From Unorganized Obstacles to Organized Flow

Over the past few years, we have had the opportunity to design and be a part of several incredible outdoor living and landscape projects. With projects ranging from here in Arizona thru Texas to South Carolina, we struggled to keep projects organized and on track. The main reason, we didn’t have a true structure in place. We comprised a simple list of items required for the design process, but often, these items would come in via email without subject lines, incorrect/missing information and details, and the occasional text message with a drawing on a napkin. We quickly realized that we needed to implement a design agreement; something that would outline a list of items we would need to not only be successful, but efficient. This Design Agreement would require our clients providing us the following:

  • Project address
  • Homeowner’s last name. This helps us communicate with clients when discussing a project. Some clients use the homeowner’s last name or address when referring to a project.
  • Survey, Plot Plan, Grading, and Drainage Plan, Elevation Markers, House Construction Plans if the property is a new build.
  • Pictures of site area and several pictures of the house. Our goal is to make the house rendering as realistic to the actual home. The pictures also aid us to other visual clues that help us exceed the expectations of the client.
  • Verified Measurements, needed to ensure proper planning and execution.
  • Project Goals; what we are trying to accomplish.
  • Rough sketch or idea of features and placement.

Prior to the design agreement, we would be lucky to receive half of these items. With time being a key factor in getting these designs back to the client for presentation, frustration would be an understatement. A lot of time would be wasted sorting, matching, and re-requesting items, just so we could get started on the design process. We tried to train and work with these clients; some understood, some didn’t. The ones that didn’t, we simply parted ways. In turn, we implemented the 7 items above. We sent out a formal email and found this magical cloud storage called “DropBox”. Now being organized, having our clients create a “project” folder and upload all 7 items, we quickly streamlined the process of gathering required information. Unless you implement something in writing and get organized, the only person to blame for inefficiency is yourself.

Collaborative Project
On Demand Design Concepts & J’s Pools & Spa’s
Cypress, Texas

Collaborative Project
On Demand Design Concepts & Premier Paradise, Inc
Queen Creek, Arizona

Design Goals For 2019

2018 was an amazing year for us. We realized building relationships across many levels was key for the goals we set for 2019. While realizing our strengths, identifying our weakness’ were equally important. If you know me, you know that I am not afraid to ask questions or ask for guidance in areas needing improvement.

Improved Level of Space Planning:

The ability to collaborate with other designers like Cory Stanley of Decorative Pools & Landscaping, has enabled us to grow in design beyond our own expertise. His background in mechanical engineering and custom home building has been valuable with many of the structures we have featured in our latest designs. Cory has given us enhanced insight into space planning, from average family homes to large luxury estates projects, while keeping the clients budget in focus.

Expand Knowledge of Horticulture

Extending our knowledge of climate tolerant plants and trees has become critical for our ability to design in other regions. We are thankful to have Todd Erickson, owner of Campus Landscape, as a huge resource. His knowledge on plants and trees, as well as overall landscaping knowledge has really helped us with different climate zones.

If you know Todd, he will always try and find a way to sneak a palm tree species into a design.

Enhance Communication

Another area we want to build on is having involved conversations with architects and builders. The ability to discuss house plans, site plans, grading and drainage plans, has allowed us to create growing and meaningful relationships.

We are no longer considered for just creating pretty pictures and videos. We are now actively involved in multiple aspects of the project. The ability to have input on space planning, outdoor living features such as swimming pools, structures, outdoor kitchens, fire/water features, material selection, plant selection, lighting packages, and elevation challenges has been essential to take us to the next level.

Next Level Design & Presentation

With the evolving 3d visual world it’s critical we maximize the limits of our current design software (Structure Studios VIP3d). Continue utilizing Sketchup Pro and explore other design software such as Lumion. This will allow us to produce a higher level of detail and create a more realistic visual experience.

Collaborative Project
On Demand Design Concepts, B&B Pools, Inc, Arbor Engineering, Cory Stanley
GreenWood, South Carolina

Staying organized and surrounding ourselves with top Collaborative resources has been key to On Demand Design Concepts success. A phrase we embrace, “Collaboration Over Competition”.

— John Martese – On Demand Design Concepts