Oil: Making the Connection

Oil: Making the Connection

I want to produce a short film to show the connection between plastic waste and the loss of oil that it represents. During my #LitterCUBES events 2019, I found that hundreds of people were unaware that plastic is primarily made from oil

I plan to work again with Shetland film maker JJ Jamieson. I intend the film to be projected with the #LitterCUBES in the lead up to  Cop26 Climate Conference. I need £2,500 to cover the very basic costs of making and editing the film.


You can make a donation by clicking on the orange DONATE button at the top of the page.  In return you will receive a limited edition print of my ‘2020 Message in a Bottle’ photograph.    Thank you!

Message in A Bottle (2)

Many thanks to all of the following for supporting the making of the #LitterCUBES: Ullapool Harbour Trust, Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape, the Heritage Lottery Fund and Scottish Natural Heritage, and for donations from: individuals, Eyemouth Marine Ltd, rag, Sheihallion, Ullapool Harbour Trust and support in kind from Eyemouth Harbour, Dunbar Harbour Trust  plus  North Light Arts and An Talla Solais  for their support with the #LitterCUBES events. Thanks also to  volunteers and all those who donated money to make these events possible.



Looking out to sea through yet another plastic bottle picked up from the rocks of a Scottish beach, my resolve is to use my art as activism. To show and tell a local Scottish story which is contributing to #ClimateChange and to add to the global evidence that scientists, the media, activists and commentators are cataloguing to pressure world leaders into making decisions that will mitigate global warming and its increasing effects on climate and world ecology.

Our actions using and allowing plastic to bleed into our seas contributes to the waste of finite resources (Embodied Energy) that the plastic represents.

Help me show this local – global connection to the #ClimateEmergency in Glasgow during the next UN summit COP26. Please get in touch/leave suggestions of contacts that might enable me to share this story.


Looking to 2020

As I take stock of my project this year making 20 #LitterCUBES, I am inspired by the  hundreds of conversations that were triggered at events, about our Climate Emergency and our need to urgently change our habits.

I am convinced that Art more than ever must reach out to connect people and help to bring about change.

In 2020 I want to take my #LitterCUBES to COP26, the next Climate Conference which will be held in Glasgow. So, I have put together this 2 minute video pitch, to reach out and link up with other artists, galleries, arts and environmental organisations beginning to plan events in Glasgow.

Please share the video, leave a comment below or get in touch via littoralartproject@btinternet.com

Looking to recycling

‘I feel an awful lot of people would like to see recycling taking off. Projects like yours have successfully put plastic pollution in the public gaze. I feel we are at the point where we are waiting for a workable recycling process to happen especially in harbours. Connections need to be made especially in the fishing industry.’  Eyemouth Harbour Master, Richard Lawton

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It is for this reason that all the #LitterCUBES events have taken place in unexpected locations like the old Eyemouth fish market, under the gaze of passers-by, giving the opportunity of making connections between young and old, trawler crews, visitors, divers, fish merchants and residents.  Even on chilly days questions are asked, conversations begin and un-thought of connections are made.

Broad discussions with the local fish-merchant about the recycle-ability of fish boxes and box strapping, led to a useful connection with a visiting packaging supplier keen to emphasise the ‘good & bad polymers’ e.g. the ease of recycling Polypropylene products compared to Polystyrene ones, which is less easy especially when contained fish and absorbed fish oils & blood.

My Polypropylene #LitterCUBES made from prawn boxes and strapping now have an end destination in Grimsby in 2021 after showing the finished collection next year.  All the bottle CUBES including the one started in Eyemouth will be easily recyclable as they are made from valuable PET [Polyethylene terephthalate].

It is the heavy Rope/net and fine fishing line CUBES that the enthusiastic young people from Eyemouth High and  Primary Schools joined in weaving and sewing that will prove more difficult to recycle. The end of life of the thousands of pieces of rope and fishing line, collected on the Berwickshire beaches by tens of beach cleaners locally is far less certain. Please get in touch with recycling possibilities!

Eyemouth group shot

A massive thanks to all who took part, particularly the schools and teachers, plus supporting organisations Splash, Berwickshire Marine Reserve, Blue Marine Foundation, Eyemouth HarbourEyemouth Harbour and Eyemouth Hippodrome. I am grateful to the many donations from supporters through Crowd Funding and philanthropic arts, community & environment trusts, plus local business Eyemouth Marine Ltd.

“As someone who is concerned about the future health of our marine environment, I would encourage everyone to take action and change habits to ensure the health of our seas. At Eyemouth Marine we are conscious of this, and take steps to minimise our impact on the marine environment.

By supporting the #LitterCUBES project we hope to highlight the scale of marine plastic pollution; This is an issue for our community locally as well as a national concern, and Julia’s display’s in Eyemouth will serve as a reminder to us all of our responsibility to look after our seas, we have one world, one ocean, we need to look after it”.

Patrick Flockhart, Director Eyemouth Marine Ltd





Weaving connections in Eyemouth


Preparation is underway to weave thousands of pieces plastic cord, rope, net, fishing line and hundreds of plastic bottles collected along the Berwickshire coast into 3 #LitterCUBES.  Each cube will also contain a 30% mix of materials from the NW Highlands, East Lothian, Shetland and Angus and will present an account of the nature, scale and the complexities of marine plastic pollution in our coastal communities. I hope it will inform the need to break with polluting habits and expose the actual value of plastic involved.

The week’s events will provide practical opportunities to weave together and to weigh and calculate the energy value of plastic pollution

Public events at SPLASH, Community Space, along Eyemouth’s Quayside  everyone welcome, free and fully accessible event.

Thurs 26th 3-5 pm           Fri 27th 1-5 pm              Sat 28th Sept 10 am – 5 pm

Thanks to everyone for collecting litter items and to Eyemouth Hippodrome, Voluntary Marine Reserve, Eyemouth Harbour Trust, SPLASH Commuity Trust, for in-kind support and for donations from Eyemouth Marine, local residents, crowd funding and philanthropic arts, community and environment trusts.


Plus a wider thanks to Ullapool Harbour Trust, Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape,the Heritage Lottery Fund and Scottish Natural Heritage, and for donations from: individuals,  rag, Sheihallion, Dunbar Harbour Trust   North Light Arts and An Talla Solais  for their support with the #LitterCUBES events. Thanks also to  volunteers and all those who donated money to make these events possible.  Please get in touch if you would like to learn more/join the events.



Angus Coastal Festival

Glad to be in Arbroath to launch this year’s Angus Coastal Festival (13- 23rd Sept) with its bio-diverse programme of events, covering all the things I love and enjoy about working within the Scottish Littoral  zones, from the geology of cliffs, rocks and pebbles, to investigating rock pools, identifying seaweeds, coastal plants, butterflies and bird life. And importantly connecting and working with people who care and want to help to make our marine environment healthy and sustainable.

Over 12 beach cleans are taking place, already tonnes have been removed from Arbroath beaches and more bottles saved  by the Ladyloan Primary School  with Turning the Plastic Tide and Our East Haven  volunteers for the Angus #LitterCUBES.  60 eager pupils joined me to learn more about sculpture, plastic as a material and its origin in oil and energy. I am asking  Festival goers to join me today Saturday 14th threading and weaving the next #LitterCUBES at the Arbroath Signal Tower from fishing net and rope. All welcome.