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Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #125 on: January 27, 2023, 09:29:48 AM »

The greens are really too big and too wild, and nobody likes to three-putt. 



Who am I to disagree with you about a course you built, but I will. While the Old Mac greens are big and wild, I don't think they're too big or too wild. I really like playing Old Mac and the greens are part of the fun. I seem to recall you saying something to the effect that if there was water or sand on the surrounds of the greens rather than extra green width, the punishment for an approach landing in the same place would in general be a lot worse than a three putt. I don't mind having a very long first putt following a less than good approach instead of having to drop next to water or hitting out of a bunker.  The odds for most players of two putting from across a huge green are at least as good as an up and down from a bunker, and making par is more likely than if the shot had been lost in a greenside pond or burn. Variety is the spice of life (and golf). Isn't that why you like to create courses that are different rather than follow a formula? To me the "big, wild" greens are one of the strengths of Old Mac


Stewart:


Don’t misunderstand- I like the course, even though I don’t like to three-putt either.  But I understood from the beginning those features would be a turn-off to some/many golfers.  Luckily Bandon attracts plenty of the kinds of golfers who like that sort of thing, so we had the luxury of not worrying about the people who don’t.

Brett Meyer

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #126 on: January 27, 2023, 09:56:10 AM »
Brett,


I appreciate your response and your views.


You have your view I have mine - should everyone think the same?. You may think I am wrong thats your opinion isn't what this Discussion Group is for? TD work is to me is becoming more and more repetitive (thats my opinion whether its right or wrong) irrelevant of the size of the greens, location, landforms that existed before and so on etc.

Some people think TD has done different things golf course design wise thats their view mine is different. Colt, Braid, Simpson and even M+E have certain design traits (for example the sand wastes becoming common ::) ) that continue over time or see in many of their designs. Architects have this as well - very few have made me go wow I didn't think of that or thats a beautiful detail - you may think my standards are too high - we all think differently.

Every site is unique it does make the course or holes look different from the bigger picture thats why I can see why people think 'oh wow thats different he hasn't done that before' or thats 'pioneering' however for me its the details - naturalistic, smooth, curves, soft touch, minimalistic - a number of TD trademarks which are visible to me but not to others on this site whether they are simple or OTT with no complicated detailed drawings which is their approach and rely on great shapers which some are used repetitively that certain approach/details seen on multiple courses not just one.


I just see things differently - it may baffle (or frustrate  ;D ) most of you - its what it is. My view is that C+C are in a similar mould to TD - I would say Hanse has more variety out of the Big Three.

If I had the choice of visiting a new Doak course (knowing what he and his shapers are more likely to do) or an unknown who looks like their work is different to others - I would go to the unknown its what I am. I know its more likely that most of you would rather go to a new Doak course than an unknown who has done something different. It's the same for me in Architecture as well as Boony would testify.

Regarding sand in this thread - some think its OTT and others think its awesome. Some prefer Trump and others prefer Biden, Republican or Democratic/Conservartive or Labour in UK. Variety is the spice of life, everyone has different views and I do know I am in a very small minority on this site ;D  which others may think my views are warped.


Cheers

Ben

Ben,

I certainly appreciate your tone and civility. It's a lot better than several others on this site and certainly in the broader world of discussion forums. So thanks for that. And I agree that variety is the spice of life...which is part of the reason why I've been banging on about restoring Pine Barrens in the other thread.

I think that a problem with a lot of your posts here is that people are giving some pretty extensive responses to your arguments and you're kind of just shrugging them off and saying 'eh, we have a difference of opinion.' I agree with you that we have differences of opinion and probably most people here understand and respect that people will have differences of opinion and that ultimately there's no right answer in something like this.

But when someone makes an extensive argument against your points, you either have to argue back in detail or concede defeat in walk away. I wrote a few hundred words on why I think your point about Doak's work being repetitive is wrong. Instead of trying to rebut it, you just repeat that his work is repetitive. I can't respect this as a difference of opinion at this point because I've provided what I think is pretty good evidence against that. So you either need to (1) admit that I'm right and that your claim is wrong, (2) dispute my evidence, and/or (3) present some new evidence to support your argument.

I also addressed the point about naturalistic shaping, but not in as much detail. Here I admit it's a real matter of personal preference. But I still wonder what you want Doak to do. Do you want him to start shaping courses like Pete Dye? Or Jim Engh? Or Mike Strantz? I would argue that we have plenty enough examples of Dye's work, at least from the 80s and 90s. Doing something like that would be repetitive. I'd argue against copying Engh for a variety of reasons that I won't get into. Maybe he should do a maximalist style like Strantz? One could argue, as I have, that some of Strantz's courses could have really benefitted from some editing. Do you think that any of these guys' work was repetitive?

Ultimately a big part of the variety comes the fact that there are different guys working in this area. I don't think that Doak's work is repetitive but even if it were, he's just one guy out of dozens who have been operating over the last 100 years. And he's done far fewer courses than most of the big names over the past 100 years. Given the number of Tom Fazio, Pete Dye, Arthur Hills, etc. courses that we have, I think we could still use a few more Doak and Coore/Crenshaw courses.

John Mayhugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #127 on: January 27, 2023, 10:18:22 AM »


I get why a lot of you out there are frustrated at me or defending TD that ok a lot of people don't like to be 'challenged'. The funny thing is most of you are not seeing where I am coming from - there are other Architects now upping their game will TD be left behind like Blockbuster did because they didn't evolve? you never know everything has a shelf life. What he is producing then and now from my designers viewpoint is becoming more and more repetitive the longer it goes if you don't see it thats ok if you like what he is producing thats fine. Its also similar to what Norman Foster is producing in Architecture when he produces a new design or project you see it is a typical Foster not something different to what they have done before.   


There is no such thing as the perfect golf course and we all have different tastes and do things differently. Some people prefer on cloud to nikes its like that in the golf world outside of GCA circles. I have been in the fortunate position to meet other Golf Course Architects face to face and what their interpretation a golf course should be.


Ben,
I highlighted your Blockbuster analogy, but can't bring myself to comment on it while still being nice.

Your position about Doak's work is bizarre to me. Granted, I'm not an architect of any sort - just a golf consumer. I make my judgements about courses by playing them and evaluating my experiences. I've no interest in "defending" Tom - I'm just trying to defend rational discussion.

I've played around 17 Doak courses - either new builds or major renovations. You posted earlier that you've played two of them (SAB & RC). Yet from that very small sample size (and nothing built in the past 15 years!) you have decided that his style is repetitive and he needs to evolve to remain relevant. Presumably you've decided this by looking at pictures posted on GCA and other sites?

Maybe someone can assess building architecture by looking at photos - I don't think that works nearly the same in golf. Pictures might inspire or discourage a visit, but that's where it ends.

As long as people continue to play golf in roughly the same manner it's played today, I think Doak's work will remain relevant. He builds courses that fit the land and environment that they are built on. His courses require thoughtful play but don't demand particular methods or shots. Skill gets rewarded, but courses are playable by anyone. The courses generally look great in photos, but the real greatness is the way they provide an intriguing playing surface well suited to where they are built.





Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #128 on: January 27, 2023, 10:25:27 AM »
Brett,


I appreciate your response and your views.


You have your view I have mine - should everyone think the same?. You may think I am wrong thats your opinion isn't what this Discussion Group is for? TD work is to me is becoming more and more repetitive (thats my opinion whether its right or wrong) irrelevant of the size of the greens, location, landforms that existed before and so on etc.

Some people think TD has done different things golf course design wise thats their view mine is different. Colt, Braid, Simpson and even M+E have certain design traits (for example the sand wastes becoming common ::) ) that continue over time or see in many of their designs. Architects have this as well - very few have made me go wow I didn't think of that or thats a beautiful detail - you may think my standards are too high - we all think differently.

Every site is unique it does make the course or holes look different from the bigger picture thats why I can see why people think 'oh wow thats different he hasn't done that before' or thats 'pioneering' however for me its the details - naturalistic, smooth, curves, soft touch, minimalistic - a number of TD trademarks which are visible to me but not to others on this site whether they are simple or OTT with no complicated detailed drawings which is their approach and rely on great shapers which some are used repetitively that certain approach/details seen on multiple courses not just one.


I just see things differently - it may baffle (or frustrate  ;D ) most of you - its what it is. My view is that C+C are in a similar mould to TD - I would say Hanse has more variety out of the Big Three.

If I had the choice of visiting a new Doak course (knowing what he and his shapers are more likely to do) or an unknown who looks like their work is different to others - I would go to the unknown its what I am. I know its more likely that most of you would rather go to a new Doak course than an unknown who has done something different. It's the same for me in Architecture as well as Boony would testify.

Regarding sand in this thread - some think its OTT and others think its awesome. Some prefer Trump and others prefer Biden, Republican or Democratic/Conservartive or Labour in UK. Variety is the spice of life, everyone has different views and I do know I am in a very small minority on this site ;D  which others may think my views are warped.


Cheers

Ben

Ben,

I certainly appreciate your tone and civility. It's a lot better than several others on this site and certainly in the broader world of discussion forums. So thanks for that. And I agree that variety is the spice of life...which is part of the reason why I've been banging on about restoring Pine Barrens in the other thread.

I think that a problem with a lot of your posts here is that people are giving some pretty extensive responses to your arguments and you're kind of just shrugging them off and saying 'eh, we have a difference of opinion.' I agree with you that we have differences of opinion and probably most people here understand and respect that people will have differences of opinion and that ultimately there's no right answer in something like this.

But when someone makes an extensive argument against your points, you either have to argue back in detail or concede defeat in walk away. I wrote a few hundred words on why I think your point about Doak's work being repetitive is wrong. Instead of trying to rebut it, you just repeat that his work is repetitive. I can't respect this as a difference of opinion at this point because I've provided what I think is pretty good evidence against that. So you either need to (1) admit that I'm right and that your claim is wrong, (2) dispute my evidence, and/or (3) present some new evidence to support your argument.

I also addressed the point about naturalistic shaping, but not in as much detail. Here I admit it's a real matter of personal preference. But I still wonder what you want Doak to do. Do you want him to start shaping courses like Pete Dye? Or Jim Engh? Or Mike Strantz? I would argue that we have plenty enough examples of Dye's work, at least from the 80s and 90s. Doing something like that would be repetitive. I'd argue against copying Engh for a variety of reasons that I won't get into. Maybe he should do a maximalist style like Strantz? One could argue, as I have, that some of Strantz's courses could have really benefitted from some editing. Do you think that any of these guys' work was repetitive?

Ultimately a big part of the variety comes the fact that there are different guys working in this area. I don't think that Doak's work is repetitive but even if it were, he's just one guy out of dozens who have been operating over the last 100 years. And he's done far fewer courses than most of the big names over the past 100 years. Given the number of Tom Fazio, Pete Dye, Arthur Hills, etc. courses that we have, I think we could still use a few more Doak and Coore/Crenshaw courses.




Hi Brett,




I could write a long list of things from my experience on Tom Doak courses for now I am going accept that people are not seeing what I am seeing. I have played 3 courses that was done by Doak 2 new ones and one renovation. Have heard opinions from others of Doak courses that I haven't played.


So I feel that any response from me to your query will be a waste of time because you just don't see it from my standpoint.


Its a difference of opinions whether it is right or wrong we have to agree to disagree - I don't agree with some that you have said likewise the other way round. 


Now I am regarding the matter closed (which some may say Hallelujah!) from my side and I hope you do the same as well.




Yours in golf
Ben



 

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #129 on: January 27, 2023, 10:47:27 AM »


I get why a lot of you out there are frustrated at me or defending TD that ok a lot of people don't like to be 'challenged'. The funny thing is most of you are not seeing where I am coming from - there are other Architects now upping their game will TD be left behind like Blockbuster did because they didn't evolve? you never know everything has a shelf life. What he is producing then and now from my designers viewpoint is becoming more and more repetitive the longer it goes if you don't see it thats ok if you like what he is producing thats fine. Its also similar to what Norman Foster is producing in Architecture when he produces a new design or project you see it is a typical Foster not something different to what they have done before.   


There is no such thing as the perfect golf course and we all have different tastes and do things differently. Some people prefer on cloud to nikes its like that in the golf world outside of GCA circles. I have been in the fortunate position to meet other Golf Course Architects face to face and what their interpretation a golf course should be.


Ben,
I highlighted your Blockbuster analogy, but can't bring myself to comment on it while still being nice.

Your position about Doak's work is bizarre to me. Granted, I'm not an architect of any sort - just a golf consumer. I make my judgements about courses by playing them and evaluating my experiences. I've no interest in "defending" Tom - I'm just trying to defend rational discussion.

I've played around 17 Doak courses - either new builds or major renovations. You posted earlier that you've played two of them (SAB & RC). Yet from that very small sample size (and nothing built in the past 15 years!) you have decided that his style is repetitive and he needs to evolve to remain relevant. Presumably you've decided this by looking at pictures posted on GCA and other sites?

Maybe someone can assess building architecture by looking at photos - I don't think that works nearly the same in golf. Pictures might inspire or discourage a visit, but that's where it ends.

As long as people continue to play golf in roughly the same manner it's played today, I think Doak's work will remain relevant. He builds courses that fit the land and environment that they are built on. His courses require thoughtful play but don't demand particular methods or shots. Skill gets rewarded, but courses are playable by anyone. The courses generally look great in photos, but the real greatness is the way they provide an intriguing playing surface well suited to where they are built.




John,




Appreciate the response it may be bizarre to you but not me. I just view things differently to how the majority of others on this site see. I do notice some sort or repetition of courses that I haven't played on the Renaissance Golf Design website and photos TD courses to the ones that I have played knowing its not a strong case of argument with certain people on this particular site. The more I am seeing it there are more connections between the courses and the design approach/style becoming more obvious to me not others. People may think I am weird but its what I am and what I see however still have a pint of beer with you anytime.

Umm isn't great surfaces sometimes is not attributed to the designer but nature even if it was a great site?.

Like I said to Brett if people don't see what i am seeing - I accept that and are we entitled to their views which is the purpose of this DG.

I do wish all TD courses the best in terms of longevity however there could be a day when TD course is being redone by another Architect which is still a possibility which probably get protests from a number of people here if they are still alive  ;D . It happened to Ross and many others.




Cheers
Ben

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #130 on: January 27, 2023, 10:45:29 PM »
Ben:


Everything in golf architecture is 100% a matter of opinion, and you have a right to your opinion of my work or anyone else's.  But I find it telling that you are willing to shrug off others' comments as "Oh we have a difference of opinion" and yet you can't let it go when anyone does the same to you. 


As to your opinion of my work, I don't really care, but to make it on the basis of seeing two or three of my courses [and none of my ten best ones] and then declare all of my work as repetitive is just silly.  You are entitled to not like it, but you have not seen enough to say THAT.


I am only saying this to you in hopes that you actually take a minute to reflect on the whole thread.  You've stated your opinion repeatedly, and stating it over again for the fifth time would be a waste of breath.  If you have any sense you'll let it drop.  If you don't, a few of us will have a good laugh about it.


P.S.  I'm just going to go back to one of your points to tear it up.  You're a fan of Pete Dye; I was fortunate to have known him and learned from him.  I think he was one of the most creative minds I've known.  You gave him credit for being such a pioneer for doing such things as using railroad ties.  But you do know where he got that idea, right?  Everything he did, you could pull apart just the same way as you have done to my work. You're just choosing not to.  Pete's work was quite repetitive because he was stuck with flat sites most of the time -- and that is PRECISELY what made me focus so much on finding clients with better sites that provided more variety to work with, in the same way that Tom Fazio focused on finding clients with money, after watching his uncle work on a few projects that failed financially.  Great sites have been the key to my success, but they were also the key to most everyone else's success.  If you're such a genius that you've gotta prove it without the benefit of a good site, I'd advise that you might want to try succeeding with two hands before you tie one of them behind your back.   

Connor Lewis

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #131 on: January 28, 2023, 12:01:47 AM »
To add a bit of historical levity to the conversation, Harry Vardon would likely answer yes to the rather broad question asked in the title of this post.


When Vardon visited the United States on his transformative tour of 1900, he played in Florida and was shocked to find that the entirety of most of Florida’s courses were entirely made of sand. He most certainly left the state thinking “there was too much sand.”


Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #132 on: January 28, 2023, 05:02:34 AM »
To add a bit of historical levity to the conversation, Harry Vardon would likely answer yes to the rather broad question asked in the title of this post.
When Vardon visited the United States on his transformative tour of 1900, he played in Florida and was shocked to find that the entirety of most of Florida’s courses were entirely made of sand. He most certainly left the state thinking “there was too much sand.”
An interesting comment from HV given that the links at Grouville/Royal Jersey, a course that is well worth playing by the way, where he grew up and learnt to play the game, is all sand and back in his day was even more open sand and sand scrape in nature than it is now.
atb

Kalen Braley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #133 on: January 28, 2023, 01:42:14 PM »
I just re-watched the movie again last night and this quote really popped out in context of this thread.

From A Star is Born:

"... music is essentially twelve notes between any octave. Twelve notes and the octave repeats. It's the same story told over and over, forever. All any artist can offer the world is how they see those twelve notes. That's it. He loved how you see them."

I think all of us (to some extent) identify with different GCA's work in similar context...

Ira Fishman

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #134 on: January 28, 2023, 05:13:39 PM »
Kalen,


Which version of the movie? To prove your point, they all hit different notes.


Ira

Kalen Braley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #135 on: January 28, 2023, 05:19:32 PM »
Kalen,

Which version of the movie? To prove your point, they all hit different notes.

Ira


Good point, lol.  The most recent one with Cooper and Gaga

Ira Fishman

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #136 on: January 28, 2023, 05:36:32 PM »
Well, to prove your point further, as talented as Lady Gaga is, she is not even in the same league as Garland and Streisand. I can think of a few gca examples, but probably better left unsaid.


Ira

Kalen Braley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #137 on: January 28, 2023, 05:54:59 PM »
Well, to prove your point further, as talented as Lady Gaga is, she is not even in the same league as Garland and Streisand. I can think of a few gca examples, but probably better left unsaid.

Ira

That could very well be, although I haven't seen any of the prior versions, so couldn't really say.

I just really like the soundtrack, the story, the relationship interactions, etc. in this latest one....it was really really well done in my humble opinion.  ;)

P.S.  In GCA terms I'll throw out Jim Engh's stuff.  I know his courses gets poo poo'd a lot here, but I enjoy them because they're quirky and different and just plain fun to play

Daryl David

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #138 on: January 28, 2023, 07:35:07 PM »
Ben:


Everything in golf architecture is 100% a matter of opinion, and you have a right to your opinion of my work or anyone else's.  But I find it telling that you are willing to shrug off others' comments as "Oh we have a difference of opinion" and yet you can't let it go when anyone does the same to you. 


As to your opinion of my work, I don't really care, but to make it on the basis of seeing two or three of my courses [and none of my ten best ones] and then declare all of my work as repetitive is just silly.  You are entitled to not like it, but you have not seen enough to say THAT.


I am only saying this to you in hopes that you actually take a minute to reflect on the whole thread.  You've stated your opinion repeatedly, and stating it over again for the fifth time would be a waste of breath.  If you have any sense you'll let it drop.  If you don't, a few of us will have a good laugh about it.


P.S.  I'm just going to go back to one of your points to tear it up.  You're a fan of Pete Dye; I was fortunate to have known him and learned from him.  I think he was one of the most creative minds I've known.  You gave him credit for being such a pioneer for doing such things as using railroad ties.  But you do know where he got that idea, right?  Everything he did, you could pull apart just the same way as you have done to my work. You're just choosing not to.  Pete's work was quite repetitive because he was stuck with flat sites most of the time -- and that is PRECISELY what made me focus so much on finding clients with better sites that provided more variety to work with, in the same way that Tom Fazio focused on finding clients with money, after watching his uncle work on a few projects that failed financially.  Great sites have been the key to my success, but they were also the key to most everyone else's success.  If you're such a genius that you've gotta prove it without the benefit of a good site, I'd advise that you might want to try succeeding with two hands before you tie one of them behind your back.   


Please let this be the “mic drop”.  ;D

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #139 on: January 29, 2023, 06:43:20 AM »
Ben:


Everything in golf architecture is 100% a matter of opinion, and you have a right to your opinion of my work or anyone else's.  But I find it telling that you are willing to shrug off others' comments as "Oh we have a difference of opinion" and yet you can't let it go when anyone does the same to you. 


As to your opinion of my work, I don't really care, but to make it on the basis of seeing two or three of my courses [and none of my ten best ones] and then declare all of my work as repetitive is just silly.  You are entitled to not like it, but you have not seen enough to say THAT.


I am only saying this to you in hopes that you actually take a minute to reflect on the whole thread.  You've stated your opinion repeatedly, and stating it over again for the fifth time would be a waste of breath.  If you have any sense you'll let it drop.  If you don't, a few of us will have a good laugh about it.


P.S.  I'm just going to go back to one of your points to tear it up.  You're a fan of Pete Dye; I was fortunate to have known him and learned from him.  I think he was one of the most creative minds I've known.  You gave him credit for being such a pioneer for doing such things as using railroad ties.  But you do know where he got that idea, right?  Everything he did, you could pull apart just the same way as you have done to my work. You're just choosing not to.  Pete's work was quite repetitive because he was stuck with flat sites most of the time -- and that is PRECISELY what made me focus so much on finding clients with better sites that provided more variety to work with, in the same way that Tom Fazio focused on finding clients with money, after watching his uncle work on a few projects that failed financially.  Great sites have been the key to my success, but they were also the key to most everyone else's success.  If you're such a genius that you've gotta prove it without the benefit of a good site, I'd advise that you might want to try succeeding with two hands before you tie one of them behind your back.   


Tom,


Thank you for the advice in the last sentence - we will see maybe one day and I do like a challenge  ;D

I would appreciate if you can stop 'twisting' words that i am supposed to have said or written and in future could you put them in your response as reference/fact.

Did I actually write that I am a 'fan of Pete Dye'? - Dye did some amazing work and some meh work having played some of his lesser know courses also did i refer to 'Dye being a pioneer of railroad ties'? are you reading accurately what I actually wrote?


Very interesting to see you are stating that Pete's work is repetitive.



With Pete Dye as your mentor many moons ago surely you were able to have more design freedom when you went on your own. Regarding some of your former colleagues are they doing better commercially now? or have they produced better designs than you? people will always have different views of this and the more recent colleagues - could they potentially eclipse you as they have been 'let free to do their own thing'. Thats evolution and moving on with the times.

I have worked with people (Architects or Golf Course Designers) or companies who are commercially astute - one of the clients i worked for is one of the most famous company in the world a multi billion dollar company and their design approach across the company and commercial mindset totally blew me away and I can see why they are so successful and they did evolve over the last few decades to be ahead of the market that puts them in a strong position. It was one of the greatest experience i have had in my work life even though i wasn't keen to work on their projects at the beginning in the end it was the best.

You have your ways of doing things as we all have - is it going to last for the rest of our life/career? I have seen how you work and operate on site. Most on this site (GCA) haven't so I have which was a learning curve for me. 


Designers do have certain habits - some don't see it and some do. Sometimes it's better not to give the game away and let others work it out for themselves why this comment is being said and if they have a different view or opinion thats ok. Would life be better had everyone got the same opinion/view?


Cheers
Ben
« Last Edit: January 29, 2023, 07:00:40 AM by Ben Stephens »

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #140 on: January 29, 2023, 06:47:07 AM »
Tom,




One question if you were entering a golf course design competition and the rule is that the entry was just a reference number (no reference to who the designer is) would you win the competition?




Cheers
Ben
« Last Edit: January 29, 2023, 07:01:13 AM by Ben Stephens »

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #141 on: January 29, 2023, 07:07:26 AM »
Ben:


Everything in golf architecture is 100% a matter of opinion, and you have a right to your opinion of my work or anyone else's.  But I find it telling that you are willing to shrug off others' comments as "Oh we have a difference of opinion" and yet you can't let it go when anyone does the same to you. 


As to your opinion of my work, I don't really care, but to make it on the basis of seeing two or three of my courses [and none of my ten best ones] and then declare all of my work as repetitive is just silly.  You are entitled to not like it, but you have not seen enough to say THAT.


I am only saying this to you in hopes that you actually take a minute to reflect on the whole thread.  You've stated your opinion repeatedly, and stating it over again for the fifth time would be a waste of breath.  If you have any sense you'll let it drop.  If you don't, a few of us will have a good laugh about it.


P.S.  I'm just going to go back to one of your points to tear it up.  You're a fan of Pete Dye; I was fortunate to have known him and learned from him.  I think he was one of the most creative minds I've known.  You gave him credit for being such a pioneer for doing such things as using railroad ties.  But you do know where he got that idea, right?  Everything he did, you could pull apart just the same way as you have done to my work. You're just choosing not to.  Pete's work was quite repetitive because he was stuck with flat sites most of the time -- and that is PRECISELY what made me focus so much on finding clients with better sites that provided more variety to work with, in the same way that Tom Fazio focused on finding clients with money, after watching his uncle work on a few projects that failed financially.  Great sites have been the key to my success, but they were also the key to most everyone else's success.  If you're such a genius that you've gotta prove it without the benefit of a good site, I'd advise that you might want to try succeeding with two hands before you tie one of them behind your back.   


Tom,


Thank you for the advice in the last sentence - we will see maybe one day and I do like a challenge  ;D 

I would appreciate if you can stop 'twisting' words that i am supposed to have said or written and in future could you put them in your response as reference/fact.

Did I actually write that I am a 'fan of Pete Dye'? - Dye did some amazing work and some meh work having played some of his lesser know courses also did i refer to 'Dye being a pioneer of railroad ties'? are you reading accurately what I actually wrote?


Very interesting to see you are stating that Pete's work is repetitive (alongside your dislike of square greens).

With Pete Dye as your mentor many moons ago surely you were able to have more design freedom when you went on your own. Regarding some of your former colleagues are they doing better commercially now? or have they produced better designs than you? people will always have different views of this and the more recent colleagues - could they potentially eclipse you as they have been 'let free to do their own thing'. Thats evolution and moving on with the times.

I have worked with people (Architects or Golf Course Designers) or companies who are commercially astute - one of the clients i worked for is one of the most famous company in the world a multi billion dollar company and their design approach across the company and commercial mindset totally blew me away and I can see why they are so successful and they did evolve over the last few decades to be ahead of the market that puts them in a strong position. It was one of the greatest experience i have had in my work life even though i wasn't keen to work on their projects at the beginning in the end it was the best.

You have your ways of doing things as we all have - is it going to last for the rest of our life/career? I have seen how you work and operate on site. Most on this site (GCA) haven't so I have which was a learning curve for me. 

Designers do have certain habits - some don't see it and some do. Sometimes it's better not to give the game away and let others work it out for themselves why this comment is being said and if they have a different view or opinion thats ok. Would life be better had everyone got the same opinion/view?


Cheers
Ben

« Last Edit: January 29, 2023, 08:06:56 AM by Ben Stephens »

Mark Chaplin

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #142 on: January 29, 2023, 07:22:50 AM »
Tom,




One question if you were entering a golf course design competition and the rule is that the entry was just a reference number (no reference to who the designer is) would you win the competition?




Cheers
Ben


In a finance and marketing driven world how successful would a course by designer A be compared to one by C&C, Doak, Ebert or Hanse?


Just as a painting with a black background and a few splodges by artist A is worth a couple of hundred quid and a similar picture by a well known artist can be worth tens or hundreds of thousands or more.


In either case an unknown could pass the technical test with a better score.
Cave Nil Vino

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #143 on: January 29, 2023, 07:51:51 AM »
Tom,




One question if you were entering a golf course design competition and the rule is that the entry was just a reference number (no reference to who the designer is) would you win the competition?




Cheers
Ben


In a finance and marketing driven world how successful would a course by designer A be compared to one by C&C, Doak, Ebert or Hanse?


Just as a painting with a black background and a few splodges by artist A is worth a couple of hundred quid and a similar picture by a well known artist can be worth tens or hundreds of thousands or more.


In either case an unknown could pass the technical test with a better score.


Mark,


Thats a good response.


Would clubs look at numbers if it was a Doak, Hanse and C+C course it may gain additional revenue however how many UK golfers do know them? most only see the course what it is not who designed it. Most probably prefer to play the Belfry more than the Renaissance for example. Its can be a matter of knowledge and taste not forgetting accessibility/location. Sometimes hosting certain tournaments elevate it rather than who designed the course. 


Its very often the case in Architecture (Buildings) in UK where Expressions of Interest are so much more common than competitions compared with 20 or 30 years ago or beyond. In France there are far more Architectural competitions to find the best design.


Its happening more and more often in GCA like the Architecture world these days that most clients prefer to go with experience, reputation than the optimum best design. People who won competitions or had the opportunity 20-30 years have never had it so much better today and the ceiling for unknowns to break through as grown a lot thicker and harder.


Cheers
Ben
« Last Edit: January 29, 2023, 08:05:24 AM by Ben Stephens »

Ally Mcintosh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #144 on: January 29, 2023, 08:22:40 AM »
Tom,




One question if you were entering a golf course design competition and the rule is that the entry was just a reference number (no reference to who the designer is) would you win the competition?




Cheers
Ben


In a finance and marketing driven world how successful would a course by designer A be compared to one by C&C, Doak, Ebert or Hanse?


Just as a painting with a black background and a few splodges by artist A is worth a couple of hundred quid and a similar picture by a well known artist can be worth tens or hundreds of thousands or more.


In either case an unknown could pass the technical test with a better score.


Mark,


Thats a good response.


Would clubs look at numbers if it was a Doak, Hanse and C+C course it may gain additional revenue however how many UK golfers do know them? most only see the course what it is not who designed it. Most probably prefer to play the Belfry more than the Renaissance for example. Its can be a matter of knowledge and taste not forgetting accessibility/location. Sometimes hosting certain tournaments elevate it rather than who designed the course. 


Its very often the case in Architecture (Buildings) in UK where Expressions of Interest are so much more common than competitions compared with 20 or 30 years ago or beyond. In France there are far more Architectural competitions to find the best design.


Its happening more and more often in GCA like the Architecture world these days that most clients prefer to go with experience, reputation than the optimum best design. People who won competitions or had the opportunity 20-30 years have never had it so much better today and the ceiling for unknowns to break through as grown a lot thicker and harder.


Cheers
Ben


Ben,


People never got hired in golf course architecture competitions on the “best design”. Many clients can’t discern the “best” design and they will still go with some hook in the presentation that took their fancy OR a feeling of professionalism from the designer (often with fancy graphics) OR a good sales pitch OR a recommendation from previous work OR something that will guarantee them more revenue.


It’s a ridiculous question to ask not only because of the above but also because there are so many variables from one pitch to the next.

Peter Sayegh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #145 on: January 29, 2023, 08:44:47 AM »
Has this dead horse turned to jerky yet?

Yes, I think there can be too much sand. The aesthetics may be great but I think it's playabilty is very overrated.



Erik J. Barzeski

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #146 on: January 29, 2023, 08:47:47 AM »
Ben, dude, just stop. You're not making yourself look good here at all. "Would you win a design competition?" What kind of a stupid question is that?
Erik J. Barzeski @iacas
Author, Lowest Score Wins, Instructor/Coach, and Lifetime Student of the Game.

I ignore Rob, Tim, and Garland.

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #147 on: January 29, 2023, 09:40:13 AM »
Ben, dude, just stop. You're not making yourself look good here at all. "Would you win a design competition?" What kind of a stupid question is that?


It may be stupid to you and Ally.


Sayonara!

Steve Abt

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #148 on: January 29, 2023, 09:46:41 AM »
Ben, why not create a new thread like “Do the portfolios of the new golden age architects lack the diversity of those of the golden age architects?” or whatever argument you’re trying to make? I think part of what is so off-putting about this is that 1) you’ve hijacked a totally unrelated thread based on one word of a random reply and 2) you’re targeting one architect at least partly because he’s on here and you’re trying to get a rise and responses from him and his many defenders.


If you start a new thread comparing and contrasting the portfolios of multiple architects, I think there would be a more interesting discussion, assuming that’s what you’re looking for. 

jeffwarne

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can There Be Too Much Sand?
« Reply #149 on: January 29, 2023, 10:01:00 AM »
Ben, dude, just stop. You're not making yourself look good here at all. "Would you win a design competition?" What kind of a stupid question is that?


It may be stupid to you and Ally.


Sayonara!


This thread brings several thoughts to mind.


1.Imagine if there had been an internet in the late 80s  early 90's and  Fazio Nicklaus Dye and the Jones brothers were involved in daily "lively" discussions with a young Tom Doak.
Which only adds to my appreciation that TD continues to interact here.


2.A design contest would identify a very narrow skillset of an architect's  tool chest, to say nothing of his ability to assemble a team to get it successfully in the ground on budget and on time.
Such a detailed plan might also inhibit an proven, experienced architect who could achieve the above while allowing the project to evolve creatively "in the dirt".
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

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