Forum Replies Created
April 2, 2014 at 2:11 pm #152877
Yes. I forgot about that. The client posts the job and anyone can provide a proposal. My experience was that the other people proposing were off the mark as far as what the job entailed and what kind of experience it required…
You are probably right to avoid it if this is key to getting a future job. Not to change the subject, but its looks like you have a good amount of experience working in Asia already. Why are they asking for this ‘test run’? Sounds sketchy to me, but maybe that’s how it works in China.
We’ve heard some on this forum about cultural differences being the basis of misery and misunderstanding for workers and job seekers….(of course in US we think we do it the RIGHT way! HA!) Is your client’s request normal for that culture? What is your common ground for communication and contracting work in Asia? Just curious….April 1, 2014 at 9:50 pm #152882
You could try Elance.
I used it for a couple of projects with a somewhat shifty client and it worked pretty well. It was only in the States, but there are tons of freelancers and jobs posted there from all over the world. Its kind of a pain to set up, but the client is required to have at least a portion of the project funds in an escrow. The client is responsible for releasing the funds, but there is some recourse if they are past due.
Maybe they have figured out some ways around the roadblocks Rob described….March 21, 2014 at 7:48 pm #152955
I think this is beautiful and her best work that I’ve seen. The details and materials are so rich. She’s been working with that teardrop mound shape for a while – the Federal Courthouse in Minneapolis has some “drumlins” that were planted in grasses, but there have been a number of problems with maintenance and viability of the plants over the years. Looks like some of that has been solved here with the faceted planted planes that make up the mounds. It will be interesting to see how the design matures. Thanks for sharing Rob.February 13, 2014 at 4:44 pm #153106
We are using Carbonite. Its not cheap (depending on how much space you need) and you do need at least 5mps upload speed for the initial upload, but it is automatic and saves daily after that. I don’t know if its our ‘favorite’ but after researching all of the options, its the one that works best for the amount of storage we need.January 27, 2014 at 9:23 pm #153239
You could just buy your own quarry!
Whats so great about basalt? If you don’t want red Colorado stone, you could try slate from here in the Black Hills – check out Dakota Stone in Hill City, SD http://www.dakotastone.net/ledge_building Its easy to build with and makes nice tight joints….January 21, 2014 at 3:39 am #153306
So I guess my initial suggestion of half of an oil drum, a pile of dirt and a bunch of sticks won’t work (random, but those were my first “design” materials)….I LOVED Legos – and they are very popular with my own 11 year old, but NOT as popular as Minecraft (as several others mentioned), which is incredibly 3 dimensional and spatial. My rugrat has designed amazing forested amusement parks with water slides into underground caverns, floating forest islands, whole worlds of landscapes and structures. I don’t like it because of the blockiness, but I suspect its the future of BIM in fledgling form….but of course it only works if the kid has access to an ipad or computer – the ipad version is free, computer version is $30 or something like that.
What about a mini Japanese style rock and sand garden? I do like the graph paper and template idea too…How fun and exciting to be able to encourage a young one to design!January 12, 2014 at 5:11 pm #174558
Yeah. Because being homeless is so awesome, who wouldn’t want to stay homeless for a free sandwich every day? Personally, I just love sleeping in a bleach-smelling cell with a plastic mattress and thin holey blankets. Its totally worth it even if I can’t get into the shelter until 10:30 at night and have to leave again at 6 in the morning. And who wouldn’t love sleeping in a park-bench tent in -14 weather. Its just like winter camping! That is the life!
But seriously folks, some of you are seriously out of touch / misinformed about what it really means to be homeless, who is homeless and why people are homeless. There are a wide variety of reasons people become homeless, including mental illness, substance addiction and domestic abuse, but the greater reason is the lack of a safety net that I would bet money we all have access to – and that’s not a government safety net, but a family-community-health-cognitive safety net that most of us take for granted.
And PLEASE don’t tell us that nobody ever helped you a day in your life, you got where you were all on your own because that is absolute bunk. Struggles are NORMAL. Not having the social-emotional-cognitive-health resources to overcome those struggles is what puts people at risk for homelessness.
Robert, you’re entitled to your opinion but I find it extremely disturbing. I don’t expect every landscape architect to have fighting homelessness on their list of “top 10 reasons I became a landscape architect”, but it is ABSOLUTELY within our purview. In fact, in areas of high homeless populations we might be thought of as being negligent in our life and safety responsibilities NOT to take this population into consideration. I had no idea that being a landscape architect excused us from involvement in serious societal issues – and in fact our profession is, at least in the United States, BASED on this. Central Park was conceived of and created as a ‘pressure release’ for the extreme poverty and poor living conditions that New Yorkers faced at that time.
Providing food, shelter and other resources for indigent people is not making people ‘equal’ or some great communist plot. It IS a moral and ethical response to people in need.January 9, 2014 at 9:36 pm #174562
Check out Supportive Housing. This is primarily created for homeless people with a history chronic substance abuse. This is a concept being used throughout MN and I believe in Washington or Oregon with great success. No – it doesn’t address the root causes of addiction and social inequality. It meets people where they currently are and moves forward from there under the philosophy of harm reduction.January 6, 2014 at 4:02 am #153440
Curious about your opinions Land8ers – when does it cross the line? Is it unprofessional to look up information pertinent to the meeting?
It seems to me that you could have a laptop or tablet in front of you and have all kinds of activity going on, but appear to be taking notes. Is it just the phone? If its ok to search for pertinent information should you announce it? What is the etiquette?
Also, I think of parenting needs. With two working parents often both attending meetings and not necessarily available any other way, the cell phone is the point of contact for kids. If you need to be available to kids for emergencies can you set your phone on the table? Do you explain to the group you are meeting with? What do you all think?November 8, 2013 at 4:33 am #153637
Farmer and ranchers here use steel structures to control access to hay. They can eat, but they can’t get into the structures. Maybe something like this would be a good solution? http://www.a1gate.com/hay-feeders.htmlOctober 10, 2013 at 8:36 pm #153909
Great points that I concur with in both Andrew’s and Nick’s comments – stick to schematic on lower budget projects and use an hourly fee calculation.
Our firm does not use the percentage calculation for fees unless required to by the client (some govt. agencies / municipalities). We use a structured fee proposal (Schematic, DD, CD, CA, Bidding, etc) based on an in-depth spread sheet calculating project hours by phase, including office work and other leg work that you wouldn’t charge LA fee rates for. We do provide the total per-phase fee to the client as part of our proposal / contract (not the spread sheet – thats internal) along with a very detailed description of what that phase includes and does not include.
This way the client knows exactly what they’re getting for their money and we know that we are getting fairly compensated for our time as well as being covered for additional services. We do sometimes give people a break in fees depending on the circumstance; in one case a discount so the client had incentive to get the property surveyed as it saves us time, money and accuracy.
Not to mention the ethical implications of the percentage of project budget fee. Unless the client has a very specific and set budget I have a hard time seeing how this sets up a collaborative and trusting relationship when they may be concerned or watchful that you are designing to a particular fee rather than their need.September 26, 2013 at 10:39 pm #154040
No, I think these are permeable pavers, they just didn’t add the material, or didn’t use the right material, between the pavers to fill the gaps. I’m guessing the controversy is either about ADA compliance or that sand swept into the gaps would reduce the permeability.September 26, 2013 at 2:41 pm #154056
Though I am admittedly of the ‘follow your heart’ camp it is not without a very firm grasp on reality and my own experience. You CAN actually make a decent living doing a number of the things you mentioned being interested in above including landscape architecture and its variants. What worked for me is a straight MLA from the University of MN. A friend got a double masters from that U in planning and LA and was the only one of the MLA class to get a job (this was 2 years ago).
Landplanner’s construction and design management idea is a great one – someone who is really good at managing projects under construction is an invaluable member of the design team and many designers don’t know how to do it well.
Lots and lots of people can sketch and draw very very well. If you want to do architectural rendering professionally, go to art school not design school.
Wayfinding / signage / branding seems to look particularly good in my experience – I think Penn State has a good environmental design program that includes the above. OR maybe you should just skirt the whole issue and be a researcher – write your own grants. Maybe you’re the next William Whyte.
All that being said – my education was a LOT LOT LOT less expensive than yours will be. We’re talking 6-9k per year for GRAD SCHOOL (I think around 3k for undergrad) compared to nearly 50k now at my alma mater. $100,000 for a master’s degree? This is certainly something I’d want to crunch the numbers about if I were in your situation.
So overall my advice is to do something you are passionate about, something that when it gets tiresome (and it ALWAYS does) still has something to sustain your spirit, but go into it with your eyes wide open as far a career financial expectations and debt repayment. The bottom line for me was that I could still pay off my student loans waiting tables or working in a accounting department. I couldn’t do that if my debt was 100k or more. Best of luck!August 20, 2013 at 2:34 pm #154343
The true answer is that there is no tree that restricts its growth to the top 5′ of its structure.
Well, some are right – a pollarded tree does. Grow a Sycamore for 25 years and pollard it. Oops. No room for the roots. Mulberries would grow faster and you can also pollard them. Oops. Now your sidewalk and mural is covered with purple splats of bird droppings. So you are left with species that block the mural the least. I think you are too cold for Palo Verde or Seguaro, but I’d start thinking along those lines or find a metal sculptor to make metal trees. Seriously.
The fact that your client wouldn’t allow you to design a low perennial or shrub landscape that would enhance the colors of the mural, potentially control parking on the rolled edge curb and suit the site must be maddening. Not to completely diss your clients but they clearly don’t see plants as things that are alive. I feel for you!July 22, 2013 at 4:59 am #154483
I worked almost exclusively on a laptop for a couple of years, now work on a desktop. The desktop is much much much faster, easier to work in detail on graphics programs as well as drafting. Not to mention ergonomics – laptops aren’t designed for 8 hour a day every day use. No, your employer probably won’t have you working on your own computer. BUT if you don’t find a job and have to work for yourself, my experience is that the desktop works much better. Whatever you do, don’t buy it from a big box retailer and do pay attention to the graphics card needs of the types of programs you will be running. There are no laptops that will run programs like AutoCad, Adobe suite stuff, etc. satisfactorily that are available from those places – and don’t believe them if they tell you it will. It won’t. Just a heads up – buy a computer that is made for the types of programs we use.
I have no experience with running AutoCad on a Mac. But I do know that you can’t buy a couple hundred dollars of extra memory, install it yourself and keep your computer running competitively for a couple of extra years instead of buying a new one with a Mac. In terms of durability and stability, I just replaced a Dell that I had running all day just about every day for the last 8 years. Never crashed, never failed. The OS just finally got so outdated that I couldn’t put any new programs on it. Pretty much everyone I know replaces their Mac products (you name it, Iphone, Ipod, Ipad, laptop, desktop) every two years. I don’t know if they just fall apart or the new ones are so pretty they can’t help themselves. haha!