Tag Archives: art

Carbon Dust


Although life has almost been entirely consumed by anatomy lectures and dissections, I always calm right down when I get to pick up a pencil and draw. Learned a new technique last week in class called carbon dust. Surprisingly been pretty neat considering the black mess I created shaving carbon pencils. My first stab at this and it’s taking time to get familiar with certain brush strokes I want.  Above you can see that I’m currently working on the brachial plexus in the upper arm. No where near done but just a little preview of what’s to come!

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Fallen Angels

(Images via Look in Art and Avax News)

The Anatomy of an Angel was created by Damien Hirst back in 2008 out of carrara marble. From the back you’d mistaken it for another sculpted angel until you see the skin has been chiseled away to show the some underlying organs, bones, and muscles. The last few images here show his other collection “Myth and Legend” created in 2011. After sharks, sheep and cows in formaldehyde, he moved onto some mythical creatures. Legend, whose name immediately reminds me of Pegasus, is a winged horse that has been partly surgically flayed, showing superficial/deep muscle and bone. The other is a unicorn called Myth, with skin resected from its two legs. Not sure if these horses are still in Chatsworth, England, but I’d love to see these in person. From pictures they look eerily majestic and even more captivating with exposed tissue. I’m a major equine fan.

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Let’s Smooch


While studying anatomy I came across Alex Grey’s paintings from his Progress of the Soul Collection. He’s best known for his psychedelic and spiritual feel with his use of colours and patterns. His paintings show figures in a variety of postures including kissing, copulating, birth, praying, and death. It’s hard to not feel pulled into his intricate layers of anatomy and his use of light giving its sublime feel. Now to pull away and continue studying anatomy. Hope you felt a moment of captivation like I did.


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(Image via Scientific American)

This is an illustration that won the Ralph Sweet Award – Best of Show for 2009 currently being showcased at MaRS for the Association of Medical Illustrator’s annual conference in Toronto, ON. I adore horses and it’s incredible to see the intricacies of their respiratory tracts.

This week has been absolutely crazy, attending the Comics & Medicine conference followed by the Association of Medical Illustrator’s (AMI) annual conference all happening in Toronto. I have to fit it all in my normal work and volunteering hours and not to mention trying to enjoy the Beaches Jazz festival also at the Toronto Beaches. It’s a good time to be in Toronto right now. Unfortunately I can’t attend all the talks for the AMI conference but I’ve been volunteering as much as I can to submerge myself in the field. Mind you I haven’t even started my masters so sitting in some of these is way beyond my knowledge. Still, it’s amazing to be exposed to this field of medical illustrations, comics, and graphic design so early on. I’ll share with you this weekend what I’ve thought of the Comics & Medicine conference. And of course share what I can about the AMI conference as well. I’ll throw in some jazz festival pictures for those interested. Stay tuned if you please!

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Underneath your skin

I thought maybe it would be a good idea to start posting some of the work I’ve done and build my portfolio section of my blog. Here’s an anatomical drawing I did of flexor tendons in your right hand. If you strip away your skin, tissue, and some fat, this is what you’d see. Essentially, those long tendons reaching to the tip of your fingers and thumb are what helps you grip objects and what bends your fingers towards your palm. (Flexor digitorun superficialis, flexor carpi radialis, flexor pollicis longus, and abductor pollicis longus) If you look at your hand (palm face up), you can see each finger appears to be separated into three sections and the thumb into two sections. The sheaths give individual control to each finger (ie. curling your index finger). If you imagine not having sheaths and bending your fingers towards your palm, you’d build up a lot of slack and bulge out underneath your skin. But these sheaths keep the tendon in place throughout its length. Hope you found that little description helpful and please do let me know what you guys think!

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Sorry for being rather MIA but it is now my modus operandi to keep my blog more frequently updated. Had my convocation for my undergraduate degree just this week so things were quite hectic. More about that on another post. But to start, here are some rather cool science pictures I came across on the web and also from a recent graduate from the biomedical communications program I’m entering this September.

(Blood Flow via Enid Hajderi)

(DNA via Veritas Vita)

(silk spinning spigots of a spider spinneret  via The Arachnology)

(Angelman Syndrome via Science Daily)


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(image via Society of Radiographers)

(image via Metro UK)

(image via Shadows of the World)

(image via GilyGily)

(image via itunes)

I never thought much of x-rays, other than its medical use. But Hugh Turvey has opened this new realm of “xograms” to me while I was looking into medical artistry. He’s a photographer, an Artist in Residence at the British Institute of Radiology, and uses x-ray technology to create some of these stunning images. He uses the conventional black and white film exposed by phosphors while X-rays collide with the film. His final stage consists of colouring to enhance interest and density variance. He has created a book called, X is for X-rays, where A-Z daily objects are coloured xograms. I would have loved to get that as a kid, but doesn’t mean I’m not still a kid a heart. Time to make room on my bookshelf.


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Human Organs


Electric Lungs


Brain Waves

Optic Nerve
I recently came across some works by Jessica Lloyd-Jones. She merges art, science and technology into sculpture and various installations. Her anatomical neon collection uses blown glass containing neon lights and were inspired by biological electrical and the presence of natural electrical activity in our human body. Inert gases are encapsulated to give the different coloured effects. She describes anatomical neon on her website:

“Brain Wave conveys neurological processing activity as a kinetic and sensory, physical phenomena through its display of moving electric plasma. Optic Nerve shows a similar effect, more akin to the blood vessels of the eye and with a front ‘lens’ magnifiying the movement and the intensity of light. Heart is a representation of the human heart illuminated by still red neon gas. Electric Lungs is a more technically intricate structure with xenon gas spreading through its passage ways, communicating our human unawareness of the trace gases we inhale in our breathable atmosphere. “

I’m blown away how incredible this collection is and making me excited for the coming few months. I finally finished my Honours Bachelor of Science in Cell and Molecular Biology and Gene, Genetics, and Biotechnology a few weeks ago. But to be honest, I feel exhausted from the amount of work I’ve been doing the past four years. Not to mention, the fingernail biting period back in March waiting to know if I got into the masters I decided to only apply for. Graduating in June is bittersweet but I’m looking forward to my professional masters in Biomedical Communications at the University of Toronto.  I can’t wait to start showcasing my own integration of science and art. Look forward to future posts that might wow you and my journey in getting down and dirty with nifty and creativity.

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