An Ocean Garden

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In this captivating book, artist and avid beachcomber Josie Iselin celebrates the unexpected beauty of seaweed, an often overlooked but fundamental aspect of ocean life.

Produced on a flatbed scanner, Iselin’s vibrant portraits of ocean flora reveal the exquisite color and extraordinary forms of 200+ specimens gathered from tidal pools along the California and Maine coasts.

Her engaging text, which accompanies the images, blends personal observation and philosophical musings with scientific fact. Like her previous books, "An Ocean Garden: The Secret Life of Seaweed" is a poetic and compelling tribute to the natural world and the wonder it evokes.

“I fell in love with seaweed at the kitchen counter. I had returned from the windswept beach with a sack full, and as I dropped each specimen into a tub of salt water, its form and color and translucent sensuality awakened. Pale pinks mingled with bright greens and yellow oranges. Rounded fronds, bumpy textures, and long slender fingers unraveled. I focused on one green algal mass. As I teased out the delicate blades, they would stick to my fingers or to each other—these ocean flora truly belong in water not air—but I persevered . . . I felt like I was unraveling secrets that few have seen.”