The Guy Harvey collection of fish jaws and drawings
In the past, all members of the Honours Zoology Class at Aberdeen University were required to prepare a taxonomic collection as part of their final degree examination.
Back in 1978, a young zoologist by the name of Guy Charles McNeil Harvey put together a collection of fish jaws, mainly from Jamaican waters, to illustrate feeding adaptations. What made the collection truly exceptional was a series of exquisite drawings that Guy made to accompany the fish skulls.
Guy Harvey graduated in the summer of 1978 with First Class Honours in Zoology. In his subsequent career he has managed to combine his love of marine biology and his great artistic abilities. He is now a hugely successful marine artist with an international reputation. The Zoology Museum is indeed fortunate to have in its care so many examples of Guy's early work.
"From the dramatic and fascinating world of marine art there has emerged a young artist whose works have captured the imagination of people around the world. A self artist whose paintings are of such detail and realism he has become known as the John Audubon of marine art" Mr. Curt Gowdy.
Guy Harvey is a unique blend of artist, scientist, diver, angler, conservationist and explorer, fiercely devoted to his family and his love of the sea. Growing up in Jamaica, Guy spent many hours fishing and diving with his father along the Island's south coast. He was obsessed with the creatures of the sea and began drawing pictures of the many different fish he observed.
© Guy Harvey
Born in Lippspringe, Germany on September 16, 1955 while his father was serving as a Gunnery Officer in the British Army, Guy is a 10th generation Jamaican of English heritage as his family immigrated to Jamaica in 1664. From his early inspirations, Guy's natural gift to recreate marine life has propelled him from Professor of Marine Biology to a Wildlife Artist and Photographer. Guy initially opted for a scientific education, earning high honors in Marine Biology at Aberdeen University in Scotland in 1977. He continued his formal training at the University of West Indies, where he obtained a Doctorate in Fisheries Management.
In 1985, he depicted Ernest Hemingway's famous fishing story "The Old Man & the Sea" through a series of 44 original pen and ink drawings and displayed them at an exhibition in Jamaica. Based on the positive response he received at the show, Guy began painting full time and by 1988 was providing custom artwork for use on a variety of products.
Guy began to travel the world to gain more knowledge of the habits and activities of marine wildlife. He became an avid scuba diver and skilled underwater photographer. He pioneered a technique of diving and photographing free-swimming billfish. His personal observations made during these diving expeditions have better enabled him to capture the detail in his paintings that contributes to the popularity of his work.
As an ardent conservationist, Guy has consistently supported "catch and release" fishing ethics for game fish around the world. He works closely with many conservation organizations to help protect global fishery resources. In 1986, he was selected as Jamaica's representative to the International Game Fish Association and in 1992 was appointed as a Trustee. Guy's support of the Pompano Beach Fishing Rodeo and its artificial reef program was highlighted by his sponsorship in 1997 of the sinking of the "Guy Harvey Reef". In 1998, Guy was voted the IGFA's first ever "Lifetime Achievement Award" from the World Fishing Awards Committee. In 1999, the Oceanographic Center of Nova Southeastern University and Guy Harvey collaborated to create a non-profit Marine Research Institute. The Guy Harvey Research Institute was established to provide scientific information necessary for effective conservation and restoration of fish resources and biodiversity. Guy's first autobiography, Portraits From The Deep, a 208 page hardbound coffee table stylebook was released in 2002. In 2004, Guy Harvey's Portraits from the Deep, a 13 episode, made-for-television fishing series aired on Outdoor Life Network.
Guy currently maintains his art studio in Grand Cayman, where he lives
with wife Gillian and their two children, Jessica and Alex.