From coast to coast

Outdoor Lifestyle Magazine - - Contents - By SCOTT SIM – WOOD­STOCK, ON

From the first mo­ment that you meet John Bright, it is easy to find your­self in a com­fort­able place. This young man im­me­di­ately makes you feel wel­come. He has a cer­tain sense of con­fi­dence, not be con­fused with cock­i­ness; al­though he would have ev­ery ex­cuse to take on a boast­ful swag­ger. A tal­ented de­signer, and even more im­pres­sive hu­man, John Bright is a name you need to know in the land­scape pro­fes­sion.

John’s jour­ney into land­scap­ing did not fol­low the nor­mal in­dus­try path. The son of a li­brar­ian and an ac­tu­ary, his in­flu­ence to the out­doors isn’t from home. “My par­ents are not green thumbs. At all. They kill ev­ery­thing,” John jokes.

He coasted through high school and grav­i­tated to athletics. Odd jobs fol­lowed. It was when he be­gan work­ing at a nurs­ery that his route be­gan to de­velop. Here he taught him­self all about plants, when he wasn’t driv­ing his bosses crazy. “I didn’t even know what a Hosta was,” he pro­fesses. John sought a new chal­lenge soon after, find­ing him­self build­ing dry stack walls for a con­trac­tor. Fol­low­ing a travel hia­tus, John per­formed some free­lance land­scape con­struc­tion. It was at this point that he de­cided to en­ter the Land­scape De­sign Pro­gram at Fan­shawe Col­lege in Lon­don. “It was the first time that I ac­tu­ally tried in school…. this was the first time that I was like ‘I want to do this.’”

John sketched as a kid - mostly di­nosaurs. “I couldn’t draw a tree to save my life.” he says. He stopped draw­ing for a pe­riod; at­tempted some art classes in high school, then ceased again. It wasn’t un­til he dove into land­scape de­sign that he re­ally dis­cov­ered his finest skill. John’s land­scape de­sign sketches set him apart from the pack. “It’s a dy­ing art…not a lot of peo­ple are do­ing it any­more. And I think that’s maybe what got me a little bit of trac­tion,” he says. John speaks of emo­tion and feel and how his draw­ings trans­late to the client. Al­though he has a full grasp of Au­toCAD and Sketch-up de­sign pro­grams, “ex­pres­sion on pa­per” brings his ideas to life (even if it takes twenty to thirty pages of ren­der­ings to get it right).

After grad­u­at­ing with hon­ours, John found em­ploy­ment in Toronto, split­ting his time be­tween the of­fice and on site. Look­ing for more of an op­por­tu­nity to de­sign full-time led him back to Lon­don and Spring­bank Land­scapes, where he had spent time as a col­lege co-op stu­dent. “I think it’s gonna be a good fit,” he says. No ques­tion there!

His tal­ent has not gone un­no­ticed. John’s ‘Cot­tage in the Coun­try’ de­sign was rec­og­nized with a Land­scape On­tario Award of Ex­cel­lence and his work has ap­peared in the Fall/ Win­ter 2015 edi­tion of Out­door Land­scape Magazine. John’s modern style al­ways tips its cap to tra­di­tion. Hi clients ex­pe­ri­ences and life­style prompts him to in­cor­po­rate in­ter­na­tional fla­vor and per­sonal touches through­out his de­signs.

With ease he will gain new clients, and more of his sketches will be­come a re­al­ity. His tal­ents and per­son­al­ity as­sure this. Now set­tled into what is his true call­ing, ex­pect to hear more from John Bright.

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