with companies like HP, Autodesk, NVIDIA, and several others, in collaboration with the Sir John Soane Museum, to create Project Soane. Their idea was simple. Using BIM tools like Revit, common in the profession today, they would sponsor a worldwide crowd-sourced effort to recreate the lost work of Sir John Soane from the Bank of England in a series of virtual models created in Revit.
The project has two phases initially. The first phase is a general call to all Revit users, worldwide, to participate and help recreate a few selected spaces. There are both interior and exterior spaces chosen. Participants join an Autodesk A360 site through which they gain access to a collection of high resolution scans of Soane's original drawings. Using these, and some starter models created by CASE Incorporated, now part of WeWork, and the project's data curators, participants can create and refine portions of the model, and upload their efforts back to A360.
Where they are incorporated into the whole by the CASE team. Over a period of months that the modeling phase is active, participants and spectators can see the model take shape, and slowly bring Sloane's lost architecture treasure back to life. The second phase of the project will take the fully aggregated and curated model, and make it available for rendering. This will be a crowd-sourced effort and competition to produce renderings of the completed model. So, now that you understand a little bit more about Project Soane, allow me to share a little bit about my interests in Architecture, Classicism, Technology, and Education.
So that you can begin to see some of what the goals of this course are. The majority of my time is consumed in helping firms be successful using tools like Revit, and implementing building information modeling. Much of my time is dominated by the latest tech. But I also spend a good deal of time thinking about and studying history. I enjoy learning about history in general. But as a member of the building industry, I am also quite interested in architectural history. And in particular, Classical Architecture. This area is of such interest to me that late in 2013, I published a book called Renaissance Revit: Creating Classical Architecture with Modern Software.
At first glance, the book is a tutorial guide on how to create the Classical Orders, Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian, within the Revit software. But really, the classical columns just provide an architecturally interesting vehicle to explore the creation of robust, and sometimes advanced, Revit Family content. As such, I often like to describe the book as a quote, unquote, deep dive into the Revit Family Editor. I've wanted to take some of the content from Renaissance Revit and create a course for quite some time.
Project Soane has given me a way to do that and much more. Rather than simply do a video version of the book, with Project Soane, I am able to take some of the lessons from the book, and apply them to a real project. So, I decided to focus on the Corinthian Columns at Tivoli Corner as the perfect way to marry Project Soane and Renaissance Revit. Project Soane is unique. Nothing like it has ever been attempted before. So, even if you're watching this course after the completion of the initial modeling and rendering phases, there's still plenty to learn from exploring the contributions of the crowd, and enjoying the fruits of their labors.
Now that you know what Project Soane is all about, please allow me to walk you through my contribution to the project.
- Researching source materials and source drawings
- Sketching and modeling architecture
- Setting up the project in Revit
- Modeling overall forms
- Using system families
- Adding details such as columns and moldings
- Creating an interior model
- Rendering the project