Return to Nature: Five Pro Tips for Optimizing Your Landscape Design

By the Galerie Perrie Team

Image: Sculptures by Franz West, Montauk, New York. Copyright © Jake Rajs 2015.

For many, beauty isn’t solely the domain of art galleries. This has been especially true since the start of the pandemic, and it’s amazing to ponder how we’ve all learned to slow down and appreciate our surroundings in such a short time.


One way many art collectors have channelled this newfound appreciation for nature has been by, more than ever, creating beautiful outdoor spaces. Landscape design has thus provided solace, even as it’s increasingly broken down barriers between living spaces and the outdoors.


Indeed, with the introduction of, everyone has the opportunity to perfect their surroundings both inside and out with the click of a button. Consequently, whether you’re designing a cityscape terrace in NYC or a backyard garden space in the suburbs, you have more options than ever for introducing creativity in your own sacred space.

Better still, to help you along, we here at The Good Life have put together the following tips for arranging your own exterior. Yes, believe it or not, art isn’t just meant to be locked inside, and with these suggestions and a few of your own ideas, you too can cultivate greater serenity in your outdoor haven.


Tip No. 1: Art is a Landscape


Introducing art into your outdoor space can make it feel more like an extension of your home. This is why sculpture arrangement serves as such a crucial facet to landscape design. Because their media are often weather-resistant, pottery and statuary are key to incorporating permanence and made esthetics into overall garden and terrace layouts.

That said, sculpture placement is a significant piece of the puzzle. One trick to transforming an indifferent outdoor space, then, is to place one or more sculptures at a distance from doors and windows. This will create focal points that draw the eye across the entirety of the surrounding space.


Tip No. 2: Landscaping is Art

Up front, decide on the landscape aesthetic. What do you prefer? English Countryside? Xeriscape? Or perhaps a manicured Formal arrangement is more your speed. Planning your landscape design to sync with the rest of your arrangement is crucial to optimizing your outdoor space and can make acres of open land seem more intimate and make even smaller yards seem larger.


Also, consider topiary.  True works of art, even a few small shaped hedges or bushes, or a handful of incorporated bonzai, can help draw a connection between art and nature. Most fascinating, some landscape aficionados have even combined topiary and sculpture into narratives that keep their guests mezmorized with every visit.


Tip No. 3: Feature Presentations 

Another idea to consider is outdoor features, which include outdoor lighting, water displays, walkways, swimming pools and even TVs and bars. If, for instance, you’re someone who appreciates motion in your designs, incorporating a walking path of vibrant stones might be the very element that will set off your garden area.

Also, consider this facet of outdoor design as it will work with your other elements, such as whether light features will set off your sculptures and/or landscaping. Whatever you decide, a well thought-out plan for your features are part of the whole, not just conveniences. The rule of thumb is less is more, so don’t over-clutter with features but go with exactly what you need.


Tip No. 4: Color By Nature

As with art collecting, color is crucial to outdoor design. However, bear in mind that, for some homeowners, the outdoor palette will consist of the natural tones. Others may desire a pop of color. Consider the various shades of marble, wood, bronze, glass, granite and soapstone. Weather is a key factor in determining color, especially in high-precipitation areas, because not only must you consider whether your design choices fit with their surroundings but if the materials you choose for their color can stand up to the elements.


A professional landscape designer can work with you to choose the materials and colors that will work best for you. But even if you are into DIY, don’t forget to do your homework in this area thoroughly before placing any orders.


Tip No. 5: The Big Picture


The view from your home is unique and should not be ignored. Whether you are facing an ocean, mountain, or Park Avenue, make sure you consider how your outdoor design meshes with its background. Above all, avoid blocking the view. It can even help to think of the vistas surrounding your home as a stage-play backdrop for the drama of your perfected landscape design.


Recommended Sculptures:


Follow us on Instagram @galerieperrie