Monday, February 25, 2013

Scenery and Place

I've been able to drive back and forth between middle and east Tennessee several times in the last three weeks. The color palette is more diverse than you might expect. In the distance sometimes you can see that certain trees have the reddish early spring cast as they begin to bud out.

I believe the introduction of the American interstate system probably sealed the deal on landscape as commodity. The scenery became something behind glass that we consume at high speeds. The difference between the macro view of vistas and rolling hills unfolding out from I-40 and the ecological minutiae of place is one that I hope the Land Scouts can help span. This is not to say that we must walk the distances we drive (although it's not a bad idea if you've got the time, wits, and health to do so), but that our understanding of the large scale scene is deepened in a significant way when we have personal experience with the specific and individual. I suspect this rule would hold true for other situations. For example, how we view populations of people.

Glitch art and a landscape: technology gets organic.
How can we create relatively convenient and meaningful land experiences that provide the familiarity and intimacy needed to become good stewards? How can we make those experiences accessible to as many people as would like them? Things on which to stew in the coming weeks as we hope for Spring and notice the days lengthening.