Inspired by the delightful activity of birdwatching, Spirit Spotting delves into the world of scavenging and observing magical creatures. Birding takes you out into natural landscapes and turns hiking into a treasure hunt. Some explorers keep lists of the birds they spot and are exuberant when they find new ones. If you discovered a magical world, would you observe and document the creature in it?

Imagine keeping a drawing book, or a log of all the whimsical creatures in another realm. How would you describe the beings? Would you compare them to creatures from earth? Imagine trying to name new animals. How would you go about categorizing them? Although you may never have the chance to travel to another realm, it’s always fun to use imagination and come up with magical creatures of your own.

In the film My Neighbor Totoro, Mei Kusakabe stumbles upon magical spirits that lead her on a great adventure in her own backyard. How would someone react if they really saw a magical woodland spirit? Would they try to capture it, photograph it, or follow it on an adventure? Spirit Spotting encouraged the idea that whimsical creatures might be hiding in our own world. And if we look hard enough, we might be able to find them. It’s perfectly natural to expect the unexpected and to be pleasantly surprised. The world is full of undiscovered critters, plants, and phenomena.

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