Okay, so this is kind of an off-topic post for us, but it’s been something we’ve both been thinking about for a while and I saw an article today that I just had to share. (Hang on; we’ll get to that!)
Have you ever been driving down the highway and suddenly become aware of the alarming number of discarded plastic bags you see caught in trees or just blowing across the interstate? Ever go swimming at the beach and get spooked by what you think is a giant jellyfish only to discover it’s a plastic grocery bag? How about lose your cool trying to close the cabinet door under your kitchen sink, but you can’t close it because it’s overflowing with all of those stupid plastic bags that don’t really seem to serve a very useful purpose because they inevitably end up with holes by the time you unload your groceries from them, but, you don’t have the heart to throw them away so they get stuffed in a cabinet?
Well, we’ve been there and it got Andy & me thinking about how we can do our part to cut down on the usage of plastic bags. I swear those darned baggers at the supermarket have stock in the production of plastic bags because they refuse to put more than one or two items in a bag. And, after a week’s worth of shopping you end up with dozens of the flimsy little good-for-nothing polluters.
Our first step in cutting down on our plastic consumption was to purchase some of those reusable cloth bags at the supermarket and use any leftover plastic bags we still have under our kitchen sink for household trash rather than buying new trashbags. We also decided it might be fun to make an art project out of it (no, not a plastic bag sculpture….we don’t have quite that many bags saved up). Instead, we thought it would be fun to put together a photo series showing all of the places that these menacing bags seem to find themselves.
I admit, we haven’t progressed very far with our photo project and we sometimes forget to bring the cloth bags with us to the supermarket, but, we’re trying. And so is China. Yesterday, China’s State Council announced that starting this summer all shops can no longer provide free plastic bags to their customers and production of the super thin plastic bags is strictly forbidden….I think they might be on to something. Of course, they use lead paint to make children’s toys, so they don’t earn huge points from me, but still…it’s a start. Here’s the story:China Bans Plastic Bags
As for us, we’re still working on gathering photos for our plastic bag project, but we thought it might be fun to get some help. If this is something you’ve ever thought about, or even if you haven’t but it sounds interesting to you, help us by sending us some cool photos of plastic bags you see in places where they shouldn’t be and hopefully later this year we’ll have a cool collection to show you.
Here’s a couple to get us started….we took these with our little point and shoot camera on the one day we made it to the beach this past summer. It was a really windy day and in the first shot this tattered bag was hanging on to the lifeguard chair for dear life.
The beach grass made for a great net for several bags, but we choose to photograph just this one…What really struck me was that the bag appeared to be new and unused. I imagine someone brought it to the beach to collect all of the trash they accumulated, but the wind took it away and they either didn’t notice or couldn’t be bothered to run after it.
Don’t worry, we picked up all of the plasic bags we saw and took them home with us to throw away. Let’s just hope they don’t end up blowing off the trash truck they’re carried away on!
** ADDENDUM **
Since at least a few of you (thanks Sandee, Patrick, Linda & Andrea for your comments…you guys rock! Can’t wait to see what you capture Andrea!) seem to have some interest in our plastic bags photo project, we thought we’d up the ante and make it more interesting by turning the project into a contest. Contest means prizes and who doesn’t love free stuff!
We need at least 20 submissions to pull this off, so all you photo lovers grab your cameras and get out there and start shooting plastic. Here’s what we want…send us your best photo of a plastic bag found in a place where it shouldn’t be and we’ll put all of the entries on our blog. Then, we’ll let you, our loving blog readers, vote on the one you like best. The shutterbug behind the winning photo will receive a free portrait session. The contest isn’t limited to clients, so have some fun people! And depending on the response we get, we may add additional prizes.
Well, get out there and start shooting. The contest ends on Earth Day, April 19, 2008, so you have plenty of time. Please e-mail your photo submissions to email@example.com and don’t forget to include your name, address, phone number, and e-mail address so we can contact you if your photo is chosen! And, have fun!!! Can’t wait to see what you all come up with!