Vectorworks 2019 Courses Now Available


I am pleased to announce that I have completely updated and expanded courses for Vectorworks 2019:

Foundation Course

The purpose of this course is to teach you the basic concepts of Vectorworks. It is tempting to try to avoid these basic concepts, but these are the ones that make you truly effective in Vectorworks. It is tempting to try to avoid this course, but going to a more advanced one would be a mistake. This is the course you need if you really want to use Vectorworks well. It is important to work through each movie and exercise. You might not understand why you are learning a specific technique—but trust me—to maximize the potential of Vectorworks you will need to learn each one. I know that you want to progress as quickly as possible—we all want that! I have taught thousands of people Vectorworks by using the manual that this course is based on. They have become skilled at using Vectorworks by working through these exercises.

Video run time: over 8 hrs of video

Vectorworks Building Information Modeling (Architect) 2019

Many people talk about BIM these days—it is a powerful way to create drawings. This course is an introduction to using Building Information Modeling with Vectorworks Architect. It is designed to teach you BIM concepts and how to use Vectorworks Architect so that you can be more productive. All of this has been brought together in a concise course.

Through the course, you will complete a simple two-story project that will teach you the basics of BIM. We will start with first principles and then construct a Building Model step by step so that we can create plans, sections, and elevations. We will progress through modeling the site, generating solar studies, rendering 3D views, creating internal room elevations, and constructing details.

Video run time: over 11 hrs of video


Vectorworks Foundation Course 2019


Released last week, Vectorworks 2019 has some powerful new features. To get the best from it, you should really be completing some form of foundation training.

We are pleased to announce the completion of our Foundation course for Vectorworks 2019. This is a completely new and updated course that shows the best features you need for getting started with Vectorworks 2019 and contains more than eight hours of video in a structured online course.

Check out the course here…

Vectorworks Tip 458 – How to Select Objects With Similar Record Information

I have been running a course for landscapers this week and I had a question about selecting objects with a specific record format attached, or with a specific field value.

One method is to use the Select Similar tool.


This tool is designed to select objects that are somehow similar.

Continue reading

Vectorworks Tip 457 – Saved Views And Layer Combinations

Saved Views And Layer Combinations

There is a feature in Archicad call Layer Combinations that is often used to say the software is better than Vectorworks. The feature is used to set up layers (classes in Vectorworks) for viewing and designing, and to control viewports. However, Vectorworks has a similar feature called Saved Views.

Vectorworks has had viewports for many years. The command sets up a viewport that matches our selected combination of design layers and classes. We have used the technique to edit the design layer from the viewport, often instead of using Saved Views. Before Vectorworks had viewports, we would have to use Saved Views to set up the file for printing. Using the viewport trick seems to have made us forget about the benefits of using Saved Views—what a shame!

Continue reading

Quantity Reporting for Landscapers – Course Outline and Schedule 2018

Quantity Reporting for Landscapers

This course will introduce you to the concept of quantity reporting in Vectorworks. The course will start by looking at the concept of worksheets, how they find information, and how we can make a worksheet report the information that we want.

Vectorworks is very powerful for landscape design. I have created reports that would count up all of the planting, landscape areas, mulch, grass areas, edging, etc. Set up correctly, your projects can report everything that you need to deliver. Vectorworks can count objects, quantities, volumes, and budgets. This makes Vectorworks extremely powerful for reporting the quantities of your projects.

To achieve this, of course, you need to understand how Vectorworks finds information and reports it. I have been asked to put together a course that will cover reporting quantities with Landmark. This course is going to be a brand-new one; it will be online and live only. Because it will be run live, it will not be a course that you can take on your own time, although it will be interactive. This will allow you to ask me questions as we work through a series of lessons. These lessons will be recorded so that you will be able to watch them again.

The cost of the course is $150 US/person. (in New Zealand the cost of this course is $210/person+GST).

To register for this course, email me using the contact page…

Continue reading

Vectorworks Tips 455 – Controlling the Elevation of a Massing Model

You can control the elevation of a massing model by setting the Z value in the Object Info palette. You can also use the Send to Surface command.


When you use Send to Surface command, Vectorworks will send the insertion point of your massing model to sit on the site model. The insertion point of your massing model is generally the corner of the polygon that you started first.

So, depending on where you started your massing model, your building will end up at different elevations. You might see a blue dot on your massing model when you select it in a Top/Plan view. Moving this blue dot has no effect on the Send to Surface command.

Vectorworks Building Information Modeling (Landmark) 2018

We are pleased to announce that the new landmark course for Vectorworks 2018 is finally complete. I know this has taken longer than most people expected. The course has been completely redesigned from the ground up and it now follows the structure of the two-day Landmark BIM because that has been so successful in New Zealand.

The course has completely new movies and exercises. The total running time of the videos is just over six hours and 43 minutes, which should take you about a week to complete.

You can find more information about the course by clicking on this link…

SST_1801 – Title Block Borders and Drawing Management


1801 Title Blocks and Document Issues

Title blocks have undergone a major overhaul in Vectorworks 2018. The old Sheet Border tool has been completely replaced with a new Title Block Border tool and Drawing Issue command. The title blocks have been changed to use object styles, their layout is easier to change and customize, adding revisions and creating issues have been updated, and a new document transmittal facility has been added.

Continue reading

Topics for 2018

Following our online meetings in December 2017, we now have an idea of the topics we will be covering next year. The users suggested that we cover some new topics and focus on creating efficient workflows for things like setting up projects and detailing. They asked to go back over some fundamental things such as the resource manager, worksheets, and walls. Finally, they asked if we can update some of the older topic such as site modelling, Renderworks, and complex roofs.

Continue reading

SST_1712 – Wrap-Up For 2017

1712 End-of-Year Wrap-Up

At this time of the year it is always interesting to look back at the topics that we have covered. Some of these topics are brand-new, while others are updates of previous years. Vectorworks 2017 introduced some new tools and techniques, topics that we covered earlier in the year. In October, we of course began looking at what was new in Vectorworks 2018.

Continue reading

Vectorworks Tips 454 – Workflows – Create Objects From Shapes

Your workflow is the way that you work, the way that you use a tool/technique and then move onto the next tool/technique. As Vectorworks changes and updates every year you need to keep an eye on your workflows to ensure that you are using the latest and most efficient methods. This workflow is one that I use all the time to speed up modelling and drawing. Tools like the massing model, hardscape, property line, etc., are polyline-based objects that have their own modes for drawing. I often find that these modes are not the most efficient way to draw.

Continue reading

Vectorworks Tips 453 – Workflows – Creating Symbols For Efficiency

workflow3Most users are able to create symbols, and all users should be able to use symbols. Symbols are relatively small repeatable objects, and most Vectorworks users use symbols to speed up the drawing process. There are two workflows for using symbols: a quick workflow versus an inefficient workflow. Some users use the inefficient workflow because they don’t know how to make symbols follow the efficient workflow.

Continue reading

Vectorworks Tips 452 – Workflows – Title Blocks

Your workflow is the way that you work, the way that you use a tool or technique and then move on to the next tool or technique. As Vectorworks changes and updates every year, you need to keep an eye on your workflows to ensure that you are using the latest and most efficient methods.

Take title blocks as an example. You might be used to the old way of using title blocks, where you selected the tool, double clicked in the drawing area, and the title block was placed and became the graphic design that you required.


Continue reading