We had the good fortune of connecting with Yura Lotonenko and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Yura, alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
LASD Studio: Landscape Architecture. Sustainability. Design. LASD Studio provides garden design, landscape architecture, urban design, and regional landscape design services internationally based in San Diego, California. Our landscape, ecology, future of the planet, and our civilization is under a big risk. We aim to create, shape, and restore the landscape and urban environments for the sustainable continuation of life on our planet. Our goal is to live in balance with nature and provide: clean water, air, soil resources for the next generation. But we cannot achieve our goal alone. Whether you are private person, commercial, NGO’s, or governmental institution you are welcome to join our mission. Life begins with you. Join our mission today. We are a unique interdisciplinary team that has one clear mission: We aim to create, shape, and restore the landscape and urban environments for the sustainable continuation of life. Our goal is to live in balance with nature, and preserve vital resources for the next generations after our lifetime. I don’t like to talk about difficult situations with your own company. I guess business owners knows exactly what I mean, it is never easy to have your own business. But in our case it is not about us or our own success, it is about bigger image – success of everyone, success of our future, ecology, ecosystem, landscape habitats, success of living together in balance with nature. I think that this mission is what inspires us most, and that is why we are doing what we are doing despite all the challenges that comes our way. And we will continue to do what we are doing in any case. And there are so much to do with our Earth to sustain life, what we do is just a little baby steps now. We hope we can gather more people and produce more during our lifetime.
How do you think about risk?
To my believe, and professional experience. I would say to take risks is tricky. Let me share with you my thoughts. When I participated motivational seminars, business-psychology events, had my own coach for LASD Studio, etc. Very often we see the same and the same – when someone jumping on the stage and screaming that you must take risks without actually diving into explanations, and specific parameters of that risk. I believe if we talk about risk, we also have to talk about managing those risks. See, for example, if somebody will tell you jump in the pool full of sharks – take a risk! You might think a bit before you do that. Also, it is not about procrastination, but mostly about possible beneficial outcomes that might arise after taking this risk. Of course, risks in a daily life are different. But those risks are nothing else than smart decision making based on your long term goal, vision in life, business etc. I took too many risks, some of them are good, some of them are fatal mistakes. So I learned with the journey of LASD Studio in San Diego and in Denmark that it is important to take risks in a smart, and being able to manage those risks, to analyze them, to take some additional tools to understand the risks. It is nothing more than smart, logical and intellectual decisions. Some of us making emotional decisions, maybe for some people and business owners it works well, in my case it never worked well. Risk is a great tool. Because of that I managed to have my own company in Denmark, San Diego that providing high quality landscape architectural services for residential, commercial and urban spaces today worldwide. Our company has projects in San Diego, Los Angeles, Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Iceland, Abu Dhabi, Canada. I believe, we are still just at the beginning of our journey with LASD Studio. But to be honest would it be smart to take risks without a good preparation? And in my case, or a case of LASD Studio, preparation means 3 start-up’s failures, 15 years of education, 2 Master degrees, numerous international practices, a years of self education and so on… So to conclude this discussion, I think risks are great, but you need a good preparation; clear understanding benefits of why do you need that step (as not every risk you need in case of sharks in a pool), being able to manage the risk, never make emotional decisions, understand at least 70% of situation before taking the risk. I think that would be a very fair and respectful way to treat ourselves with certain risks.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
San Diego is an amazing place to be. I personally love our endless beach in Del Mar, Meditation garden in Encinitas, surfing and kite surfing. Very often I plan my weekend as wake up at 6 am. go surfing at La Jolla Shores with friends. Take a bike trip from La Jolla to Encinitas with friends and stay for the lunch is a different places along the way. Another amazing place, I love to visit is Sunset cliff. I love to be there with my girlfriend during the sunset. After that we are happy to hear good jazz and have sea food at La Jolla’s Eddie V’s, just a great place and always nice people. This is actually one of my favorite places to eat / have a drink in La Jolla.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
LASD Studio Megan from M Studio https://www.mstudiointeriordesign.com/ Kimberly Alexander from Alle Landscapes https://alleelandscapedesign.com/ better call her John Beaudry https://www.beaudrydesign.com/ I think he is already with you guys. Thank you.
All rights reserved by LASD Studio, San Diego, CEO Yura Lotonenko Original pictures, some of our works.