A friend asked me if I could sketch several proposed improvements to an existing public park. Additions to the open spaces included a new xeric garden in front of a picnic pavilion, new bike paths on the park perimeter and a pedestrian bridge crossing a drainage creek connecting to a residential neighborhood. My first step was to visit the park and photograph the specific areas planned for improvement. I downloaded my iPhone images and then created three “overlay and trace” drawings of the proposed improvements. My step-by-step explanation shows how easy the visualization process was!
New Xeric Garden
Step 1 - iPhone Digital Photo. I held the camera high above my head to capture more of the ground area. After downloading the image, I printed it in color on 8.5”x11” paper for tracing.
Step 2 - Red Pencil Mockup. I taped tracing paper over the photograph and blocked out the xeric garden, interpretive signage and pathways using a red Col-Erase pencil. My scanned JPEG of the mockup was approved by my friend before continuing onto the final drawings.
Step 3 - Ink Line Drawing. I taped a new sheet of tracing paper over the mockup and drew the final illustration using a Pilot Fineliner (fine point) pen. Knowing that I was going to color directly onto the original artwork, I make a record scan of the line drawing. Why? I could easily print the line drawing and color a duplicate if the original marker coloring got ruined or changed!
Step 4 - Final Marker Color. I used Chartpak AD markers and colored directly onto the original line drawing. The thinness of the tracing paper allowed me to color both on the front and back side of the paper.
Step 5 - High Resolution Scan. I finally scanned the colored drawing at 300dpi and saved a jpeg. The image was emailed to my friend and incorporated into a presentation. Always make high resolution record scans of your completed drawings for archival purposes and as reference for future projects.
New Perimeter Bike Path
The sequence of images below represent the identical step-by-step illustrative process I used for the Xeric Garden. This composition focused on the activities generated by a soccer field and the new bicycle pathway. I drew additional shade trees and landscaping to improve the open space character.
New Pedestrian Bridge
I composed the photograph to include the housing on the left and the bike path in the distance. I drew new shade trees to block most of the housing and illustrated the change in plant materials between mowed grass and natural grasses lining the waterway. Notice the new dog park on the right side of the drawing.
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