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Oceanic 31

In 2022 I was contacted by The Shark Trust about an ambitious new art project they were planning to launch at the 'For the Love of Sharks' event. It didn't take much convincing for me to be involved; sharks, art, conservation - what is not too love? The artists were given the list of 31 Oceanic shark and ray species to choose from, of course, for me it had to be the basking shark.
Swimming with basking sharks in Scotland
Whilst I could have chosen any of the incredible sharks off the list, I have a special connection to the basking shark after working with them for the past three years. Having the opportunity to share the water with this species, I have had the chance to study their intricate details, movement and behaviour - making this shark an obvious choice for me. Donating an art work of this species, to work towards its conservation is a privilege. 
Basking shark art work by ocean artist Rachel Brooks, Oceanic 31 project

Oceanic 31 is a brand new shark and ray art project from The Shark Trust. We are bringing together artists from a variety of backgrounds who are passionate about wildlife, conservation, and using art as a tool for positive change. The artists have kindly agreed to donate the pieces to our cause. Each artist has focused on one species of Oceanic Shark or Ray.

The original art work is an A1 archival ink work, created with a mix of pointillism, line work, finished with a subtle wash of watercolour. It was first exhibited at the Royal Geographic Society in London, with 16 other original art works featuring different species of Oceanic shark and ray. The diversity of styles and pieces was incredible, from bronze sculptures to digital art and textile work it was an amazing celebration of both art and sharks. Getting the opportunity to meet some of my fellow artists was also a real highlight. 
The entire collection of 31 species is currently on a touring exhibition of the UK. See upcoming tour dates, virtual exhibition and register for the auction here.

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