Resources/Books for Drawing Technique

Landscape Architecture for Landscape Architects Forums GRAPHICS Resources/Books for Drawing Technique

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    Paul Best

    Hi all,

    I am attending UC-Denver to start my MLA I in Fall 2011.  I deferred my admission for a year to take time between ugrad and masters to save money and hone my skills.  I am wondering if anyone can recommend any books on drawing/hand rendering technique that are particularly geared toward or suitable for LAs. 

    Any suggestions would be much appreciated.  I will basically spend this year drawing and learning AutoCAD. 

    Thomas J. Johnson

    Drawing the Landscape – Chip Sullivan
    Landscape Graphics – Grant Reed
    Plan Graphics – Davis // Walker

    That should keep you busy for a while… Have fun!

    Cody Thurman

    Another good book is residential landscape architecture ( by booth and hiss) which walks you through the design process but also has sections on color rendering and drawing perspectives from photos. The three listed by Thomas are currently on my coffee on my table and are pretty much standard books for designers/la’s.

    Cody Thurman

    I left a good book out. Plan graphics for the landscape designer by Tony bertauski. Its actually a relatively cheap book but it’s packed full of info 

    Thomas Jump

    I find this blog to be a great resource for a variety of drawing and sketching styles. I believe it was featured on Land8 a while ago.

    Andrew Spiering

    Check out the Land8 Bookstore (powered by Amazon) under the Graphics section. There are a lot of great selections there to wet your palette. Chip Sullivan has a couple of great books, as well. He has a very loose style similar to crackskullbob (above).

    Jim Leggitt has a lot of good examples on his blog as well as Mike Lin’s new site,



    Mike Lin has a book that guides you through the techniques he covers in his drawing class, Drawing and Designing with Confidence. I took his 2 week class and found it to be helpful ( His perspective charts might be worth checking out, as they make perspective drawing really easy. The first book we covered in school, and to which we kept returning, was Landscape Graphics by Grant Reid.

    You may also want to start a collection of photoshop images you can plug into some of your boards: cars, people, furniture, plants without background.

    Enjoy the time!

    david j bockman

    I second the recommendation for Chip Sullivan’s book. Absolutely wonderful, inspirational, informative, etc.


    You are so smart to do this! It wouldn’t be a bad idea to learn the fundamentals of Adobe Creative Suite also.

    Jon Quackenbush

    I would say to buy a bunch of Calvin and Hobbes books and try and draw like Bill Watterson.

    Kirk Hiatt

    One book I always recommend to the first year students (most of whom find drawing mystifying) is “Drawing on the right side of the brain” by Betty Edwards. This is NOT a how to for designers but rather a book that shows the reader how to “really see” through drawing. You can probably find the book in your local library. – This gives the background and theory from the book

    Also, I second Susannah’s comment. Learn Adobe CS if you haven’t already. You’ll be happy you did.

    Best of luck!


    Chip Sullivan has two fantastic books; one on climate and gardens and the other on drawing. The one on drawing is both a ‘how to’ and and inspiring.

    ALEX P

    Mosaics by West8


    Large Parks


    no books on hand rendering are needed. 

    ALEX P


    ALEX P

    False Flat_ why dutch design is so good

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