The creative spark is at its best when encouraged. Holmesglen landscape design trio, Ben Griek, Charles Leadbetter and Sagi Maor are at their happiest when they're allowed to explore their inspirations.
These students understand the importance of a healthy environment. For each, the Holmesglen classroom has offered a positive learning space where they've been able to explore their landscaping passions.
They have grabbed every opportunity, which included participation at the 2017 Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show. Ben was awarded silver in the Avenue of Achievable Gardens category, while Charles and Sagi were each recognised with bronze.
While these types of industry events have provided invaluable professional development for the three students, they have also offered the chance for them to make a difference.
"I have always been passionate about sustainability. I believe sustainable gardens are the future to reduce our impact on the environment," Ben says.
Sagi is equally enthused by the way Holmesglen's teaching methods have allowed him to contribute to community harmony. "I want to inspire [people] to create their own personal sanctuary in their gardens," he says.
For Charles, Melbourne has represented a change of pace from his upbringing in his quiet Scottish homeland. His studies have allowed him to bring joy to the life of others, while furthering his career.
"I was brought up on a farm in the heart of Scotland. One of my earliest memories was of how quiet and peaceful life is in the Scottish country. I want my designs to transport the client to a place of tranquillity and peacefulness at the end of the day," Charles explains.
The landscape design course offers all students the chance to immerse themselves in a variety of experiences. In 2016, the class had the chance to present individual design submissions for a new outdoor area, as part of the redevelopment of Holmesglen's Moorabbin campus. The students are keen to point out how these types of opportunities have given them the chance to expand their knowledge of the industry, explore different plants and materials and form strong working relationships with a range of local suppliers.
Landscape design is a field that welcomes dedication and people who are willing to work hard. As Ben sums up, "From a young age, my life motto has been to go with the flow. There will be ups and downs, dry periods and flourishing periods. We must all take a path, and it is a lot easier if you go with the flow."