If your love for landscaping goes beyond simply planning your garden or DIYing your yard, then you might be interested in pursuing it as a career choice.
For those unaware, landscape designers create and maintain exterior spaces for residences, commercial and other areas. You will be combining your knack for design and knowledge of horticulture to realize your ideas into a welcoming space.
Since you are reading this, then the chances are that you are giving this profession serious consideration. If so, here are the steps you need to take before choosing to become a landscape designer.
Step 1: Understand the Difference Between a Landscape Architect and Designer
The first thing is for you to figure out what your options are. To begin with, there is a significant difference between a landscape architect and a designer. In order to call yourself a landscape architect, you will need to acquire a state license. This will need you to complete a bachelor’s degree in architecture and follow it with a master’s degree specializing in landscape architecture.
Some universities also allow you to complete a bachelor’s in landscape architecture directly. Of course, this would require a long-term commitment for at least five years.
On the other hand, if you want to become a landscape designer, you do not necessarily need a degree in the subject. Instead, you can gain experience in the field working jobs or studying horticulture.
In fact, you do not even need to go to college to pursue this interest of yours. If you are still in high school, you can type in get online homework help on Writepaper.com, a platform that can help with your class assignments. This will get you some time to find a part-time job under an established designer as the first step. Eventually, you will be able to make connections and build a portfolio, which can lead to further opportunities.
As you can see, there is a clear distinction between the two, and the option you choose will determine the next steps to take.
Step 2: Reach Out To Designers
If you are unclear whether you want to become a landscape architect and a designer, the best path would be to get an answer from a practicing professional. You can also visit a few colleges and universities that offer related programs. This will allow you to get answers to any questions you have. You can also talk to the instructors to guide you through the process.
Prepare a set of questions and discuss your concerns with more than one designer. Each expert you talk to will have their own school of thought, and by talking to more people, you will be able to gain a wider perspective regarding landscape design and its opportunities.
Step 3: Read About The Courses And Curriculums
Another university-related step you can take is reading about what you will be learning as a landscape design student. You can and should know the differences between architecture and designing courses.
Typically, in landscape architecture, you will learn about drafting technical drawings, spatial planning, creating landscape constructions estimates, and more. If you are choosing a design course instead, you will want to compare to see which of these are included and which are not.
Step 4: Do An Internship
As we discussed already, finding a part-time job can be one way to gain exposure to this field. This can be a tremendously insightful experience to learn about what you are getting into. This opportunity can prepare you for the reality of the job and offer you some background knowledge before you join college.
And most importantly, if working in the field discourages you or turns out to be different than expected, you will have time to revisit your career choices. Of course, it is understandable that this option will not be feasible for everybody.
Step 5: Study The Job Market
Before you choose a career choice, wouldn’t it be better to know what awaits at the other end? For this, you will want to rely not only on the internet but also on what recent graduates have to say.
What the professors and experienced professionals tell you could significantly differ from what recent college graduates have to say. If the field is already saturated or does not have great opportunities for the new future, you should be aware of it before you sign up. You could also scour some career websites to look up the recent job postings related to landscape design.
Importantly, also remember that when you join the market, the situation can be vastly different.
Step 6: Take Drawing Classes
If you are sure that you want to study landscape design, it will not be a bad idea to start preparing. It will come as a great aid for your course if you have a bit of flair in drawing or sketching. This is, unquestionably, one of the crucial skill sets that you will rely on to communicate your ideas with others. As you progress, you could rely on software, but coming up with a concept sketch is the first step of developing a design idea.
You can sign up for summer drawing classes while in high school. Of course, if you are already an artist, then this might not be necessary.
Step 7: Work On Your Time Management
As with any other major, landscape design will also require you to do tons of coursework and assignments. These could also be practical, so you will have to make sure you stay on top of everything.
Moreover, remember that designers are often bound by deadlines. Even though the field is creative, you will need to ensure timely delivery. This is an aspect that you should work on from day one. Once you join a college and get the class schedules, you will want to schedule time for your studies and yourself.
Step 8: Connect With People
Being a landscape designer means that you will have to work hand-in-hand with construction workers, architects, carpenters, gardeners, and more. And importantly, you will need to understand what your client needs. After all, they are looking for an expert to help them create what they seek in a way that improves their life.
This means that you need to be proficient in communicating with people. You would be better off starting your landscape designing course with this in mind. Make new connections along the way, and build relations with others. Your education is not bound only to what you learn in the classrooms.
Be Motivated For The Right Reasons
There are several different reasons for studying a specific subject. For some, it is the job prospect, or an attractive salary package, while for others, it is the passion.
All that being said, when you are choosing a creative field like landscape design, you need to bear in mind that it is not always about drawing your ideas on paper. In reality, it will require you to be a project manager, a designer, an artist, a businessperson, and more.
Moreover, you will also need to keep up with the changing trends and familiarize yourself with the evolving climate conditions to be a good landscape designer. In other words, there is going to be a life-long learning curve.
If you think landscape design is the right answer to your questions regarding the future, then you are on the right track. Make sure that you do your research before committing yourself to this profession.