Apr 30, 2018 | BY Celine Jennison
Deep Blue Life = engaged and aware ocean advocates, taking action to protect the health and the future of our environment, and dedicated to a more ocean-friendly way of life.
Sonni Hönscheid speaks up about her Deep Blue Life. Sonni is the amazing artist responsible for Starboard’s Tikihine line — ‘art you can ride!’
What environmental issue is most important to you as an ocean athlete? What do you do to fight this problem?
In my environment, it’s Plastic, Ships and Sewage that bother me the most… Plastic pollution is something I can play my part in helping to solve, by doing beach cleanups, sweeping the ocean (using the Starboard “Trash Picker”), and encouraging other people to do the same thing…
Besides SUPing, I’m an artist. My art is inspired mainly by the Ocean – with that I try to sensitise people about the beauty that surrounds us, that we have to take care of nature.
Painting is like writing a diary for me – about all my trips, experiences… My main inspiration is the Ocean. I’m also trying to sensitise and inspire people with my paintings about the beauty of our Ocean and Nature. In the painting “Look through their eyes” (below). You can see a human face sharing its eye with the fish. More humans would act differently when it comes to keeping the environment clean if they would see from a fish’s perspective.
Another painting is called 20 faces – it’s made out of stuff I collected over the years around the world from the beach.
Nature is full of jewels – like Pearls from Tahiti, little stones from Newquay, corals from the Canary Islands, Shells from many different beaches… But there’s also plastic…
What does it mean to you to ride an eco-board?
It means that I can stand a 100% behind of what I’m standing on!
What other actions, big or small, do you take to help the environment?
I reduce plastic where I can on a daily basis, and I teach others about that (especially kids). I also recycle & use natural products whenever I can …
I recently strapped a bucket on my Tikhine and paddled out to “sweep” the ocean with the “trash picker”. I released a fish which was trapped in a plastic bag and in quite a short time the bucket was full of trash.
Through Social Media, in daily bases and through my art I spread the message. I’m an Ambassador for the German Ocean Foundation, we just did a Project together with Visitors (mainly kids) from the BOOT Show in Germany, we painted a board which is going to be auctioned in summer, the release is going to the foundation for environmental projects.
What motivates you to care about the health of the oceans and environment? Any cool stories to share?
My motivation is the beauty of nature. Sometimes we get too distracted to see it— but every time either I’m in the water, running in the sand dunes, walking through a forest…. That’s my motivation right there! We are part of the whole thing, we can exist because of nature.
Do you have an eco-goal for the new year that Starboard can help you achieve?
My goal is to keep on doing as many cleanups as I can! I did a little video clip of my last one and I got quite a lot of people writing to say they want to join me on the next mission – so that’s great!!
What message do you want to pass on to the next generation of ocean athletes & ambassadors?
You can never cross the Ocean unless you have the courage to leave the shore— be courageous, set goals, don’t be afraid to fail, be different and be an example to follow!!