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Archive for the ‘scientific illustration’ Category

The online program in scientific illustration founded by Gretchen Kai Halpert has a new website! Fall classes begin in August.

Here’s the latest at Classes Near You > New York:


Gretchen Kai Halpert

www.gretchenhalpert.com
Gretchen Kai Halpert is the founder and 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.

Learn more about the distance learning program in scientific illustration at http://www.gretchenhalpert-distanceprogram.com.


    Scientific Illustration Distance Learning Program


    Session I

    September 21 – November 23, 2015 (ten weeks)
    7:00 p.m. EDT (New York time)
    The first session of this distance learning program addresses the basics of scientific illustration, including the following topics: graphite, perspective, proportion, scientific conventions, lighting, textures, transferring, scanning. Students will receive handouts, learn from tutorials and engage with one another through live video conferencing.


    Session II

    September 16 – November 18, 2015 (ten weeks)
    7:00 p.m. EDT (New York time)
    In Session II, students will learn about the following topics: pen and ink, crow quill, technique, composition, editorial, scratchboard, anatomy, professional practices, final projects. Students will receive handouts, learn from tutorials and engage with one another through live video conferencing.


    Session III

    August 11 – October 13, 2015
    7:00 p.m. EDT (New York time)
    Students will learn about watercolor techniques, digital options and continue to learn about composition. Final projects and prep work for internships and independent studies are also a part of this session. Students will receive handouts, learn from tutorials and engage with one another through live video conferencing.

    Cost per 10-week session: $990 USD (more info)

    Contact Gretchen at ghalpert@stny.rr.com for more information Contact Gretchen Halpert for information.

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Botanical artist and printmaker Bobbi Angell shared with me that US Postal Service’s new “Forever” stamp features the art of Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717). Merian was a dedicated independent scholar who made significant contributions to biology and the not-yet-established field of ecology. Her line drawing of a rose is featured on the Vintage Rose stamp.



Also See

Art, Ecology and Maria Sibylla Merian

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Last week I posted an announcement about the new distance learning program in scientific illustration taught by natural science illustrator, Gretchen Kai Halpert. Today we have the opportunity to learn more about this program.

You are invited to join the conversation with Gretchen below. Gretchen is happy to answer your questions about her new program. If you have a question related to one of the topics below, please post your question in the proper thread. If you have another question you would like to ask, please enter it in the Comment box below. Thank you.


Save the Date

The next 10-week session of Gretchen’s distance learning program begins
January 20, 2015. To register, contact Gretchen.


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Gretchen Kai Halpert

www.gretchenhalpert.com
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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Gretchen Kai Halpert

www.gretchenhalpert.com
Gretchen Halpert is a scientific illustrator and biologist with many years of experience creating illustrations for the medical field, for scientific research, and for commercial clients. Gretchen also teaches classes in the book arts and leads journaling classes.

    Botanical Illustration in Watercolor
    August 7, 2014
    10 AM – 4 PM
    An introduction to scientific illustration, drawing with accuracy, attention to detail, and a watercolor technique of slowly building layers of mixed color. This workshop will be held at Running with Scissors artist studio in Portland, Maine.
    View Details/Register

This information can also be found at Classes Near You > New York and
Classes Near You > Maine.

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Graduate students Michael Pin and Elizabeth Luscher lead a conversation about genetically modified plants. Photo credit: Plant Discovery Day Staff

Graduate students Michael Pin and Elizabeth Luscher lead a conversation about genetically modified plants. Photo credit: Plant Discovery Day Staff

There are many places to see plants in an urban setting, but where can you go to learn about plants and current plant research?

Elementary school students in Riverside don’t have to look too far to learn about plants. They only need to turn to UC Riverside. Some local students have the opportunity to learn about plant research first-hand every school year and it is this exciting opportunity that is the focus of this issue of Plants, Life, Riverside.

Each Spring one hundred fifth-grade students from Highland Elementary School in Riverside get to immerse themselves in the plant sciences thanks to the dedication of graduate students in the Department of Botany & Plant Sciences at UC Riverside.

Launched in June 2012, Plant Discovery Day was created by graduate students Jessica Diaz and Erin Brinton, National Science Foundation (NSF) research fellows who wanted to do more than mentor undergraduates and make classroom visits to satisfy the outreach requirement for NSF grants funding their research. They wanted to do something more meaningful and fun that involved more of the department. After doing some brainstorming, they decided to invite students from a local school to campus and Plant Discovery Day was born.

Originally called “Where Does Food Come From”, the first Plant Discovery Day took eight months to plan. Jessica and Erin selected Highland Elementary School as a partner because it was close to campus and served minorities underrepresented in the sciences. 

At the first Plant Discovery Day, students visited several interactive stations, each about a separate plant science topic. This format has proven to be successful and Plant Discover Day is well on its way to becoming a model example of how to engage students in activities related to plants, science and higher education.

This year graduate students provided each student with a white lab coat and a folder for their work. With lab coats on and with folders in hand, students engaged in interactive activities about:

  • Scanning Electron Microscopy
  • Citrus research at UCR
  • Carbon Dioxide Exchange
  • Plant Physiology
  • Alternative Energy/Biofuels
  • Strawberry DNA Extraction
  • Plant Biotechnology
  • Going to College

Students also learned about botanical illustration. I had the opportunity to participate in Plant Discovery Day and led an activity called “Discover Seeing” that was about how to see plants while using drawing as a learning tool. I also introduced students to scientific illustration as a career and brought attention to the many ways scientific illustrators teach us about science. 


What’s Next for Plant Discovery Day

Event founders Jessica Diaz and Erin Brinton will soon complete their graduate studies and they have started working with the graduate students who will coordinate Plant Discovery Day after they leave.

I asked Jessica and Erin what they envision Plant Discovery Day becoming. Both said they would like it to become a public event benefiting the entire Riverside community. Erin added, “If we could invite more children, have more events, and involve entire families in the event, I feel we would have really succeeded in creating a special outreach event that fills a niche not yet explored by UCR.”

Both founders are very aware, however, that to grow Plant Discovery Day, they will need more funding. While the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences contributes some money towards the event, graduate students are left on their own to raise money to pay for expenses associated with materials, equipment and lunch for the children. 

Would you like to help this group of bright, passionate and dedicated graduate students with Plant Discovery Day 2015?

Go to UCR Online Giving and select the fund titled, “Excellence in Botany and Plant Sciences”. This is a general fund benefiting activities sponsored by the department. Please enter Plant Discovery Day in the box labeled “Special Instructions” and use Appeal Code 14CNAS05. This will make sure your contribution will be used to support this wonderful outreach event. 

When asked what message they wanted to get across about Plant Discovery Day, Jessica replied, “The overall goal is to get kids thinking about the amount of research that has been done on plants and the types of research that has been conducted about plants and plant ecology. Don’t take plants for granted. Science is not only working with mice.”

Questions about contributing to Plant Discovery Day should be directed to
Dr. Edie Allen, Department of Botany & Plant Sciences, UC Riverside.
(951) 827-4714



About Erin Brinton

Erin is a 5th-year Ph.D.candidate in the lab of Dr. Julia Bailey-Serres at
UC Riverside. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Biology at Occidental College in Los Angeles. Her interest in plants is rooted in years of gardening with her father while growing up in Colorado. It was at Occidental College that Erin cultivated her love of plants and her desire to feed the world. While at Occidental, she studied the root system of desert agaves and aloes in the lab of Dr. Gretchen North. She received a Beckman Fellowship for her undergraduate work. As a graduate student, Erin was awarded a NSF graduate research fellowship to fund three years of her schooling and research. She was recently awarded the UCR Dissertation of the Year Program Fellowship to fund her remaining time at UCR. Erin will return to Occidental College in January to begin a two-year post-doctoral research position in Dr. North’s lab. Dedicated to making science accessible to all people, Erin’s previous outreach experience includes presentations at colleges and high schools and working as a math and science tutor with elementary school and high school students.

Erin is currently investigating flood tolerance in corn at the molecular level. She explains that, “Crop loss to flooding in the US costs on average $1 billion dollars with over half of that coming from corn. Improving corn’s tolerance to flooding could not only save money, but also have the potential to alleviate crop loss in areas of the world where farmers cannot afford to replant their corn fields after a flood as we do here in the US.”


About Jessica Diaz

Jessica is a 5th-year Ph.D. candidate in Dr. Patricia Springer’s lab at UCR where her current research is focused on creating rice plants that have more upright leaves so they can be planted at a higher density. Her research also focuses on creating these plants without altering any other parts of the plant’s architecture. Jessica was awarded an NIH MARC U-STAR (National Institutes of Health Minority Access to Research Careers – Undergraduate Student Training for Academic Research) fellowship in 2007 as an undergraduate at California State University, Northridge. The NIH MARC U-STAR program focuses on encouraging and preparing underrepresented minorities to pursue careers in research. Jessica credits this program with providing her with a sense of direction in her life. Jessica is a past-participant in the Plant Genomics Research Program at the Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research at Cornell University. Since beginning her research at UCR in 2009, she has been awarded a two-year IGERT fellowship sponsored by NSF, followed by a three-year NSF graduate research fellowship to fund her research.

Originally from Arleta, CA, a predominantly Latino city, Jessica found it difficult to learn about education beyond high school because she did not know anyone with a higher education. While working as a Playground Supervisor at an inner city school, she created an academic and recreational program promoting a positive social atmosphere that went beyond standard school hours. Dedicated to increasing science literacy in underprivileged areas, Jessica wants students to know that science can be enjoyable and stimulating and not intimidating. Jessica explains, “I feel if I can convey to them what I have learned through my journey, I can bring diversity to the science community and integrate it to inspire other students.”


Inspire young botanists.
Contribute to Plant Discovery Day.

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Botanist and scientific illustrator Bobbi Angell is one of many artists participating in Flora: A Celebration of Flowers in Contemporary Art, an exhibition at the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (March 15 – June 22, 2014). This new exhibition occupies four of the museum’s six galleries and explores artists’ relationship with flowers. Angell has more than 20 pieces in the exhibition. They include

Tritonia copper etching 9"x6" © Bobbi Angell, All rights reserved

Tritonia copper etching 9″x6″ © Bobbi Angell, All rights reserved

copper etchings, scientific illustrations and illustration work printed in related publications.

Educational events associated with Flora will be offered through Spring. They include Artist Talks, an orchid care workshop, a wildflower walk, a gallery tour, a special lecture about bumblebees, a visit to one of the finest private gardens in North America, and a hands-on workshop with Bobbi Angell who will guide participants in the drawing of spring flowers and orchids.

Details about each event, as well as selected images from the exhibition at
Flora: A Celebration of Flowers in Contemporary Art.

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