Tourists usually flock to Trafalgar Square to stand underneath Nelson"s Column and pose by the famous four lions. But there was a rather different attraction today as a colourful parade of hand-painted baby elephants took centre stage.
A collection of 260 life-sized models decorated by celebrities and artists is being placed over the capital this summer for the London Elephant Parade 2010.
Tommy Hilfiger, Matthew Williamson, Julien Macdonald, Alice Temperley, Diane von Furstenberg, Lulu Guinness, Marc Quinn and John Rocha are among those who have taken part in the initiative to raise awareness of the plight of Asian elephants.
Among the works marching on Trafalgar Square today was Williamson"s elephant made up of a glittery rainbow of colours, and Hilfiger"s artwork painted bold red and sporting a mohican of foliage across its head.
An elephant by Paul Smith was fashionably attired in pastel shades and signed by the designer on its knee.
The highly collectable artworks will pop up at a host of London landmarks including Buckingham Palace, Parliament Square and the South Bank over the next few months, before being auctioned off to raise £2 million for charity.
The money will help The Elephant Family charity and more than 15 UK conservation charities working in Asia.