There are designers, and then there are eco designers who prove art and sustainability can easily marry. Sarah Turner is one such earth-friendly artist with a mission to get creative with post-consumer waste.

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Sarah Turner holding framed art made from colorful recycled soda cans

Using drink cans that would likely end up in landfills instead of the recycling stream, Turner turns the metal into wall art that can initiate conversation about design, artistic elements and sustainability, all while offering visual appeal. Seeing the amount of plastic bottles and cans that ended up in the garbage inspired her creativity and a passion for this line of art. When talking about upcycling used cans, a kindergarten work table might come to mind, but Turner challenges consumers, saying, “Just because something is made from rubbish, it does not need to look like it.”

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rainbow hearts made from soda cans

For example, one framed piece shows her love of art and the planet with a colorful display of cutouts that fan out from a rainbow of small hearts in the center to larger hearts around the outside, with all of the colors resulting from existing aluminum soda cans. Another piece brings to life an autumn tree that, upon inspection, features fluttering butterflies as the leaves.

purple butterflies made from soda cans

Turner’s journey into finding new uses for waste began in her college days while working at a coffee shop and working toward her design degree in 2008. She has dabbled in bringing household materials, such as plastic bottles, drinks cans, glass bottles and electronic circuit boards, back to life. That passion and talent has led to her work being exhibited internationally at prestigious shows in London, Milan, Paris, Los Angeles, Baku and locally in Nottingham, U.K., where she is based.

pink and purple flamingos made from recycled pop cans

Near her home in the U.K., Turner has found an endless source for waste materials, all of which are found at local homes and businesses. In addition to the soda can art, all of her work can be seen on her website, including lighting, sculptures, other artworks and jewelry.

+ Sarah Turner Eco Art & Design

Images via Sarah Turner Eco Art & Design