Design Technology & Tradition
ripe persimmons in basket after a successful harvest

It’s no secret that we live in an age of rapidly-changing technology. Tech has offered today’s Architects and Designers incredibly powerful tools. We’re not verging on Artificial Intelligence or anything (thank goodness) but we are pretty proud of having made the transition from a traditional analog office to a pretty high-tech one. At the same time, we maintain our traditional art of Landscape Architecture to the highest standards.

Making The Switch

Young peaches may continue to ripen well into the winter

This is what our Landscape Architecture plans looked like back when they were 100% hand-drawn. That’s right! Each of our designs was a hand-rendered and hand-colored masterpiece. We still love the aesthetic of hand-drawn, and it was hard to trade in our drafting tables for something that looks more like this:

Young peaches may continue to ripen well into the winter

Learning how to use Computer-Aided Drafting (AutoCAD) from scratch was as daunting for us as it was for many traditional firms.  Since we are ridiculously independent people, we mostly taught ourselves how to use this software, and continue to learn new methods and techniques to this day.  From the early days of wanting to smash our computers to our now tech-savvy team, we are proud to now have the technology and the knowledge to use it.

AutoCAD doesn’t look much like what we were used to, but now we sometimes dream about XREF-ing DWGs (Don’t ask.)  Huge advantages of designing on a computer include the ability to easily make changes and view different possibilities, as well as the chance to share digital copies across the globe.


Young peaches may continue to ripen well into the winter

We’re letting you in on a secret … As a firm based in Northern California, you would think that we all live and work in the Golden State. But the truth is, about half of our team works remote, across 4 states and 2 countries! So how on earth do we manage to work together like one well-oiled machine? In addition to our staff’s unreal work ethic, Communication Technology has made it possible for us to all work on the same projects from different points on the globe. Screen-shares and Image-captures allow us to share our work with each other and bounce ideas around, and weekly virtual meetings keep us all on the same page. Our Principal Architects call the shots on each project, while our amazing office manager keeps everything streamlined from her Control Center. Her desk doesn’t actually look like Star Trek, but it might as well!

Web & Media

Young peaches may continue to ripen well into the winter

The most recent addition to our tech-savvy firm is our new look. We realized that we were due for a new website and lost no time in rebranding both online and on paper, and we love the results. The truth is that we owe a ton to technology and our team’s varied skills in Web design, Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, and Online media, among many others. We also couldn’t do it without our on-call IT genius (he knows who he is) or the team who powers our website and this blog from Hawai’i. Mahalo, guys!

Some Things Don’t Change

It’s comforting to realize that even with all the new, some things around here are just the same as they were when we started out over 40 years ago. Architecture still presents the same opportunities and challenges, hand-drawn renderings are still our go-to for showing developing designs, and the best ideas are still sometimes scratched down in 5 minutes on tracing paper. In the end, we’re the same as we’ve always been, and just as excited to continue our traditions as we are for whatever comes next!