Top 10 Things to do with Your Summer Break!

summer students; credit: Tyler Olson /

It’s finally July, the sun is shining and school’s out for summer. For those Über-geeks, keen beans, and even those who just want to keep their hand in — here are 10 things you can do to keep yourself in good stead for the next year ahead at college or university (or just life in general!). 10. Wake Up Early Ok ok, within reason — it is your holiday after all. But do you really want to waste it in bed? Think about those few hours when the sun rises, all is quiet, before anyone else in the world is awake – a serene and brilliant thinking time. Besides it’s been widely suggested that early risers are more productive, creative, and successful. 9. Volunteer 

Allotments make a great place to volunteer; credit:  johnbraid /

Allotments make a great place to volunteer; credit: johnbraid /

If you haven’t managed to wangle yourself an internship this summer, why not volunteer? There are so many different companies, charities, and local government bodies that would be grateful for a bit of help in the current economic climate. There is bound to be something to suit your interests. Not only will it look good on the CV, but also it will leave you feeling rewarded and satisfied. 8. Read
Visual Communication for Landscape Architecture, click on the picture and pick up the nook today

Visual Communication for Landscape Architecture, click on the picture and pick up the nook today

Read, read, and read some more. Read for a project or dissertation coming up, but also read to broaden your horizons. Browse the best magazines, browse LAN, and browse not just landscape architecture publications but others too! This is the perfect time to keep abreast of developments in politics, economics, and the wider society that are both influential to Landscape Architecture and, that in turn, may be influenced by our discipline.  Check out our book reviews here 7. Sketch Enough time is spent on computer graphics during term time. With endless weeks and gorgeous summer weather present, take a sketchbook, some pencils, pens, watercolors, pastels, whatever you will, and draw whatever you see! Try quick 1-minute sketches to build up your confidence until you eventually spend longer and longer on them. And remember — practice makes perfect. Why not try out for Sketchy Saturday? Get your sketches into us and be in with a chance to get featured in our top 10 article– e-mail us at
Work by Marlon Grifaldo

Work by Marlon Grifaldo

6. Hug a tree Ever hugged a tree? If yes, then you’ll know how great it is. If not, then do it! There is scientific evidence, which indicates hugging a tree (ok, just being in open green space in general, but why not go all out?) improves health and well-being. 5. Be inspired! Make time to take a trip. Not necessarily to the Amazon or the depths of India, but to an art gallery, famous place, or just the open countryside. Hop on a random train or bus, cycle out beyond the city. See beauty in something and be inspired. See ugliness in something and be inspired to change it. Get off the computer and out into the world! 4. Take a look at your CV/Portfolio Why not makeover — or indeed start — your portfolio or relook at your CV? Redo some renderings for your portfolio while you have the time. Polish up your credentials. There are plenty of websites out there offering free help. Browse Pinterest or for ideas. 3. Learn a new skill There’s plenty to pick from; learn a new language, dabble in a new computer program/software, take up sewing, try your hand at woodcutting, or master the art of hula hooping. You never know where it could lead you or what interesting concepts you may arrive at from linking different artistic disciplines. Think along the lines of fashion and architecture like Zaha Hadid’s NOVA shoe or music and art a la Wassily Kandinsky’s ‘music paintings’, often numbered and titled “Composition”. 2. Start a blog
LAN don't miss it! Image credit: lenetstanb / shutterstock, modification by Scott Renwick

LAN don’t miss it! Image credit: lenetstanb / shutterstock, modification by Scott Renwick

In the modern world, it’s all about self-promotion. Whether we like it or not self-promotion is all about social media. Keeping a blog helps in this respect but it’s also a wonderful way to keep inspired, keep motivated, and keep a record of your journey and growth as a person and designer. So whether it’s written, visual, or a bit of both, make your mark on the world and web by starting a blog today. 1. Appreciate it. Appreciate it. It’s your summer break, the clue is in the title but don’t waste these glorious weeks. Use them to your full advantage and importantly, remember, once you start ‘a real job’ you’ll rarely have weeks on end to focus on any of the above. So, which will you be doing this summer? Just one or quite a few? Let us know on twitter @latweets4U or via our Facebook page. Article by Sonia Jackett Featured image:Tyler Olson /

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