We were lucky enough to enjoy an afternoon at this beautiful house on the cliff in Castor Bay late last year. The wonderful garden design framed the view perfectly - out over the Hauraki Gulf to Rangitoto and beyond. And yes - the pool was as cold as it looked for Molly & Charlie. Sadly, we aren't all lucky enough to have a wonderful view like this, but we can all create a view within our own garden; regardless of the surrounding landscape.
First, find an appealing object or view that deserves attention. That might be within your garden or you could "borrow" a view from outside your garden, as the owners have done here. This could be the point where the sun sets, a neighbour's beautiful tree or the Waitakere's in the distance.
Within your garden, look for your focal points (if you don't have a focal point in your garden, it may be time to create one!) such as a bench, an impressive plant or tree, a water feature or an urn or vase.
You can also frame views within your garden too with arbors, gaps in fences, plantings and gates. Create a sense of excitement and intrigue as you move into the space. In both cases learning to recognize axial relationships in your garden is one of the best ways to site your framed view.
A visual axis or sight line is simply the line or view the eye follows from one point to an object in the distance. Stand in the area of your garden with the strongest or most appealing vantage point. This could be your front door, back deck or even inside your house looking through a window or open door.
Look out from your vantage point and select the strongest object in view. This may be the vista of a river beyond, or a potting shed, a large tree or the steeple of a church in the distance. This line between point "A" and point "B" is your primary axis. Once the scene or object has been identified and the sight line has been established, the next step is to consider ways to frame the view to screen out surrounding distractions and direct the eye toward the object or vista.
This is much easier than you might think. The pendulous branches of a weeping tree can be removed above a path, thereby framing the path itself, heightening the pleasure for anyone who walks along the path. Allowing a climbing rose to trail around your kitchen window or offering a glimpse of your house through a grove of cabbage trees are just a few ways of framing your garden without a lot of effort.
In some cases, it will be important to screen undesirable views or objects to eliminate distractions, such as a neighbour’s house, power lines, or rubbish bins. Once you determine the view that you want to highlight, look for existing elements to help build your screen. Privacy fences, buildings, existing trees and evergreens can all be incorporated to eliminate distractions and frame the attractive components.
If you have a view that you would like to enhance, why not check out our landscape design services and see if we can help?