All sharks – bright and beautiful, great and small, weird and wonderful - we love them all. And our limited-edition calendar for 2021 celebrates them in style.

Showcasing a different shark every month, our calendar includes fun facts and colourful illustrations, to brighten even those darker-gloomier months.

We caught up with Hannah from our team, who's also the designer behind the LOVE SHARKS Calendar...


WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION BEHIND THE CALENDAR?

In a nutshell – to celebrate and share our passion for sharks!

Over the years we’ve had many requests for a Shark Trust calendar. This year provided us with the perfect opportunity, so we finally decided to go for it. But, instead of a traditional photo calendar, we wanted to do something a little different...

Our A-Z of Sharks poster, and the accompanying book of poems for children, received some lovely feedback from supporters. So, we thought why not create something similar for adults? Something bright, fun, and colourful. For shark fanatics everywhere!



WHAT DOES THE CREATIVE PROCESS LOOK LIKE?

Sharks are the perfect subject. With so many different species, they provide an endless source of inspiration. So, the first stage involved deciding which species to include!

We wanted to highlight the incredible variety of sharks we have in our waters. So, we decided to showcase popular species alongside some of the lesser known. Once we felt we had a good range of species, the next step involved researching and gathering lots of reference material.

  • RESEARCH STAGE: We wanted the designs to be full of personality and to tell a story about sharks. So, researching about how each species lives and interacts with their environment was key.

    I particularly loved discovering about the incredible bond Whale Sharks and Pilot Fish share. Pilot Fish are very particular when choosing which shark to ‘befriend’ and over time form a close bond. In exchange for food and protection, these welcome travelling companions keep their shark parasite-free. How amazing is that? And such a lovely example of how everything is so intricately connected! Big or small, everything plays a key role in the ecosystem.


  • PENCIL SKETCHES: The next step was to mock up some rough pencil sketches. The chosen designs were then refined and worked up into finished line drawings. These were scanned into Illustrator and turned into vectors.

    Love Sharks 2021 Calendar - Blue Shark artwork

  • FINAL ARTWORK & COLOUR: From here we applied lots of bold colour. We wanted the designs to be bright and cheerful, so we chose colours from the Shark Trust’s complimentary colour palette. Rather than the primary teal palette.


WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN?

So far, my favourite design is the Basking Shark. I had so much fun learning all about the invisible microscopic world of plankton. These tiny plants and animals are truly amazing. And thanks to technology we’re able to see just how incredible they are. These perfect structures are beautiful, intricate and complex.

The stains used by scientists to view them under a microscope inspired the multi-coloured palette for the design. I think they almost look like sweets - bright pink foam shrimps, jelly beans, and sherbet lemons - floating in the water. And I'd imagine a Basking Shark, swimming in rich planktonic waters, probably feels just like a kid in a sweet shop.

On top of sustaining this beautiful giant, plankton is also responsible for 70% of the worlds oxygen. So, we just had to celebrate these amazing creatures and their relationship with Basking Sharks in our calendar.

Love Sharks 2021 Calendar - Basking Shark Design


WHAT’S COMING UP NEXT?

I'm currently working on a Great White Shark design, which we’ll be posting soon. So keep an eye out for more updates...


Want to grab yourself a copy? 

Click here to find out more about our Kickstarter campaign, which enabled us to bring our calendar to life.