How is it possible to take a look at the plastic garbage polluting our oceans, stir things up and, at the same time, put out a call for action and activate more people to take up an idea?
It is possible with photography


– and within the framework of the

»Pick It Up« project.


Photo: Patrick Strattner
Photo: Patrick Strattner


Photo: Jan Michael Hosan
Photo: Jan Michael Hosan



From the fifties, when plastics were first introduced into the mass market, up until today, 150 million tons of plastic have landed in our seas and oceans. We are currently speaking about 12.7 million tons a year, and the tendency is on the increase.*
Pieces of plastic of every conceivable size are now found in every oceans around the planet – in the polar ice regions, on sea beds, as carpets of garbage floating on the surface of the water, at the mouths of rivers, in plastic whirlpools that reach from the surface down to the bottom, and along every coastline. The traces of this enormous amount of garbage are clearly evident: the toxic substances found in plastic enter the ocean, sea creatures get entangled in ghost nets**, or they confuse plastic items with food and perish as a result. Micro-plastics contain high concentrations of toxic substances, which, as a result, enter the animal and human food chain.

Photo: Obie Oberholzer
Photo: Obie Oberholzer



• to invite very MANY people, NATIONALLY and INTERNATIONALLY, to participate
• to speak to all AGE GROUPS
• to actively practise ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION, aiming to achieve tangible results
• to actively use PHOTOGRAPHY as a tool for environmental protection
• to have PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY set an example and offer inspiration  
• to initiate ACTIONS related to the subject of plastic garbage
• to draw and gain people’s ATTENTION through all forms of media, because…

… the more people who get involved taking pictures around the globe, the more plastic garbage will be collected, more attention generated, and, as a result, more people activated to copy the idea.



We were first able to launch the concept in early 2017, with the support of the »horizons zingst« Environmental Photo Festival, within the framework of its 10 Year Jubilee. 
For this purpose, we asked 13 professional photographers around the world to serve as role models, to find plastic garbage outside their front doors, so to speak, and to create an image for the exhibition. 
The pictures on display were taken in China, South Africa, the USA, Denmark, Australia and other countries, and exhibited in 3x3 metre dimensions right in the middle of Zingst – revealing that plastic garbage pollution is a problem that encircles the globe. The festival alone saw 57,000 visitors, and up until today a good portion of the 250,000 yearly visitors to Zingst will have seen it. 

Photo: Claus Sjödin
Photo: Claus Sjödin



The principle is simple, and the title is also an invitation to deal with the subject: plastic garbage is swept into and deposited along coastlines, in bays, at the mouths of rivers and on the most beautiful beaches – all over the world.

»Pick it Up« calls us to keep our eyes open, take a step closer, pick it up, take a photograph, and post the picture with the hashtag #pickitup on Instagram, or send the picture to us. Finally comes the step of disposing of the plastic garbage appropriately.   

It just takes a couple of minutes of your day at the beach, while taking a walk at the seaside, or by a stream or a lake right outside your door, and you will have made a small but significant, and, consequently, impactful contribution towards environmental protection; because, every piece of plastic garbage removed from the shore, means less plastic finding its way back into the ocean.


fotogloria | büro für fotografische zusammenarbeit GmbH

Eschelsweg 4

22767 Hamburg

Telefon 040.60942906-0

Telefax 040.60942906-9



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