Life at the moment often leaves us feeling like we have been through the washing machine and come out the other side feeling a bit the worse for wear. Spare a thought for these Australian sealions who go through the wash many times every day as they hunt around the offshore reef. Fearlessly braving the thumping waves exploding at the base of the cliffs they surf their way back in to shore to find the calmness of the warm rock pools. When their curiosity about this weird human who sits all day watching from the rocks is satisfied they can haul out onto the sand ....rolling to dry themselves and then settling in with their friends to snooze away the sunny hours before heading out again.
I have spent many days and weeks sharing life on this wilderness beach with these marvellous and friendly critters. One of the rarest sealions on the planet, with less than 10,000 remaining in Southern Aussie waters, they are certainly the most beautiful and possibly the most curious and friendly too. Often they have approached me and sniffed the extremities of this weird human laying on the sand or on the rocks. And since Aussie sealions are thigmotaxic (meaning they love to be in physical contact with each other) it is not unusual for them to come up and touch me out of curiosity. When this happens I always feel blessed as though nature has granted me her sacred benediction and I am also reminded that if one goes into nature with an open mind and an open heart wonderful things can happen.
If you too love these gorgeous beings you can support them through the Australian Marine Conservation Society www.marineconservation.org.au I hope my paintings of Aussie sealions bring awareness and the will to help AMCS's marvellous conservation efforts.
‘In the wash - Australian sealions’
Image size 63 X 57 cm
pastel on Supertooth paper