Wim Hof

Known as the "Iceman", WIM HOF is a Dutch extreme athlete notorious for his ability to withstand extreme cold. He attributes his accomplishments to his breathing techniques based on the Tibetan Tummo meditation.

Hof holds 21 world records. In 2007, he attempted climbing Mt Everest wearing nothing but shorts and shoes. At the altitude of 24,500 ft, his ascent was cancelled due to frostbite on one foot. In 2008 he broke his previous world record by staying immersed in ice for 1 hour, 13 minutes and 48 seconds. In February 2009 Wim reached the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, again wearing only shorts and shoes. He ran a full marathon (26.219 mi) on sandals and in shorts, above the arctic circle in Finland with temperatures close to −4 °F. The challenge was filmed by Firecrackerfilms. In 2010 Hof again broke the ice endurance record by standing fully immersed in ice for 1 hour and 44 minutes in Tokyo, Japan. In 2011 Hof broke the ice endurance record twice, in Inzell in February and in New York City in November, setting a new Guinness World Record of 1 hour, 52 minutes, and 42 seconds. In September, Hof ran a full marathon in the Namibia Desert without water, under the supervision of Dr. Thijs Eijsvogels. Wim has officially swam under ice for 66 meters, unofficially swam under ice for 120 meters with one breath.

Hof is the founder of THE WIM HOF METHOD, a meditation routine that involves breathing exercises, and endurance to the cold. Download the app here, follow him on Instagram and Twitter.

3 words to describe Nature?

Happiness. Strength. Health - both inside and outside

3 things Nature taught you?

Nature is life

Purpose

Destiny

3 most treasured Nature spots?

Sierra de Guara, Spain

Ordesa National Park, Spain

Jokulsarlon, Iceland

When you look at the ocean, it makes you feel…?

Eternal

When you see a forest, it makes you feel…?

Mystical

When you see a volcano, it makes you feel…?

Powerful

When you see a sunrise or sunset, it makes you feel…?

Beautiful

When you hear thunder, it makes you feel…?

Humble

When you hear the wind howling, it makes you feel…?

That Mother Nature is talking

Are you an Ocean, Mountain, Forest, or Desert person?

Mountain

On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is Nature to your well-being?

There is nothing else

Share with us a childhood nature memory?

When I saw the Italian Alps for the first time as a seven year old boy, they were like strange entities - overwhelming.


Robert & Birgit Bateman

ROBERT BATEMAN is a Canadian naturalist and painter. Bateman started as a high school teacher of art and geography. In 1957-58, Robert travelled around the world for 14 months in a Land Rover with his friend Bristol Foster. As they made their way through Africa, India, Southeast Asia, and Australia, Bateman painted and sketched what he saw. His work started to receive major recognition in the 1970s and 1980s. Robert Bateman's show in 1987, at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, drew the largest crowd for a living artist. After two decades as a high school teacher, he became a full-time artist in 1976. Over the years, the sale of his prints have raised millions of dollars for environmental causes.

His work is featured in many public and private collections including the HRH The Prince Charles, HRH The Prince Philip, HRH The late Princess Grace of Monaco and HRH Bernhard, Prince of the Netherlands

Books about his life and art have sold well over 1,000,000 copies. He has been the subject of several films and television programs. Three schools have been named after him. He has been awarded 14 honorary doctorates. In 1977, he received the Queen Elizabeth Silver Jubilee Medal, the Officer of the Order of Canada in 1984, the World Wildlife Fund Member of Honour Award  in 1985, the Rachel Carson Award in 1996, the Queen’s Jubilee Medal in 2002, the Sir Edmund Hillary Foundation of Canada's President’s Medal  in 2005, the Amnesty International Human Rights Defender Award in 2007, the Royal Canadian Geographical Society Gold Medal in 2013, and many others. In 1998, the National Audubon Society named Robert as one of 20th Century's 100 Champions of Conservation

In 2013 the Robert Bateman Foundation was established as well as The Robert Bateman Centre in Victoria, BC. He is widely regarded by the national and international conservation community as a “hero” for his lifelong support and clearly articulated perspective.

3 words to describe Nature?

Essential. Complex. Wonderful

3 things Nature taught you?

To pay attention

To go slowly

To care about the future

3 most treasured Nature spots?

Around my home on Salt Spring Island

Around my home in Toronto

East Africa

When you look at the ocean, it makes you feel….?

Peaceful and inquisitive (what is on it and what is in it?)

When you see a forest, it makes you feel…?

Also peaceful and inquisitive

When you see a volcano, it makes you feel….?

Not so peaceful and less to be inquisitive about

When you see a sunrise or sunset, it makes you feel…?

Visually stimulated

When you hear thunder, it makes you feel…?

Nostalgic for times past when I was sheltered and cozy in our house during a storm

When you hear the wind howling, it makes you feel…?

A bit unsettled and sinister

Are you an Ocean, Mountain, Forest or Desert person?

More forest, but I have positive feelings for all forms

On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is nature to our well being?

10

Share with us a childhood nature memory.

One day in May in the 1940’s, a warm front brought a mass of migratory birds into the Toronto area. They seemed to fill the ravine behind our house with their voices filling the air with song and their bodies gathering food everywhere. I did a painting of that day in 1944 titles, “Backyard Birds”. I was 14 years old at the time.

BIRGIT FREYBE BATEMAN is a retired high school art teacher. An accomplished artist in her own right, she is a published and exhibited photographer. She was for 10 years,  the Director of the World Wildlife Fund Canada, and Friends of the Vancouver Island Marmot Foundation for 5 years. Since 1967 she has traveled throughout the world searching for images. After many exhibits around North America in both public and private galleries, her latest honour was an exhibit, Mindful Vision, sponsored by the State Russian Museum in the Stroganoff Palace in St.Petersburg, Russia in  2011. Her images have been published in the books of End of the Earth: Voyages to Antarctica by The National Geographic Society, Dangerous Beauty by Miramax, and Artists for Nature in Extremadura by Wildlife Art Gallery, as well as in Conde Nast Traveler, Outside Magazine, Northwest Travel, Geo Airone, National Geographic Adventure and Shambala Sun.

3 words to describe Nature?

Restorative. Comprehensive. Elaborate - “We are only part of nature!”

3 things Nature taught you?

No matter how destructive an event is to the environment, nature will come forth from the ashes.

That it is more complex than we can ever know.

Sometimes slow and steady wins the race and sometimes an all powerful thrust is needed to push through.

3 most treasured Nature spots?

Sitting on top of a 4 x 4 observing the African Savanna.

In a deep green mossy forest of very tall Red Cedars and Douglas Firs as at our place on Salt Spring Island and in Helliwell Park on Hornby Island.

On a beach up the BC coast with waves crashing on the shore as on Hornby Island.

When you look at the ocean, it makes you feel...?

Insignificant and curious

When you see a forest, it makes you feel...?

Impressed and protected

When you see a volcano, it makes you feel...?

Full of awe

When you see a sunrise or sunset, it makes you feel...? 

Calm and at peace, but also emotional

When you hear thunder, it makes you feel...?

Intrigued, since I didn’t hear it usually while I was growing up.

When you hear the wind howling, it makes you feel...? 

Afraid that some of our big firs and cedars will fall on the house!

Are you an Ocean, Mountain, Forest, or Desert person? 

All! Whatever setting I am in, I look all around, take a deep breath and am overwhelmed by the magnificence of all around me. The deep breathing immediately calms me. It is as if my genes are rejoicing.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is Nature to your well-being? 

10

Share with us a childhood nature memory? 

The youngest of 3 children, I was 8 when my family immigrated to Vancouver in 1955. Living in the West End we were latch-key kids. My parents usually were at work, so we didn’t have regular weekends the way others did. But one of the first special outings was going to Stanley Park. I had never seen such towering giants of trees. But the most impressive was the hollow tree, which was a Western Red Cedar about 700 years old. My uncle, who had immigrated years earlier and now had a car, had driven us there. He drove the car into the hollow and took a photo of the car with all of us in it. I felt protected by the giant cedar walls wrapped all around us.


Farhoud Meybodi

Founder of Cadre, and Co-Owner/Creative Director of Wayfarer Entertainment, FARHOUD MEYBODI is a writer, director, and producer focused on “disruptively inspirational” storytelling content across scripted, unscripted, and branded distribution channels.

Farhoud started his career in law, and spent his mid-twenties climbing up the corporate ladder as a sales and marketing Executive for a global luxury brand. This non-traditional background gave Farhoud a marketers mindset — something he draws upon quite frequently while helping brands, networks, non-profits, studios and NGO’s create stories that build empathetic bridges to viewers from all walks of life. Farhoud is a firm believer in the power of “Anti-branded content,” a term he coined that represents authentically constructed branded content that gives viewers the space to connect with universal brand values without forcing them into a sales conversation. At his core, Farhoud is passionate about creative content that entertains, educates and inspires. He believes in the power of raw and honest storytelling to help transcend political/social divisiveness through shared experience, and empathy.

Mostly recently, Farhoud directed and produced Season Three of My Last Days, an award-winning documentary series about life told by people living with a terminal illness, for the CW Network. He developed, and executive produced Chefs Without Borders, a documentary series featuring celebrity Chef, Curtis Stone, and Actress/Model, Lindsay Price, as they journey from Los Angeles to Tanzania to live with, and learn from three Indigenous tribes, each representing a unique perspective on food insecurity. Farhoud also developed, executive produced and wrote Man Enough, a disruptive dinner conversation series featuring Scooter Braun, Anderson Silva, Justin Baldoni, Matt McGorry etc that explores the heart of traditional masculinity in America. Farhoud created and executive produced Project Upgrade, an unscripted series for Google featuring YouTube stars, The Merrell Twins, as they set out to design and build a new consumer product with the help of successful, female mentors from Google, Space X, NASA, and Disney.

Farhoud has also developed and directed national campaigns for Subaru, Frosted Flakes, MetroPCS, and The Ad Council, and sold several scripted pitches to major studios and television networks.

3 words to describe Nature?

Hallowed. Life-giver. Muse.

3 things Nature taught you?

Resilience

Inner-peace

Patience

3 most treasured Nature spots?

Hot Springs, Arkansas

Astara, Iran

Delphi, Greece

When you look at the ocean, it makes you feel…?

A sense of deep reverence and gratitude

When you see a forest, it makes you feel…?

Like I’m in divinity’s sacred cathedral

When you see a volcano, it makes you feel…?

Humbled yet resilient, like Frodo taking in the awesomeness and fiery peril of Mount Doom after a long long journey through darkness.

When you see a sunrise or sunset, it makes you feel…?

Older

When you hear thunder, it makes you feel…?

Microscopic

When you hear the wind howling, it makes you feel…?

Like I’m hearing the whispers of my ancestors

Are you an Ocean, Mountain, Forest, or Desert person?

Jungle

On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is Nature to your well-being?

10 - My happiness, balance, well-being, and sense of self are deeply and intrinsically connected with Mother nature. She is EVERYTHING.

Share with us a childhood nature memory?

When I was a little kid, maybe five or six years old, my parents would take us to Yosemite, CA every year for an epic camping trip with friends and extended family. Over the course of a week, twenty of us would swim in Yosemite Falls, hike the Muir Trail to Half Dome, and roast marshmallows around the campfire, telling ghost stories while taking the grandeur of the seemingly limitless starry night. These trips are some of the most magical memories of my youth, and we didn’t have mobile phones, personal computers or WIFI to get in the way of the experience.

This was also around the time I was obsessed with the film, The Karate Kid. One time, I remember hiking down to the river with my friends — and while they ran around, having fun, I opted instead to sit on the banks of the roaring river by myself. I remember feeling the urge to close my eyes, breath deeply in and out, and move my hands up and down out ala my hero at the time, Daniel Larusso, just like he before his big championship match in the film. When my friends finally found me, sitting there doing my Karate Kid breathe-work, they laughed at me like I was some confused weirdo. In hindsight, I think I was just a little ahead of the curve — recognizing the beauty of nature and tapping into the stillness within to savor the special moment. Also those kids who mocked me are now probably spending tons of money each month on yoga and Qi Jong breathe work classes. :)


Simon Beck

SIMON BECK is the world’s first and most famous "Snow Artist". He graduated in Engineering from Oxford University but decided later on to leave his office job in order to become a cartographer. In December 2004, after a day of skiing, he got the idea to draw a star on the small frozen lake in front of his place. His sense for orientation in combination with his passion for outdoor and physical activities inspired him to complete a snow creation. The day after, looking down from the ski lift; he was impressed by the result. After the next snowfall, he repeated the exercise by creating an even more complex drawing. Snow Art was born.

During his childhood, Simon Beck drew mostly geometrical forms. The geometrical drawings were inspired by Koch's snowflake and became more complex over time. Simon’s drawings cover an area of 1 to 4 hectares (corresponding to 2 to 8 soccer fields - 2.5 to 10 acres) and take up to 12 hours to complete and demand a walk of 20 to 30 kilometers in the snow - wearing snowshoes. Hence, his creations are both artistic and athletic performances – truly unique creations shaped by the varying and challenging conditions of the environment.

Simon's creations gather thousands of fans from all around the world with over 270 000 fans on Facebook. He has also created and accomplished Snow Art performances for world-renowned brands. As he is always looking for new experiences, with the desire to raise awareness of the environment, Simon Beck continues to provide beautiful creations and wonderful photos of his fascinating art form.

3 words to describe Nature?

Beautiful. Unforgiving of human error. Uncaring

3 things Nature taught you?

Always be mindful for your own safety

Nature does not play by human rules

Nature can never be predicted, unexpected is its nature

3 most treasured Nature spots?   

Mont Blanc

Grand Canyon

Big Basin

When you look at the ocean, it makes you feel...?     

The terror of shipwreck, movies eg Das Botte

When you see a forest, it makes you feel...? 

Memories of when I was a competitive orienteer, I look at it from that viewpoint, how easily can one run through it and what is the terrain like

When you see a volcano, it makes you feel...? 

Hard work climbing them because of the loose stones

When you see a sunrise or sunset, it makes you feel...? 

Another day of my life has gone for ever

When you hear thunder, it makes you feel...? 

Threatened by the lightening  (when I'm on a mountain)

When you hear the wind howling, it makes you feel...? 

Thank God I'm indoors

Are you an Ocean, Mountain, Forest, or Desert person? 

Either mountain or forest

On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is Nature to your well-being? 

10

Share with us a childhood nature memory? 

Seeing the sunset light lighting up the mountains in North Wales