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SYoshiko's avatar

Slums of the Deep

218 59 6K (1 Today)
By SYoshiko   |   
Mature  |  Published:
© 2012 - 2020 SYoshiko
This is another in the conservation/environmental series.

Particularly this is about garbage patches in the ocean, here's a link from wiki for pacific garbage patch:

[link]

cs5 photoshop

detail: [link]


you can see these are not the playful mermaids that live in clean waters but some diseased victims of harsh environment.

scales and fins brushes: [link]
crab and shark : [link]
rock fish (not inside can) [link]
Image size
2313x4859px 785.91 KB
Comments59
anonymous's avatar
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toonham's avatar
toonhamHobbyist Artist
:star::star::star::star::star-half: Overall
:star::star::star::star::star-half: Vision
:star::star::star::star::star-half: Originality
:star::star::star::star::star-half: Technique
:star::star::star::star::star: Impact

Wow. This really does send a powerful message. Starting from the top and going down, you can see the filth pouring into what looks like clear ocean water. The message really hits you when you see the bottom with the trash and the diseased mermaids. The message to me seems to be that "The problem is deeper than we can see." Mermaids tend to represent allure and beauty, but they lay there infected by the lifestyles of people they have never met before. Their scales are worn, their skin is discoloured, and their hair is far from luxurious.

I do, however, find that there are too many living plants in the area given the waste pouring in from above and that most of the electronic devices contain toxic chemicals and parts. The absence of nearly all other life does feel more realistic.

Excellent, excellent work!
toonham's avatar
toonhamHobbyist Artist
You're welcome! Thanks for the reply, too! Very thought provoking. I do agree that seeing a problem without working at a solution just makes the situation more complicated.
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
thanks for the critique. An interesting point you make about the living plants, here is my thought process on that. In the beginning I had wanted to put even more trash and less plants. I left a lot of animal life out mostly because the fish that I wanted to put in were vibrant colors and I felt that they wouldn't work with the overall dark and dingy color theme. After looking at wreckage I decided that the plants and corals would try to reclaim the sea floor and it shows that some of it has been there a long time, its not all newly dumped trash. Plants are also the hope that nature could possibly still prevail if only the dumping would stop and it had a chance to catch up and over take the trash. I think complaining and pointing out a problem without suggesting a way to fix it is too easy - in this case I want to imply that we should stop and that there is still hope.
toonham's avatar
toonhamHobbyist Artist
See above reply because I apparently cannot delete it. =P
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
thanks for taking the time. I like to give critiques as well I'm appreciative that it wasn't purely positive with nothing to work on, I'm glad to hear what people really think and how I could look at things I do in the future or even when reworking old pieces.
toonham's avatar
toonhamHobbyist Artist
No problem. I'm always glad to be of help!
cookiebaby722's avatar
cookiebaby722Hobbyist Digital Artist
so cool! love the details
Sinned-Sama's avatar
I added this as a fave a few days ago so that I could craft a well thought comment. There aren't many pieces out there that capture the problem aquatic life encounter with all the waste we produce, and this is one of the best. Why? Because it combines fantasy with reality. This isn't a mermaid interacting with the human world: this is the human world affecting the mermaids.

While there is direct input into the water, it quickly fades. It dissolves into the water column or sinks. Thus, we don't see much of the waste in the water until you get deep down. By using fantasy, you show the viewer the harsh realities sea creatures encounter when their habitat is polluted. The mermaids are sickly and on the verge of death. They are wounded, have some kind of growth on their tails that's possibly a side effect of toxic waste, and most importantly: they need help.

What I like most about this piece is that you're drawing attention to the pacific garbage patch. I live on the Island of Hawaii, and I'm a marine science major. I've seen what this has done to the North Western Hawaiian Islands, and the creatures that live there. Monk Seals, sea birds, turtles, sharks and fish--anything you can imagine is affected by this.

Of course, leaving the environmental issues aside, it's a lovely piece. The details here are amazing. The garbage, wounds on the mermaids, and the creatures present are well done and seem very natural. Things don't seem out of place--it looks like everything sunk down. The pale mermaid particularly stands out because it's a sickly color-she's obviously unwell.

Thank you for this. I believe that art is an effective tool in communication. This speaks to me on so many different levels--I hope others feel the same.
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
I appreciate your deeply thoughtful comment so much. Its great to know that the piece is speaking in the way I meant it to. I usually use my personal work as 'play' time but I think I have a responsibility to make a statement sometimes or I'm not deserving to call myself an artist :)

thanks so much for taking your time to comment. Its nice to hear feedback esp from a marine science major.
MicahBlack's avatar
MicahBlackProfessional General Artist
THIS
is a really, really cool way of calling attention to, and raising awareness about, an issue that a lot of people are either unaware of, or totally apathetic to..[or in denyal]
BRAVO!
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
thanks so much :)
Wolfberry-J's avatar
Great concept and execution!
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
oh thanks so much
seto-chave's avatar
seto-chaveHobbyist General Artist
The Slums, where all lesbian mermaids hang out.
missmjwilson's avatar
missmjwilsonHobbyist Writer
This right here...should have been on TV or as a billboard, anything. My cousins are marine biologists, and they have told me some horrible stories of wounded dolphins, whales and the effects of pollution in what was once a beautiful body of water.
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
yes its very sad, actually a friend on here featured my drawing in an online article about the floating trash cloud or garbage cluster.... there's a word for it. anyway its awful.
Eisblume's avatar
EisblumeHobbyist Digital Artist
Incredible work!
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
thanks so much ;) took a bit of time
frenchfox's avatar
:omg: Fantastic image ! here is a good summary of what the human has made of his dreams :no:
Great work , you deserves a DD :clap:
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
thanks so much :)
Vinobia's avatar
This sends me chills down my spine..of how much we are killing us but killing everything else in the process :( Very powerful picture indeed
SYoshiko's avatar
SYoshikoProfessional Digital Artist
thanks for recognizing it the way it was intended
Vinobia's avatar
Your welcome. I'm glad you did this though..It could be used for a lot of Environmentalism/Blogs to help save animals and the Earth. Extremely well done.
anonymous's avatar
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