“There is a slow yet steady awakening among students towards architectural journalism” – The Hindu
An architect’s journey is treacherous, and it takes one to know one. However, it also is exceptionally romantic. The subtle behavioural cues of the human intellect and psyches they form with their built-environment are something only the learned can understand. As much as we love to design, command and drink coffee, most of us also have an unparalleled drive. To write about the things that we care about, on the topics that need to be written upon and to communicate with the people who matter the most; and on the way, publish and let the world know about our ideas, and possibly even embrace them. Critiquing, documenting and teaching are just some of the by-products that ensue when one writes about architecture and design. When it comes to exposure, architectural writers may not find a reader base everywhere since it is an esoteric field, and some topics may require at least a basic to a mid-level understanding of architectural terminologies and principles. But articles about the relationship between art + architecture may find exuberant bibliophiles amongst architects, designers and art enthusiasts.
In the information age, many platforms promote this journey by being willing to publish and even teach amateurs about the niche field of architectural writing.
Types of Architectural Literature
There are as many types of architectural writers as are literary formats to explore. Architects and designers, likewise, share the same philosophical drive to explore the limits of their syllables and their art, in a process to make their ideologies legible to the untrained mind. Most people usually start with a personal blog that later may turn into a professional one. After a successful weblog, there is an upward journey to descriptive articles and case studies, onto active journalism and critiquing and maybe ultimately resulting in a book. The social media revolution has been the key to the information explosion that we experience today. We are in the centre of a changing order, a novel movement of the early 21st century, where the power of syllables stands mightier than ever before.
Here are some of the online platforms where you can publish your writing:
1. Re-Thinking the Future
“RTF is born out of the need for a platform that encourages and promotes excellence in Architecture on a global scale. This is a one-stop platform for Architects to seek inspiration, criticism and development.” (Re-thinking the Future, 2015)
RTF is a platform that allows young architects across India and 12 other countries to contribute towards a growing rage that is popularly known as architectural journalism. It is time to review how we approach architecture and the related fields, and the existence of such platforms make the ideas more accessible to everyone. Along with daily publications, articles and professional blogs, they also came up with a novel Training Program to nurture the young architects to voice their opinions and train them in the niche field of writing architecture.
WordPress is a self-hosted open-source blogging platform that allows anyone to build their website or blog. It is a celebrated option for people who want complete control over the future of their blog. Since their active user base is one of the highest and gives absolute control over your content, it is the platform of choice for most writers and content creators. WordPress is also one of the most popular web hosting services.
Since its launch in 2012, Medium has grown into a community of writers, bloggers, journalists, and experts. It is an easy-to-use blogging platform with limited social networking features, which makes it an ideal choice for writers who want to aim at a much more research-driven and academic pool of readers. Medium, essentially, works much like a networking site where you can create an account and start publishing your articles. You will get a sub-domain and profile address to make your writing much more authentic.
LinkedIn is known to be particularly important for writers because it displays their media presence. If there is anyone that needs to be media-savvy in the twenty-first century, it is the writers from the architectural and design fields. They can provide first-hand accounts of the inner workings of the said disciplines. Most freelance writers choose LinkedIn to promote their articles since it also is a place where more recruiters/ potential clients are regularly present.
Tumblr is a somewhat unconventional form of a blogging platform. It is a microblogging forum with social networking features that include following other blogs, reblogging, built-in sharing tools, and more. With an algorithm and design similar to that of any other popular social media website, Tumblr surely stands out as a younger and hip contemporary of WordPress or Medium.
ArchDaily is an extremely popular weblog publisher that covers architectural news, projects, events, interviews and competitions, opinion pieces, and many other articles. It serves as a gold standard for what is expected of architectural weblogs and media, catering to a large reader base consisting of architects, designers and just about anyone interested in the built environments. Since it is not open-source, architects and writers seeking to publish their works need to contact the ArchDaily editor and go through the due editorial process.
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