Category Archives for "News"

Practical, Parametric Object Making Using GDL – Masters of ArchiCAD Training by Gary Lawes

Today I interviewed Gary Lawes to learn more about his upcoming ArchiCAD GDL Training Course, the next installment in the Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series. Click on the 6 minute video below to listen in on our discussion.


Gary has used and loved ArchiCAD since 1990, and has had his own residential design firm for over 10 years. He says he always budgets a few hours in each project to create custom GDL library parts, knowing that these small investments really pay off. Overall he estimates he shaves about 25% off his production time due to efficiency gains he achieves with these tools that he’s crafted to meet his needs.

In Gary’s short 4-lesson course (which starts next week), you’ll learn how to create your own custom, intelligent and parametric library parts with GDL to boost your productivity and give you much greater control, flexibility and finesse as you develop your project.

As you know, ArchiCAD comes with an extensive library of objects, doors and windows. These are all built with Graphisoft’s exceptionally powerful object creation scripting language called GDL. However, there’s no way that Graphisoft can supply everything you need pre-made in the box.

Click here for more info on this ArchiCAD GDL Course by Gary LawesJoin us for this online training and you’ll see how easy it is to fill in the gaps (for your practice and your projects) and create objects that are stretchy, self labelling, highly parametric, to manufacturers sizes where appropriate, or constrained to local building codes as required. And of course make sure they all schedule correctly.

When you take advantage of GDL, all items may be placed extremely quickly, normally no more than 2 or 3 clicks, appear perfectly as appropriate 2D symbols often displaying differently on different stories (stairs and downpipes for example), and very rapidly produce accurate BIM information.

In this course Gary will help you tap into the power of GDL and turbocharge YOUR ArchiCAD use and performance beyond anything you’ve ever experienced.

The course will be presented as a series of 4 one-hour webinar sessions at 1 pm PDT on Wednesdays starting September 9. All sessions are recorded and posted for viewing in your web browser as well as downloaded for permanent reference.

Practical Parametric Object Making Using GDL is on sale now for only $147 (save $50 off the standard registration fee). Click here to go to the Masters of ArchiCAD website for more info and to sign up.


MasterTemplate for ArchiCAD 19 To Ship in July; Special Pre-Launch Offer Announced

Master Template Logo croppedFollowing last week’s public release of ArchiCAD 19 by Graphisoft, I have started work on developing the next version of MasterTemplate, the leading independent template for ArchiCAD with over 1,225 users from 67 countries.

AMT19 is expected to ship in the second half of July for both U.S. (imperial) and International (metric) editions. It continues the tradition (since 2007) of building in proven, field-tested Best Practices methods into the framework of your ArchiCAD project file, saving you time, helping you be more organized and efficient, and giving you more consistent, higher quality results.

As always, the new template will provide full compatibility with the new ArchiCAD version, including the latest library and features introduced this year.

Please read through this post carefully, as there is a LOT here:

  • powerful new features based on the latest insights of ArchiCAD Masters
  • special discounted pre-launch pricing available through Friday July 10
  • valuable bonuses to encourage you to buy now rather than wait
  • an invitation to send in your suggestions, ideas and feature requests

The pre-launch bonuses (revealed below) are actually worth more than the price of MasterTemplate. They’ll be of tremendous value to you and your practice. I’m really excited about how much I can offer you this year!


In addition to compatibility revisions, we will be adding new components to MasterTemplate based on the insights I’ve gained from the Masters of ArchiCAD Summit presentations as well as the courses in the Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series by Tim Ball and Andreas Lettner.

For example, based on Tim’s pioneering work, we’ll provide a new IFC-based data structure to facilitate preparation of specification documents directly from the template-based project file. We’ll also include a substantial number of new Complex Profiles that may be used as-is or adapted for your design context; these will make it easier and faster to build detailed ArchiCAD models.

Andreas will be working with me to provide a number of carefully chosen Cinerender “Scene” presets that will speed up your visualization process while providing a well-modulated set of quality choices. You’ll work around the traditional trade-off of quality vs. speed (since in general, higher quality renderings take more time). These Scenes make it easy to get quality renderings appropriate for your design phase, modeling process, workflow and deadline time frames.

I’ll also be working to include some of the tools and methods shared by other ArchiCAD Masters during the February Summit conference. Better support for BIMx Pro will be incorporated, as well as additional quantity calc tools.


With each new version of MasterTemplate, I am always interested in adding more useful and/or cool features suggested by users. It’s also the perfect time to resolve any bugs or unnecessary limitations in previous versions of MasterTemplate.

If you’ve got ideas, suggestions or feature requests, please email I promise to respond to each and every note you send in, and examine it for possible inclusion in this year’s template upgrade.


MasterTemplate 19 costs $297, the same as previous versions.

  • In our Pre-Launch Special Offer, you can buy MasterTemplate now for only $247, saving $50.

You’ll get AMT18 immediately, and will receive AMT19 as soon as it is released.

For more info and to purchase your license, please visit the MasterTemplate website. Scroll down and click the orange button that says “Yes, I Want to Start Optimizing My ArchiCAD Projects NOW”, then make your payment with credit card or PayPal and you’ll get an immediate email with instructions for how to login and download the template. You’ll also get access to a series of training videos that will make it easy for you to integrate MasterTemplate into your office.

Note that one license covers an entire office, since I expect that the template will be become your new “office standard”. There is a full 90 day Money Back Guarantee, so you can even try the template out on one or more of your current projects, then decide whether you want to keep it.

If you already have a MasterTemplate license, you may upgrade for $127.

  • As part of our Pre-Launch Special Offer, you can purchase your upgrade right now for only $97, saving $30.

To upgrade your template, login to the MasterTemplate website member area with your email and password, then click the link in the left-hand sidebar for the MasterTemplate Upgrade. Click the Buy Now button and follow through our secure shopping cart checkout, and you’ll get a confirmation via email that you’re all set up for AMT19.

As soon as AMT19 is released, everyone who has purchased a license will get notification via email.


Everyone who purchases MasterTemplate 19 between now and next Friday July 10 will get a FREE Bonus of my upcoming 4 week Masters of ArchiCAD Training Course:

This series of lessons is normally sold for $197, but you’ll get it free!
It will give you what you need to take best advantage of ArchiCAD 19.

Class 1 will focus on the new features of ArchiCAD 19. Learn how to use the new Permanent Guide Lines, Tab Bar and single window interface, PDF Improvements, 3D Surface Painter, enhanced Graphical Interface for Library Parts, Labeling and Listing Enhancements, and Point-Cloud Support.

Class 2 will show you the easiest ways to migrate your projects into the new version, including transitioning your ArchiCAD Library and Favorites. We’ll also look at migrating your Template and bringing it up to date with the latest tools and methods in ArchiCAD 19.

Class 3 will be a compilation of Lessons from ArchiCAD Masters, based on the top presentations made in the recent Masters of ArchiCAD Summit and Training Series. Discover the key insights that enable these masters to produce their work faster and better than other users. Whether you have attended the Summit and previous classes in this series, or not, you’ll get a precise, actionable set of ideas and methods you can implement into your practice.

In Class 4 we’ll revisit the 7 Keys to Best Practices for ArchiCAD, my classic presentation from 2011 that codified the most important principles to understand when running your project. I’ll integrate the latest gems from the ArchiCAD Masters along with the most up to date features of ArchiCAD 19 to give you a road map for what to focus on this coming year to optimize your usage of ArchiCAD.

This $197 course (yours FREE with purchase by Friday July 10) is part of the 2015 Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series. It runs from July 22 through August 19 on Wednesdays at 1 pm PDT. All sessions are recorded and posted for permanent reference, so you don’t have to attend live – however if you do join us on the webinars, you’ll be able to ask me questions and enjoy the comments and questions of other ArchiCAD users from around the world.


If you’re purchasing MasterTemplate for the first time (rather than upgrading), I’ll throw in a free 90 day membership in my ArchiCAD Coaching Program worth $97.

When you’re a member of the coaching program, you can send me your ArchiCAD-related questions any time, and I’ll give you my personal assistance!

You can email me your questions, and I’ll email back, or I’ll address your challenge, issue or topic in one of my regularly scheduled Coaching Calls. These are live two-hour webinars in which I’ll open up your file (if you send me one) and work through your question, demonstrating how to use ArchiCAD in the most effective manner to resolve your design or documentation challenge.

My ArchiCAD Coaching Program has always been limited to members of my Best Practices Course, but now, for the first time, you can get access to my personal support line when you purchase MasterTemplate.

The 90 day membership is normally $97, however you’ll get it free when you purchase MasterTemplate during our pre-launch special promotion.

For more info and to purchase your license, please visit the MasterTemplate website.

Learn How to Use ArchiCAD’s Cinerender Tools to Create Beautiful Renderings

Next week we launch the new online ArchiCAD training course with Andreas Lettner on Cinerender Methods, Tips and Tricks. I chatted with Andreas today and we discussed the course as well as his background as an architect, instructor and technology innovator.


The course starts June 17 and will broadcast live via GoToWebinar for 4 consecutive Wednesdays. Lessons will be recorded and posted for permanent reference on the Masters of ArchiCAD website.

For more information and to register for the Cinerender course, click here.

How to Create ArchiCAD Working Drawings without Drafting Details

Earlier this week I interviewed Tim Ball, an advanced ArchiCAD user in the UK, to learn more about how he develops his ArchiCAD model in a way that virtually eliminates manual 2D drafting of Details.

The 10 minute video shows the evolution of his project workflow over the past few years, from independently created Detail drawings through model-based Details and now pure-model Details.

How to Create ArchiCAD Working Drawings without Drafting Details – Interview with Tim Ball

Tim has also figured out how to embed textual data into his elements in a way that makes it possible for ArchiCAD to automatically generate and compile accurate specification documents that are fully based on the model.

I believe his workflow is a bit tricky to master, however ultimately much more efficient. In addition, it increases the consistency of the drawings, since everything (even details and specifications) is based on the intelligent 3D Virtual Building model.


Tim will be teaching how to implement his methods in the upcoming online training course Working Drawings Without Details, which kicks off on April 15.

Tim’s course is part of the Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series, a set of five short courses running over the next 6 months taught by carefully chosen ArchiCAD experts.

I’m looking forward to sharing these training courses with ArchiCAD users around the world. Sessions will be broadcast live once each week, and recorded and posted for easy, permanent reference in the website member area.

I hope you can join us on this journey of discovery along the path of mastery. When you implement some of these strategies of the Masters of ArchiCAD, you’ll become more efficient, productive and profitable.

Plus, you’ll be able to enjoy your work more.

As Tim says: “You can focus on the fun, sexy part of ArchiCAD – the 3D modeling and design – and virtually eliminate the boring 2D stuff.”

Please let me know if you have any questions, comments or feedback.


Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series launches with 5 short courses by ArchiCAD experts

Eric-Bobrow-photo-2I’m delighted to announce the Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series, a set of five short courses running over the next 6 months taught by carefully chosen ArchiCAD experts.

These trainings are visionary yet supremely practical; advanced yet highly approachable.

They will enrich your understanding and help you implement some of the powerful ideas and methods shared in the recent Masters of ArchiCAD Summit.

Each master brings something unique to the table. Every one of them is a practicing user who pushes the limits of ArchiCAD and has figured out how to get more done with less effort.

Take one course and you’ll advance your practice.
Go through all 5 and you’re going to be unstoppable.

The first class starts next Wednesday April 15 as Tim Ball shares how he creates “Working Drawings Without [Drafting] Details”.

When you use Tim’s approach, you’ll be able to focus most of your time on the cool, fun part of ArchiCAD (designing and modeling in 3D) and virtually no time at all on tedious Detail drawings and Specifications (they come directly out of the highly detailed model).

ArchiCAD training by Tim Ball will show you how to go directly from your 3D model to Detail drawings and Specifications

Yes, it is truly possible, not overly hard, much more efficient (and fun) and Tim will show you how.

Tim’s course kicks off the series.


The Masters of ArchiCAD Training Series is offered as live one-hour webinars, with one session per week through October.

You don’t have to attend the live sessions. They will be recorded and made available in the website member area for permanent reference. These video recordings will make a great addition to your reference library.

These training resources follow up on the Summit presentations of each Master, and will take you deeper and guide you along the journey so that you can easily integrate their methods in your office:

  • Tim Ball – Working Drawings Without Details (6 lessons)
  • Andreas Lettner – Cinerender Methods, Tips and Tricks (4 lessons)
  • Eric Bobrow – ArchiCAD 19 Upgrade Training (4 lessons)
  • Gary Lawes – Practical, Parametric Object Making Using GDL
  • Roderick Anderson – ArchiCAD and BIMx Strategies to Optimize Design and Construction

The Training Series page provides a complete description for each of the courses.

Each course has a standard price of $197, except for Tim’s longer course, which is $297.

To encourage you to jump in with both feet (and be off and running) we’re offering a Training Series bundle for only $597.

This is an amazing value. The retail prices of these courses total $1085. Yet even more important, the impact on your practice and how efficiently you run your projects is far larger. When you implement the methods pioneered by these Masters, you’ll use ArchiCAD in a much more optimized and powerful fashion.

NOTE: Don’t let cash flow get in the way of grabbing this offer: you can choose our extended payment plan option available at $97 per month.


When you sign up for the full bundle, you’ll get complimentary access for the Masters of ArchiCAD Summit recordings – 12 dynamic presentations by grand masters from around the world, an extra bonus value of $197!

The Summit was an inspiring, community-building event attended by over 300 ArchiCAD users. One advanced user wrote to me after the Summit saying he had “filled his idea basket.” Others used terms like “fabulous”, “awesome”, and “winner” to describe the conference.

  • “The [Summit] sessions were some of the very best I have experienced.” – Lew Bishop, Santa Rosa CA

I’m delighted to be able to share all of this ArchiCAD goodness with you!

Please let me know if you have any questions, feedback or comments.

Best regards,

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