New Vaquita art

Here is a poem that I wrote for an upcoming poetry competition focused on ocean pollution:

THE NETS WE FORGET

The dark gray sky casts its shadow on the sea,
The sea swells with the wind, whipping up froth.
Thunder booms among the rolling clouds;
Lightning flashes in the distance,
But underneath, it is calm.
The muffled sound of the storm above dances off the coral.
Small reef fish swarm in and out of nooks and crannies.
All seems fine at first, but there is something wrong here.
A ghost enters the scene.
A nearly invisible drifter.
A gillnet.
But this fishing net does not belong to anybody.
It has been abandoned,
But its job is not done.
This ghost still has lives to take.
First comes a shrimp,
A puny pink prawn:
Gone.
His life ends and is doomed to drift away,
Trapped forever.
Next is a fish.
A huge one at that.
He swims right into the net,
And in the blink of an eye,
The life leaves his body.
A little porpoise swims through the shallows,
Bubbles dancing down her side.
She’s teaching her baby how to fish.
They happen upon a juicy meal,
But as the mother darts towards the target,
She is struck by a web of death.
The fish they were chasing
Was already a victim.
The baby, terrified, watches as her mother writhes in agony.
And the ghost has taken yet another life.

Here is a double exposure image, made from a Vaquita photograph and an ocean sunset photograph that I combined using digital software:Vaquita Double Exposure

And here is a mosaic of a Vaquita made out of hundreds of photographs taken during International Save the Vaquita Days 2014 & 2015:

ISTVD Mosaic

International Save the Vaquita Day has become a huge event, and one that has been—and will continue to be—making a legitimate difference for the Vaquita and its survival. Showing the people and government of Mexico that the world cares about the Vaquita and appreciates their efforts to date will hopefully inspire them to follow through with their promises and actually save this species. To make ISTVD 2016 the biggest one yet, help ignite the buzz and donate to the event by buying a cool ISTVD 2016 t-shirt!

https://www.booster.com/international-save-the-vaquita-day-2016

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The painting is finished!

Despedida Vaquita

Frédérique Lucas’ masterpiece is complete. Four months in the making, the 17-year-old artist revealed her photo-realistic painting to the world yesterday. Titled “Despedida (Goodbye) Vaquita,” the work manages to capture raw emotion like few other paintings do. It depicts an entangled, washed up Vaquita on a Mexican beach, while the sun vanishes just as the porpoise’s life did. Please share the link below with everyone you know to inspire them to help the Vaquita. We need artwork like this to light a fire in us all to try our hardest to protect this porpoise. Thank you Frédérique and everyone that shares this painting and the Vaquita’s story. I have yet to hear of someone who was not moved by the Vaquita’s predicament, so the problem is that not enough people know. If they did, it would be a whole lot easier to save these little guys.

http://namu-the-orca.deviantart.com/art/Despedida-Vaquita-Goodbye-Vaquita-470879101

In other news, Save the Whales is running a Vaquita drawing contest for students, with the deadline being August 15: http://www.savethewhales.org/STV_StudentContest.html.
The prizes are either 4 tickets to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, or an “Adopt-a-Vaquita Kit” if you can’t make it to California. Those are outstanding prizes, especially for only drawing a picture! This is an opportunity not only to get great cetacean prizes, but also to support the Vaquita while making artwork. I won’t be submitting anything, but I will be making some larger Vaquita paintings soon, where I will put them up for auction with the proceeds going to the Vaquita, as always.
🙂

Put Your Face on Toshiba Vision

IMPORTANT! Please vote for the Vaquita in the “Put Your Face on Toshiba Vision” sweepstakes. The winner of the contest gets their picture displayed every 8-10 minutes for 24 hours a day on the enormous Toshiba Vision screens in Times Square, NYC! Obviously, this is a HUGE deal. Tell all your friends and family to vote! You can vote up to 10 times a day. Keep clicking on the “VOTE” button until it says “You have already voted ten times today, please try again tomorrow!” Thanks!

http://apps.facebook.com/your_face_on_toshiba/vote-view.php?id=1632

Difference Quiz

The male and female Vaquita are exactly the same, except for

A) their eye- and mouth-patch color.

B) their vocalizations.

C) their size.

D) their speed.

*I have decided to try something new. Every now and then I will post a multiple choice question to test your Vaquita knowledge. 🙂 Try to answer it on your own, but please, if you have any problems, use this or any site on the blogroll. Google works too. When you think you have the right answer, leave a comment with that letter, and I will have a post congratulating the first person to correctly answer the question. The point of this is to have fun and get involved in Vaquita research. Good luck!