In "Soil Stories", our protagonist, Francine, embarks on a journey of discovery that begins with her realization that soil is alive and that without soil, life as we know would not exist. In her journey of discovery she meets with soil scientists who help her "see" beneath the surface of the soil and help her understand how diverse yet ordered soil bodies are in the landscape and how much work has been done in soil survey. In the second half of the story, Francine meets with characters that help her take an up close and personal look at some physical and biological attributes of soils without which they would not function. In the final part of the video, a character from history shares an epiphany about soils with Francine and translates this to modern terms.
"Soil Stories" was born out of a collaborative effort between ESRI-SC and SC NRCS. We (Buz Kloot and Pam Thomas) wanted to get all the information about soils across, but in a way that was engaging. While facts came easy, it's not always easy to be engaging on this subject. Until that is, when I (Buz Kloot) was at a ScienceFilm workshop with Jeff Morales and Colin Bates where I began to see that the story trumps all when making videos. Colin's advice to me one morning was "why don't you make a movie about people who have a relationship with the soil?" - well, the rest is history. Credit goes to so many and I have tried to acknowledge all at the end of the video, but I fear I may still have left some out. To those I apologize. This series along with other experiences of making video for the NRCS in the last three has changed the way I look at natural resources in general and more specifically, at soils . My profound thanks to all of the professionals in the NRCS and to the many land owners who have helped shape my thinking.