Usually a house is a man’s greatest asset; “his home is his castle.” A house or home can easily become the most important possession for a family, which would include its surroundings or landscape.
Recently, several of the landscape architects and design associations have predicted trends towards homeowners spending more money to dress up their landscapes and add outdoor living spaces, including water gardens or water features. Increasingly more homeowners are spending non-discretionary income on their homes, inside and out, rather than on second homes or exotic vacations. It is not surprising that the landscape design business is flourishing.
With the exception of a few large landscape architectural design firms, most have not taken advantage of the high tech design software tools available to the industry. This is due to the high cost and a steep learning curve related to the graphics and design technology.
When plotting out a water garden, most landscaping contractors are currently providing their clients with a hand-drawn sketch or sketches or floor plan. Many landscape designers and architects currently use CADCAM or 3D-type software programs. At best, these programs produce stilted, unnatural results. Only a couple of the programs offer water garden related images, and they fall far short of offering enough objects to create more than a handful of unrealistic looking water features.
The “Water Garden Digital Image Library” – first of its kind – has just been released by Aquamedia Corp. It consists of png-formatted images of actual images of rocks, water, waterfalls, ponds, water plants, aquatic creatures such as turtles and fish, etc. The “Water Garden Digital Image Library 5.0” is packaged with Microsoft’s Digital Image Suite 9 software and a two hour training video of Master Waterfall Builder Douglas Hoover teaching, step by step, how to design a virtual water garden using a digital photograph of a back yard.
Many architects, designers and landscapers charge as much as $3,500 for an average detailed landscape plan in southern California. But most homeowners are more interested in a general concept than they are the details, and it is easier for them to get excited about a $350 digitally designed photo than about a detailed floor plan of the entire property. Today’s “NOW Generation” wants to see how it will look NOW!
A $350 virtual photograph that only takes one hour to produce, has a greater impact and leaves a stronger impression than a $2,500 landscape plan which takes me ten hours to draw. I can produce ten digital photo designs in the time it takes to draw one floor plan. One can easily do the math… four designs a day, five days a week, multiplies out to $364,000 per year.
The training video for the Digital Image Library 5.0 is concise and attentive to minor detail and will allow almost anyone with basic computer skills to become proficient at using its software. This trio: Library, software and training video, will allow the designer to create hundreds of different water gardens, and clients will see an actual photograph of a water garden in their yard.
The timing could not be better for introducing The Water Garden Digital Image Library. This artistic tool will allow landscapers, architects and designers to vividly express their visions and ideas to their clients. The customers will be able to see exactly what they will be getting with no room for confusion or doubt. This added service will put the professionals in a class by themselves. And the homeowners will be impressed, to say the least, by the classy virtual waterscape they are looking at, down to the last detail of designing in a water leveler for the pond.
The “Water Garden Digital Image Library” offers several major benefits: It increases net profits by closing more sales, and it provides extra revenue from the change to digital design. It sets you apart from your competition. It reassures your customers that what they see is what they actually get. It personalizes the design by placing it into an existing photo of their yard. Digital design does not require you to measure the area of the photo in which you are placing the virtual image.
Best of all, by offering a digital design, you are compensated for your time spent with the client in the event they reject your bid. Clients will gladly pay $350 for a digital design and it only takes an hour to complete the average design. Four designs per day, five days per week, is $364,000 per year. What great potential!