Artist Hannah Tofts uses her work as a medium to draw attention to the plastic waste that ends up in our oceans. And she does so quite literally, as she collects the plastic and uses it to create something beautiful. By doing so, Hannah hopes to make people think about the huge mountain of plastic we use.
In Scotland, where Hannah lives, there are times when the beach is completely covered in plastic bottles and packaging, which she found shocking. “After all, people around the world want to keep their sidewalks clean, so why shouldn’t we also keep our beaches clean too?” And during a visit to her father in Australia, she came across an even more shocking thing: she discovered tiny plastic marine litter that had been ground by surf and sand into micro-particles that will never disappear. This discovery made her think: a visit to the beach is a fun, positive, happy event for most people, but that changes with such pollution. And so she started the ‘Let’s go to the beach’ project to increase awareness about plastic and the amount of waste that ends up in our oceans. Her dream? To be able to return to the days when we visit the beach with that happy, positive vibe.
Photo: Shannon Tofts
After seven years of picking up plastic waste on the west coast of Scotland, Hannah has amassed a huge collection of the stuff. She sorts, washes and photographs all the objects she finds. Hannah even created three different designs for a Beachclean Sarong, and thanks to a successful Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign, has managed to put the first batch into production.
The sarongs are available from letsgotothebeach.org. Part of the proceeds go to organizations such as the North Sea Foundation and the Plastic Soup Foundation.