Attention ARCHICAD USERS:
Join Us For Free Monthly Training Webinars
PLUS: Add Your Name to the Worldwide Directory
"Building A Community One User At A Time"
The ARCHICAD USER website offers a monthly series of free training webinars hosted by internationally recognized ARCHICAD educator Eric Bobrow.
In addition, it hosts a Worldwide User Directory, connecting ARCHICAD USERS from around the world in a new knowledge community.
NEW: Free ARCHICAD Jobs Board!
Post a Job | Contract | Your Resume and connect with ARCHICAD USERS around the world.
YOU are invited to join us!
Thursday MARCH 26 at 1 pm PDT
Leslie Pink_Morgan, Isaman Design
My special guest on this ARCHICAD USER webinar is Leslie Pink_Morgan of Isaman Design in San Luis Obispo, on the central coast of California. "Pink" (as she is often referred to by her colleagues) recently shared with me 3 very different projects as examples for exploration and demonstration in my ARCHICAD Best Practices 2020 training course.
I was impressed by the combination of beautiful design, intricate modeling and the variety of vernacular styles, and invited her to share the firm's work to ARCHICAD USERs around the world.
Here is her personal story, along with a description of what we'll explore during the session.
"I graduated from Cal Poly SLO in 2006 with a bachelor’s degrees in Architecture and a minor in Construction Management. I was first introduced to ArchiCAD by my current boss, who has been using ArchiCAD since version 6. I started with version 14, so whatever year that was… maybe 2011/2012. It was a game changer for our office as far as efficiency goes. We had been doing SD in ArchiCAD, DD in SketchUp, and CDs in Autodesk; once we made the switch it allowed us to do everything in one program, more efficiently and more successfully. ArchiCAD also allowed me to improve my personal design skills by being able to jump from 2D to 3D with a touch of a button to better understand how 2D changes affected the overall model and 3D design.
"It seems like our office utilizes ArchiCAD as an extreme modeling tool as well as producing renderings and detailed construction documents. We are generating 3D virtual models for our clients to walk through, during the DD phase of our projects. We’ve also started incorporating Twinmotion and Lumion into the mix, which takes things to a whole new level. I will be sharing a few of our projects, each a different architectural style, and each with useful solutions to common modeling needs. We do our best to model as much as we can in order to cut down on added linework in 2D views. However, our details are all linework, so that would be another place to improve utilizing all the 3D work that we put into our models.
- French Style: barrel roofs, pitch break eaves, curved roofs, complex profiles (currently under construction)
- Contemporary: Flat roofs, parapet cap, skylights, angled windows, custom furniture (completed and photographed)
- Modern Farmhouse: Standing seam metal roofs (roof wizard), board and batten siding, custom light fixtures, custom door panels (currently under construction - I also have this model available in Twinmotion if you want to share that transition)
I invite you to join us for this special presentation by an expert ARCHICAD USER!
Monthly Training Webinar: FREE for ARCHICAD USERS
Thurs. March 26 at 1 pm PDT
Leslie Pink_Morgan, Isaman Design
Case Studies and Training Hosted by ARCHICAD Educator Eric Bobrow
Sign Up Here!
These monthly webinar sessions are offered as a free gift to the ARCHICAD User community.
They feature interviews with leading users, onscreen review of projects, as well as training exploring ARCHICAD features in context.
NOTE: If you can't make the live presentations, access to the replay recordings are made available to registrants.
When you sign up, you'll also get a free Bronze Level membership in the ARCHICAD USER site, and may add yourself to the Worldwide User Directory.
March 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
Kristian Bursell, GDL Developer, CADSwift
An interview and demonstration with one of the most respected GDL Developers for ARCHICAD, Kristian Bursell of CADSwift in Australia.
Attend this session to discover the most powerful capabilities of ARCHICAD GDL objects. Kristian has pushed the limits and you'll see how how he has created a new function that has "too many benefits to mention". Instead of describing them, you'll see them demonstrated LIVE.
As a special gift to ARCHICAD USER, all attendees will receive a free 1 year subscription to CADSwift's main tool, Infinite Openings.
December 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
ARCHICAD Beginner Tips & Tricks
In this training I share some of the most important basic concepts and methods that will help you use ARCHICAD effectively. Even if you're not a beginner, you're likely to enjoy and benefit from the presentation.
While Graphisoft provides videos to help people get up to speed, I've found that there are many areas of the workflow and practice that are confusing, particularly to newer users.
I go over some of the common mistakes to watch out for, as well as strategies to gain the most advantage from ARCHICAD.
NOVEMBER 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
10 Cool ARCHICAD Tricks You Can Use
I'm going to share a number of my favorite "tricks" to help you get more mileage out of ARCHICAD 23.
These 10 tricks are taken directly from MasterTemplate 23.
You'll see the inner workings of my template during this webinar, and learn how you can achieve these effects in your own template, regardless of whether it's the Graphisoft standard one, another third party product, or something you've developed for your own office.
I'll even make available a free download to help you implement some of these slick tricks.
OCTOBER 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
ARCHICAD 23 MIGRATION TIPS
Attend this training to learn the best way to migrate your projects and your office standard template into ARCHICAD 23.
While Graphisoft has made this easier than previous versions, there are definitely things to watch out for, and things you'll want to do to gain full advantage of the new version.
SEPTEMBER 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
ARCHICAD COACHING Q&A SESSION
Coaching Q&A sessions are one of my favorite ways to help the ARCHICAD community develop more mastery and understanding to gain maximum leverage from this powerful software.
Send in your questions ahead of time to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, along with project files via Dropbox. I'll pick out a mixture of beginning, intermediate and advanced questions and weave the session around them.
Be as specific as you can about your challenges and what you'd like me to demonstrate. I won't be able to answer everyone's questions, however we'll cover a lot of ground in this two hour session.
I'll give priority to people who can attend the session and have a conversation with me (using computer mic and speakers) as I look at their project. It's always more satisfying when we can have a chat and I can make sure the questions are answered to your satisfaction.
AUGUST 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
New Visualization Options for ARCHICAD
In this session we compare:
- The OpenGL 3D Window (that we use day to day)
- BIMx (Graphisoft's innovative communication and collaboration application)
- TwinMotion (the new gaming-style visualization environment that Graphisoft recently announced as a technology partner)
- and a fascinating new option from Xuver.
Each of these tools has unique strengths that can be leveraged for specific use cases.
Graphisoft's BIMx allows ARCHICAD model sharing with clients and consultants; it is unique in the way it can embed working drawings into the 3D file. It runs on multiple platforms including mobile, desktop and browser.
Twinmotion provides a virtually instant upgrade of the visualization quality with higher quality rendering and interesting options for the external environment including landscape and entourage. It allows dynamic linking and updating between the viewer app and ARCHICAD.
XUVER - A NEW VISUALIZATION ENVIRONMENT
Xuver is a new entry to this area. The company approached me in April and asked me to review their technology to see if I would like to share and promote it to ARCHICAD users. I met with them and quickly saw that its unique feature set could be very appealing.
It is a browser-based, cross-platform gaming-style model viewer with features including avatars (human figures visible in the scene) and collaborative exploration (you can review the project with clients or consultants, tour the model and go from room to room together).
When I reviewed Xuver I found the experience to be intuitive and natural, and somehow more comfortable to navigate in than other viewing environments. They offer a free trial and a very inexpensive monthly subscription.
During the session, I interviewed representatives of Xuver, to get their perspective (pun intended) and some background on the company.
JUNE 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
4 Projects, 3 Users, One Template
We will look at 4 interesting projects submitted by users from around the world, and discuss how they approach their work.
All 4 projects were done using MasterTemplate - however they are all quite different - yet share a common file structure.
MAY 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
PROJECT REVIEW CHECKUP
Expert Reviews of Projects Sent In By Users
We review 4 interesting projects submitted by users from around the world, and resolve various questions and challenges, with some good tips and tricks along the way.
Dialog, discussion and demonstrations of methods and approaches to troubleshooting and optimization.
APRIL 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
30 Years with ARCHICAD - Eric Bobrow at 65
A Look Back and A Look Forward
A journey down memory lane, as I turn 65 and celebrate 30 years working with ARCHICAD.
Features interviews with David Marlatt AIA (head of Graphisoft US in the 90's) and Neil Wainwright (the person who changed my life, pointing me in the direction of working with ARCHICAD back in 1989).
Check out the tour of original ARCHICAD boxes, manuals and marketing materials going back to version 4 - with lots of interesting stories about the journey!
Taking ARCHICAD Beyond Design:
Cost Estimation and Construction Management
with Roderick Anderson & John Hallgarth
MARCH 2019 WEBINAR RECORDING
In this inspiring session Roderick Anderson and John Hallgarth shared more than two hours of cutting edge strategies for leveraging the power of ARCHICAD for cost estimation and construction management. An exceptional presentation full of actionable insights, tools and methods that you can use in your own projects.
ARCHICAD, BIMx & Bluebeam Workflow
Roderick Anderson's Costa Rica design-build firm Sarco Architects specializes in high end vacation homes for U.S. and other foreign clients in beautiful tropical locations in Central America and the Caribbean.
A long-time ARCHICAD user and pioneer, Roderick has presented his work at international BIM conferences, Graphisoft launch events, Masters of ARCHICAD Summits, as well as teaching the popular training course ARCHICAD and BIMx for Design Build.
His presentation in the ARCHICAD USER webinar series in March 2018 was one of the highlights of last year. He shared with us his beautiful designs and masterful use of technology for efficiently and profitably delivering construction drawings as well as marketing materials for the Cap Limón Luxury Club Residences resort in the Dominican Republic.
In the upcoming webinar Roderick will show his latest work and talk about some of the most interesting innovations and changes he has made to his ARCHICAD template. He'll also reprise his Best Practices 4 BIM presentation he made at BIM World MUNICH in November 2018, demonstrating how ARCHICAD and BIMx enable enhanced communication for project management during construction.
Roderick has also developed a very effective hybrid 3D/2D/Data workflow for cost estimates and management of subcontractor trade contracts. He exports sets of views from his ARCHICAD model as PDF files into Bluebeam, and adds information and derives quantities for each trade. The visual linking of the quantity takeoffs and the notated drawings is particularly useful in ensuring that everything is being included and coordinated in estimates and construction.
ARCHICAD 5D Workflow Using Data Properties and Excel
John Hallgarth worked as Virtual Design & Construction Manager at a large general contractor in Southern California, before venturing on his own to create a specialized ARCHICAD template known as ContraBIM.
An important part of ContraBIM is the 5D component, which automates quantity reporting and model based estimating. This solution utilizes the power of data in ARCHICAD, and creates a bridge for reporting with Excel.
John showed a preview of his specialized project template in the August 2018 ARCHICAD USER presentation, and will be returning to the webinar series to talk about how ARCHICAD users can set up their projects for detailed quantity takeoffs and cost estimation using Excel.
John and I are jointly developing new resources that will launch this spring, including a version of MasterTemplate with an extended cost estimation system powered by ContraBIM, and a new Quantity Takeoff and Cost Estimation Course in the Masters of ARCHICAD Training Series. We'll share some preliminary information about these resources during this session.
I am excited to share the inspiring work of these two ARCHICAD veterans with you and thousands of ARCHICAD USERs around the world in the March 11th webinar.
NEWS: During this session, John and I announced plans to integrate his C5D quantity and cost estimation workflow into MasterTemplate to make it easy for ARCHICAD USERs to run the numbers throughout the design process and optimize their project costs. We'll also be offering a course to teach the methods and systems that can make this a routine part of the workflow rather than an exotic or cumbersome exercise.
We'll be posting additional information over the next few weeks - stay tuned!
December 2018 Webinar Recording: BEST PRACTICES UPDATE - 10 COOL TUTORIALS
ARCHICAD Best Practices have changed a LOT over the years.
Have you kept up?
In this brand new free training webinar I presented 10 useful ARCHICAD tips, tricks and working methods that are "hidden in plain sight" in recent upgrades, covering a wide range of modeling, documentation, presentation and data usage.
As I planned out the presentations the main criteria I used were:
- Is it new or different in recent versions of ARCHICAD?
- Is it valuable and useful?
- Is it something that many users would miss noticing?
- Is it clever, fun or otherwise cool?
- Can I demonstrate it in about 5 minutes, and teach people how to use it?
These 10 demonstrations show some really cool, fun, awesome and interesting new things.
I bet you will learn several new tools and tips that can be put to use right away.
NOTE: Recordings of earlier monthly sessions are posted on separate pages.
You can access them by clicking on the titles or images below, or via the Webinar Recordings menu at the top of the screen.
As part of my month-long Master ARCHICAD event, I offered a free ARCHICAD USER Coaching session in November 2018.
There were a wide variety of questions from beginner through tricky advanced usage.
It is my passion and mission to help ARCHICAD USERs get the most out of this software, and my group coaching sessions are a great way to help lots of users understand best practices methods and how to apply them to their own challenges.
I've run online sessions like this for almost 8 years for members of my ARCHICAD Coaching Program, and in November I invited all ARCHICAD USERs to sit in, and get questions answered.
While working on MasterTemplate 22, I figured out quick ways to achieve various graphic effects.
They are so easy that I'm tempted to call them "tricks" however they are actually useful methods to produce images and drawings for client presentations as well as production work.
Many of them rely on clever combinations of Graphic Override Rules and Combinations, fantastic options introduced in ARCHICAD 20.
Others require careful setup in complex profiles, or specific settings in the 3D Window using the 3D Styles dialog, or the use of Model View Options.
While I showed some of these in my recent presentation on MasterTemplate (and they are all included and preset for quick access in AMT22), this webinar goes through the step by step setup and use of a great many of the most useful and interesting graphic tricks that I've figured out in recent years.
Watch the recording to see some cool options you can use in your projects!
In June we had a very special presentation with two of my favorite ARCHICAD experts. Tim Ball (UK) and Andreas Lettner (Austria) are architects and veteran ARCHICAD users who created the Masters of ARCHICAD 2017 course with me.
This online advanced Best Practices Course ran from July 2017 through May 2018, and covered the workflow, strategies and methods involved in the creation and development of a sizable hotel project, from concept through to working drawings and data extraction. In a series of 20 live classes broadcast twice monthly, we explored, demonstrated and explained a broad swath of ARCHICAD processes, sharing tips, step by step instructions and downloadable files.
This is your opportunity to catch the highlights of the year in review, the best and most interesting parts of an in-depth educational journey.
In May 2018, I interviewed Chip Hudson, a veteran ARCHICAD USER who has created one of the most highly developed and refined templates I've seen. It's going to be a treat to explore his project files to see how everything is dialed in for speed and consistency along with active scheduling and some innovative quantity take-offs.
I first became acquainted with Chip when I saw a presentation by Josh Bone of Graphisoft at a BIM Conference a few years ago. Josh showed how quickly and easily a kitchen could be assembled from the kit of parts Chip had set up in his template (see screenshot below).
It's the same idea as the Interactive Legends in MasterTemplate, applied in a focused manner to this design area. I was impressed, and got permission from Chip to incorporate the concept into the next iteration of MasterTemplate, along with a few other pieces of his template.
In preparation for the webinar, I spent an hour with Chip going through one of his projects, and saw even more cool tricks that he's developed. This session is an eye-opener for ARCHICAD USERs who want to optimize their workflow, increase productivity and create working drawings with less effort and higher quality.
I love it when people like Chip are so willing to share their knowledge with the ARCHICAD community. He's even going to make available some parts of his template, including smart library components he's developed.
In April, I interviewed award-winning Los Angeles architect Tracy Stone, whose firm emphasizes sustainable design in a modernist context. Their 4 person office has used ARCHICAD for close to 20 years, and been featured several times by Graphisoft for their innovative applications of the program in both architecture and interior design contexts.
Tracy also teaches at several Los Angeles architectural programs, and shares her work periodically at ARCHICAD user group meetings.
The firm has developed an efficient working methodology that we explored during the April training webinar.
DESIGN CHALLENGES, ARCHICAD SOLUTIONS
One of the challenging workflows Tracy Stone has tested and optimized relates to multi-unit designs on sloping sites.
She showed us how they have worked out a method for placing hotlinked modules on negative stories within the same project, allowing them greater speed and simplified management as the design progresses.
We also looked at her office standard template, and opened up some of the wide range of projects that she is known for.
The March training webinar and case study interview showcased the work of award-winning Costa Rica architect Roderick Anderson, who has been featured by Graphisoft in articles and ARCHICAD launch events. Roderick also was a presenter in the Masters of ARCHICAD Summit and taught a course on BIMx Strategies for Design and Construction as part of the Masters training series.
Roderick is well known for designing and building beautiful high end custom homes on challenging coastal sites. His firm Sarco Architects recently tackled their first complete resort development in the Dominican Republic, which has already won several prestigious design awards.
In this interview/case study, we explored several projects live, on-screen inside ARCHICAD, and discussed how Roderick approaches the design and development process. It was particularly interesting to see and hear how he carefully optimized the workflow to suit a large site with multiple buildings and a combination of private and public spaces.
BONUS - Silver and Gold Level Members Only: Roderick shares a BIMx model of one of his recent projects - a rare chance to download and study the stunning work of an ARCHICAD Master!
Andrew Passacantando AIA
In the February 13 ARCHICAD USER monthly training webinar, I interviewed New Jersey architect Andrew Passacantando about the fascinating story of his remodel of an 1870's Victorian home.
The 5800 square foot building was owned by a developer as part of a large parcel. Since it was on the historic registry, the town required that the remodel be done consistent with the historic style, while adding a two car garage and modernizing the interior with a new kitchen and other amenities.
The project started as a spec house that would be sold after the remodel was completed, however a local family saw the work in progress and purchased the property, so it became a custom home designed to meet their needs. While the front facade was retained, the interior layout was reworked and the rear of the property was allowed to be substantially augmented.
Detailed interior renderings allowed the new owners to visualize various options such as different moulding styles and make design decisions more easily. BIMx Pro has been extensively used by the contractor to manage construction on site, comparing 3D views with the actual work in progress. Approval by the historic board was more easily achieved by presenting the before and after images and walkthroughs of the ARCHICAD model.
Andrew's beautiful restoration and extension are an eye-opener for anyone involved in historic preservation or remodels of older, more ornate buildings. As a one-person firm, Andrew has evolved a highly efficient working methodology. In this webinar, I asked him to reveal the shortcuts he's developed that help him to meet deadlines, remain profitable and stay sane...
IMAGES: (Top Two Rows) Existing (on left) vs. Expanded New Design with Garage
(Lower Section) Living Room perspective, Post Top and Post Base
UK Architect Tim Ball
"Pushing ARCHICAD's Limits While Maintaining Profitability"
In the inaugural session January 16th, leading UK Architect Timothy Ball RIBA shared his latest work on an ambitious mid-size institutional project (a "care home" modeled with exquisite detail along with integrated BIM data) as he proves out his innovative methodologies on a larger scale.
Ball is well-known for his pioneering work with superbly detailed 3D models that push the limits of ARCHICAD while maintaining a highly efficient and profitable practice.
The recording of Tim Ball's presentation is now available on this page.
MONTHLY WEBINAR SERIES - CASE STUDIES PLUS TRAINING
These monthly ARCHICAD USER webinars combine interview and discussion with live study and training based on a current project of an expert user.
Each month I will interview and showcase the work of leading ARCHICAD users, weaving training content into the case studies.
These sessions are the centerpiece of the new ARCHICAD User website, which will also provide access to additional tutorials and discussion, as well as discussion areas and a worldwide user directory.
Eric Bobrow has worked with ArchiCAD for 29 years as a trainer and consultant. His firm Bobrow Consulting Group (BCG) was U.S. Reseller of the Year in 2000, ranked in the top 5 nationally for 10 years, and was awarded Graphisoft Platinum VAR status during a successful 20 year run, before he switched gears to focus on training and consulting in 2010.
His ArchiCAD Tutorials channel on YouTube has over 23,000 subscribers and reached a ground-breaking 3.5 million views. It is by far the most popular ArchiCAD video resource outside of Graphisoft itself.
MasterTemplate, the Office Standard for ArchiCAD, is the most widely-used independent template system for the software, embedding best practices principles into the structure of the project files to increase efficiency, optimize productivity, and improve consistency and graphic quality.
Bobrow is the founder and producer of the MASTERS of ARCHICAD SUMMIT and TRAINING SERIES as well as the ARCHICAD USER website.
ABOUT the ARCHICAD USER Website
The ARCHICAD USER website is the home for a worldwide virtual user group.
For 15 years I facilitated the Los Angeles ARCHICAD User Group, with an active membership of dozens of local users who attended monthly in-person meetings. We held our meetings at the local AIA chapter and at the offices of local firms.
It was an immensely valuable experience for everyone involved, and I'd like to build something like it for users around the world.
A UNIQUE SPIN ON A USER GROUP
Programs for the ARCHICAD USER site include monthly live webinar presentations, recorded tutorial videos, resource downloads and discussion areas.
The monthly webinars are a combination of case study, interview, Q&A and training content woven into an entertaining and educational 90 to 120 minute format.
To bring together our virtual community, there is also a user directory.
My plan is to facilitate personal connection, topic exploration and resource sharing in ways that are distinct from the ArchiCAD-Talk Forum and the existing LinkedIn and Facebook groups and pages.
THE JOURNEY TOWARDS ARCHICAD MASTERY
A major theme of the user group is the Journey Towards ARCHICAD Mastery, with tutorials and downloads for users ranging from beginner through expert and beyond.
Free membership will give users access to most of the community resources, with paid levels available for people who want additional support for their ARCHICAD Journey.
The site and infrastructure of the ARCHICAD User portal will be built out in a series of stages. I invite all users who would like to be part of a connected community to join us and share the journey, as we help bring up the general level of knowledge and enjoyment of ARCHICAD.
INDEPENDENCE AND COMMUNITY
The ARCHICAD USER website is an educational resource that is independent of Graphisoft, allowing us to focus entirely on inspiring, training, educating and delighting ArchiCAD users.
Graphisoft and ARCHICAD are registered trademarks of Graphisoft SE. All of us involved in the ARCHICAD USER website are grateful for the cutting edge software that Graphisoft develops and distributes. It is what brings us together here, and continues to be the inspiring tool that liberates us to create better designs with more ease and efficiency than any other BIM product.