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Yorkshire start-up transforms plastic bottles into photographic quality art

Stuart Jones created C02nscience to recycle plastic bottles into photos.

Bradford-based Co2nscience was set up to find a way of re-using some of the millions of plastic bottles thrown into landfill each year. Their solution? To make pictures from recycled bottles, turning waste into art.

The company has already teamed up with landscape and sports photographers and been licensed by the National Archives and Transport for London to reproduce some of their images. Prompted by a desire to run a business which was ecologically sound as well as profitable, founder Stuart Jones used to make cardboard CD and DVD packaging as an alternative to plastic cases. But as music sales dropped, he turned his attention to other forms of recycling manufacturing, and decided to focus on plastic bottles instead.

Co2nscience makes the ‘stretcher’ prints by chopping the bottles down into pellets and then meshing them together again to create a fibre. This is then turned into a soft and smooth sheet which is then able to be printed on. Each print is made from between four to 22 recycled 50cl plastic bottles, depending on its size.

Some of the recycled bottle photos.

Stuart told “We are passionate about the planet and innovation, so when we came up with the idea to re-use discarded plastic bottles and turn them into stunning wall art we knew we’d hit on something unique and exciting.

“With people’s help, we can spread the word far and wide, and hopefully, in the not too distant future, create such a demand for the ubiquitous empty plastic bottle that will mean very few end up in landfill – so important as they can take 500 years to decompose.”

Co2nscience has now launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise £12,000 in order to turn 140,000 bottles into prints. This figure was chosen as the number required to make enough of the material to cover a football pitch.

Almost £10,000 has already been collected, with seven days to go until the end of the campaign. You can pledge online at the Co2nscience Kickstarter campaign page.

By Lucy

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