A very impressive blogger, futurebird, has a whole series entitled The Urban Naturalist, which she explains thusly:
The urban naturalist is a scientist in one sense, concerned with observation and study of the city as an organism. In another sense, the urban naturalist is a bit of mystic, a pilgrim seeking spiritual enlightenment and a connection with mother nature through the city as a natural organism. This is different from seeking a connection to nature in the city by observing urban wildlife but rather seeing the people and buildings and commotion of cities as natural, like an anthill or a forest.
Here’s a comparative set of drawings from one Urban Naturalist post:
A little more reading about futurebird (via Starts and Fits) reveals she’s a fellow Clevelander (grew up in Shaker Hts., I grew up in Cleveland Hts.). I suppose we exiles from Cleveburgh feel so passionately about urbanism because so much of our home town’s soul has been lost to sprawl, disinvestment in the urban core, and poor environmental management. Of course, it’s not all doom and gloom: click here for an article about a unique loft building in Cleveland geared toward independent filmmakers, the only one I know of it the country. A whole lot more of that kind of innovative thinking, and Greater Cleveland (and any beleaguered rustbelt city, for that matter) could have a little more of drawing number two.