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Gemma and Boyfriend

Gemma Dunstan and her boyfriend recently found a mysterious message in a bottle and are looking for help locating the sender. Photo: Gemma Dunstan.

After years of finding and researching messages in bottles, I have come to realize that there are as many motives for sending them as people on earth. Yet, I still wonder: What is the motive behind sending artwork with no identifying information attached?

Gemma Dunstan of England is trying to solve just such a mystery as we speak, because she recently discovered a message in a bottle on a walk with her boyfriend along the Devon coast.

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The message in a bottle as Gemma found it. Photo: Gemma Dunstan.

Inside was an unexpected “message”–in fact, it is a large piece of paper covered completely in a sketch of a face. Gemma describes it as the face of “an old man.” To me, it almost looks like two different half-sketches: there appear to be two noses, and the eyes and eyebrows look a little different to me. Maybe this sketch is meant to represent two faces? What do you think?

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This is what Gemma found inside the bottle. Creepy! Photo: Gemma Dunstan.

Now, she’s trying to figure out who drew this face and why?

One of the only clues is something resembling a signature and possibly a number in one corner of the paper.

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Is that a number? A signature? Photo: Gemma Dunstan.

So far, neither Gemma nor I have identified any clear contact information on the sketch…

I’ve seen this happen a million times, and the only hope for finding the sender is to share these images online as much as we can, in hopes that the artist behind the sketch will recognize their work and come forward. Gemma needs your help, folks!

Let’s do it!