Date of Award

Summer 5-10-2019

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education (MAEd)


Art and Design

First Advisor

Melanie Davenport

Second Advisor

Kevin Hsieh

Third Advisor

Jennifer Hamrock



The purpose of this study was to create a series of artwork in response how plastic is affecting marine life and indicate implications for classroom use. I focused primarily on the plastic pollution in and around the North Pacific Gyre and three of the marine animals affected. I chose animals that spend time off the coast of California and painted images of the Pacific leatherback sea turtle, the Laysan albatross, and the California sea lion. Through this project I have learned a lot about myself, both as a consumer and as an artist educator. Since the beginning of this research I have changed our household ways of viewing and using single-use plastics. This study has also pushed me artistically to create works to raise awareness and inspire change. I feel confident that I will be able to use this knowledge to motivate students to do the same.