Time to Recharge

The view from the end of the hike to the top of the Diamond Head State Monument, Honolulu, HI / image: Alexandra Hay

With summer in full swing, some of you may be taking (or dreaming of taking) a summer vacation soon. Continuing with the theme of theme of creativity and inspired design, below we take a look at how Professional Practice Network (PPN) members recharge and keep that creativity flowing. While vacations and travel in general were mentioned, along with coffee and lots of naps, the most frequent response involved spending time outdoors (no surprise there).

Here are a few of our members’ favorite ways to take a break.

Take a Hike

“Get out in nature—mountains, desert or coastal.”

“Go to the beach and walk.”

“Hiking in the Catskills and viewing the landscape from a mountain top.”

“I am drawn to free-flowing rivers and creeks.”

“I fly fish as far away from people as possible.”

“Reading, hiking, leaving the phone behind.”

“Take my RV out to a park—usually end up at a US Army Corps of Engineer facility located nearby, or to a local State Forest.”

“Taking a walk through an open meadow.”

“Work in my yard.”

“Working my farm.”

image: Alexandra Hay

Make Time for Exercise

“Climbing, hiking, and skiing.”


“Exercise, meditation.”

Rapids Footbridge in Rock Creek Park, Washington, DC / image: Alexandra Hay

“Going for a walk, ski, or snowshoe in the woods.”

“I’ll be trying a dog sledding vacation soon.”

“Jogging through new landscapes.”

The West End, Jones Beach State Park, NY / image: Alexandra Hay

“Running in natural areas.”

“Yoga and exercise, although the Bahamas do help.”

The 2016 Women in Landscape Architecture Walk in New Orleans, part of the ASLA Annual Meeting and EXPO / image: Event Photography of North America Corporation (EPNAC)

Travel, Events, Conferences, & Confabs

“Dinner with friends.”

“Family vacations.”

“Go to botanical gardens or travel to gardens abroad.”

“Go to the ASLA Annual Meeting.”

“Going to nurseries.”

Kew Gardens, London / image: Alexandra Hay

“Going to the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA) conference and getting energized by the projects my colleagues are working on.”

“I spend time with my family.”

“Looking at the world from an airplane!”

“Taking classes in related fields.”

At the ASLA Annual Meeting and EXPO / image: Event Photography of North America Corporation (EPNAC)

“Talking to people, especially students, showing people how important what we do in landscape architecture is.”

“Travel to visit friends in cities around the country and world.”

Janet Echelman’s 1.8 Renwick at the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery, Washington, DC / image: Alexandra Hay


“Art museum visits.”

“Browsing design books by different types of artists.”

“Looking at or creating art through photography, drawing, painting, etc.”

“Paint abstracts.”

“Paint, take photos, play video games, nap…especially nap.”

“Tactile art…drawing, watercolors, knitting.”

“Watercolor painting.”

The Storm King Art Center, NY / image: Alexandra Hay

Other Activities to Recharge

“Astronomy with my telescope.”

“Hobbies—knitting, canning, cooking.”

“Listening to music.”

“Read about anything but landscape architecture.”

“Read science fiction and non-science literature.”


Reston’s Used Book Shop in Virginia / image: Alexandra Hay

At the start of 2015, a questionnaire was sent out to members of ASLA’s Professional Practice Networks (PPNs). The theme: creativity and inspired design. As you can imagine, responses were varied, and included many insightful comments and suggestions. Synopses of the survey results were originally shared in LAND over the course of 2015, and we are now re-posting this information here on The Field. For the latest updates on the results of the annual PPN Survey, see LAND’s PPN News section.

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