|From In the Garden|
As regular readers of this blog know, I am a landscape designer-a new one at that. Being new to the field has me facing some hurdles and needing time to learn some tricks. Well, last year when I designed my first landscape while concurrently taking a landscape design class I learned you should draw a base map first, then draw your design in draft mode on tracing paper placed over the base map. Once the draft design is final and you are ready to put the design to the vellum you just place the tracing paper design under your vellum and begin drawing. Sounds easy right? Nope, Vellum is not as transparent as tracing paper and I could not clearly see my design through the vellum. To say I had some difficulties would be putting it mildly. The solution was a light box (thanks to Mr. Fix-it who suggested it).
Mr. Fix-it and I came up with a design and commenced to making a light box so I could design in comfort and with ease. There are commercial drafting tables and light boxes available but I did not want the expense at this point, plus I felt I could work with what we would be able to design.
I had already purchased the two 18" fluorescent lights at a local big box store for about $10 a piece. The large sheet (36" x 27") of tempered glass was picked up at the Nashville Habitat Re-store for $10 as well. For a long time I simply placed the glass on top of the lights and worked that way. It was not a good plan because the glass is extremely heavy and put a lot of weight on the lights. The next step was to build a box. I purchased a few boards of red oak (3" wide but you can use any width for your box).
Full sheet designs on vellum are 24" x 36". My glass is a bit bigger than the size of the full sheet but the lights are not as big, therefore the box did not have to be as big. The two pictures above are a bit misleading because that current design I am showing is drawn on tracing paper that is sized 19" x 24" and is not full sized. When I have a full sized drawing on this glass (as in the first picture) you would not be able to see the box at all. We built the box big enough to provide a stable base for the glass and to contain the two lights. The corners were mitered, glued, and screwed together to make a square, then stained a golden oak color. I attached the lights and made a groove for the cords to come out of the box. I think it looks and works fine and the total cost was less than $40. I just love it. I might add that the desk in my office does not have square edges-they are rounded. Therefore the desk would not work for designs because the T-bar would not accurately move along the edge to ensure a square working area. The glass takes care of that and I am able to move it around as I need to....
in the garden....
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In the Garden