Friday, May 19, 2006

New Manual for Landscapers

I‘m really happy to tell you all that I have just put the finishing touches on my new VectorWorks manual for landscapers. This manual is specifically designed to get you going quickly with placing and counting plants (Landscapers have been telling me that they want to do this as quickly as possible). I show you 4 different projects and with each project you will learn a more about how you can use VectorWorks for landscaping.

The manual starts with placing and counting basic plants on a scanned plan. The next project we learn to import the scan, add some custom plants and count them. The third project shows you how to import a DXF/DWG file and add the plans and landscape areas and it also shows you how to count those areas.

The final project starts an empty file and works through setting up the file, creating a 3D site model, placing a 3D house on the site, adding plants, roads, adding site modifiers and creating a drawing.

The manual also contains an appendix where some topics are covered in greater detail.

This manual is available now from :

Sunday, May 14, 2006

The Need for Foundations

The picture above is from a one of my manuals. The reason I’m using this picture is to demonstrate an issue that come up recently with a client. The client wanted to draw something like this but they hadn’t read my Essential Manual, so they were having trouble with basic concepts and they were missing basic skills. After some telephone chatting the client has been using the Essential Manual to improve and to build a basic knowledge (or foundation) in VectorWorks.

The Essential manual is like building good foundations before you a house.

Would you start to make the roof or make the windows of a house before you put the foundations down? Of course you wouldn’t, you’d do things in order and put in some good foundations first. Then you’d put in the floor structure and the walls and build up the house. That’s what the Essential Manual is designed for, to give you a foundation for your VectorWorks knowledge. All the other manuals will build on the knowledge that you get from going through the Essential Manual.

I know when you start the Essential Manual you might be thinking “I don’t see the relevance of this...” But stick with it. To understand the relevance try working on an office project or try working through one of the advanced manuals, you soon see that you need these basic skills, the foundation knowledge...

Friday, May 12, 2006

Is VectorWorks powerful enough

I was chatting to an old friend the other day and he suggested that there are many people that can use VectorWorks in a way that looks competent, but really they don’t understand the power of VectorWorks. 
That got me thinking, do people really understand the power of VectorWorks? For example I have know people that use groups instead of symbols, or they cut and paste instead of using layer linking (or design layer viewports). Some of these simple techniques can make VectorWorks faster and make it easier to use VectorWorks. 
there might be several (maybe hundreds) of tricks that could make you more effective at VectorWorks. These are the sorts of topics we cover in the cadsupportonline user group. check out the user group at: