The Education of Representation

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    Travis Rice

    Blending theory with practical knowledge should be a given in any institution that is worth a darn.   There is no reason why you can’t absorb knowledge from Foucault and Baudrillard one moment and then understand the basics of 2 point perspective the next.  Both will serve you well in your professional pursuits…I can attest they have served me well.  Thanks for the thoughts Eli and keep fighting the good fight…lol!

    Travis Rice

    While I enjoy the job security of there being more “talkers” in the work force I am alarmed at the number of instructors teaching in accredited schools coming straight out of grad school without one ounce of real world or practical knowledge under them.  With most of today’s university presidents forcing assistant professors and even lecturers to have grad degrees and even at some places phd’s we are missing out on a bevy on great professionals with so much to offer.  They are forcing a template meant for science, engineering and medical fields upon design and it just doesn’t work.  Some of my best undergrad instructors just had bachelors degrees and a whole lot of professional experience…Where are you Arthur Schaller!?  I guess they call it “education inflation” to give it a name and I genuinely feel it is hurting how we educate designers.  Nick …I hope both you and Brian stay busy …best of luck to both of you in the new year. 

    Andrew Garulay, RLA

    The assumption is that one has to be highly skilled in hand and/or computer assisted graphics as an individual in order to be a successful landscape architect. Is that truly the case?


    Should students be taught to work in a landscape architect’s office or to be licensed landscape architects?


    This profession almost universally requires internship which pretty much is dependent on production of plans, documents, and other presentaion media or materials. This should also point out that these skills are an intern away from anyone licensed in the profession who may not excell with these.


    It is almost a chicken and egg thing because of internships. If you don’t have the graphic skills it limits your ability to be chosen to be an intern – and yes, you have to be chosen, you can’t enroll, or sign up, you are at the whim of those who may hire you. It is very difficult to proceed in the profession (become licensed) without internship.


    Once you are licensed, your own graphic abilities are only limiting on what graphics you can personally produce. You are one intern away from the type of graphic ability you want your pffice to have.


    I contend that your personal graphic ability is more important while in school and as an intern than it is as a limitation in the profession. That should imply that other things become more important in their place.


    Ideally, we should be trained in an accredited school to work in a landscape architects office AND to be a landscape architect who has such an office.


    My hand drawing skills suck, so after following conventional wisdom and getting out because I had no chance, I designed my career taking that in account and moved forward accordingly. I minimized and simplified my graphic presentations to fit my ability instead of doubling down on graphic training to get through school a dozen years later. I did my intern work in design/build where other abilities and experience were valued over graphics. I then built my career out of civill engineering offices (fine tuning grading plans for national ASLA award winning LA firmS in the process). I produce very nice site plans and landscape plans in autocad mostly as black & white line work.


    Graphics are not the be all and end all.

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