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New set of watercolour birds up on my Behance porfolio!
For the past two months I have been staying at Ox-Bow school of art, an art school and artist’s residence located in Michigan. These are some of the works completed during the stay.
The Paintbrush and the Plant
Before botanists had photographs, they had paintings. Delicate watercolors of leaves, seeds, flowers, and fruit were objects of beauty as well as scientific tools.
Shirley Sherwood (collector of botanical art and patron of the Gallery of Botanical Art at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew) and biologist John Kress explore modern examples of the genre in their 2010 book, The Art of Plant Evolution.
Their book, a mix of art and science, looks at the way that contemporary scientific discoveries are changing our understanding of plants and plant evolution. With each painting is up-to-date evolutionary information—drawn from recent DNA analysis—plus observations by each of the artists and details about modern plant classification.
(Based on The Paintbrush and the Plant, an illustrated article by Veronique Greenwood in Seed Magazine.)
Artist Vicki Thomas painted the yellow globes and unusual roots of this African species at the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Yellow Lotus: Nelumbo lutea
Botanists believed the lotus to be a relative of the water lily, but DNA analysis has linked the lotus much more closely to the sycamore tree. In this painting by Beverly Allen, all stages of the plants from bud to fruit are shown together—an impossible grouping in nature but common in botanic art.
Australian pitcher plant: Cephalotus follicularis
These carnivorous little pitchers, painted by Christina Hart-Davies, grow only in swamps in a small corner of western Australia, and, as they live in peaty, nutrient-poor soils, they must eat flies to make up the difference. Interestingly, they are unrelated to the other two families of pitcher plants—all three groups evolved their unusual dining habits independently.
This is a design to showcase the biggest star (VY Canis Majoris) and compare it with increasingly smaller but also increasingly familiar bodies.
The color given to each body is its average color, and in case of the stars reflects how hot it is. Stars that emit blue or even ultraviolet light are the hottest, while stars that emit red light are significantly cooler.
Below each name of the star you will find how many solar radii big they are (1 solar radius is the size of the Sun). In case of the planets, it shows how many Earth radii each body is.
VY Canis Majoris is 1,800 to 2,100 solar radii big, which means that 5,832,000,000 to 9,621,000,000 Suns will fit into VY Canis Majoris.
Our sun is the only star close enough to make proper photographs of, so all other photos were unusable in this presentation. Artists’ impressions aren’t always equally accurate. For example, the Sun looks red in all photo’s, yet it’s classified as a yellow dwarf, and it emits yellow to greenish light.
That’s why I chose to make an abstract representation of each body, because in this presentation only size and color matters; not what the body actually looks like. Browse the web if you want to find out what they look like.