Becoming a Biophilic Designer happened organically. I didn’t actively choose it, but rather my spiritual beliefs naturally led me down this path.
I felt inspired by a transcendent experience that was born from a trip to Malaysia in 2017, it continually fascinates me how life can take you through such unconventional routes!
Belum Rainforest 2017
My journey started with a trip to Belum Rainforest, one of the world’s oldest rainforests. Estimated to be more than 130 million years old, this rain-forest dates to a time when dinosaurs still roamed the earth!
In the tropical morning light, my partner and I met our ‘jungle guide’ at a small private jetty on Temengor Lake. The lake was a shimmering expanse of emerald green and was encapsulated by the dense walls of the rainforest.
After a captivating 30-minute boat journey through the Royal Bellum State Park, we branched off into one of the smaller rivers. Our guide eventually eased us into a sheltered cove. I knew that this was going to be an adventure when our guide yielded his machete and cut us a path into the jungle ahead. We felt a mixture of fear, beauty, and mystery as we navigated our way into the heart of the jungle.
A Transcendent Connection to Nature
My mind (for the first time in years) quietened down. Until now, I had never truly experienced awe. The hairs on my body stood on end, whilst I took in all the sensory gifts supplied by the jungle. This, combined with the pungent smells, a concoction of jungle animals, and Gaham Bau trees (with their White Oud oil) filled me with equal parts liberation and humility.
Biophilic Design – Connecting with Nature to Improve Health & Wellbeing
My enlightening experience with the jungle left me with an innate need to connect to nature. The jungle adventure positively impacted my mental health. Alongside increased life satisfaction and feelings of autonomy, this has even benefited my physical health with lower hypertension and fewer headaches.
With my new, heightened appreciation for nature, a hunger to evolve, and a solid reputation in the design industry since 2000, I set about researching and learning how to bring my two passions together.
Biophilia translates to ‘love of life.
It is the idea that humans have an inherited need to connect to nature. The theory was first advanced by the American biologist, Edward O’Wilson in 1984 when he noticed that increasing urbanisation was leading to a disconnection with the natural world and having an adverse impact on physical and emotional well-being.
This philosophy has been researched and scientifically tested over the years. I wish to spread this positive impact further with my work as a Biophilic Designer!