Exterior elevations illustrate the finished appearance of an exterior wall of a building. They convey the types of materials proposed, types of doors and windows, the finished grade, roof slope, foundation, footings, and selected vertical dimensions. Elevations assist the designer in visualizing how proposed door and window types and locations on the floor plan will influence the appearance and style of the structure (Figure 7-5).
Exterior elevations are identified with a title and scale. Generally, exterior elevations are titled according to the compass direction they are facing, either North Elevation, East Elevation, South Elevation, or West Elevation. If a building is not facing true north, the side that is oriented the most nearly north is identified as such. Then the other elevations are titled according to the compass direction most closely related to them. In some cases, exterior elevations are titled Front, Rear, Left, and Right.
Figure 7-5 Exterior elevations convey the materials used and particulars of doors, windows, roofs, and footings, as well as important vertical dimensions.
In most cases, architects and engineers draw exterior elevations. However, interior designers may be required to draw exterior elevations for residential or small commercial projects, such as retail store facades, as shown in Figure 7-6. When remodeling a building or adding space to an existing structure, it may be necessary for the interior designer to draw partial exterior elevations for clarity and understanding.