By Edwin Espinoza, Landscape Architecture Intern at Nemetschek Vectorworks, Inc.
As a recent landscape architecture student at the University of Maryland, I took several courses about the various aspects of site design. Learning how to use CAD programs to communicate designs was naturally a big part of my education. Unfortunately, the university only offered AutoCAD-specific courses, so when I began my internship at Nemetschek Vectorworks, I didn’t know much about the Vectorworks line of software. However, that quickly changed because of how easy it was to use, and it’s now my preferred tool for design. Here are 3 reason’s why you, too, will find Vectorworks software easy to use:
- Students and professionals are always working on a deadline. Vectorworks simplifies the design process in both 2D and 3D. It’s possible to work in both modes dynamically, which saves a lot of time.
- It’s easy to present realistic visuals to clients. You can import geographic information system (GIS) data to create a digital terrain model of your site design.
- Vectorworks software's vast import capabilities make it super efficient for integrating design elements from other files including images, PDFs, DWGs, IFC, Rhino, etc.
- Vectorworks offers preset views to show what a design looks like from multiple viewpoints. It also allows you to create a section viewport from your drawing.
- It comes installed with default plant symbols, as well as many other symbols for every field of design in various colors, shapes, and sizes.
- Renderworks, an add-on available with any Vectorworks product, offers numerous rendering options to fit your specific style, ranging from a sketchy look to a more photorealistic one.
3. Customization Options
- If you have a detailed design workflow, Vectorworks allows you to create a library of customized symbols.
- You can use free-form modeling tools to create any shape you can dream up, and then push/pull, twist, or deform it to design something new.
- The Heliodon tool lets you adjust data like the region, city, dates, and time to display the sun and shade patterns on your site. You can also create a solar animation to really bring your design to life.
- The combination of the Site Model and related Site Modifier tools let you adjust the elevations and slopes on site designs, and they do the analytical work for you by displaying slope ranges and water flow, while also calculating cut and fill volumes from your changes.
Adjusting to new design software seems intimidating at first, but that anxiety is quickly replaced with an efficient workflow that allows you to create whatever you can imagine. If you haven't already experienced Vectorworks software, request a free 30-day trial version. Also, check out our Getting Started Guides. Offered in both video and PDF formats for all Vectorworks modules such as Landmark and Fundamentals, these guides provide tips and tricks, as well as short, project-based tutorials, so you can jump right in to designing with Vectorworks. Have fun exploring!