Get to know attending filmmaker Jeff McLoughlin

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The NatureTrack Film Festival is excited to welcome Director Jeff McLoughlin to the 2020 Festival in Los Olivos, March 20-22. Produced by local museum, Wildling Museum of Art & Nature, this extraordinary film captures one of our local National Monuments, the Carrizo Plain, in a unique way – through the eyes of artists.

Carrizo Plain – A Sense of Place, recently screened at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, is a cinematic journey into a remarkable remnant of early California — the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Explored through the eyes of three artists, Chris Chapman, John Iwerks, and Bill Dewey, the Carrizo Plain comes to life in this documentary that reveals the special character of this hidden landscape. Through their personal sense of place, we discover what makes the Carrizo Plain National Monument and places like it so important for us all.

Jeff remarks, “The film profiles the work and words of three artists with decades-long experience in interpreting the sublime beauty of the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Located at the eastern edge of San Luis Obispo County in Central California, the Carrizo is the state’s last remaining remnant grassland. It provides a window into early California as it would have appeared prior to the gold rush.

Every person has a unique way of seeing a place as well as interpreting its value on a human level. The intellectual concept of what makes a landscape unique as well as the emotional connection that a special place holds for them reflect in ways that are profound to each individual. Combined, this constitutes their personal “Sense of Place”.

Subjects of a film like this one are all multifaceted characters with busy creative lives of their own. The artists were lending time and energy to a documentary film production with faith that the story I planned to tell would be worthy and reflective of who they are and the love they share for the Carrizo. For me as a producer, the job is to coax out authentic reflections of the plain that reveals the artist’s level of passion and enhances the viewer’s understanding. Each artist had his or her own story and expertise, much of which was unknown to me at the inception of filming. Such is the wonderful onion that is documentary filmmaking.”

Filmmaker Jeff McLoughlin has spent the last decade focused upon documentary films that explore California’s natural history, environmental issues, and art. His credits include the award-winning environmental film, “The Condor’s Shadow” which is currently in international broadcast distribution. His three most recent works are short films that explore the concept of “artists for preservation” – individuals who focus their creative energies on the bridge that art can provide to an appreciation of the natural world. Further notes on these films can be found on the website for Jeff’s production company –