Requiem for the Forest Giants HD

High Definition Historic Footage

Giant Redwoods in a Lumber Yard Cold Deck, 1960, Humboldt County, California. Screen shot from Requiem for the Forest Giants, a short video excerpted from “Wasted Woods” 1964 by Harvey Richards.
1960, Humboldt County, California. Photo by Harvey Richards

Requiem for the Forest Giants HD is the first of many new high definition video versions of the short videos offered on the Harvey Richards Media Archive as previews of his 22 documentary films. Now in 2019, all of his finished films have been converted to high definition videos. Requiem for the Forest Giants HD replaces the previous standard definition (SD) version. Over the next months, these new high definition videos will replace the original preview video on all the video pages and on my YouTube channel. Film makers, publishers and the public now can access all the films in high definition for their projects.

Over the years since 1987, working in the Harvey Richards Media Archive, I have felt moved, almost haunted, by my father’s forestry images and films. With global warming now in full swing, forests and whole towns are burning down around us in the excessive summer heat and dryness, forcing us to flee the choking air that covers the cities up and down the west coast. The prophetic nature of these images of the destruction of the western forests has become crystal clear. Giant redwoods were cut down and stacked in immense cold decks in lumber yards waiting to be sawed up into lumber for our suburban sprawl. Now gone, these images of the ancient redwoods laying like corpses in a grave are a tragic record of our foolishness and greed. What has taken the place of these ancient trees is a planet in trouble. These images of the deforestation of the west coast show how it has happened.

Harvey’s work as a photographer began when he found a way to help movements and causes that were close to his heart. From the 1950s until through the 1960s, he focused on laborcivil rights and peace. As time went on, he turned with increasing frequency to his forestry photography. Back then, it didn’t seem to have the urgency of war and the battles in the streets. Yet in retrospect, it had greater urgency than most of us realized. Images of reckless logging and the gutting of forest ecosystems that took millenniums to create now serve as a chilling call to action, a demand to stop the wrecking of our natural environment.

The short preview videos now on my YouTube channel, of which Requiem is one, were all made from the original film to video conversions done back in the 1990’s. Now (2019) the films have been newly converted to high definition video. This new high definition collection will surface on the YouTube Channel and on the Harvey Richards Media Archive over the next few months as new posts and uploads are completed. Subscribe to my blog to receive notices of these forthcoming new high definition preview videos. All the new HD videos are now available for licensing.


Requiem for the Forest Giants HD — 1 Comment

  1. This was great. It’s amazing that people think constant consumption of our world will not really effect its viability. When you see this and imagine thousands of years of increases in consumption like this it’s pretty clear this is not sustainable. On top of that I wonder what has been lost since 1964.

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