• Gretchen Halpert

Models, Drawings, GNSI


Drawing and Model by Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka.

Images courtesy of CMoG and Cornell Univ.

Do you remember when natural history museums first came into vogue? Neither do I, but history does. Consider what you find in such a museum today: skulls and skeletons, rocks and minerals, taxidermied animals and bird skins. Jellyfish and fresh flowers......wait. No. Because invertebrates and plant materials lose their integrity-color and form-quickly. From 1863 to 1890, Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka immortalized specimens in glass for museums and university students, and Rudolf held my dream job of traveling the world, drawing unusual specimens on site to later transform into glass with his father, Leopold. The flip side to creating models from drawings, is creating drawings from models. Making a 3-D model helps us understand what's happening around the corner, and our drawings reflect that understanding.

I'll be presenting this talk at the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators Annual Conference, held June 25-Jul1 1, in Asheville, NC. To register for the conference: http://2017.conf.gnsi.org. Check out all the workshops, speakers, panels (I'll be on the education panel), and field trips. I attend every year, and am never disappointed! If you plan to attend the conference, let me know. We'll have a gathering of SIDP students-past, present, and future!

What else is going on?

I'm exhibiting artwork this month at: The Trailside Museum at Mass Audubon, "Wild Waters: New England's Freshwater Wetlands" May 20-July 23 Cumming Nature Center, "Beauty in What We See", (GNSI-Finger Lakes chapter exhibit) Feb. 6-May 14 Boyce Thompson Institute at Cornell University (GNSI-FL),"Weeds: Untamed Wonders", March-May

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