Last Sunday, during an impromptu shopping trip to the Trafford Centre, Manchester we came across vibrant art creations on elephant statues dotted all around the mall.
The national Elephant Parade Tour has been sponsored by mall owners 'intu' to raise greater awareness for the plight of Asian elephants.
Top artists, celebrities and schoolchildren have created their own elephants.
by Claudia Schiffer
Alex Jones, presenter of BBC's 'The One Show' designed 'Spirit' with Mercy Delta. This colour combination and mix of patterns with the horse design is so creative and eye-catching.
'An Elephant's Tale' by Katie Sollohub was inspired by childhood memories of Tarzan and Boy riding elephants in the jungle, Barbar The Elephant and other stories about these magnificent creatures.
|'An Elephant's Tale'|
One of my favourites was 'Sunday Best' by Anna Masters. Her pretty blue and white elephant was inspired by patterns on Chinese ceramics.
Patrice Moor loves pink tulips and Jane Austen and decided to paint a tulip upside down on Mrs Bennet's head to make it look a bit like a bonnet!
I was fascinated by the wide range of styles from the pretty to the fun and quirky .......
|'Pop Art' by Nattapol Buaum|
'Ice Creamy' by Karina Choudrie
Of course as this is a UK tour, there were designs related to this part of the world including 'Pilgrim' with its West Country sea-faring connections. There's a continuous harbour scene which Martin Procter, the artist, hopes will remind people of this lovely area of England.
'Wild London' by Patricia Shrigley is all about the enjoyment of local wildlife. She believes that the Elephant Parade is a celebration of our relationship with wildlife and it also shows that we care.
Richard Powell was asked to create a very British icon. Apparently The Red Arrows Royal Air Force Aerobatics Display Team was suggested by an eight year old girl and as a result he created the vibrant red elephant to reflect the colours and design of the aeroplanes.
This UK Tour follows eleven successful parades in cities around the world including Amsterdam, Singapore and Milan. Millions have been raised for Asian elephant conservation projects through the auction or sale of the elephants.
I hope you enjoyed my selection ..... my favourites ...... and finally, here is Lily Pepper, covered in oriental lilies and defintely one of the prettiest!
We were so lucky to see the elephants as this was their last day in Manchester and they have now made their way to Gateshead in the north-east. For details of dates and future venues click here. (This tour ends in London in July 2014.)
Meet some of the artists and have a peep behind the scenes in this short video .......