Meet Jonathan Jarodsky, park ranger and artist, creator of the whale design of the Recover t-shirt series, available at shop.surfrider.org.
What initially motivated and drew you into art?
I come from a family who encouraged artistic expression and I’ve been creating art since I was a child. I love the process of creating art as much as the finished result. One of my greatest pleasures is when my art has a positive effect on the people/community who experience it.
What inspiration does your artwork draw from our ocean, waves, and beaches?
My experience and awe of the ocean is a huge inspiration to my artwork. Being out in the ocean is a humbling experience and frequently inspires me to interpret that experience through my art. I’ve been on a big whale illustration kick lately. Whales are remarkable beautiful creatures that live a very complex lifestyle that we are continuing to learn more and more about. Observing whales in the wild inspires and excites me to live and love this life as much as I can.
What does the ocean mean to you and why should it be protected?
The ocean is such a fascinating and important ecosystem. Covering more than 70% of the earth’s surface, its overall health is directly related to the health of our planet. Loss of habitat is the greatest threat to any species, including our own.
What is one life experience that has resonated for you and really made a difference in your life or your art?
For the past 10 years I’ve worked as a ranger at Mt. Rainier National Park. Being a steward to the wilderness and people who visit the park has been really important and impactful on me. My job inspires me to appreciate how beautiful this world is and to not take our lives or the environment for granted.
Why do you feel it's important to support the Surfrider Foundation and our mission?
I think supporting the Surfrider Foundation is important because it allows people the opportunity to actively participate in the conservation of the oceans, waves and beaches. Having that opportunity to participate is not always an easy thing to do as an individual. The Surfrider Foundation provides that platform for individuals' access to contribute to the protection of the ocean. Working together, we can get more positive work accomplished.
For more info or to shop the Recover t-shirt series, visit http://shop.surfrider.org.
To see more of Jonathan's artwork and to check out some of his photos, you can follow him on Instagram at @jhjarodsky