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Robert Barker Design – Cambridge Based Garden Design

Skin Deep Blog

Modelling

Robert Barker

A very good friend of mine is a keen climber and he recently explained to me that he was taught that while climbing there are different types of fun. Type 1 fun is instant “wow, isn’t this amazing” type fun and then there is type 2 fun. Type 2 fun is delayed fun, for example when you are climbing a cliff face in unpleasant conditions you are putting in the hard work because you know that when you reach the top your going to see a breath taking view and then at that moment you forget about all the hard work that got you there. When creating a show garden you certainly experience both type 1 and 2 levels of fun. There has been the instant fun, such as going to the press launch, which was an honor to attend and spend time with such a talented group of people but then there is the type 2 delayed fun spending countless hours in front of the computer wading through admin, spreadsheets, health and safety forms and organizing to make sure every member of the team will be at the right place at the right time. Just like anything in life, it can’t all be fun and in many ways it’s the fact that it is hard at times is what makes it special.

I am very lucky because I have such a talented team around me but until the garden is completed in late May, we are all obsessing over jigsaw pieces that hopefully will all fit perfectly together. To help me get a grip of the sheer size and scale of the jigsaw puzzle I built a model of the garden. I sometimes do this for clients with large projects but I will always create a model for a show garden. It is common for a designer to create computer-generated visuals from a two-dimensional plan but actually building a model gives you such a clearer view of size and scale. Being able to touch something also makes it that much easier to imagine yourself within the space and how the space will work. After a trip to my local craft store I built a model of my garden with foam board, modeling scenery foliage and then created the sculpture out of floral foam. It took time to do but I enjoyed doing it.

May is quickly approaching and whatever the type of fun I experience along the way I can’t wait to see all of the jigsaw pieces come together and see the garden full size in all its glory.