Michael Carlew, a dual degree senior in Landscape Architecture and Landscape Contracting and Management, speaks with two MSU students about the profession.
8.17 was our first day of classes at Mississippi State University. It was difficult to get students organized to participate in the events. We had five students who basically ran the event themselves. We set up on a pedestrian plaza that was designed by landscape architects between the post office, student union, and cafeteria (I don't think we could have asked for a better spot). There were far too many people with whom to talk, so they focused on groups and just talking to anybody who would listen for a few seconds. We were also next door to the career services office, and we were able to plant a seed for some students who were seeking career advice. One student even said she wanted to change her major to landscape architecture. Everyone with whom I spoke was quite friendly and receptive.
Landscape Architects invaded and propagated Albuquerque, NM
In Juneau, Alaska, we had three landscape architects (there are only four of us here) show up at a downtown waterfront park we are redesigning this winter. The event got lots of press, and we had about 50 people stop by over the two hours to check out the display. It became a political event, with local politicians showing up and candidates for the upcoming election all hobnobbing.
Parking Day Meets 08.17.11
Our inspiration was drawn from park(ing) day, but instead of creating a park in the parking stall, we decided to also do an art installation that involved pedestrians that meandered by the stall. This particular installation was to draw participants in and help them realize that a crucial role of a landscape architect is to transform unattractive areas into functional and aesthetically pleasing environments that engage individuals. It is still currently on display on campus until next Friday, and it definitely turns a couple heads. Overall, a great success.
Brianna Weintraub, Student ASLA
Colorado State University
Landscape architects and landscape architecture students at the DuPont Circle Fountain in Washington, D.C.
Group Shot in Centennial Park - Atlanta Section - Georgia Chapter
Your Window. Designed.
Athens, Georgia. The Jaeger Company.
The Illinois chapter held events in three separate locations on 08.17.11; Millennium Park in Chicago, the Dandelion Fountain along the Riverwalk in Naperville, and the Lincoln Memorial Garden in Springfield. During the lunch hour, more than 60 Illinois landscape architects gathered in each of the three locations to enjoy the sunshine and spread the word about our profession. Volunteers held a variety of signs, engaged with park visitors, and answered questions about each of the parks, as well as landscape architecture in general. Importantly, these events served as a uniting force for our chapter—many members expressed that they had a great time and would be willing to continue to volunteer in the future. As a result of 08.17.11, we’ve built an even stronger volunteer network in Illinois, and we plan to carry the momentum we’ve established to support the upcoming national public awareness campaign.
We shared some free residential design advice. It was a great turnout and everyone had fun, and even our local hardscape supplier came out.
Showing them how it’s done in downtown Omaha, NE.
Landscape architects from the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society hit the busy corner of 20th and Market Streets in Center City on 08-17. We hung boards illustrating examples of landscape architect-designed projects in Philly and spoke with people about it. The boards were hung on the fence of PHS's temporary 'pop-up garden.'
NYC's Penn Station
Penn Station Plaza reimagined. NY'ers had some great discussions about what landscape architecture is... and the sketches intrigued passersby... including a NY1 News reporter!
Portland, Oregon landscape architects spent the noon hour talking to folks about what we do. This is Director Park.
The playground in Tilles Park in STL County is a favorite for local families.
Your Environment. Designed. even went international popping up in Trinidad.
Landscape architects take on Tulsa, OK.
Honk If U ❤ Landscape Architecture!
The honks were deafening! The lunch crowd was out.
UCLA Extension Landscape Architecture Program
Students at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Charleston, West Virginia
Initially, I will admit I was skeptical about the reaction and interest only four of my colleagues and I could possibly create on the streets of Charleston, West Virginia, during 8.17.11. Nevertheless, as soon as chalk hit the pavement and markers met paper, human curiosity and the natural impulse to discover led passersby to ask us what we were doing and why we were doing it. Our success was in our unavoidable presence, which in a way defines the 8.17.11 campaign and the profession of landscape architecture finally stepping out from the "understory."
I went out 'chalking' the evening before. Cutting out a stencil with my old exacto knife and a sheet of 120# watercolor paper made me reminisce about studio nights long past. I picked up some spray chalk at the hardware store and I was ready to go tag some landscapes.
I chose 3 sites in my neighborhood. While chalking I only talked to a few passers-by and a park staff person, but these site are popular with dog walkers, families with young children and joggers. I figure hundreds of folks pass these stenciled signs every week.
As I uploaded my photos to the Facebook page, the feeling of national camaraderie was overwhelming. Seeing what other groups were doing, seeing all the 'Designed by a Landscape Architect' signs in so many different settings, just like the one I spent so much time cutting into a stencil, pulled my tiny contribution into a much larger, synergetic context. Of course, that was the point of making it a national effort. Knowing that, I was still overcome by the power of the cumulative visuals. It definitely was not the solo act of a subversive graffiti bomber. I felt that excited feeling you get when you start to envision all the potential in a new project. We have long, rainless summers in the San Francisco Bay Area, which means chalk interventions will be around for a while.
Independence Point is the city’s first park designed by a landscape architect.
North West Indiana
I was interning over the summer and wanted to do something on 8.17 (after the mystery of it being introduced to us at LABASH),so I wrote an email to the newspaper to see if they would be interested in a story about landscape architecture . I got an email five minutes later and was on the phone interviewing with them the same day. I'm hoping to get a similar story published in Purdue's campus newspaper sometime soon.
Purdue University College of Agriculture, Landscape Architecture
Three of our great sponsors came to Citygarden to support our efforts. Ashley Bement from St Louis Composting chalked a whole lot of sidewalk, David Mudd from Kirchner Block had a booth set up at the Freno Raingarden at 11th & Pine, and Steele Crissman and Amanda Thieret from Earthworks came to talk to the public with us.
ASLA staff joining the 08.17.11 crowd in front of HQ.
For a medium chapter with just 132 members, we had an astounding 23 percent attend understory events across the region. In addition, three of our great sponsors came to Citygarden to support our efforts. Ashley Bement from St. Louis Composting chalked a whole lot of sidewalk, David Mudd from Kirchner Block had a booth set up at the Freno Raingarden at 11th and Pine, and Steele Crissman and Amanda Thieret from Earthworks came to talk to the public with us.
The unexpected star of the day was our chapter balloons, 25 of which found their way to the wrists of happy children who carried the brand of STL ASLA throughout the city. The balloons were a big draw, but passersby were also receptive to engagement and to learning a little bit about landscape architecture. Members reported very positive interaction with the public, and the background of Citygarden was an excellent example to draw from.
Kentucky had three events: one in Louisville, Lexington and Covington / Cincinnati. In Louisville, we saw a local architect who commented on the event saying that he agreed landscape architects need to get the word out to folks due to the lack of knowledge about the profession. He thought what we were doing for 8.17 was a great idea and wished us luck! We need to get out of the understory! Little by little, it will happen!
The Alford Acres Urban Farm Design Charrette event in Bend, Oregon had 16 participants including a student from University of Oregon. We created 3 conceptual designs that completely convinced Habitat for Humanity directors to include an urban farm design as a key feature of their site development plan. The understory success was showing how landscape architects benefitted the community by combining design aesthetics with growing produce for Common Table, a non-profit volunteer run café.