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SKETCHBOOK: a creative tool and a way of life that celebrates design and drawing as vital ways to see and value culture, to discover ideas, and to envision a better world.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Jim's Drawing Resurfaces in National Geographic Film

This powerful film is only 8 minutes long.  Bamberger's narration using Jim's drawing is at 4:20.

This is one of the most inspiring short films you'll see, telling the story of rebirth of Texas Hill Country wasteland into verdant grasslands and springs. I worked with and was inspired by Texas rancher and renowned conservationist David Bamberger in the early 1990s, working as a landscape architect and land planning consultant for JJR/inc. The team included non-profit education innovator Julia Jarrell, my JJR partner Dale Sass, and architecture critic David Dillon. By that time many of Bamberger's ideas had already transformed his 5,500-acre Selah ranch into a model for land conservation. At 4:20 of this short film, David uses one of the many drawings I created during our extended conversations to illustrate his foundational idea for using environmental processes to bring the land back to life. When I was shown this film in 2020, I hadn't seen that drawing in 25 years. I'm beyond delighted that it continues to inform and inspire.

Here's the link:

Selah: Stone to Water. A National Geographic Film

Bamberger explains how his childhood experiences and values shaped the philosophies that led to the restoration of Selah.

Screen shot of Bamberger using Jim's drawing--now used as an interpretive exhibit at the ranch--to explain how his conservation strategies work with environmental processes to bring the land back to life.


  1. Hello Jim, this is so inspiring and peaceful. Thanks so much for sharing!

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