We ask ourselves many question when designing Outdoor Living space… “How will people interact in the landscape? How will the landscape hold space for people?” and, perhaps most importantly, “How will that experience feel?” Our emotions allow us to make sense of the world around us as humans, and we respond to external forces innately based on how they make us feel. As designers, we shape the landscape in order to shape the human experience. Believe it or not, that’s what we really do… and all this time you thought we were just making gardens!
So what goes into creating a landscape that conveys emotion? The first trick is determining the emotion that wants to be conveyed. If the space is going to be used regularly for entertaining, perhaps it calls for a festive and fun atmosphere. If the landscape will be a quiet retreat, tranquility and calm may be the emotions to create. Once the intention has been set, the style can follow. Color and style are great design tools that create an emotional experience. Of course, emotions are very personal. What feels tranquil to one person may feel formal and uncomfortable to someone else. This is why getting to know our clients is such an important part of our design work.
Memories make up a huge part of our emotional experience. Imagine walking through a garden and stumbling upon a plant that reminds you of a happy time in your childhood- touching soft leaves of Lamb’s Ear, for example. Instantly you are transported back to that time. It could even be a smell- Lavender or Apple blossoms, taking you back to summers spent on a farm or at Grandma’s house. For us, the warm ambiance of café lights always takes us to a cozier place. Like someone flipped a switch back to ice cream on the porch on a summer evening.
Water in the landscape has a strong effect on us. The sound of falling water or a trickling fountain is often a source of deep relaxation. That’s why many of our landscapes designed to create tranquility feature water. Water can take the form of a formal fountain, a reflecting pool, or a natural water feature – we find that in all states, its ability to transform the mood of a space is powerful!
Because emotion is such a personal thing, you may choose to enhance your space with elements that have meaning to you, that bring joy and relaxation to you personally. Many of our clients love birds, and find their presence joyful and exhilarating. Features that attract wildlife, such as ponds and bird gardens, create environments that bring the show home to your backyard. This sweet pond hosts frogs for dreamy summer evening serenades. For us, the feelings of peace and joy brought by this backyard pond are endless, and it’s clearly a hit with the frogs.
We hope you all are having a beautiful start to Fall! It’s definitely boosting our spirits to have such beautiful days. If you’re looking for a new outdoor living space tailored just for you, look no farther!