The Tree Projects is an environmental outreach organisation that aims to educate people about the importance and beauty of trees. We do this by creating unique and engaging photos and videos about forests and tall trees. We also help to promote tree based tourism and encourage people to engage with forests via tree climbing. The organisation is run by Steve Pearce, a wilderness photographer and film maker, and his wife, Dr Jennifer Sanger, who is a forest ecologist.

One of our signature outputs are our ‘tree portraits’. For the last six years we have captured stunning photographic portraits of impressive rainforest trees in New Zealand, Tasmania, Taiwan, Western Australia and the USA. These Tree Portraits are a complete, distortion-free image of an entire, extremely tall tree. When you stand at the base of a large tree and look up, the top of the tree is often obscured by the lower branches, making it extremely difficult to get a sense of the full scale of the tree. Our Tree Portraits allow people to appreciate, for the first time, a tree’s true size and beauty.

We also create informative videos and documentaries to help educate people about the importance of trees. This year we produced a film called the Big Tree Hunters which followed the journey of five young Tasmanians as they ventured into the forest to discover Tasmania’s remaining big trees. It also highlights how a lot of Tasmania’s giant trees are still being logged, and what people are doing to help conserve these beautiful trees. Steve was also the recipient of Dahl Fellowship and produced the EUC2020 videos which were aimed at educating teenagers about Eucalypts.

The Tree Projects also encourages people to go out and discover the forests for themselves. We produced the Giant Tree Register in our home state of Tasmania which shows 200 of Tasmania’s tallest trees. We have collated all of our information gathered from LiDAR and many other different sources. Our intention is to inspire a new generation of big tree hunters dedicated to exploring Tasmania’s forests. We do this so that more of Tasmania’s giant trees can be discovered, documented and protected. We believe that tree based tourism is a much more sustainable and profitable industry for regional communities than logging.

As tree climbers, we also found that getting people to the trees is a great way to engage people in trees and forests. We started the Hobart Recreational Tree Club where we facilitate people in tree climbing. The club is open to any adult who is interested and is completely free. Once participants are experienced enough, they graduate from park trees and we take them out to climb an 80m tall tree in the forest. It is an incredible experience for people to climb up into these giant trees. We have had over 30 people climb with us through the club.