The National Parks: America’s Best Idea
by Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan : Companion to the PBS series by acclaimed filmmaker Ken Burns. Beautiful captivating imagery combined with a comprehensive history from the beginning of the idea to present. This book brings the history of the NPS alive and expresses how truly lucky we are to have the National Park System alive and well in the US…it is nothing to take for granted.
A Passion for Nature : The Life of John Muir
by Donald Worster : A biography that explores the extraordinary power of John Muir to inspire others to see the sacred beauty of Nature. Including private correspondence, the book traces Muir from childhood through his adult life.
Wilderness by Design: Landscape Architecture and the National Park Service
by Ethan Carr : A history of landscape park design, Wilderness by Design, places national park landscape architecture within a broad historical context. The book explores the impact of landscape architecture on how the national parks are enjoyed and how well they are protected.
Building the National Parks: Historic Landscape Design and Construction
by Linda Flint McClelland : Building the National Parks explores the conflicting missions of preservation and accessibility of the National Park Service and tells the history of the architects, landscape architects, and civil engineers who worked to create an infrastructure that emphasized scenic views and blended with topography and natural features.
Mary Colter : Architect of the Southwest
by Arnold Berke : Details the incredible career of architect, Mary Colter, best known for her work in Grand Canyon National Park (Hopi House and Lookout Tower to name a few).
75 years ago, the WPA commissioned a series of posters, called “See America”, to encourage travel to the National Parks and simultaneously put artists to work. From 1935-1943, various artists created this iconic series of imagery that remains popular today. The bold, flat renderings and a clear separation of foreground, middle ground, and background are hallmarks of these vintage posters.
In partnership with the National Parks Conservation Association, The Creative Action Network is helping to revitalize interest in these posters and our National Parks.
They have just launched a new See America Project, with a modern twist. CAN is crowdsourcing new poster submissions from artists for the National Parks as well as other cultural and historical sites in America. Much of the work is directly inspired by the New Deal Arts Project but others are breaking tradition and venturing in unexpected directions.
Check out the new generation of See America Posters and get inspired to get out there and explore our National Parks…. or submit a poster of your own!
The architectural style known as “National Park Service Rustic” (or “Parkitecture”), is a style that arose in the National Park System to create structures that harmonize with their natural environment. It uses native wood and stone to create structures that don’t interrupt the natural or historic scene. Characterized by hand-built and organic forms, parkitecture rejects the perfection and symmetry of industrial architecture.
Several of the NPS buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, one of the most renowned being the LeConte Memorial Lodge, located in Yosemite National Park.
Hopi House is located on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Built in 1905 and designed by architect Mary Colter.
Lake McDonald Lodge, in Glacier National Park is a rustic swiss-chalet style building with clipped gabled roofs, balconies on the upper stories, and jigsaw detailing. Principal building materials for the structure are stone for the foundation and first-floor walls, with a wood-frame superstructure.
Longmire Administrative Headquarters, in Mount Rainier National Park, was designed by staff of the National Park Service’s Landscape Division under the direction of landscape architect Thomas Vint.
Parkitecture is a significant influence in both Residential and Resort Architecture. It is a style that shows sensitivity to the precedence and beauty of a building’s surroundings by blending form and materials with the landscape. For further examples of both resort and NPS parkitecture, check out pinterest and houzz.
The New Year tends to inspire people to think about change. A blank slate to start doing new things or continue doing old things in a new way. It is interesting how the way businesses deal with change often determines their success and longevity. As DHM begins our 40th year, we have a unique perspective on events that have and will continue to shape our growth, both on the personal and corporate level. The economy, politics, technology and even weather immediately impact the decisions we make on allocating resources, time, money and energy. As we add additional staff, welcome new partnerships, say goodbye to others, move some offices to new buildings and remodel current ones, it is our reactions that characterize our strength as a team and our resiliency as a firm. Below are some tokens of wisdom I found to reinforce this ability to embrace change and learn from it in ways that improve our professional lives as intrepid entrepreneurs of design in 2014.
Think of Change Like a Software Upgrade. As the world changes and our operating system evolves, applications that used to work may not work anymore. As a result, they need to be updated with new code in order to function in a changed environment. Read on…
Mentally strong people embrace change and they welcome challenge. Their biggest ‘fear’ (if they have one) is not of the unknown, but of becoming complacent and stagnant. An environment of change and even uncertainty can energize a mentally strong person and bring out their best. Read on…
Ignore your inner reptile. The lizard brain is concerned with survival; it likes the tried and true, so it’s likely to pipe up, flooding you with adrenaline warnings of “Danger!” as you veer off course. But in the modern world it’s like a misfiring car alarm: pointless and annoying. Read on…
Of course there’s an app for that. Read on…
This past fall, I was driving on the highway and noticed a pick-up truck pulled off onto the shoulder and a man near the vegetated edge reaching out as if to grab something overhead. Like any good rubber-necker, I slowed down and took a couple of seconds to look at what he was doing. To my surprise, he had a bucket full of berries and was working on his second one! Seeing this immediately brought good memories to mind of bike-riding around my childhood neighborhood, passing the random mango tree and picking a few mangoes to eat later in the day. But it also made me wonder why there aren’t more fruiting trees and shrubs within cities that people could easily harvest…or, maybe, there are lots of fruiting trees around and I’m just unaware of it.
Although there are quite a few naysayers on the idea of fruit trees in cities – some with valid points – I think it is worth considering in some areas. Below are links to several organizations who are working towards the successful integration of fruit trees in urban settings. Could this work in your city?
The London Orchard Project