As someone who enjoys visiting the Motherland, going on safaris is one of my favourite things to do. Despite my initial fear of them, animals have always been a significant part of my upbringing.

Their constant presence in our Zimbabwean culture has always intrigued me. During holidays spent at my grandmother’s house, baboons and monkeys were always present. I often wondered if their presence had spiritual significance, particularly since totems play a significant role in our culture, and my mother’s family’s totem was a monkey. However, I never dared to ask, as I was unsure if their presence was simply a result of their hunger. What I did know was that animals played a critical role in our Zimbabwean culture, and we were taught to respect them through various spiritual stories.

On a visit to the Ngorongoro crater in Tanzania, I was struck by the diversity of the ecosystem and animals that I encountered there. Similarly, on trips to Pilanesburg, Kruger, and National Parks in Madagascar, I was introduced to a range of fascinating fauna that I never knew existed, particularly in Madagascar. After these trips, I felt compelled to design a modern take on animal print. The print served as a showcase of the incredible wildlife we have while emphasising the importance of conservation.

That’s how the Pangolin print was born.

Despite the significance and sanctity attached to animals in our culture, their value is being undermined by the illegal trade and poaching of endangered species such as rhinos, elephants, South African Abalone, and pangolins, which is the world’s most trafficked mammal. In creating the print, the pangolin was chosen as the central element, paying tribute to all animals facing extinction.