Illinois Natural History Survey - University of Illinois

Illinois served as the start for one of the greatest exploratory endeavors undertaken on the North American continent—the Lewis & Clark Expedition. This expedition generated perhaps the most famous nature journals ever compiled during the two-year exploration of the American West. A new Corps of Discovery was developoed by biologists Dr. Michael R. Jeffords, Susan L. Post, and Carolyn Nixon, at the Illinois Natural History, and is based on this expedition. Whereas Lewis and Clark traveled thousands of miles to document the changing landscape, the new Corps of Discovery documents the landscape that will move, evolve, and change while the individuals stay put. Members use their skill in photography, writing, and sketching, to aesthetically document the changing environment of their chosen sites.


Photo of Mike Jeffords teaching Photo of Sue Post next to paint chip display Photo of Carie Nixon teaching
Michael Jeffords, Susan Post, and Carie Nixon 



Because Communicating Nature is less about learning the technical skills of photography, drawing, and descriptive writing, and more about the creative integration of these disciplines, each class meeting involves a variety of skill-building activities during each of the four meetings. In addition, we will explore the unique activities of physical journaling and photo-journaling, as well as keeping a sketch journal.

Thus, we encourage individuals to attend who can commit to all four core classes and to document the changes that will take place at their site over the next few years. Individuals successfully completing Communicating Nature will have additional creative opportunities through this program.

To download a copy of an Illinois Steward article (Summer 2006) on the Corps of Discovery, click here.


Emiquon Corps of Discovery
Cache Corps of Discovery
Lost Mound Corps of Discovery
Allerton Corps of Discovery
Sangamon Corridor Corps of Discovery
Rivers Corps of Discovery
Arboretum Corp of Discovery at the Universtiy of Wisconsin, Madison


Beginning in March of 2012:


Funks Grove Corps of Discovery


This course is now full.

Illinois Natural History Survey

1816 South Oak Street, MC 652
Champaign, IL 61820

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