A pod of Melon-headed whales cruises through the deep blue waters off Hawaii. Though volcano Mauna Kea still looms in the distance, the ocean has long dropped off into the abyss.
This painting was commissioned as a birthday gift for someone, to commemorate her PhD study done on this species. They are highly gregarious, these Melon-headed whales—or ‘peps,’ as the commissioner called them affectionately, after their scientific name Peponocephala electra. As such the painting features 57 dolphins, to give a feel for the huge pods they normally travel in. Every dolphin is an individual with different markings, one by one painted by hand. It’s probably my most complex painting to date.