Archive for the ‘natural science illustration’ Category

Clockwise from above left: Assemblage, watercolor and pencil on Kelmscott vellum by Kate Nessler, 2014, 30.5 × 22", © 2014 Kate Nessler, All rights reserved; Bird Nest Series No.1, colored pencil on paper by David Morrison, 2014, 13 × 19", © 2014 David Morrison, All rights reserved; Woven Trees, archival ink-jet print from 2.25 film negative by Sue Abramson, 2014, 24 × 24", © 2014 Sue Abramson, All rights reserved; Epilogue, watercolor on Cowley’s veiny calfskin vellum by Wendy Brockman, 2014, 27 × 23", © 2014 Wendy Brockman, All rights reserved.

Clockwise from above left: Assemblage, watercolor and pencil on Kelmscott vellum by Kate Nessler, 2014, 30.5 × 22″, © 2014 Kate Nessler, All rights reserved; Bird Nest Series No.1, colored pencil on paper by David Morrison, 2014, 13 × 19″, © 2014 David Morrison, All rights reserved; Woven Trees, archival ink-jet print from 2.25 film negative by Sue Abramson, 2014, 24 × 24″, © 2014 Sue Abramson, All rights reserved; Epilogue, watercolor on Cowley’s veiny calfskin vellum by Wendy Brockman, 2014, 27 × 23″, © 2014 Wendy Brockman, All rights reserved.

Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation
Pittsburgh, PA
March 19 – June 30, 2015

The Hunt Instutute invites you to view Elements!

The exhibition Elements features drawings and watercolors of bird nests with a focus on the natural and man-made materials incorporated into these architectural structures. Photographs of forest understory will transport the viewer between the landscape and the ephemeral artifacts that signify the remains of a cycle of building, incubating, nesting and fledging. The featured artists are Sue Abramson, Wendy Brockman, David Morrison and Kate Nessler. The creators of these drawings and watercolors of bird nests and photographs of transitional landscapes are inspired by the relationship of the nest to time, place, music and architecture. Each artist has imbued the structures and the materials used and the locations and environments where built with their individual insight and perspective. Also included in the exhibition is a selection of birds, nests and eggs on loan from the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

Pittsburgh artist Sue Abramson’s photographs of the Frick Park woodlands are a response to the raw materials in nests and the extraordinary visual chaos of these habitats. Minnesota artist Wendy Brockman’s watercolors of nests, eggs, feathers and plant materials are rich with nuance and complexity and speak of time and place. Indiana artist David Morrison’s colored pencil drawings are an exploration of the issues of existence, regeneration and obsessiveness through his examination of the layers of natural and found objects that compose the architectural structures of nests. Arkansas artist Kate Nessler’s watercolors are expressive of symphonic movements, and they reflect the intrinsically creative and practical use of disparate materials that are woven to create a space of strength and balance that are essential for survival.

Opening reception

The opening reception on 19 March (5–7 pm) is open to the public. Beginning at 5:30 pm each of the four artists will introduce their work in the Elements exhibition. This is an opportunity to meet all the artists.

Talk one-on-one with the artists

On Friday, 20 March, 10 am–noon and 1–4 pm, visit the gallery at any time during the designated hours and talk one-on-one with three of the artists. Abramson, Brockman and Nessler will be available to discuss their concepts and process and will display their materials, and Brockman also will demonstrate her painting technique. This event is free and open to the public.

Open House 2015

Our annual Open House on Sunday, 28 June (1:00–4:30 pm) will include the talk “Nest structures of North American birds and the materials used in their creation” (1:30–2:30 pm) by Patrick McShea, program officer and educator, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and tours of the Elements exhibition and the reading room (2:30–4:00 pm). This event is free and open to the public.

Cabinet of curiosities

The Cabinet of curiosities in the Hunt Institute lobby will display bird illustrations from the Library’s rich collection of natural history and art books, including Mark Catesby’s (1683–1749) exquisite folio, The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands (London, the author, 1731), and works by microscopist Marcello Malpighi (1628–1694), natural historian the Comte de Buffon (1707–1788) and the artist George Brookshaw (1751–1823).


The exhibition will be on display on the 5th floor of the Hunt Library building at Carnegie Mellon University and will be open to the public free of charge. Hours: Monday–Friday, 9 am–noon and 1–5 pm; Sunday, 1–4 pm (except 3–5 April, 3 May and 24–25 May). Because our hours of operation are occasionally subject to change, please call or email before your visit to confirm. For further information, contact the Hunt Institute at 412-268-2434.

About the Institute

The Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, a research division of Carnegie Mellon University, specializes in the history of botany and all aspects of plant science and serves the international scientific community through research and documentation. To this end, the Institute acquires and maintains authoritative collections of books, plant images, manuscripts, portraits and data files, and provides publications and other modes of information service. The Institute meets the reference needs of botanists, biologists, historians, conservationists, librarians, bibliographers and the public at large, especially those concerned with any aspect of the North American flora.

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Gretchen Kai Halpert

Gretchen Kai Halpert is the owner and the instructor of a new online program in scientific illustration. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Gretchen has many years of experience working as a scientific illustrator and teaching programs about natural science illustration.

    Scientific Illustration Distance Learning Program
    Distance Learning / Online
    January 20, 2015
    7:00 pm (New York time)

    This new Scientific Illustration Distance Program allows students to study botanical and scientific illustration from wherever they live. The program runs year-round. Students may enroll in the full program or take individual classes. A new 10-week session begins January 20, 2015. Contact Gretchen Halpert for information.

This information has also been posted to Classes Near You > New York.

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Order the new calendar!

Order the new calendar!

Never lose sight of nature in 2015 with The Illustrated Garden’s new calendar!

This new calendar features hand-drawn illustrations, hand-lettered text and pages of garden lore, birds and bugs. It also includes all full moon dates for 2015, Solstice and Equinox dates, major holidays (plus some not-so-major, but very interesting holidays).

This new calendar was created by illustrator and teacher Val Webb, founder of The Illustrated Garden. Published in a convenient 8.5” x 11” format, this new calendar will be sent as a printable PDF beginning January 1, 2015. Happy New Year!

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Artist and naturalist Linda C. Miller has a collection of small nature paintings now on view at A Touch of Earth Gallery. This artisan gallery features all forms of collectible art, including pottery, jewelry, prints, lamps, metal works and more.

Stop by the gallery on Sunday, December 14, 2014 from 12-4 PM to meet Linda and to view her new collection titled, Small Works. Linda has painted over 100 portraits and is known for her contemporary compositions, bold rich colors and detailed work.

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University of Bristol Botanic Garden

A four-acre garden founded in 1882 by Adolf Leipner, professor of botany at Bristol University College. Plant collections address the following subject areas: plant evolution, Mediterranean plants, local plants, rare native plants, and useful plants. This garden was founded on an initial budget of £104!

    Drawing in the Glasshouses
    Wednesdays, September 3 – November 26, 2014
    11 AM – 1 PM
    This group drawing class is led by Sheena Vallely in the glasshouses at the garden. The Pick Up a Pencil group (or Pupgroup) is open to artists of all abilities and is designed to enhance drawing awareness and overcome old habits. All materials provided. Limit: 8 students. Cost: £95.00
    Register online
    View Details/Register

    Traditional Botanical Drawing & Painting

    Mondays, October 6, 2014 – June 8, 2015
    1-4 PM
    A 21-week course for beginners and those wanting to improve their skills. Taught by Jenny Brooks, this foundation course in botanical illustration will focus on line, texture, tone, watercolor techniques and color mixing. Cost: £360.00 (payable in installments).
    Register online
    View Details/Register

    Beetles, Butterflies and Bees

    Saturday, October 22, 2014
    10 AM – 4 PM
    Wildlife and natural history artist, Cath Hodsman, leads this one-day workshop about drawing and painting insects. Participants will use microscopes and other magnifying tools to observe their subjects. Cost: £50.00
    Register online
    View Details/Register


    Saturday, November 22, 2014
    10 AM – 4 PM
    Learn about lettering and alphabets in this one-day workshop with Roma Widger. Participants will practice round hand and italic scripts and learn how to apply their new skills to greeting cards and bookmarks. Cost: £35.00
    Register online
    View Details/Register

This information can also be viewed at Classes Near You > England.

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Get ready for Costa Rica 2015!

Here is the latest news at Classes Near You > Florida:

Mindy Lighthipe

Custom classes, art tours, books, ebooks, videos and artwork can be viewed on Mindy’s website. To register for classes, please contact Mindy.

Artistic Adventure Tour – Costa Rica

February 6-16, 2015

In this 10-day workshop, you will tour Costa Rica with botanical and nature artist, Mindy Lighthipe, and nature photographer
Nancy Richmond. Travel to different locations where the rainforest will by your classroom. Learn field sketching, field research, color notation, composition and how to use digital photography for reference details. This workshop is for all levels and welcomes photographers as well.

Some of the places you will visit include:

Go to Costa Rica Art Tours to view the detailed itinerary for this trip.

Cost: $3,549 per person
Save $250 discount if registered before August 1, 2014.

Any questions? Contact Mindy Lighthipe or call 352-226-0949.

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Back from the Brink: Celebrating Species Making a Comeback

A group art show by MasterWorks for Nature opens at the Lloyd Library in Cincinnati, OH on June 7, 2014. You are invited to attend the opening reception that will be held from 4-7 PM. Arrive early to attend a special presentation by Dr. Terri Roth who will talk about species conservation and the Carl H. Lindner Jr. Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden.

The art, as well as the rare books on display, celebrate iconic species that were once on the brink of extinction, but through positive human intervention, managed to stage a comeback. Featured species include the Bald Eagle, Bison, wolf, trumpeter swan, and grizzly bear, among others.

The concurrent book exhibition features rare natural history titles held by the Lloyd, some of which offer the earliest printed depictions of the featured species. The books center on the work of the “father of natural history,” a Frenchman, George‐Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, who in the 18th century wrote one of the most comprehensive and scientifically based natural history encyclopedias. His work formed the basis of natural history research and development for the next 100+ years.

Proceeds from sales of the artwork will benefit the Lloyd Library and the Carl H. Lindner Jr., Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife.

Visit the Lloyd Library

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