Pull tab Fish

Dec 13

I have been thinking about making a painting of fish using pop can tabs as the scales ever since this project started.

I have learned a lot about what motivates me while doing this independent project, and I have noticed the following about how I work:

-If there are no grades involved, I am not as motivated (I wish this wasn’t the case! But it is good to recognize, and I know that some of my future students will operate similarly.)
-If a task is fun and relaxing for me, I am more likely to put more time into it.
-I work best under pressure and time constraints.

Today is the last day for me to put any work into my blog, so naturally, I finished this painting today.

Here are some photos of my progress:

I first painted a canvas blue, then quickly decided I would make the ‘ocean’ a bit more abstract.

Finished ocean drying

I then outlined the fish in pull tabs and used an opaque silver sharpie & white paint to add more details to the fish.

The finished project!

I was pleased with how this turned out!  It is special to me because I had a lot of people collecting beer tabs for me, including family members, and my new cohort fun family.

I also intended this painting to illustrate to how the pollution and man made materials such as microplastics in the ocean can end up negatively affecting our marine wildlife.

This is something important to me as a biologist and as an ocean enthusiast.  I think that this small project could inspire a bigger project for me using garbage to depict wildlife or the environment.


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