News Stories from May 2014

Natural History Illustration Guest Blog: Dave Prescott on Wonderful Fungi May 31st 2014

Story posted: 31. May 2014 by Lizzie Harper

Scientific illustrators get to spend time with some pretty inspiring people; this week I asked Dave Prescott from Hereford New Leaf to write a guest blog about his love of all things fungal:

"Check out these beautiful shrooms that Lizzie has drawn. It is a little-known fact that fungi are probably the greatest species on the planet. Philosophically, biologically and edibly, they outstrip anything else by quite some distance (except possibly bamboo, but that is a subject for another day). Consider the following:

Field Mushroom by Lizzie Harper

Fungi are…

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Category: Showcase of themed natural history illustrations    Comments: 0    Viewed: 2497

Scientific Illustator Out and About: Ross's Festival of the Hedgehog Workshop - May 23rd 2014

Story posted: 23. May 2014 by Lizzie Harper

Natural history illustration includes demonstrations of botanical illustration skills, and a fair amount of teaching too.

I was recently asked to be "artist in residence" and to lead a drop-in workshop at Ross-on-Wye's central library .  This was to mark Ross's Celebration of the Hedgehog (the symbol of the town).  I planned to draw in situ, and to encourage any visitors to draw from an assortment of speciemens I'd assembled.

Many of these are my own; I collect skulls and now have enough to ask visitors to match the animal to their skull; interestingly, all the adults…

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Category: Scientific Illustrator out and about    Comments: 0    Viewed: 2953

Natural History Illustrator: A Week’s work May 16th 2014

Story posted: 16. May 2014 by Lizzie Harper

This week was a mix, and wonderful in being quite relaxed.  It gave me the chance to stare out of the window at the sparrows, and go for a walk in the local bluebell wood as well as to get some work done.

First, I had a day-long workshop to plan for 16 eleven year olds at Weobley High school . They’ll be drawing skulls and bones, then shells, then insects; before designing their own “ideal” skeleton.  We’ll talk about extinction, the differenced between internal and external skeletons; and the pros and cons of each before deciding whose creations will survive…or become…

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Category: News of current projects    Comments: 0    Viewed: 1369

Natural History Illustrator Out and About: Visit to Hay Primary School May 9th 2014

Story posted: 9. May 2014 by Lizzie Harper

A couple of weeks ago, Hay primary school (our local school) had a “World at Work” week which encouraged school parents to come along and explain to the children what their jobs entailed.

I went along to talk about my career as a Scientific illustrator.

I began by explaining what I did, and why all sorts skills other than simply drawing were vital; numeracy (scaling drawings up and sorting out invoices), literacy (sending clear emails and contracts to clients), and not getting to knocked back when things don’t work out perfectly...

After showing my portfolio and…

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Category: Painting workshops    Comments: 0    Viewed: 1374

Botanical Illustration: Exploring the achene fruit type May 2nd 2014

Story posted: 2. May 2014 by Lizzie Harper

Natural science illustration and natural history illustration require you to understand both what your subject looks like, and also the correct words needed to scientifically describe it.  Last week my blog was about fruit type definitions , inspired by some work I did for Rodale's 21st Century Herbal by Michael Balick.  Whilst getting my head around the terminology of fruit types, I realised there's scope for a whole blog about the seemingly humble ACHENE.

The ACHENE is "a small dry indehiscent single-seeded fruit" (Flora of the Birtish Isles, Clapham Tutin and Moore). So…

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Category: Biological terminology    Comments: 0    Viewed: 8400