In the next year, I’ll focus on natural history collections, raccoon “hands,” horses, magpies, and the wind.
I’m telling you about root & star because:
I think it’s a phenomenal way to engage children in artful thinking and exploration. I love the magazine and love being part of it. There’s no monetary benefit to me if you subscribe or pick up a copy at one of the retailers now stocking it.
But, that’s fine — I only hope you’ll find it wonderful, too!
“Too much importance cannot be given to drawing, as it is not only an excellent device for securing close observation, but it is also a rapid method of making valuable notes.”
Inspired by Louis Agassiz, the Harvard Committee of Ten insisted that drawing be an essential part of science education at their institution. While this curricular edict was issued in 1894, it is a learning and research recommendation whose value I rediscover every time I work on the “Ecologically True Story of the Tortoise and the Hare.”
Mid-semester, responsibilities, due dates, and life can feel overwhelming. But, taking breaks and doing “other” activities are essential strategies for fostering your own work and creative thought.
I’ve remarked many times that reading, writing, and drawing are three ways that I manage to ‘suspend’ time. In all three activities, my brain slips into a hyper-focused dimension in which I have no sense of time passing.
And while this brain space can be problematic when I have a finite amount of time for it, allowing ourselves to work and think outside of time is not just pleasurable, it’s really important.
After all, a body of research indicates that arts activities are often key to science breakthroughs.
This month’s newsletter shares a few perspectives on why and how to engage in leisure and arts activities.
I spent much of the summer contributing to/planning two summer teaching institutes at the University of Wyoming, working on an art-as-science research manuscript with some great collaborators in Canada’s Northwest Territories, and crafting some illustrations of native bees for a science ed/outreach initiative based in North Carolina. And most recently, I helped facilitate UW’s first ever SciArt Symposium, which was a fascinating blend of both fields.
Through it all, I’ve been thinking about my genuine interest in being a catalyst and idea-sharer, helping others access the pleasure and productive aspects of art-science integration.
And so, this month’s newsletter focuses on some of the ideas and info I’ve encountered and shared this summer, with an eye toward connecting you to others’ ideas.
September Table of Contents
Sketching Tip: Sketching at zoos and aquariums (guest tip!)
Artful Science: Stardom – Women in science and the arts
Artful Classrooms: Drawing in the Classroom – Ideas in practice
Sketchbook Snapshot: Experimenting through repetition
News & Events:
Illustrated greeting cards for staying in touch this summer
University of Wyoming Natural History Class – student workshop