A day in the life of a landscape designer

A day in the life of a landscape designer
7 February 2020    Donnay Torr    0 comments
Ben Miura has an almost magical ability to turn boring landscapes into beautiful spaces for people to relax and play in. He shares more about his work as a landscape designer at Landsberg Garden Design with us.

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Ben Miura: Landscape Designer

What is a typical day on the job like?

A typical day for me would often start early with a site visit; whether it’s meeting a new client, presenting plans to an existing client or liaising with contractors who are constructing one of our gardens. On returning to the office I would continue to work on our designs. We use hand sketches and a CAD program called Vectorworks to illustrate and communicate our designs. Once the workday is over I typically have time to go rock climbing, surfing or head to the gym.

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What inspired you to choose landscape design as your career? 

I have always loved the outdoors and I come from a family of engineers, architects and other creatives so I guess designing was in my blood. I was drawn to Landscape Design because I feel it combines my many skills and passions. I am most inspired when I’m out in nature and surrounded by it. I can’t think of another job that so perfectly combines my desire to be creative with nature.
 

What would you say are three key personality aspects or skills that make for a good landscaper?  

A passion for plants and the environment is a key aspect of a good landscape designer’s personality. This would have to be supported by a good eye for design and artistic flare. A potential landscape designer should also be able to creatively problem solve when considering construction and peoples use of spaces.

What have you learned about yourself through the work that you do?  

Firstly, I have learned how much I love plants and have turned into even more of plant nerd. I have discovered I am very curious about how people interact with different spaces and how things work. If I know how something works or how it is built, I have a greater understanding of it and can then implement it in one of my designs. My work has inspired me to continue to develop and broaden my skills.

What’s been your best moment while doing your work?  

Some of the best moments of this job are standing in the gardens that have just been completed knowing that every plant is where it needs to be. It’s also a rewarding feeling to see the smiles on my clients faces and hearing how it will or has changed their lives.

How do you keep going when things get challenging?  

I have a growth mindset, so I actually really enjoy and embrace challenges.

Problem solving pushes me to think outside the box and combine logic with creativity. When faced with a tough or complex challenge I take time to pause and practice mindfulness.

It can also be helpful to discuss the challenges with colleagues or a mentor. When challenging moments arrive, I remember why I love my job and the positive impact that I can bring to people’s lives.  

Are there any surprising or odd things that people wouldn’t expect if they picked this career?  

We often joke in the office that the job is all about drainage and yes, that is a part of the job, among many other things. The lack of awareness the general public has of landscape design is also surprising. We often get confused with landscape architects, landscape contractors and gardeners. Many people don’t understand the hours of training, the numerous amounts of skills and knowledge that are required.

Landscape design, overseas, is a highly regarded profession and I believe we need to develop its exposure in Australia.

Can you share a funny or weird story about something you experienced while working on a project?

I remember one client who had over 300 goldfish in their swimming pool that was no longer being used. I couldn’t bear to “just get rid of them” so I spent a weekend going around to pet stores giving away goldfish... I still have some in a fish tank at home.

What advice would you give to young people considering pursuing a career in this industry?  

I would encourage any young person who has a passion for design and nature to pursue a career in Landscape Design. I recommend reaching out to a local landscape designer and ask them about their work and how they got there. You might even be able to do some work experience with them which would be valuable.
 
Other advice I would give is to get a casual job at your local nursery. That’s where I began. During my studies this casual job helped me to develop my passion and knowledge of plants.
 
Finally, start drawing! Everyone can draw no matter what. The key is to start. Hand drawing is one of the foundational skills needed before moving on the CAD programs and becoming a well-rounded landscape designer.

Discover more!


Does Landscape Designer sound like the job for you? Learn more about becoming a Landscape Designer or working in design- and architecture-based industries here. There are loads of interesting industry and career options to browse on Skillsroad: discover them all here!

Wondering what your natural skills are, and if your skills suit a career in landscape design? Try the Skillsroad Career Quiz to discover your natural skill set, and which career options might work well for you. Click below to begin!

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