Ask A Landscape Architect How Drawings Become Real?

July 3, 2019by Monica Perrone

My first steps are to interview the client and take copious notes, asking many questions about use, priorities, preferences, concerns, and desires. I visit the site again to take inventory and further consider opportunities and constraints. After developing an accurate site plan as my base, I then analyze all of the collected data and develop a very specific design response that is depicted as a preliminary plan per the examples below. It is from this first graphic effort that the construction documentation and details grow and develop, long before any physical implementation of a project. These thoughtful early drawings serve as the master plan vision for the project and play an important role throughout the bidding and building process. I continue to work with the client, contractors, and craftsmen to insure that the design intent is realized with the initial renderings serving as the roadmap. These illustrations are the first glimpse at the potential each of these properties possess, and act as a starting point for achieving satisfying and fulfilling transformations. 

English Garden for a Craftsman Remodel at Home Ranch

A re-designed landscape for a beloved rural bungalow amid mature trees. Privacy and year-round beauty are two of the many products of this English Formal design effort. I’ve been working with Mike and Gail since 2006. The shaped pool North of The Oval was recently completed and we are currently working on the final drawings for Tucked In, their stone guest cottage dashed in at left in the rendering below. Next project: Gentleman’s Orchard! 

Terra Bella, Hope Ranch

In Italian, Terra Bella translates to “Beautiful Land” which is fitting because of how stunning the landscape renovations looked after this project was completed. I was part of the selected design team that worked closely with the original owners to realize the layout of this somewhat Versace-inspired estate. I worked with Landscape Development Inc. and was partnered with Denise Perry in a design-build capacity until 2001. I was responsible for many of the conceptual drawings, inspirational images, and construction management that led to the Asian Garden, Potegere and Vineyard, Herb Garden, Boxwood parterres, various fountains, Rose Arbor, Entry Court with eight 72″ box Swan Hill Olives, and many more design details that were realized at this 2.9 acre ocean-side family home.

Traditional Garden Design for a Hospice House

This sixteen-bed hospice care facility completed in 2006 has a 150′ long rose arbor as its crowning feature. Traditional in theme and appropriate for its agrarian setting, this facility needed to feel inviting so that patients and guests could feel at home while managing end of life issues. Hedges, tree canopies and private patient patios offer beauty and comfortable transitions to/from the larger garden. An organized layout of paths and various points of interest, including four water features and a mist-filled grotto, allow for strolling and retreating. A significant herringbone brick formal patio and lawn support larger functions.

Whitney Residence, Chinese Camp

Ahrens Residence, South Lake Tulloch

Monica Perrone

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Monica Perrone is a sole-practitioner landscape architect with over thirty years of industry professionalism. She has lived and worked in various regions of the United States with diverse experience in landscape architecture, planning, urban design, landscape contracting and event design.

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