Kim’s Lecture and Workshop Programs
All programs are designed for libraries, garden clubs, schools, botanical gardens, landscape and design professionals, garden shows, private groups, and special events.
Beauty on the Wing ~ Life Story of the Monarch Butterfly
The Monarch’s life story is one of nature’s most incredible examples of adaptation and survival. But the Monarch migration is in great peril. Learn how you can help. Through photographs and discussion, Beauty on the Wing tells the life story of the Monarch Butterfly, the state of the butterflies migration and why they are in sharp decline, and the positive steps we can take as individuals and collectively to help the Monarchs recover from the devastating effects of habitat loss and climate change. (1-1.5 hours).
The Pollinator Garden
Following the rhythm of the seasons, celebrated landscape designer Kim Smith presents a stunning slide show and lecture demonstrating how to create a welcoming haven for bees, birds, butterflies, and other wildlife. Native plants and examples of organic and architectural features will be discussed based on their value to particular vertebrates and invertebrates. (1.5 hours)
Beautiful Birds of Coastal New England
NEW PROGRAM: Hundreds of species of birds find refuge and habitat along the shores of New England. Traveling through the four seasons, this program highlights some of the most beautiful and beloved. Illustrated with Kim’s award winning photographs.
Carolina Wren Snowy Day East Gloucester
Film: Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly
NEW PROGRAM: Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly is a 45-minute narrated film that takes place in a garden and at the sea’s edge. Every stage of the butterfly’s life cycle is experienced in vibrant close-up, from conception to pupation to metamorphosis. The film is suitable for all ages so all can gain a deeper understanding of the symbiotic relationship between wildflowers and pollinators and the vital role they play in our ecosystem. Filmed in Gloucester, Massachusetts.
From earliest recorded history the butterfly has represented life’s momentous transformations. None more so than black butterflies. In some cultures black butterflies are thought to foretell death, and in others the return of a spirit to the living world. Continuing today, butterflies are associated with spiritual rebirth and transformation. Their metamorphosis from caterpillar to adult, along with their graceful beauty and vibrant wing patterning, inspires poets and artists universally across time and cultures.
Discussion and Q & A with the filmmaker to follow showing.
Nature in Focus ~ Close-up Photography Workshop
This workshop by celebrated butterfly and garden photographer and filmmaker Kim Smith is based on her photo/journal work for regional and national publications and her acclaimed photography exhibits. Bring your camera and questions and Kim will guide you in capturing the beauty of the flora and fauna found in the garden. (1.5hours)
Author, illustrator, and designer Kim Smith presents the necessary elements for creating a sheltering haven for butterflies. Native plants and well-behaved non-native plants will be discussed based on their value to attracting specific butterflies. When we create in our own back yards a habitat designed for adult Lepidoptera and their caterpillars, we give back, one garden at a time, the gifts of grace and beauty we receive from nature. This lecture and slide presentation will help you gain a deeper understanding of the interconnected world that we human beings share with plants and butterflies and how to translate that information to your own garden. (1-1.5 hours)
Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities!
This inspiring presentation by author, illustrator, photographer, and noted landscape designer Kim Smith is based on the book of the same name, which she wrote and illustrated. Kim reveals how to create the framework, a living tapestry of flora, fauna, and fragrance that establishes the soul of the garden. Using a selection of plant material that eliminates the need for pesticides and herbicides, and guided by the plants forms, hues, and horticultural demands, Kim reveals how to create a succession of blooms from April through November. This presentation is as much about how to visualize your garden, as it is about particular trees, shrubs, vines, perennials, and annuals. Illuminated with Kim’s photographs and illustrations, and citing poetry and quotations from Eastern and Western cultural influences, this presentation engages us with an artist’s eye while drawing from practical experience. (1-1.5 hours)
The Fragrant Garden
The air impregnated with the scents of flowers and foliage imbues a memorable atmosphere in the garden, playing the subtle, and sometimes not-so-subtle role of strengthening the the ambiance we wish to create. Through photographs, examination of historical precedent, and discussion of specific plant varieties, celebrated landscape designer Kim Smith provides the key elements for creating a fragrant garden. Fragrance -elusive, emotionally colored, and so entirely related to experience – welcomes us as we walk though the pathways of our garden. (1-1.5 hours)
Your Garden as Habitat Workshop
Noted landscape designer Kim Smith presents the necessary elements for making your garden a haven for bees, birds, butterflies, and other wildlife. Once you begin to think about your garden as welcoming food source and shelter, it will influence all your horticultural decisions. Kim will help you assess your existing garden to create a more life-sustaining ecosystem. Native plants and examples of organic and architectural features will be discussed based on their value to particular vertebrates and invertebrates. Bring photos and sketches of your outdoor space to class for comment and discussion. Through lectures, photographs, and supplemental reading you will gain a deeper understanding of the interconnected world that we human beings share with plants and wildlife and how to translate that information to your own garden.
For Young and Old: Beauty on the Wing ~ Life Story of the Monarch Butterfly
Each living creature is bound to earth by many strands, weaving the intricate design in the web of life. The Monarch butterfly’s migration is a marvel of the most intricate behavior. Through photographs and discussion, Beauty on the Wing tells about the life cycle of the individual butterfly within the species grander annual life cycle, illuminating the wholeness of the life story of the Monarch butterfly. Set within the stage of a garden and the surrounding meadows and shoreline of the North Shore, this presentation can be tailored to fit all age groups. (1-1.5 hours)
Children’s Program: Through a Butterflies Eyes
Did you know that a caterpillar has six pairs of eyes and many noses? Did you know a butterfly tastes with it’s feet? And that it’s proboscis is a long double drinking straw that must zip together upon emerging from it’s chrysalis? We’ll learn all about how a butterfly sees flowers, butterfly and caterpillar anatomy, where to look for butterflies and caterpillars, and how to attract butterflies, moths, and caterpillars to your backyard.
Male Black Swallowtail Butterfly
BIO for Program Chairs
Kim Smith is an award winning landscape designer, documentary filmmaker, photojournalist, photographer, author, and illustrator. She specializes in creating pollinator habitat gardens utilizing primarily North American native wildflowers, trees, shrubs, and vines. Kim’s programs are developed from her landscape design work and documentary nature films.
Kim Smith Designs is her landscape and interior design firm. In conjunction with Cambridge Seven Associates architectural firm, Kim designed the award-winning Gloucester HarborWalk gardens. In 2017 was named an Essex National Heritage Trailblazer and became an Essex Heritage Commissioner in recognition of her work connecting people to place. Her book on landscape design, Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities!, which she both wrote and illustrated, was published by David R. Godine, Boston.
She is currently creating a documentary about Piping Plovers and her latest film, Beauty on the Wing: Life Story of the Monarch Butterfly, will premiere in 2018. Her short films, A Flight of Monarchs, which was created for the Berkshire Museum and BomBom Butterflies, have won critical acclaim. Her 45-minute documentary Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly has become an inspirational story in teaching about the life cycle of butterflies and the connection between pollinators and plants, which happen in our own backyards.
For more information on Kim’s films and design projects follow her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and visit her design and film websites. Kim is a daily contributor to the stellar community blog Good Morning Gloucester with a daily average readership of 60,000 viewers.
Ipswich Town and Country Garden Club Has Some Nice Things to Say About My Screening of Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly
Marion Frost, two time past President and six time Program Chair for the Ipswich Town and Country Garden Club, wrote a very kind note about the Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly film and program that I recently gave to her club.
How often does something you’ve looked forward to for a long time live up to your expectations? Not often. But last night at Ebsco your presentation, including your film, your comments and your Q&A were just about perfect in my book! I’ll smile as I remember the evening.
I liked having the trailer for the monarch film first. You gave the group something to look forward to. Jesse Cook’s music is an excellent choice, I think. I drum to his music often. I was pleased with the questions and with your answers. It’s obvious you’ve done a lot of research. The way you answered questions made the group comfortable. Very nice! And the film. What can I say. I’d seen clips, but seeing the whole thing was something I won’t forget. I especially liked your reference to other butterflies and your comparison of the swallowtail with the monarch. Liv’s voice was just right for the commentary!
I know from experience that the presenter is the harshest critic of the presentation. I hope you were feeling pleased with your work last night. I’d be happy to repeat the whole evening!
I’m wishing you well with the editing.
All the best to you,
Thank you Mim. It was my joy! You and your fellow club members were so receptive and interested, it was truly a pleasure to give my presentation to the Ipswich Town and Country Garden Club! Many thanks again for your kind words.