Dry-Side Adventures

By Jim McCloskey

I hadn’t thought about LandShapes in years – and my suspicion is that most readers of this newsletter aren’t even aware that it existed for a glorious five-issue run between May 2006 and February 2007, by which time it was clear to me that the magazine wasn’t going to thrive.

It’s departure from the scene was a real shame.  We saw LandShapes as a logical, dry-land counterpart to WaterShapes, positioned in the large conceptual gap between the academic leanings of ASLA’s Landscape Architecture and the raw product promotionalism of Landscape Architect & Specifier News.

Although we never really pulled it together on the sales side of things (and it showed), the editorial operation was tight and sassy from the get-go.  In fact, it was much tighter and sassier than even WaterShapes had been at any point in its first two or three years, mainly because we had such a beautiful template to follow.

Anyway, LandShapes came to mind last month as I was sorting through some old photo files looking for images I’d shot for a 2005 WaterShapes feature Stephanie Rose had written.  A few folders away was a huge pile of images I’d taken of ‘San Diego Red’ Bougainvillea for the cover of the November/December 2006 issue of LandShapes – and a huge pile of memories flowed back to me as well.

As noted above, most readers of WaterShapes never saw copies of LandShapes, as it was our plan to establish a firm base among landscape professionals before we broadened the reader base to include interested readers from among WaterShapes subscribers.  We never reached that turning point, unfortunately, but I now see no impediment to sharing this timeless dry-land trove through WaterShapes.com.

As was the case with the 131 issues of WaterShapes, I’ve converted the files from various other formats into .html versions to conform to our site’s governing parameters.  All of the articles and columns have been uploaded onto the site, with most of them categorized (unsurprisingly) in the ARTICLES menu within the Landscape/Plants/Hardscape section.

At some point in the near future, I will also set up links to full .pdf versions of the complete magazine issues so you can see everything together in its intended context.  That’s the way I prefer to look at things, and it seems to fit with the desires of those among you who claim to love the fact that full back issues of WaterShapes are readily available on our site.

As with WaterShapes articles, most of the LandShapes features include photo galleries in which you can, by clicking on a thumbnail image, enlarge things to full-screen size so you can examine the content and craftsmanship in detail.  All of the information is also fully open to searches and to sharing via social media, so you can pass information to colleagues and easily exchange information with clients.

I wasn’t kidding when I wrote in this space, ages ago, that WaterShapes.com would keep on expanding its content base even though the magazine is no longer with us – and we’ve done so to the tune of approximately 1,200 web-exclusive articles compiled since the magazine’s last printed edition appeared in July 2011.

The way I see it, the LandShapes material is a treasured bonus – an amazing collection of information I’m certain you’ll put to great and inspired use.  Enjoy!

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