Bruna Passanante – Environmental Impact Photography

Bruna Passanante

Environmental Impact Photography

            My name is Bruna Passanante and this portfolio is titled “Environmental Impact Photography” and is licensed under CC BY-NC.

This portfolio was written to showcase photographs that were shot with the purpose to bring attention to environmental issues. Specifically, I chose to showcase Benjamin Von Wong, an artist who has been known to creative surreal images to start important conversations around issues impacting our world. In the TED Talk below, Von Wong talks a little bit about how he got the idea to use photography as an approach to activism and the importance artists like himself have in our society today.

In his art, Von Wong brings light to several different issues regarding our environment in today’s world. Specifically, the main themes he covers revolve a lot around recycling and climate change. In his creations, Von Wong creates incredible, eye-catching images to bring attention to plastic use (including straws and bottles) and its effects on oceans and maritime life, waste coming from electronic materials and how they end up in landfills, endangered species, fast fashion and how it hurts the environment, climate change and pollution, between so many other causes. His major goal is to show the effects we suffer from climate change and how recycling can help our world.

Mermaids Swim in 10000 Plastic Bottles by ©Von Wong

“Feel free to quote and publish the photos on your online publication (please credit & link back to the original).”

This campaign was focused on human plastic use, specifically bottles. Von Wong used his creativity and art here, with the help of other artists and volunteers, to bring the attention of viewers to the fact that plastic takes around 450 years to degrade, and with that, by 2050 there could be more plastic than fish in the sea. He uses the mermaids here to illustrate maritime life being affected by the sea of plastic we’re creating daily. His movement called for viewers to take the pledge to recycle and reduce their own plastic use.

Clothing the Loop by ©Von Wong

“Feel free to quote and publish the photos on your online publication (please credit & link back to the original).”

This campaign was created with the intention of fighting fast fashion. Von Wong here wanted to bring attention to what really goes behind the clothes we constantly consume and dispose of. There is a huge environmental cost and number of natural resources that goes into producing a single piece of clothing, specifically fast fashion pieces. Moldy clothes from an abandoned factory were used to create these photographs and to bring attention to shoppers to be more ethical and do research next time they buy a new outfit.

Mad Max Meets Trump’s America by ©Von Wong

“Feel free to quote and publish the photos on your online publication (please credit & link back to the original).”

This campaign was brought together with the help of volunteer models and other artists to bring attention to pollution and the tolls it takes on our planet and ourselves. Specifically, Von Wong wanted to start a conversation on the negative impacts on the use of coal and the importance of supporting renewable energy. These crazy photographs suggest that if we just simply do nothing, one day we will probably end up fighting for oxygen like the models are.

Benjamin Von Wong is a photographer with a background in art and engineering, which combined have helped him go viral in benefit of environmental causes. He has partnered with brands such as Nike, Starbucks, Dell, between many other, to promote change. With the help of these companies, coworkers, and even volunteers, Von Wong has created sculptures, exhibitions, and campaigns with his photographs, all of which have helped raise thousands of dollars to environmental causes, signatures for petitions that strive to enact change, and maybe most importantly, started the conversation between so many people on how these issues have such a great effect on the world and how it is up to us to do something about it. He has also inspired numerous artist’s around the world to use their own voices and creativity towards the cause. An example is seen below of a fellow photographer at one of Von Wong’s exhibitions.

CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 RICO Lee Plastikophobia

Environmental photography is just one in many art expressions that have become more and more popular every day. Art as a method of activism is very engaging as it goes beyond an expression of creativity for entertainment, but it’s effective as a simple yet impactful way to deliver a message and educate viewers. Von Wong’s art is very distinctive and unconventional because of how shocking the images he creates are. Not only does he use the items related to the issue (such as the electronic waste or plastic bottles) to create greater than life images, but they also shock you in how they make you really think. You might not think that plastic straws are really that big of an issue until you see the waves he created with only a small percentage of what actually ends up in the oceans daily. You wouldn’t think that electronic waste is such a big deal until you see the sculptures he created with only a small amount of what ends up in landfill every day. It’s the shocking images of everyday activities being done in front of a hurricane that makes viewers stop and question themselves. It’s the group of humans, including a baby, in the toxic and polluted air, needing oxygen masks to breathe in the images he created that make you wonder how long before this is our reality. Recycling is a big factor that can help slow the speed of climate change, and artists like Von Wong are using their imagination to try and bring attention to these issues before it’s too late. We can’t ignore our world and the problems we created any longer. Visit Von Wong’s website for more information on his studies and accomplishments through art:




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Bruna Passanante - Environmental Impact Photography Copyright © by Bruna Passanante is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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