Fish Reef Tattoo

A few weeks ago I read about the Fish Reef Project that will be placing large cement Reef Balls in a patch of ocean floor just off the Santa Barbara coastline and thereby encouraging the formation of a kelp forest. I was immediately enthusiastic and contacted http://www.fishreef.org/ and offered to donate a tattoo as my symbolic way of supporting this wonderful work. One of the principal volunteers took me up on it, and together we came up with this tattoo design that I installed on him today. The reef ball is shown in dots, as befits its surface of aggregate concrete, the better for marine life to take root on. Coming around the side is a mako shark, and I give credit here to the fabulous artist Guy Harvey whose shark t-shirt design i used as inspiration. Then I added kelp gently waving above, to give a feeling of how the balls will be the static root for the living forest to anchor on. On the reef ball are two starfish and a limpet. Last I added a tiny calico bass peeking out through one of the openings, safe in his home, watching as the shark goes by. All in all, a lovely way for the medium of tattoo to bring this vision of a restored ocean to life in skin.

 Shark and Reef Ball Tattoo by Pat Fish

Shark and Reef Ball Tattoo by Pat Fish