A day to day webdocumentary.
365 moments of nature, from January 1 to December 31.
A video journal filmed by Jim Brandenburg and directed by Laurent Joffrion.
A naturalist and poetic vision of the northern wild biotopes.
Introduction by Jim Brandenburg, wildlife photographer and filmmaker
For many years I filmed the forests around my wilderness home in the great northwoods and the wide-open prairies of my childhood. I had no particular project in mind; I simply enjoyed documenting the moods of the day and the coming and goings of the wild creatures that were almost like family to me. It became like a diary and for many years it was rare not to ‘write’ something with my camera nearly every day.
Those precious experiences and memories have now found a safe home where they can be shared with many of my friends from around the world. It surprised me how extensive this diary had become. Day by day, year after year the pages accumulated. The resulting journal found its voice. Each day a one minute impression of a unique event that I was fortunate to witness is presented. Less can be more in this case. Like a good poem, the material that is left out gives weight to what remains. Nature has blessed me with its gifts of subtle but powerful teaching. One might even describe these moments I give back as a form of a small prayer; a mindful effort to pay homage to a wild and natural living land.
There were themes that kept presenting themselves to me – like the resident wolf pack that over the years learned to trust my presence. The wolf is a recurring subject, perhaps more than any other. In their trust, secrets were revealed to my camera that were not known, even to science. Then on occasion I entered into another world and encountered a ghost from the past in the name of a Native American spirit. Those that lived a natural existence here for centuries before me have left a strong presence. I felt their presence and knew it was appropriate to include that spirit.
The seasons would usually slide into their nearly imperceptive rhythm and other times the land transformed overnight. The magic of living and embracing the grandeur of wild nature is heightened by dramatic weather changes that can leave city dwellers unbalanced. Nature has become the enemy to many. That is a dangerous condition.
I have tried to project the miracle as I saw it. A translation of the unknown gift we often don’t understand or even see. I hope the message was received and understood, better yet felt. For that I would be honored; the land and its creatures would be eternally thankful.
Intentions by Laurent Joffrion, director
One day, Jim Brandenburg came to me with a mysterious gift. He gave me some hard drives filled with video clips that no one had ever seen. A work of several years in the northwoods and the great prairies of the Midwest, USA. His backyard at Ravenwood, where he lives, and Luverne, where he was born.
« It’s for you… he said, I don’t know what we can do with this, but perhaps we could work together ? »
An honor and a great challenge.
So I reviewed all of these videos. For hours and hours… And I found this remarkable body of work. I watched the seasons pass through the years. Spring blooms, fall colors, first snows, vast frozen horizons… I followed streams and canoed on preserved lakes; I wandered the great plains on the bison footsteps. Deep in the forest, I witnessed how the wolf pack evolved and their puppies grew; Wild orchids, migrating birds gathering, prairie dogs… I marveled at air bubbles trapped under transparent ice, at sparkling frost or morning silhouettes hiding in the fog. I contemplated northern lights, heard the loons call, slept under the stars…
For almost ten years, Jim filmed his natural environment, keeping an exclusive journal. Exceptional. These videos are remarkable as they come from a long term commitment, as they reflect a unique and poetic vision by Jim, and as they show the beauty and diversity of the great natural systems of the northern hemisphere, the boreal forest and the great plains, as they are when their wilderness is preserved. I don’t think I’ll ever have an other opportunity to work with such a body of work on a natural history subject.
Then, thinking about Jim’s previous successes such as Chased By The Light, Looking for the Summer or 93 Days of Spring, all built on the principle of one picture a day, I thought «Why don’t we present one daily video sequence, for the whole next year ? 365 original clips which, as a set, would reveal the pertinence of Jim’s documentary work. A journal; a collection of short and personal stories; an innovating web documentary offering an authentic and poetic vision of nature…»
This project, named Nature 365, was born from my connection with Jim, the discovery of his rare and precious video work, and from our common wish to share it with people. I hope that each person who will here discover this great wilderness, will appreciate it as much as I do.
About Jim Brandenburg
Jim Brandenburg traveled the globe as a photographer with National Geographic Magazine for several decades. His extensive body of work has been published throughout the world and his photographs have won a multitude of national and international awards. He was the recipient of the ‘Wildlife Photographer of the Year’ award by the Natural History Museum-London and BBC Wildlife Magazine, and twice was named ‘Magazine Photographer of the Year’ by the National Press Photographer’s Association (NPPA). Brandenburg was the recipient of the ‘World Achievement Award’ from the United Nations in recognition of his using nature photography to raise public awareness for the environment. The University of Minnesota awarded him an honorary Ph.D for his work. Four of Brandenburg’s images were chosen for inclusion in a unique collection that represents the “40 most important nature photographs of all time” by colleagues and magazine editors involved with iLCP.
Jim Brandenburg has published many bestsellers including: Chased by the Light, Looking for the Summer, Brother Wolf, White Wolf and Minnesota Images of Home. He has also published many young adult books including the National Geographic book titled Face to Face with Wolves. His movie and TV work includes filming with NHK in Japan, National Geographic Television Specials and the BBC television series “Life.” Several Brandenburg photographic exhibitions are planned in the US, Europe and Japan over the next several years.
Jim Brandenburg’s work can be seen on the web at www.jimbrandenburg.com or at the Brandenburg Gallery in Ely, Minnesota and Luverne, Minnesota.
About Laurent Joffrion
His passion for nature and his particular interest for the relationship that unites man with his environment inspire french director Laurent Joffrion to usually offer an optimistic vision of nature. Stories of artists who value biodiversity, stories about people committed to the preservation of their natural heritage, stories about synergies and conservation projects… His most important films have won awards at national and international festivals. Laurent Joffrion has worked with several television production companies, in France and abroad, and on the new medias by exploring innovating narrative forms. For this purpose, he created the multimedia company FollowFocus, which runs the Nature 365 channel : www.followfocus.fr