My wife grew up in Florida and every year our family makes a trip to visit her parents. Last year, we chartered a boat for my son’s 9th birthday to visit Shell Key near St. Pete Beach. My son and I were snorkeling in the gulf when we started to see some large shadows in front of us. A family of manatees swam right up to us and then circled directly below us. They seemed so curious — and much larger and more graceful than I expected. For my Alphabeast poster, I wanted to recreate that spatial experience of encountering these gentle creatures in open water.