Re: Need Advice from Technical Illustrators

Subject: Re: Need Advice from Technical Illustrators
From: Robert Plamondon <robert -at- PLAMONDON -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 2 May 1995 06:48:47 PDT

Don't forget to take a nuts-and-bolts technical illustration course. The
basic course is typically all done with ink (no color illustrations),
with isometric drawing introduced at the beginning and perspective at
the end. All the basic conventions are covered, such as the use of
multiple line weights in illustration.

Technical illustration purports to be a mechanical task with no room
for flair, though no one really believes this. I found the basic
Technical Illustration course to be almost unbelievably valuable. I
believe that every technical writer should take at least one technical
illustration course.

As for books, I have never found one that I liked very much. Micrografx
Designer is an okay technical illustration package for the PC, and
Interleaf has an excellent technical illustration package. I'm thinking
mostly of line art, though. Fancy architectural stuff follows its own
rules, and has its own packages. Most illustration is done on computer
now, though your mileage may vary. Computers are good. I got very
tired of smearing india ink.

I'm sure that larger companies still hire illustrators, since most writers
assume that they can't learn how to draw because they have detected no
"inborn talent" for it.

-- Robert
Robert Plamondon * Writer * robert -at- plamondon -dot- com * (408) 321-8771
4271 North First Street, #106 * San Jose * California * 95134-1215
"Writing is like plumbing -- even people who know how to do it will
pay top dollar to keep their hands clean."

-- Robert

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