As a child growing up, I was always doodling and sketching. There were not a lot of options for drawing tools back then, so this budding artist’s tool of choice was the basic no. 2 lead pencil. If I wanted to add a little color to my artwork, a good old Crayola crayon would have to do. If I was really fortunate, it was from a 64-pack with the built-in sharpener. I was an artist in the making!
As a student studying Landscape Architecture, I continued to hone my drawing skills. The no. 2 lead pencil turned into various technical pencils, and crayons were elevated to an array of colorful Chartpak AD Markers. While function, aesthetic, scale, proportion, balance, unity and rhythm will forever remain a constant of good design, the tools used to create these designs continue to change significantly. Pencils, pens, color markers and trash paper may still be the tools of choice for the “purest” in the development of a design, but computer software now plays a significant role in allowing design professionals to clearly communicate their ideas to customers in a more timely and efficient manner. These software programs are tremendous time savers that allow a Landscape Architect more time to develop and refine a plan.
The development of 3D software has been one of the biggest technological advances in the landscape design process. 2-dimensional plans will always be part of communicating a design, but when I present a design by means of a 3-dimensional perspective, very little is left to be said. Providing a customer with a 3D visual tour is a significant aid in expressing our concepts, thus allowing customers to fully understand the reality of their unique design.