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Eyes in the Forest exhibition and film at the Nelson Library

By Contributor
September 19th, 2014

When you see a pygmy owl or a mountain sheep caught on film by Jim Lawrence, it’s impossible not to wonder how the acclaimed wildlife photographer got such an astonishing shot.

Filmmaker Miriam Needoba set out to find the answer, stomping through forest and marsh in all weather and times of day.

Her short film Eyes in the Forest: The Portraiture of Jim Lawrence marries the art form of still images and cinematography—and answers the question.

Lawrence’s photographs are on display at the Nelson Public Library September through October, with a special artist reception and film screening on Tuesday, October 7 at 7 p.m.

“I wanted to provide an experience, an intimate view of this world that is often hidden from sight but is deeply impacted by human action,” says Needoba about the film.

“I hoped that representing their world, and Jim’s experience of it, would inspire greater empathy and understanding for the wildlife we so admire.”

The film reflects Lawrence’s approach as ethical photographer and environmentalist, but it also offers insight into the ways that Lawrence sees the subtlety and richness of the land and its inhabitants.

This is evidenced in the photographs on display: the wind lifting the fur of a coyote or the glint in the eye of a bear with a fish. It’s clear that Lawrence is at home in the wilderness.

“It is a privilege and a profound honour to observe these animals,” says Lawrence.

Both artist and filmmaker will be on hand to talk about their experiences at the reception and screening.

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