I grew up in Florence, South Carolina, but ventured northward for my education. I went to Duke where I thought I was going to be a biochemist because I loved science so much. My first semester of freshman year, I took a sculpture class (where I was welding everyday), a biodesign class (where I was making weird biological models), and a chemistry class. I found the chemistry class to be much less interesting in comparison. This left me looking for a career path that melded my love of science and the arts–making and creating things! Through a series of fortuitous events, I discovered the field of landscape architecture and spent my remaining time at Duke preparing myself for this career. I double majored in Biology and Visual Arts; I explored all the subjects I loved — Biology, Botany, Physics, Sculpture, Photography, Architectural History, Art History, Hydrology, Geology…the list goes on.
After undergrad, I received a grant to go to Japan to study Japanese gardens. I’m currently working on digitizing my Japanese garden photos. I started graduate school in the fall of 2000 at the University of Pennsylvania, where I got my Masters in Landscape Architecture. At grad school, I spent a few summers living in Manhattan and working at Urban Center Books. (I really love books.) I graduated in 2003 and began work at Environmental Concepts in the fall of 2003. (To see some of the cool projects that I’ve worked on professionally, check out the Environmental Concepts website.)
After living in Durham, Philadelphia, and NYC, I never expected to move back home to South Carolina. Myrtle Beach is one of those crazy places that defies shortly worded descriptions. There’s lots of neon, golf courses, strip clubs, and tattoo shops, but it’s also combined with relentless palm trees and gilding. Obviously, the Grand Strand wants to be like Vegas, but our strip is about 50 miles long. The whole area is tucked into one of the most beautiful and unique ecologies in the world–the Carolina Flatwoods. Carolina Bays are very, very cool, and this is the only area in the world with indigenous Venus Flytraps!
I married my awesome husband Rob in 2008, and we’ve just been working on our little home and family since then. We have a dachshund and two cats named Tinker, Texas, and Trixie (they’re all girls). My best friend Erin lives in Savannah; we talk almost every day, and she generously gives me much needed feedback and inspiration for many of my projects. My mom is the other big project-force in my life; we talk everyday and she’s always giving me advice.
I collect pretty things all of sorts. I love vernacular garden design verging on outsider art, structure disintegrating into chaos, utopian failures, fictional apocalypses, mountaineering tales (especially about Everest), and crazy patterns that hurt your eyes when you look at them. I am passionate about all of my opinions and love to argue (unfortunately for some). We’re always looking for new recipes for hot food and anything without cheese (my husband won’t eat it–insanely). And we always have red wine on the rack and are ready to entertain our friends and family!