Category Archives: Scientific Illustrations

Art.Science: Shedding a Scenic Tear

Last week I had what I hope will be a life-changing experience. This fall I had the honor of being a juror for an exhibit of insect-inspired art, called ECLOSION, hosted by  Art.Science.Gallery. in Austin, Texas.  The event was organized by … Continue reading

Posted in Musings, Scientific Illustrations | Tagged , | 4 Comments

It was fifty years ago today…

Fifty years ago today, Carl Hildebrand Lindroth’s revision of the Bembidion of Canada and Alaska was published; this was part 3 of his opus on the ground beetles of Canada and Alaska. This work is the basis of all that … Continue reading

Posted in Revising Bembidiina, Scientific Illustrations, Taxonomic Process | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

My favorite beetle illustration

Today I was reminded of my favorite illustration of a carabid beetle.  Here it is.  Drawn by my daughter, Julia, 21 years ago, when she was 4. Given the prominence of the area around the discal setae of the elytra, … Continue reading

Posted in Miscellany, Scientific Illustrations | 6 Comments

Universal Problem Solver

I want one of these. From an article by Paul Roman, “Artificial Intelligence at Milan”, in the April 1986 issue of European Science Notes published by the U.S. Office of Naval Research.

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Drawing beetles

I love the sculptural details of beetles, and their intricate structures and colors.  I like to draw them, although admittedly I haven’t done it much over the past 35 years.  I did the drawing above in 1981, which is a … Continue reading

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Photography of beetle microsculpture

Here’s the setup I use to photograph microsculpture of beetles.  I also use the same setup to photograph whole beetles, or other parts, including genitalia, although there is some variation in lighting, position, etc., depending upon the part.  In some … Continue reading

Posted in Revising Bembidiina, Scientific Illustrations, Taxonomic Process | Tagged | 1 Comment

Morphological subtleties and the value of n > 1

Authors should consider illustrating two or more specimens of a species when trying to communicate the nature of some morphological trait in that species. Here’s why. In illustrating morphological features in a publication, authors typically choose one specimen to image … Continue reading

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Ghost of a Massless Scalar Boson

This is part of an illustration from “Gauge Theories of the Forces between Elementary Particles”, by Gerard ‘t Hooft, from Scientific American, published in 1980.  I think it quite astounding that one can convey the concept of the “ghost of … Continue reading

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3D or not to 3D?

The male genitalia of Bembidion are small and partly transparent, with complex, multiple layers. This makes them hard to photograph, and hard to illustrate.  It’s especially hard to give a sense of the three dimensional structure.  I have been exploring … Continue reading

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Blowing Stumps with Dynamite

I happened upon a lovely paper by George Roberts in the Bulletin of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station of the State University, published in June 1911.  The paper has the very promising title “Blowing Stumps with Dynamite”, and it does … Continue reading

Posted in Scientific Illustrations | 4 Comments