What is technical illustration? Old Era Vs Modern Era

Basically, technical illustration is a form of graphic design used to explain the technical concepts in such a way that the layman can easily understand it. It makes use of dynamic as well as static images to explain technical concepts. Before creating technical illustration of a product, illustrators first intently study the product to have an in depth understanding of it. They do this by first researching the product. Researching a product enables a researcher to determine how to accurately and precisely convey the content of a product without getting the end user confused.

Illustrators use dedicated tools and special techniques when creating their technical illustrations. Unlike conventional artists, drafters, technical photographers and architects, technical illustrators make use of a unique set of skill set. They use technically advanced computed diagrams when creating their illustrations.

Pre-Digital Era

Producing technical illustrations was a difficult task during the pre-digital era. The tools at the disposal of technical illustrators then were pen and paper. Then, they made use of a pen called “Rapidograph” when creating complex engineering illustrations. You can imagine how messy their work got at times. Even though severely limited, these illustrators were still required to create illustrations of high precision and accuracy. This men and women had to flex their “Patience” muscles. They were still able to do a good job even though they didn’t have the technologies we have today.

The era of Computer Aided Design (CAD)

The coming of CAD brought changes to the industry. Not only did it make life easy for engineers and illustrators, it made it possible for realistic rendering to be achieved at the click of a button. In fact, animation which was virtually impossible during the pre-digital era became possible with the coming of CAD. In fact, CAD has become so simple that managers, graphic artists, technologists, and engineers can conveniently use it.


Technical illustration needs some form of input data. It most times takes the form of engineering drawings, CAD data, sketches, photographs, raster scans, verbal descriptions and sketches. This means there is no “perfect tool” needed for the creation of technical drawing. Technical illustrations find use in brochures, textbooks, manuals, whitepaper, presentations and training tools. This means technical illustration will only be useful when the right type of tool is used.

If you have any requirement of drawing technical illustrations (any kind!), I can assist you as a professional technical illustrator freelancer.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s