Drawing atmosphere: A case study of architectural design for care in later life

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this article, we use an entry to an international architectural student competition on future care to explore how social norms about older bodies may be challenged by designs that are sensitive to the spatial contexts within which we age. The power of the ‘My Home’ design by Witham and Wilkins derives from its hand drawn aesthetic and thus we consider the architects’ insistence on drawing as a challenge to the clear and unambiguous image making typically associated with digitally aided architectural designs. The hand drawn images of ‘My Home’ prompt a focus on care as enacted through the relations between material environments and things, and the atmospheric qualities these relations evoke. Throughout our analysis, we argue for greater attention to the ways in which embodied practices, everyday affects and materialities can be represented within architectural design, and the role of hand drawing as a creative methodology in this process.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-96
Number of pages35
JournalBody and Society
Issue number4
Early online date17 Nov 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

Bibliographical note

© The Author(s) 2020


  • Architecture
  • Atmosphere
  • Care
  • Drawing
  • Embodiment
  • Materiality

Cite this