Call for Volunteers Graphic Designers

The GNSI is LOADED with talented people: illustrators, of course, but graphic designers as well. Do you enjoy graphic design? Are you skilled at all basic aspects of graphic design and can produce print and web-ready art? Can you spare some time now and then to help out your intrepid (and overworked) Communications Team with the occasional graphic design project? Then we want to hear from you!

We are talking simple brochures, flyers, and postcards. We are NOT talking about regular recurring projects and you would NOT have to commit to any set amount of time or a set number of projects. We would just like to have your name on file to contact when projects come up and we are otherwise swamped (like now!). If you are available and can help out, great! If not, that’s fine, we’ll move to the next name on the list.

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Call for Exhibit: The Art of Science

The Salem Art Association invites members of the Oregon Group of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators to submit up to four images of artwork for jury consideration for an all-media group exhibition in the Camas Gallery at the Bush Barn Art Center in Salem, Oregon. The exhibit will be on display June 1-July 28, 2012.

Who can submit: Natural Science Illustrators who are current members of the GNSI-Oregon Group can submit four entries without charge.

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2012 COM.EN.ART Residency

2012 COM.EN.ART residencyThe Huyck Preserve is accepting applications for the 2012 COM.EN.ART program (PDF Application Link).

COM.EN.ART (COMmunity.ENviroment.ART) is an Artist-in-Residence program for natural history illustrators offered by the Huyck Preserve, a biological field station and 2000-acre nature preserve in the picturesque Hudson Valley hamlet of Rensselaerville, NY.

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Book Review: Joseph Hooker Botanical Trailblazer

Joseph Hooker Botanical Trailblazer

This richly illustrated little book follows Joseph Hookers career as he struggles to raise botany from a Victorian gentleman’s hobby to a recognized science. Through his world travels and a network of collectors he identified more than 12,000 new plant species, published several illustrated books and journals on plants and eventually followed in his fathers’ footsteps as Director of Kew Garden. His good friend and colleague Charles Darwin was so impressed with his work that as a legacy he funded the Index Kewensis, a comprehensive list of the world’s plant species which is still kept current today. The beautiful plant illustrations and landscapes reproduced here from his journals are accompanied by reproductions of lithographs and paintings done by Walter Hood Finch. This overview of Hookers life along with the reproduced illustrations, documents and photographs make this little Kew publication one any fan of the history of botany would enjoy.

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Book Review: Images of Nature–The Art of the First Fleet

First Fleet Falcon1787 “Two Naval Ships, the HMS Sirius and HMS Supply, three store ships and six convict transports set sail from Portsmouth bound for Botany Bay,” ‘the First Fleet’ as defined by colonial Australian historians. The brief but poignant introduction by Lisa Di Tommaso, the Assistant Librarian of the Natural History Museum in London, sets the stage for a series of images that portray the earliest encounters between European commerce and Australian aboriginal natives.

The collection exhibiting this summer in London highlights the illustrated works from three categorized sources: the works of George Raper, a midshipman on board HMS Sirius, the works of Thomas Whatling, a landscape artist turned convict for forgery, and works by unidentified artists who went by the name “Port Jackson Painter.” Given that the voyage or colony had no designated official artist, the collection’s unique depictions are a testament to the various artists, their unique character, and how they came to be in Port Jackson, Australia, in the late 1700s.

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International Competition of Scientific Illustration

The Catalan Association for Science Communication (ACCC) is sponsoring an International Competition of Scientific Illustration, organized by the Catalan Association of Scientific Comunició (ACCC) and supported by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy and the Government of Catalonia.

The competition is organized electronically. Submissions are digital files formatted for a 29.7 x 42cm vertical space with sufficient resolution for printing a display copy. Deadlines for digital submission was Dec. 24, 2011.

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Call for Exhibits: 2012 Margaret Flockton Award

This is the final call for entries for the Margaret Flockton Award 2012. Some entries have already been received and there are only a few weeks left until entry deadline.

The Margaret Flockton Award commemorates the contribution Margaret Flockton made to Australian scientific botanical illustration.

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Remedies for Small Copyright Claims

The US copyright office is continuing it's research into Orphaned Works, with the likely outcome of more legislative attempts in the future. Currently, they are looking for input on remedies for Small Copyright Claims.

If you have had successes or failures in pursuing an infringement claim, or considered and rejected an attempt at one, the Copyright Office needs to hear how and why from you by January 17th.

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Book Release: Field Notes on Science and Nature

Field Notes on Science and Nature, CoverA new Harvard publication edited by Michael Canfield, "Field Notes on Science and Nature" explores multiple methodologies for creating science field journals with multiple authors presenting a chapter each. This includes the GNSI's own Jenny Keller of the California State University, Monterey Bay campus.

The book covers disciplines as diverse as ornithology, entomology, ecology, paleontology, anthropology, botany, and animal behavior, and Field Notes on Science and Nature. Readers are allowed to peer over their shoulders and into the notebooks of a dozen eminent field workers, to study firsthand their observational methods, materials, and fleeting impressions. And features wonderful illustrations from the journals of the authors. Jenny's work is prominently featured.

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2012 Caribou Ranch, CO Art Residency

Boulder County Parks and Open Space Department is announcing an Art Residency opportunity for next summer at Caribou Ranch, west of Boulder, CO.

The selected artists can stay up to 7 days in the historic DeLonde Barn at Caribou Ranch and work in and with the inspiring landscape of the Caribou Ranch. For more information, please click here.

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Cornell Launches New Advanced Botanical Art Class

Cornell University's Department of Horticulture has just announced the third online class in their Botanical Illustration Certificate program.

Marcia Eames-Sheavly of the Cornell Horticultural Department reports that there are now three online classes making up the certificate program.

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Call for Presenters: 2012 GNSI Annual Conference

We are looking for artists and scientists to present at the 2012 GNSI Annual Conference, July 8-14, Savannah, Georgia.

If you have a great idea for the conference, email Cat Wilson - [email protected] by January 15th. Please include a title, short description of your idea and which of the follow niches you want to participate in:

  • Technique showcase (two hours) – Demonstrations of your techniques & tools.
  • Presentations  (~one hour) – Speak about a topic that you are passionate about. For example, a recent project, techniques & methods for working, history of illustration/profile of an inspirational figure from art or science history, business skills & marketing, research methods, connections between education, science and art, etc.
  • Workshops (1/2 day, 1 day or even 2) – Both art or science-based workshops are welcome.
  • Mini-Workshops (1 or 2 hours) – A hybrid between a presentation and a workshop. Participants can get hands-on with materials and techniques but in a short period of time.
  • NEW! Portfolio Reviewers (1 or 2 hours) – We are looking to incorporate portfolio reviews in the conference. Each review will be twenty minutes so you would commit to review six portfolios.
  • NEW! Contract Panel – We are looking to help GNSI members understand and have access to contract language and clauses. A first step would be a panel discussion. If you have a successful contract model, or experience negotiating contracts, consider sharing your expertise.

Illustrating Atoms and Molecules

Abstract

Since atoms are smaller than the wavelength of visible light, it is theoretically impossible to “see” an atom, even with the most powerful microscope. Nevertheless, we recognize that atoms consist of “shells” of electrons buzzing around a central nucleus. Therefore, it’s common to depict an atom as a simple sphere, its diameter proportional to the size of its outermost electron shell. Furthermore, scientists have developed experimental methods, such as x-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy, to determine the geometric arrangement of atoms within a molecule. These data can be used to construct three-dimensional models of molecules, but the illustrator must be aware that such a model is an abstract representation and is not meant to show what the molecule really “looks like”.

Atom Colors

Because an atom is smaller than the wavelength of visible light, it cannot reflect light and, therefore, has no color. The colorful atoms you see in chemistry textbooks are based on conventions that have been adopted by chemists over several centuries. The alchemists of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance used iconic symbols to depict the different elements (Figure 1). They also associated certain colors with each element based on its physical properties, although these colors never appeared in print because of the rarity of color printing prior to the late 19th Century.

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In Memoriam: Larry Isham

Larry Isham, 1987 (photographer unknown)Larry Isham, scientific illustrator for the Department of Paleobiology, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution for 30 years, died on 18 September 2011 of congestive heart failure at his home with hospice care in Arlington, Virginia. Larry helped found, drafted the first constitution, and was the first president of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators.

> Larry Isham, 1987 (photographer unknown)

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Using Engineering Principles to Reconstruct Leaf Shape

Abstract

In reconstructing the elements of a convincing prehistoric landscape, some approaches require engineering equations while others depend on subtle nuances of personal observation. The reconstruction of a fossil taxon can be strongly supported with reference to a related extant species. Where no such living plant exists, visualization and imagination are not enough; creating models using structural engineering principles and in-depth field study of living analogs is vital to both accuracy and artistic authenticity. All images copyrighted by Marlene Hill Donnelly, unless otherwise noted.

Introduction

This was a genuine collaboration between art and science: questions about color and form had a significant part in directing research. All plant reconstructions were done for paleobotanist Jennifer McElwain of the Field Museum and University College Dublin. As an ecologist specializing in climate change, Jenny needed accurate landscape reconstructions of Late Triassic and Early Jurassic Greenland. The results provide a strong visual description of the long-term devastation of global warming.

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Book Release: Colorful Edibles! A new ASBA coloring book

Colorful Edibles book coverThe American Society of Botanical Artists (ASBA) has published a wonderful new coloring book, Colorful Edibles. It features 28 pages of delicious line drawings by 26 ASBA members selected from nearly 80 submissions. I am excited to say that two of my drawings have been included! In addition, a number of other Guild of Natural Science Illustrators with ASBA membership are also in the publication.

Contributing artists are: Bobbi Angell, Mary Bauschelt, Beverly Behrens, Irene Blecher, Doreen Bolnick, Silvia Bota, Carol Creech, Carrie DiCostanzo, Jan Denton, Beverly Duncan, Joel Floyd, Keiko Fujita, Gretchen Halpert, Carol Hamilton, Wendy Hollender, Lois Jackson, Jeanne Kunze, Marjorie Leggitt, Derek Norman, Suellen Perold, Kelly Leahy Radding, Maryann Roper, Nancy Savage, Pauline Savage, Judith Scillia and Kelly Sverduk.

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Call for Exhibits: 48th Annual Wild Mushroom Show

The Art Committee of the Puget Sound Mycological Society (PSMS) is pleased to announce our third juried Art Exhibit to be part of the 48th Annual Wild Mushroom Show. The Wild Mushroom Show will be held Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16, 2011, at the Mountaineer's Club, 7700 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA

Prospectus and Entry Forms available at PSMS website
http://www.psms.org/exhibit.html#art

Ten dollars per entry. Entry deadline is September 15, 2011.

Contact: Doug Birkebak [email protected]

5 Reasons Your Camera Won't Steal My Job

This is a summary of the post originally published in Symbiartic, a Scientific American blog, run by Kalliopi Monoyios and Glendon Mellow. Read the full article here.

By far the most common question I get when I tell people that I am a scientific illustrator is one variation (some more tactful than others) of, “They still use illustrators? Why don’t they just photograph everything?” In fact, it’s a great question. Although photography is fantastically impressive and can offer glimpses into worlds both big and small, it has limitations just like any other medium. That’s where we illustrators get to fill in the blanks.

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Call for Exhibits: Focus on Nature XII

Focus on Nature (FON) is a biennial exhibition of scientific, natural and cultural history illustration. Since its inception in 1990, the number and quality of submissions have risen, the range of materials and media have expanded, and the geographic representation of artists has broadened. A five-member jury of scientists and artists selects artwork that accurately represent the subjects, or research results and processes. FON seeks to demonstrate the connection between science and images; stimulate an interest in natural history art among practicing artists, aspiring artists, and the public; and bring natural history illustration to the attention of people who might not otherwise be aware of the important role it plays in research and the dissemination of knowledge.

Each exhibit invites a guest juror from among artists who have previously participated in FON. Past jurors include Louisa Rawle Tine, Michael Rothman, Monika DeVries, Dick Rauh, and Rosemarie Schwab. The guest juror for FON XII is Francesca Anderson. For a full description of FON exhibitions, award winners, exhibition catalogs, as well as the online entry form, please visit the FON website at http://www.nysm.nysed.gov/fon/about/index.html.

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2011 GNSI Educational Series Workshop: review

2011 GNSI Educational Series WorkshopThe “Illustrating Birds” workshop, held April 2-4, 2011, in Kearney, Nebraska, combined all the best elements of a typical GNSI education experience: intensive content that provides a great foundation for illustrative work, wonderful mentoring that promotes accurate and exceptional art, and artistic camaraderie that inspires all who participate.

Workshop participant and Susan W. Frank Scholarship recipient Nancy Gehrig summarized it well: “The Bird Illustration Workshop was a wonderful immersion into the world of birds. I really enjoyed the three days and feel I have a good sense of how to improve my work. The lecture on bird anatomy was a perfect start for me, and I found the sketching of the live birds very challenging. I am pleased to say that I am looking and thinking of birds a bit differently, checking out the anatomy and structure and thinking of the shapes and landmarks—thinking about which feathers I am seeing and that structure lies underneath. Linda Feltner is a marvelous teacher, and I really appreciate her passing on her vast knowledge and experience. It was a great class and a fun group of people. We even practiced figure 8 flapping!”

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