Welcome to our podcast series from the Journal of Biophilic Design, where we interview workplace consultants, futurists, interior designers, architects, urban planners and those working in healthcare, wellbeing and other industries to find out the latest on Biophilic Design. www.journalofbiophilicdesign.com
Technobiophilia - Life, Nature and Technology
There are many metaphors of nature in cyber space which we use without even thinking about it: clouds, streams, webs, and so on. Dr Sue Thomas has conducted research on how we can use technology to enhance our connection with nature. In this podcast we talk about how the huge amount of research and environmental science data has shown the benefits of nature on our wellbeing, including reducing blood pressure and other measurable benefits. Sue has also studied research on the effects of engaging with nature on devices, through technology, such as watching wildlife shows and even playing video games.
She shares her concept of Technobiophilia. We talk about a real mix of things, ideas you can do on your commute or at your office desk, from plants, to stones, alpacas on Instagram, Farmville, live streams from eagles nests, fixed nature webcams, and lots more.
With her brush of TechnoBiophilia she would love to see a beautiful nature world appear, where you can consciously engage in nature, where the worm in a garden has as much importance and attention as a donkey over a fence. Being mindful of your environment. We are increasingly enjoying a life friendly way of living and a more balanced natured connected way of living. Long may it continue. With technology, we don't need to give it up, just because we are on a train or in an office, nature can be wherever you want it to be. Anywhere in the world.
Please visit www.journalofbiophilicdesign.com for details of her book, website and how you can find out more about Technobiohilia.
Your Life Nature
When was the last time you took a “nature break”? Hobie Hare, founder of “Your Life Nature” encourages us not only to take some time and get out into nature but also to bring Biophilia into our homes, with reminders of positive emotions, maybe it’s seashells from the beach, or a photograph that conjures an emotion that resonates with you.
Both Hobie and I are photographers, so it was nice for me to discuss and hear his perception of how imagery can improve and enhance a space, and the mindset of those experiencing those photographs. He suggests that when you consider which picture to chose, you think about what that picture will bring to your space. Maybe it’s contemplation, peace, serenity, excitement, adventure, maybe even courage. He shares explanations of the images shown here on our website journalofbiophilicdesign.com, such as the tree, bending, heavy with snow, reminds us that nature finds a way, and so do we.
Hobie also emphasises on how we can use nature to connect to ourselves and also our community, how we should remind ourselves that nature is bountiful, we should enjoy the bounty that we have. Slow down, start small, build regular habits to connect your life more to nature. I forgot to mention this on the podcast, but I think also photographs of nature also remind us to look for certain things when we are outside. He had mentioned that when you take your nature breaks, wherever you are, look at the angle of the sun, the intensity, what can you smell on the wind, watch and enjoy the behaviour of birds. A photograph is not only a visual reminder of what you’ve seen, it can also help encourage an enhanced perception when you go back outside.
Visit journalofbiophilicdesign.com for images and free download links
There’s an awesome event coming up in London which you should attend if you can. Planted Cities. It is going to be held in one of London’s greatest regeneration success stories and is run by Deborah Spencer who set up Design Junction, one of the biggest design shows in Europe for the last decade and Sam Peters, former Sunday Times journalist. We speak with Sam, to find out more about it. Planted is all about reconnecting people and spaces with nature to encourage cleaner, greener urban spaces, also showcasing brands who put the environment and nature at the centre of everything they do. They are working our industry lead in this field, Oliver Heath.
There will be 3 pillars of the show: Natural Living, Botanical Market and Sustainable Design. It will show that almost any space can be connected to nature.
There is a growing market and a growing urgency for the need to reconnect our lives and cities to nature. There are so many challenges in our cities from air, light and noise pollution which can be significantly improved when you have natural habitats, plus there are so many more health benefits having access to green space affords us, as Lockdown globally has proven.
Planted is also hoping to be a Zero Waste event, this is really ambitious, and if they pull it off, it will be a benchmark for all events. There are so many positives which will come out of this event, Io suggest you visit their website www.planted-cities.co.uk and register your attendance. Hope to see you there.
Biophilic Design and its Impact on Atmospheric Perception
Biophilic Design is becoming increasingly recognised as an essential design element in interiors and architecture. Lâl Dalay recently published the results of her research on “The Impact of Biophilic Design Elements on the Atmospheric Perception of the Interior Space”. We speak to her today about how biophilc design elements have an impact on people. Her focus is on the sensory effect the different Biophilic Design enhancements have on us.
We speak about how the healing effect is the most important impact of Biophilic Design, it has both a physical and a mental benefit. Lâl shares her studies on how organic naturalistic design creates a more positive environment for us. She analyses the essential Biophilic elements such as plants, water, colours, shapes and forms inspired by nature, fire, ventilation, animals and natural light and how we connect those design elements with the sensory experience and perception in the spaces they are introduced.
She raises the point that plants are living things, and change colours, their scent changes, how natural light can be played with in terms of using other design elements along side such as openings in architecture, creating shadows. How water is essential for us, but using waterfalls in a space you can create an interactive element.
At the end of the podcast you’ll be inspired to see how you as a designer can use Biophilic Design elements and other architectural and furnishing elements to complement each other to bring about a positive sensory environment that will have a positive impact on those using the space.
Botanic Shed 10 minute tip - 1 Soil
In the first of a series of short 10 minute podcasts with our partner Lara Cowan at The Botanic Shed, School of Nature, where she shares tips and science on why and how nature is good for us. Today we talk about Soil. You will learn some surprising facts about soil, from he smell, the bacteria, the negative ions therein and more. She also suggests a few things you can plant out at the weekend, from Broad beans to leeks… to get you out of the house and engaging in the gorgeousness of soil.
Soil is also beneficial as it cleanses the air as found in the NASA Study (see the podcast with Skogluft).
Wild Urban Spaces
Rapid Growth Urban Forest Creation... to me it seems like a dream concept, being able to rewild urban environments quickly to help the environment, bring biodiversity, create wildlife corridors, rooftop forests, school bee forests, support community and individual health and wellbeing and more... The Miyawaki Method of rapid forestation is based on observing and mimicking nature.
These forests are maintenance free in 3 years. This is a fascinating conversation with James Godfrey-Faussett, founder of Wild Urban Spaces, practitioner and advocate of the Miyawaki Method, where you will learn how James and his team densely plant indigenous trees at a mix of canopy heights, which kinds of trees, where you can go an see and experience one.
And they don't have to be huge. They are also creating micro forests in schools, cities, you can even plant them on rooftops. Can you imagine what a future city could look like? Creating roof corridors. Learn how much rootspace you need (it's surprising short!), why they need less water, Where other projects are being undertaken and how you can get involved by volunteering, donating, commissioning one.
Form James: "Dense healthy forest will heal our environment, create biodiversity and reconnect communities with nature.Areas of forest will also sequester huge amounts of Co2, clean the atmosphere, remove dangerous particle matter and heavy metals, while emitting bountiful oxygen.Micro forests have all the benefits of primal forests but on a local impactful level. Typically the size of a tennis court and planted with 600 native trees, we can achieve ultra rapid vibrant growth in all environments using the Miyawaki method of afforestation. The process allows for virtually no upkeep and the forests are maintenance free in as little as 3 years.Biodiversity is rapidly established and allowed to flourish. Even in busy urban areas biodiversity oases will form and prosper. Our micro forests grow quickly and vibrantly so the environment and community can benefit from the word go."
See more at www.journalofbiophilicdesign.com
For James Godrey-Faussett's details see www.wildurbanspaces.com
Credits: with thanks to George Harvey Audio Production for the calming biophilic soundscape that backs all our podcasts.
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