Behind the Scenes: The City Works

Behind the Scenes: The City Works

Take a behind the scenes sneak peak at how the team at City Works creates the unique and intricate city designs from around the world. 


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For over five years, The City Works have created city drawings from around the world. The quality craftsmanship of their notebooks is only surpassed by the intricacy of their designs. Every city is completely unique. 

Every drawing starts with an idea. When deciding which city to draw, the size of the city, the landmarks and architectural styles are all important considerations as they have an impact on how the final design will look.

Once the concept is finalised, it's time for the fun part – research, which often involves visiting the city to experience the architecture, culture and what the city has to offer. The travels are then backed up by online research, as well as maps to understand the geography of the city and interaction between the different landmarks.


Next, it’s sketch time! For each project, a number of sketches are drafted. This is to understand the best layout for the final city drawing. Afterwards, the process known as ‘vectoring’ begins. This involves compositing the sketches using Adobe Photoshop to create the final layout.


To create the final design, the thickness, colour and scale of the strokes are adjusted to create the perfect composition. Anything that doesn’t look right is changed – no matter how small the change is. A magnifying glass is then used for a final check to make sure there are no little mistakes such as overlapping or crossing lines.

While the overall process is very time consuming, the devil really is in the detail so every city landscape is carefully researched and designed. There is no doubt that The City Works designs are made to stand the test of time. Just like the landmarks they depict.