About

Kelly Comras, FASLA, RLA, is a licensed landscape architect and a member of the State Bar of California.

Comras' present landscape architectural practice focuses on community-based open space design. In this area of her practice, Comras brings together stakeholders to achieve a common goal that relates to the study or use of land. The projects in which she participates encompass both public and private landscapes and are generally community-wide in scope. Stakeholders include businesses, non-profit and charitable organizations, educational institutions, community volunteer organizations, elected officials and their constituents, public administrators (city, county, state, and national), and historical groups who collaborate with landscape architects, architects, engineers and other professional designers.

Comras also conducts research, publishes, and lectures on topics relating to mid-century landscape design. She is a Founding Member of the Stewardship Council for The Cultural Landscape Foundation (https://tclf.org/profile/council/kelly-comras-asla), and Past-President of the California Garden & Landscape History Society (cglhs.org) . She has lectured at such institutions as Harvard Graduate School of Design, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Library of American Landscape History, UCLA, Society of Architectural Historians, California Preservation Foundation , and others. Her recent book, Ruth Shellhorn, was published by University of Georgia Press / Library of American Landscape History in 2016; a companion documentary was released in 2015 (http://lalh.org/films/ruth-shellhorn-midcentury-landscape-design-in-southern-california/).

Comras is a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects. She has received numerous awards for her landscape architectural designs, community work, and research and publications. These include recognition from both the national organization and the Southern California Chapter of ASLA, the Landscape Architectural Foundation, and the California Council of Landscape Architects. She has also served as Vice President for her chapter and publishes in Landscape Architecture Magazine.

Contact:  kcomras@gmail.com

PUBLICATIONS

RUTH SHELLHORN
PUBLISHED BY UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA PRESS AND LIBRARY OF AMERICAN LANDSCAPE HISTORY, 2016.
Pioneer landscape architect Ruth Shellhorn helped define midcentury Southern California with such visionary projects as Disneyland, Bullock’s Pasadena and Bullock’s Wilshire and the University of California at Riverside. Landscape architect Kelly Comras, author of the biography Ruth Shellhorn, examines Shellhorn’s legacy in a lecture and the screening of a companion documentary. 

WEBSITE LINKS

Modernism Week for Disney-lovers: https://www.desertsun.com/story/life/entertainment/events/modernism/2018/02/13/disneyland-pixar-incredibles-2-presentations-palm-springs-modernism-week/334670002/

"The Brothers Behind Disney's Magical Landscapes"
Jack and Morgan "Bill" Evans were members of Disney's original design team at Disneyland
https://tclf.org/brothers-behind-disney-magical-landscapes

“Ruth Shellhorn: Midcentury Landscape Design in Southern California,”
a documentary film in the Library of American Landscape History's North America by Design series:  
http://lalh.org/films/ruth-shellhorn-midcentury-landscape-design-in-southern-california

The Cultural Landscape Foundation
https://tclf.org/pioneer/ruth-shellhorn?destination=search-results

Cultivating Place: "Conversations on Natural History and the Human Impulse to Garden,”
a radio interview on Northstate Public Radio:
http://mynspr.org/post/cultivating-place-kelly-comras-landscape-architect-historian-and-auth