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Scapa Joe

by Adriana Artmeier

A couple of years ago I found "Scapa Joe" on Instagram and instantly fell in love with their work and they're also a massive inspiration and motivation for me so I thought I would introduce them to you as well.


Caroline - We are Dean Hodson ( commercial photographer and filmmaker of 40 years ) and Caroline Appleyard ( artist and diver)

Dean -I’m a commercial photographer and filmmaker of 40 years and in that time been fortunate to not only have had commissions in the UK but also Europe, America and most recently Asia.

A commercial venture was the first instance of working together but it was clear early on that our passion for the environment and running( where we get a lot of our ideas) was a great match. WHAT MADE YOU GET INTO CREATING ART?

Caroline - I started painting in 2004 as art therapy when my dad died suddenly. WHEN DID YOU START GETTING INTO IT?

Caroline - I loved it straight away and painted in all my spare hours. I started with art, then started making sculptures with Dean.

We bounce ideas off each other and have different skills which we put together to make our art. We decided in 2017 to start making sculptures with an aim to raise environmental awareness, like the turtle filled with fag ends.

Many people aren't aware that turtles eat fag butts. These swell in the turtle's stomach and they feel full, then starve.


Caroline - The sculptures can take a few hours to a few weeks from the basic idea to designing and making it. We may do a sketch, then Dean has to 3D design and print it, then we paint it.


Caroline - I paint and sculpt full-time, and Dean is a full-time photographer and designs and sculpts in his spare time, often into the early hours DO YOU EXHIBIT IN GALLERIES OR ONLINE?

Caroline - both. We exhibit in a few galleries around the Uk, we had a sellout show in Orkney in 2019, but due to Covid, other exhibitions have had to be postponed. WHAT WAS THE MOST EXCITING PROJECT YOU'VE EVER WORKED ON?

Caroline - I get excited at all the projects we do together


Caroline - Putting Damien Hirst in a tank of formaldehyde. I hate that a shark was killed on purpose in order to make his art. Approximately 100 million sharks are killed each year. YOUR PERSONAL PRO'S AND CON'S OF YOUR WORK:

Pro's -We try to raise environmental awareness.

Con's. it's sometimes not pretty. WHAT IS THE INSPIRATION BEHIND YOUR WORK?

Caroline - I am inspired by diving, I've dived for over 20 years and seen some amazing creatures and places. I've dived with a dugong, been shit on by dolphins and stung by lots of jellyfish.

I never know what I'll see and just love being underwater. But I've seen a decrease in fish and an increase in plastic pollution.

One of my favourite dives, Flame Shell Reef in Loch Carron in the north of Scotland, was decimated by a dredger in 2019, despite supposedly being protected. So please, if you want to eat scallops, buy ones handpicked by divers. They cost more but don't destroy the seabed. WHAT WAS YOUR MOST MEANINGFUL CREATION YET?

Caroline - Most meaningful I think for me was the Big Ben Big Freeze sculpture. We have no idea how our planet will change because of climate change. So we made a frozen, flooded London sculpture, with beluga whales and polar bears. We used old toys ( polar bears and a red bus from a boot sale) and an old Big Ben statue from a junk shop. We made it in 2018 WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES ARTISTS FACE IN YOUR AREA?

Caroline - Because neither of us studied art at college/university, we will never be in certain galleries because we are not deemed worthy. I have painted full time since 2006 and worked really hard to become established as an artist, yet even though I've had solo shows and exhibit in great galleries, I don't even get a reply from the highbrow galleries. My priorities have since changed and now I just want to increase awareness about environmental issues.

This is where you can follow them (Just click on the buttons)


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