FISHFIRE Featured at Rolex’s World Oceans Week at The Explorer’s Club in NYC
A collaborative illuminated photographic design celebrating Cabo Pulmo, one of the world’s top examples of a successful marine protected area.
By Markley Boyer and Kristin Hettermann/OCEANSCAPES
When you stare into this fire, we want you to be mesmerized by the beauty of the fish which were captured in the stunning Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park in Baja California Sur, Mexico. We are depleting our fish stocks at an unsustainable rate … "burning" the oceans to meet our needs. By feeling a deeper, more intimate connection to the creatures that roam our seas we hope that everyone will create a more emphatic strategy to their own consumption patterns.
Underwater photographer and ocean conservationist Kristin Hettermann has visited Cabo Pulmo on four occasions, photographing the massive array of undersea life. Kristin speaking of her first experience in the massive school of fish at Cabo Pulmo, “We quickly descend. My heart skips many beats as I first see a coordinated mass of tens of thousands of large, shimmery jacks moving in synchrony. Soon we are in the middle of them, suddenly part of their dance. I can’t believe my eyes. To see such an expansive school of large fish … feel what life was like before the net.”
Still underwater photographs taken by Kristin Hettermann/OCEANSCAPES, 3D digital design by Markley Boyer
Markley Boyer works with visualization tools on subjects related to landscape, water and conservation. Kristin Hettermann is an ocean artivist that uses underwater photography and storytelling to celebrate the beauty of the ocean and raise awareness for important global issues.
The ocean is losing its fish at a drastic rate. Over 70 percent of the earth is covered in ocean, and reports point to the fact that ocean fish populations have been cut in half since 1970. That’s a lot of life on earth lost.
A small marine protected area in Baja California Sur, Mexico, Cabo Pulmo National Park, is a spectacular example of a global success story in protection, species re-stabilization, preservation, and inspiration. Nearly 23 years after the local fishing community established protection under a “no-take” zoning, the ecosystem within the marine park and around its borders is vibrant and thriving. People come from all over the world to experience the ocean here while diving or snorkeling, and fishing in adjacent areas is also robust. The community is proud and economically stable.
Cabo Pulmo is a community that was at the point that many are and had to make a hard decision of continuing to deplete their natural systems, or protecting. They suffered economic consequences for a time as the model shifted and took a new route, but benefited in the long-term. This model can be adapted in communities globally to replenish oceans and livelihoods. Everyone wins.