Talia Woodin

Talia Woodin is a youth activist, photographer and filmmaker based in the UK. She’s spent the past four years organising with various campaigns within the climate and environmental movement, including spending a year living on and documenting the frontline environmental defence campaign against HS2 (a destructive high-speed rail infrastructure project). She has recently re-released her debut short documentary COP-out, exploring the youth climate justice movement's participation with COP and is currently organising with The Resistance Exhibition.

Describe the nature around you at the moment.

I live in a city so apart from my house plants, nature is often few and far between. But there is a cemetery at the end of my road that has lots of amazing, ancient Holm Oaks which are great for climbing and that I'm really grateful for.

How does nature inform your practice?

My photography, filmmaking and general activism has long been centred on climate and environmental justice, which is inseparable from nature. Over the past couple of years, I've gotten more involved with local, grassroots environmental campaigns, often living within the natural environments being defended. Not only has nature been a subject in my work, but has actually held and housed me whilst creating and organising.

Name a film, podcast or documentary that blew your mind.

'The Biggest Little Farm' has long been one of my favourite documentaries, exploring some of the ways in which we can live in harmony with the land that we depend on for food and resources, rather than exploit. The cinematography is also beautiful, which is a bonus!

Name a place where you feel most at ease.

It sounds like such a 'tree hugging' cliché, but being up in a tree. I find climbing such a mindful practice and there's nothing as exciting and otherworldly as being 40ft in the air amongst a whole other ecosystem.

What message do you hope to share through 'COP-out'?

That there are powerful and beautiful solutions to the climate crisis that have long existed and will continue to, whether world leaders choose to engage with them or not. That and the fact young people will always be the ultimate catalyst for change!

How can we understand ourselves as part of nature?

Just like nature humans go through cycles, we can’t always be at peak function, able to constantly work and create. This is a capitalist ideal that is the antithesis to the constant cycles of rest, rebirth and rejuvenation that we see in nature. It’s no surprise really that capitalism has not only resulted in the subjugation of nature, but also the human spirit. In order to understand ourselves as part of nature, we must first prioritise slowing down and resting when we need it.

What are you interested in at the moment?

How to engage and motivate young people with our own histories of resistance. My generation is plagued by despondence and we often forget our own heritages of resistance and community. So, much of my work at the moment is about reigniting that spark and reminding people that we have power and autonomy in the face of how bleak everything feels. I’m also organising with The Resistance Exhibition (@resistanceexpo) to educate young people in the UK about our histories of protest.

How does nature help you overcome everyday difficulties? (question from #TheNatureKind interview with Alice Farion )

The times I get myself out into nature (not as often as I should), it reminds me that whatever challenges I’m facing in my life, there’s always bigger things at play. I find the immensity of the natural world overwhelming but also hugely grounding.

What question would you like to ask the next person on #TNK?

How do you think we can make connection to nature trendy again?

And could you suggest someone else or other organisations you admire that we could approach for #TheNatureKind.

My friends and featured youth activists in my film COP-out, Eric Njuguna and Fazeela Mubarak both part of Fridays For Future MAPA.

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