Art that's Helping our Oceans and Beaches Thrive!
Art that’s helping our oceans and beaches thrive
I just released a new series of paintings inspired by the beach and sea life. I wanted to branch out from my normal architecture paintings to create pieces you can use to decorate for summer so I came up with the idea of painting all my favorite sea animals! I’ve always loved the beach and find sea animals super fascinating. I love learning all the random fun facts about them and seeing how colorful and graceful they look swimming in the ocean.
You might not know this, but a portion of the profit I get from my paintings goes to a charity or non-profit who are doing meaningful and inspiring work. It’s a way I can support people who are making a big impact in the world and I love being a part of it!
This month, a portion of the profit of any painting in this series will go to Oceana, an organization dedicated to marine conservation. They have a number of programs and campaigns targeting different needs and one that stuck out to me is focused on restoring oceans and feeding the hungry.
Save the Oceans, Feed the World
That’s the tag of one of their campaigns. Right now, there’s a decline in fish because of irresponsible fishing habits, which means less fish for the marine ecosystem to continue to populate and less seafood options for people to eat. What Oceana is advocating for is better, science-based management for fishing to increase ocean biodiversity and abundance so more people can eat a healthy seafood meal. There are 795 million people in the world suffering from hunger and this campaign is working to close that gap.
You can learn more about them here.
Why are oceans and sea animals important?
Not only are oceans beautiful, they also provide us with water, food, air, and medicine. Oceans also absorb carbon dioxide from the air so keeping the oceans healthy is actually vital for us to breathe and maintaining a climate we can live in!
All sea animals, from tiny plankton to enormous whales, play an important role in keeping the ecosystems working efficiently and becoming resilient to changes in the environment. Tiny phytoplankton actually provide 50% of the earth’s oxygen and serve as food for other fish who then feed other fish.
My favorite – sea turtles!
If you know me, you probably already know that sea turtles are my favorite! I get wildly excited whenever I see one. They’re just so cute! And are also important for keeping the ocean and beaches healthy.
Kind of like how we keep our lawns mowed, sea turtles keep the sea grass beds short and healthy for other animals that depend on growing and developing there. Without healthy grass beds, many species of fish, shellfish and crustaceans would not survive. Beaches and dunes also depend on sea turtles hatching their eggs there because the egg shells provide good sources of nutrients and without them the beaches would start eroding.
Jellyfish are super fascinating because they don’t have any bones, eyes, a brain or heart and are 95% water. One type of jellyfish can actually transform from an adult back to a little polyp and go through it’s lifecycle in reverse! How crazy is that?! Jellyfish are important because they protect smaller fish from predators and also serve as food for larger fish.
There are so many interesting things about sea horses! These cute little creatures are actually terrible swimmers because they have such small fins. They also change colors to fit in with plants to protect themselves. They are constantly eating, and they use their tails either as weapons or to anchor themselves in a storm.
When I think of starfish, I usually think about their fun shape and how cute they are haha but they are actually predators that eat pretty much anything that comes their way. And that’s why they’re so important – their eating habits actually control the whole ecosystem! Other interesting facts about starfish are that they don’t have a brain and can regenerate body parts. So if they lose a limb, they can regrow it and the lost limb can also grow into another starfish! Crazy!
Dolphins are very intelligent and playful animals. They use echolocation to navigate and are highly social compared to other animals and kind of like having names, they each have their own signature whistle that can be recognized by other dolphins even after years apart. Like all animals, Dolphins play an important role in maintaining ecosystem health. They eat old and sick fish which actually helps control infectious diseases among fish.
Similar to dolphins, whales are very intelligent, have a complex language and use echolocation. Whales also play a crucial role in regulating the food chain so certain animals don’t overpopulate the ocean and they provide nutrients for other fish and phytoplankton. (Phytoplankton are responsible for extracting carbon from the atmosphere so we can breathe clean air!).
I’ve had so much fun working on all of these paintings from deciding on the animals to sketching them out to blending and painting in the colors. I loved learning how important all these creatures are for the ocean and ecosystem, and how these animals affect the air we breathe and the food we consume. I also enjoyed learning more about Oceana's campaigns and how they strive to make the world a better place! I'm so excited to support them in their efforts through my art!
Click here to browse through this collection of paintings and know that you can feel good decorating with art that’s helping our oceans and beaches thrive!