Landscape design

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by LawnsRUsInc., Oct 22, 2007.

  1. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Messages: 4,350

    All I want to say is the real designers, the high-end designers don't use programs like Pro Landscape or anything of that nature. THEY ALL USE AUTOCAD. I would suggest that if you are wanting to be professional, start drawing with autocad.

    I've attached another drawing we're doing this month. A little front yard redo.



    Attached Files:

  2. Swampy

    Swampy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,435

    Hey Jay.

    If you don't need this drawn up anytime soon and you don't need it done anytime soon. I can draw it up as one of my projects for my design class.
  3. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,776


    I am an Acad user, but I don't think that you can't produce the same looking plan that you showed with any other half decent cad program or by hand. I prefer Acad, but I can completely understand why someone without experience in it would rather knock that same plan out in Dynascape and have it look better than it would if THEY (with less experience than you) would have the same plan look in Acad.

    The reason that professional designers use Acad is a lot more to do with m]exchanging files and managing complicated drawings than it is for the look it can produce. If these guys don't need to do any of that, it does nothing more than draw ines, circles, hatches, dimensions, and annotations as does any other cad program. Using Acad does not make anyone more professional than someone else.

    There is nothing wrong with the example you gave, but it can be done exactly the same on a lot of programs.
  4. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Messages: 4,350

    Very true... Point well taken. My father does about 900 irrigation drawings a year, and every one of his files are autocads. Every LA that sends him the files, send in autocad. There is no way anyone can design a shopping center, or 30 unit apartment building in Dynascape, just aint gonna happen

    Messages: 18,668

    That looks familiar. Is that the referral I passed your way? looks great John. love your plant choices.
    The one thing I disagree on is Encore azaleas. I think the Encores have ruined the azaleas. The year round blooms are a farce. I still prefer the traditional azaleas that are spectacular once a year. But everybody seems to have gone to Encores:cry: alas like the disappearance of brass nozzles I guess.
  6. pls8xx

    pls8xx LawnSite Member
    Messages: 64

    Top designers don't draw. They aren't good at doing finished plans. Forty years ago that task fell to a professional draftsman. Today, professional draftsmen use ACAD. But the top designers don't know beans about ACAD. What they do know is how to direct the draftsman in what to draw.

    When everything was done by hand, the direction to the draftsman was a rough pencil sketch. It worked because the draftsman was just down the hall. Today, the draftsman uses ACAD and he might be in another state. So paper sketches no longer work. A designer needs to communicate electronically. In my opinion, it's hard to beat a simple photo editor to communicate with others. With one tool I can work with plans and photos, communicate and give directions to clients, contractors, and even the ACAD guy.

    If you want to be a draftsman, get ACAD, and learn it top to bottom. But if you want to design, concentrate on communication.

    I want to bill my time at $120.00/hr for all that I do. I can sub drawing to a free lance ACAD professional for under $40.00/hr. and he will be 3 times faster than me at producing a finished drawing.

    Does an accountant spend his time doing data entry; a lawyer typing contracts; a doctor filling out insurance forms? Why would a designer be doing finished drafting?
  7. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Messages: 4,350

    Ya Peter, that's Julie's place. Hopefully she'll call me back. I think she's still hurting from the remodel job. We shall see.
  8. Dreams To Designs

    Dreams To Designs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,406

    So what you guys are saying, is it's foolish to use tools that are specifically designed for a task and allow that task to be performed easier and more quickly? It's better to struggle with a generic program because that's what everybody uses? All the quality design programs use an Autocad engine for their base and have tailored the programs with symbols, colors and other attributes to make them easier to use and more importantly, easier for the clients and installers to understand. All the professional design software programs are compatible with autocad in DXF & DWG.

    It is easier for us as designers, architects or engineers to say how things should be done, but let's think about how or who gets things done. Our goal should be to make things simple for those not so skilled in the ways of technical drawings and make an installation easy to follow. If that takes me going to a job site with spray paint, stakes and string, then that is the most effective way to sell and have a job installed. After all,it's not really about how it's drawn, but how well the landscape is designed, installed and how it matures. A good set of drawings should be an easy to follow plan, but may not explain to a client what the design is you are trying to convey. If a sketch, picture or photo image gets that point across and sells the job, why is that wrong? If we can use photo imaging to up sell jobs and add additional services, where is the fault in that.

    I'm enjoying this discussion as I am going through the same resistance at a local university, as the faculty is hesitant about teaching digital design and imaging without proper basic design instruction. Software in the hands of unskilled designers can be a dangerous tool. The same points are being brought up with no evidence to back up the claims. Research and an open mind are the key to understanding new and different approaches. Because something does not work for you does not mean it can't work for others.

    The whole point is good design, whether it is created on paper with pencils, autocad or one of the many design softwares. Good design stands the test of time, and how it is perceived by the client. The use of software does not guarantee good design nor does it lower the quality of the work. The proof is in the finished product, and you can't get to that point until you sell your work! Whatever helps you sell your work and keep you and your clients happy should be the methods you choose.

  9. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Messages: 4,350

    I will agree with you too, but I would love the keep the industry standard being that of AutoCAD. My perception is that people on this site go and spend 1k on ProLandscape and automatically think that because you can insert a picture/site plan and place nicely colored cute little shrubs and an abundance of colorful water-wasting plant material that is aesthetically pleasing, makes you a good designer.
    I choose to disagree. A well though out design starts with the customer. Find their wants, and their needs. Design around that in conjunction with exisiting site conditions, their budget, resources available. Do they want low-high maintenance? most residences want low-maintenance nowadays. Everyone is going gree. As Kiril stated, SUSTAINABLE IS THE KEY.

    Everyone of those designs people rendered first look like crap, but they all have to be trimmed/pruned 1x a month. Good for maintenance contractor, bad for homeowner.
  10. squirrel19

    squirrel19 LawnSite Member
    from KY/TN
    Messages: 58

    There are a lot of good points going both ways, but programs like Pro Landscape are used more for the customer to get a visual of what things will be like. The basic home owner does not want to see a lot of circles and squiggly lines, they tend to not look at their property from an aerial view. We never use it as a blue print. Both auto cad and pro landscape have there place in the field of landscaping. just because one does not use it and thinks it is not professional does not mean others feel the same. Our blue prints are done by hand. thats what I give my crew to work with, but We also use Pro Landscape as a selling tool for the customer. My theory is this, If you can use a program to sell your thoughts then more power to you. We are all different and thank GOD for that one... this would be one boring place if we all were the same...

Share This Page