3 reasons why we should tell stories about scientists, not just science.

1. Human details tangibly bring Conserving Quebec caribou_Ia story to life.

Being able to relate to a researcher is key to having an interest in what that person researches. When a science story includes the scientist, a reader can hope for a quirky anecdote, a personal revelation that is highly intriguing, or even a zany description of the scientist’s physical attributes. Continue reading “3 reasons why we should tell stories about scientists, not just science.”

Turning a home movie into sciart

I’ve been exploring the intersection between sketching on location and eco-communication inspired by life a lot lately.

So, I couldn’t resist doing an eco-comm piece when I saw a couple of casual videos of my goddaughters exploring the Museum of the Rockies, a world-class dinosaur museum in Bozeman, MT.

This illustration was made by pausing the video, listening very carefully to one of the little girls describing her reaction to the museum, and sketching rapidly with Adobe Photoshop and an old-school Wacom drawing tablet (nearly as old as the fossils below).

 

Dinosaur museum_v7  (04.15.2014)

 

 

 

 

 

Dear Digit: How do I make my communications look good?

Dear Digit sketch_5

Mar/Apr. 2014

 

 

“Dear Digit, I know my communications are supposed to look good.  But, I don’t have fancy expensive design software, and I want to do my brochures and website myself.  What can I do?”

In this visual era, it is nearly implicit that our communications should not only be clear and engaging, but they should be visually compelling. However, not all of us were trained in digital arts. Those of us who were do not always have time or funds available to stay up to speed on rapidly evolving visual tools.

Fortunately, the internet is overflowing with options for every skill level. Here is a sampling of the numerous free tools and programs that can elevate your digital creative capacity. Continue reading “Dear Digit: How do I make my communications look good?”

Scicomm advice: 7 life lessons that will help make your science matter

Orange & metallic blue butterfly_20130619 (5)_cr_c_wm_rsTerry Wheeler studies bugs.

Insects, that is, and he writes haiku about them.  He also works at McGill, and runs a blog called Lyman Entomological Museum, which is a delightful collection of musings about life as an entomologist.  He recently posted a piece called “to a young naturalist” which proposes a required reading list for a budding researcher/naturalist much broader than text books and field guides.

He writes that a snapshot of his field camp library “was a nice little microcosm of General Life Advice to the Young Academic Naturalist.”

Wheeler’s insights, derived from fundamentals such as A Naturalist’s Field Guide to the Artic and the much less obvious Of Mice and Men and To Kill a Mockingbirdencompass many of the lessons I try to share with clients and colleagues working in science and sustainability.

IMG_0084_c_cr_wm_rsThey are life lessons that apply to anyone seeking a richly productive and meaningful life working in the sciences, natural history, and environmental fields. Continue reading “Scicomm advice: 7 life lessons that will help make your science matter”