A blog about scientific and medical visualization and all that’s involved.

Archive for September, 2008

Goodbye for Now

Posted by Janet on September 28, 2008

Hi everyone,
It turns out that the second year of grad school in a medical illustration program got to be a little more than I can handle right now. So…after much thought, I’ve reluctantly decided to put the blog aside for a little while. I still hope to write when big events or really interesting things happen, but no promises of weekly updates. It’s been a great experience for me searching into topics, looking for people to interview, and meeting new bloggers and illustration enthusiasts. I hope you all enjoyed my blog as well.


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Underwater Sculpture

Posted by Janet on September 23, 2008

What you see here is a sculptural work by Jason de Caires Taylor, an artist who does underwater sculpture to explor the relationship between his art and enviroment. Due to the surroundings where he places his sculptures, they tend to change in time and often end up becoming part of marine habitat.

Check out more of Jason’s work at Thanks to Jennifer for the link!

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“Math is Beautiful” Klein Bottle Posters

Posted by Janet on September 18, 2008

The newest additions to my CafePress store:

large poster 23″ x 35″

small poster 16″ x 20″

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Being a Grad Student…

Posted by Janet on September 16, 2008

You may be wondering what it’s like to be a medical illustrator. I can’t answer that because 1. all medical illustrators are different, and 2. I have not yet worked as a medical illustrator. However, as a grad student in a medical illustration program, I have to say that it’s not that different from being any grad student. The elements are the same–classes and exams, research, and lots of readings. The main difference is that you are expected to be good in BOTH art and science. You’ll never hear “will you be grading on the quality of the drawings?” like you’ll hear in some bio and math classes, when you have to draw under the microscope or plot functions. You also won’t hear things like “I’m good at art but I’m not smart enough to handle science classes” (I heard that one a lot when I was in high school and undergrad) because everyone thinks you’re smart and if you don’t have the mentality to handle it, maybe you shouldn’t be here.

Because we’re expected to be good at a broader spectrum of subjects, I tend to think that we have to work harder to survive grad school. Whereas most grad students talk 9 credit hours and call it a full load, we easily take up to 16 hours. Multitasking becomes really important when we are juggling various tasks such as observing surgery in the OR, designing magazine covers, making storyboards, and studying for a physiology exam.

I needed to take a week off from blogging and just let my mind cool off. Why are we here? Are all grad students the same? This question may be best answered by Jorge Cham, author of PHD comics–a comic about grad students which I read religiously. I do think that deep down, all grad students are connected by the endless tunnel of works, the “why am I here? am I doing the right thing?” mid-grad-life crisis, and of course, the question of “will I ever graduate?”

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Posted by Janet on September 8, 2008

Hi everyone who reads my blog,
Sorry I’m a little busy this week, but I’ll be posting some things soon about a new animation project I’m working on. It’ll be my very first animation and I’m excited. Have a nice week!


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News About Science Illustration Program

Posted by Janet on September 4, 2008

The Scientific Illustration Certificate Program at UC Santa Cruz, which is now a part of the UC Santa Cruz Extension, is facing issues of funding cuts. The lease on the University Town Center, the building that houses the program, expires in summer 2009 and the Extension has decided not to renew the lease.

Meanwhile, the faculty of the Science Illustration Program is looking for possible alternatives at less expensive locations as well as ways to support the space costs. Ann Caudle, director of the Science Illustration Program, states “…there is a deep well of support for our program amongst the faculty on the campus, in the scientific community, and elsewhere. We are optimistic about turning the situation around.”

To future applicants, the program encourages you to keep checking its website for updates, and do not hesitate to apply.

In a letter addressed to program alumni, Caudle wrote “After careful consideration, we’ve concluded that letters from employers of our graduates may have the greatest influence. Such letters would, ideally, clearly spell out the positive impact that our graduates have had on their institution (or their organization, or project).”

Graduates from other illustration programs or professionals in the field, the program needs your support also. If you are in a position to write an influential letter or do something to help, please contact Ann Caudle at or address a letter to Ann Caudle, Science Illustration Program, 1101 Pacific Avenue, Suite 200, Santa Cruz, CA, 95060.

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