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03 Mar, 2021

The Ancient Mockups – Series 1 Leonard Da Vinci

The conception of mockups isn’t a new thing. In fact, nearly all inventions first started with an ancient mockup.

If we think about it, creating mockups is all about doodling ideas down or making drawings that depict a thought. Do you know what the oldest drawing in the world is? It’s a 73,000 year old rock flake discovered in South Africa. It’s a doodle and we don’t really know what it exactly means as it appears to be a series of triangles. The doodle or the drawing was drawn thousands of years ago by Homo Sapiens. However, this was maybe one of the first times when man thought to pen down an idea in the form of a sketch.

Ancient Mockup

Today’s blog looks at some of the most influential sketches that were used to materialize the mockups:

Leonarda Da Vinci’s Helicopter

The desire to fly has always been apparent in human beings. Leonardo Da Vinci was a curious soul and had this ability to merge science and nature together. Da Vinci in 1489 sketched the first ever helicopter. Granted, it wasn’t a helicopter that can be compared to our modern day machines but still it can be seen as an idea that first shaped the reality of flying. Da Vinci was blessed with a mind that was able to relate the laws of nature with the laws of science. Here’s an ancient mockup or a sketch that was drawn by Leonardo Da Vinci:

Leonarda Da Vinci’s Helicopter an example of ancient mockup

Here’s an image that depicts the internal mechanism of the helicopter. As you can see it isn’t exactly practical yet it invokes the need for improvement. This is the very purpose of mockups, which is to look for flaws and potentially improve on them.

internal mechanism of Da Vinci's helicopter

The Flying Machine

Leonardo Da Vinci published an entire volume titled as the Codex on the Flight of Birds in 1505. This volume contained numerous sketches that depicted flying machines. This included the helicopter, but it also included one of the most intriguing sketches recorded in human history. It’s popularly referred to as the Flying Machine. Take a look at the amazing sketch below:

flying machines

This one is a little confusing as it appears to be like a boat. The basic air dynamics are similar to an airplane, except it doesn’t have wings. What vehicle flies that don’t have wings? Spacecrafts. Well, this sketch can be regarded as one of the earliest spacecraft sketches and even though it might not be practical, it does depict a very strong sense of imagination and thought.

Flying Machine Mechanism

Da Vinci’s Original Mockup – The Glider

Have you ever had a chance to hang glide? Would it be a surprise that the first ever mockup of a hang glider was sketched by the maestro, Da Vinci? Well, take a look at a sketch that was drawn in the 14th century. It’s quite reminiscent of the modern hang glider. Its models suggest that the glider control solely relies on glides without flapping.

It really is amazing to see how the ideas of a person who lived so long ago were adopted one way or another in the modern world.

Da Vinci’s Original Mockup - The Glider

In a Nutshell

Leonardo Da Vinci in essence used mockups for the same purpose we build mockups today. It’s about putting ideas into motion and changing the dynamics of your thought so that you produce a product that is truly marvellous.

Move your concept one step closer.