forests

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Art Design

If a Tree Falls in the Forest… These Megaphones Will Amplify Its Sound

September 23, 2015

Kate Sierzputowski

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All images by Tõnu Tunnel

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The soothing sounds of nature have never been easier to hear after a group of interior architecture students from the Estonian Academy of Arts decided to infiltrate a nearby forest with three giant wooden microphones. The sound-amplifying installation is near RMK’s pähni nature centre, an area where one can currently rest within the grooves of one of three megaphones to intently listen to the detailed rustling of leaves or chirping of birds both near and far.

Valdur Mikita, a writer who has often covered the way Estonian culture is tied to the 51% of forests that comprise it said, “It’s a place to listen, to browse the audible book of nature – there hasn’t really been a place like that in Estonia before.”

According to interior architect Hannes Praks the three-metre diameter megaphones will act as a “bandstand” for the environment around it. “We’ll be placing the three megaphones at such a distance and at a suitable angle, so at the centre of the installation, sound feed from all three directions should create a unique merged surround sound effect,” said Praks.

The structures will not only be available for solo meditation, but also serve as stages for intimate events and protective structures for spending the night in the woods—which in this forest you can do for free. (via Mental Floss)

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Photography

Foggy Forests of Ancient Trees Pruned for Charcoal in Basque Country Photographed by Oskar Zapirain

June 19, 2015

Christopher Jobson

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Oskar Zapirain's photographs capture eerie forests cast in thick fog, hazy light descending upon the foliage in the same green shade that blankets the floor in moss. Zapirain has been attracted to this landscape for years because of the homogenous light as well as the way it forces the viewer directly into a mystical atmosphere.

The forest Zapirain features is a beech forest in Oiartzun, Basque Country in Northern Spain. This particular forest is unique due to the history charcoal production within the region. Instead of clearcutting like we do today, the trees were instead pruned to preserve the trees and maintain the integrity of the forest across generations. The trees have since regrown with short trunks and dramatically long limbs that shoot outward like arms from almost every angle, adding a ghostly feel to each of Zapirain’s photos. You can explore more of his work on Flickr.

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Art Design

A Bioluminescent Forest Created with Digital Projection Mapping

January 5, 2015

Christopher Jobson

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While we’ve seen many examples of projection mapping on the sides of buildings or other relatively flat surfaces in an attempt to add depth or dimension, it seems photographers and digital artists are getting progressively more innovative as the technology continues to evolve. Last week we saw a commendable dance performance making use of projection mapping, and now photographer Tarek Mawad and animator Friedrich van Schoor just spent six weeks embedded in nature to create Bioluminescent Forest. The 4-minute short film imagines what various plants, insects, spiderwebs, and mushrooms might look like if they possessed the ability to emit bioluminescent light, creating a strange wonderland of blinking and twinkling organisms. The filmmakers state that everything you see was created live, without any effects added in post-production. You can watch a behind-the-scenes clip here. (via PetaPixel, The Kid Should See This)

 

 



Art Illustration

Overlook: A New Woodcut Print from Tugboat Printshop

September 4, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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After two years of preparation and meticulous carving, “Overlook” is an upcoming woodcut print from the minds and hands of Paul Roden and Valerie Lueth of Pittsburgh-based Tugboat Printshop (previously). The duo make some of the most stunning limited edition woodcut prints around, having churned out a number of new pieces since we last checked in including Woodcut Valley, Community, and Desert Island. The final color print of Overlook (above is just the woodblock used for printing) will be 28″ x 46″ and is available for pre-order.

 

 



Amazing Science

Since the 1970s a Man Has Been Planting a Forest Larger than Central Park, One Tree at a Time

July 16, 2014

Christopher Jobson

Nestled in Northeast India next to the Brahmaputra River sits Majuli Island, a giant sandbar that happens to be the largest river island on Earth, home to some 150,000 people. It is also the location of the 1,360 acre Molai Forest, one of the most unusual woodlands in the world for the incredible fact that it was planted by a single man. Since 1979, forestry worker Jadav Payeng has dedicated his life to planting trees on the island, creating a forest that has surpassed the scale of New York’s Central Park.

While home to such a large population, rapidly increasing erosion over the last 100 years has reduced the land mass of Majuli Island to less than half. Spurred by the dire situation, Payeng transformed himself into a modern day Johnny Appleseed and singlehandedly planted thousands upon thousands of plants, including 300 hectares of bamboo.

Payeng’s work has been credited with significantly fortifying the island, while providing a habitat for several endangered animals which have returned to the area; a herd of nearly 100 elephants (which has now given birth to an additional ten), Bengal tigers, and a species of vulture that hasn’t been seen on the island in over 40 years. Gives you more than a little hope for the world, doesn’t it?

Filmmaker William Douglas McMaster recently wrote and directed this beautiful documentary short titled Forest Man from the perspective of Payeng’s friend, photographer Jitu Kalita. The project was funded in part last year through Kickstarter. The video is a bit longer than what we usually see here on Colossal, but completely worth your time. (via Gizmodo)

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Design

A Retired Boeing 727 Converted Into a Home in the Woods

June 9, 2014

Johnny Waldman

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photo courtesy airplanehome.com

When most people board a plane they’re usually leaving home. But not if you’re Bruce Campbell, an innovative engineer who rejected the standards of traditional housing and decided to engage his flight of fancy. He purchased a retired Boeing 727, complete with wings and landing gear, for about $220,000 and situated it in a suburban wooded area outside Portland, Oregon. After many years of work the plane is now a makeshift home with electricity, a shower and kitchen. It’s like a young boy’s dream come true!

Want your own airplane home? “You need to acquire two things: An airliner, and suitable land to host it.” Well, it may not be quite that simple but Campbell has a how-to guide on his webpage to shed light on the process. According to the Aircraft Fleet Recycling Association (AFRA) there will be 500 – 600 aircraft retired annually over the next two decades. That’s 10,000 – 12,000 potentially new aircraft homes coming on the market. Better start making plans now! (via Bored Panda and Huffington Post)

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still from the video by Even Quach

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photos by John Brecher

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photo by John Brecher

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photo by John Brecher

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photo courtesy airplanehome.com

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still from the video by Even Quach

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still from the video by Even Quach

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still from the video by Even Quach

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photo by John Brecher

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still from the video by Even Quach

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photo by John Brecher

 

 



Photography

Cloud Forest: Landscape Photos of the Misty Czech Bohemian Forest by Kilian Schönberger

December 5, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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It’s fascinating to know while looking at these desaturated images of the Czech Bohemian Forest that the person who shot them, Cologne-based photographer Kilian Schönberger, is color blind. One can’t help but wonder if the condition leads to a greater appreciation for light and composition present in these mysterious, fog-soaked landscapes. That said, these particular monochromatic photos from Schönberger’s Cloud Forest series are more of an exception, as he generally shoots in full color, but the results are equally as magical. You can see much more of his work over on Facebook and Behance. (via Faith is Torment)