Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Scientific Illustrator?

While I was working at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, in my free time I had been experimenting with scientific-style illustration of fishes. In particular, I had drawn a bluespotted sunfish and a satinfin shiner on Procreate, a digital drawing app I use with my iPad.

Just for kicks, I decided to post them in some of the online fish enthusiast communities I am a part of, and one of my fish-related acquaintances noticed it. This particular acquaintance of mine is a graduate student working on his dissertation. We discussed matters for a little while, but soon enough I found myself commissioned for a project that would involve the digital illustration of 6 salmonids for a research manuscript. 

I have attached finished versions below, but for a detailed account of my process, click here.

Spawning male kunimasu (Oncorhynchus kawamurae)

Spawning male stream-spawning sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka)

Spawning male lake-spawning sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka)

Ferox trout (Salmo trutta)

Gillaroo (Salmo stomachicus)

Sonaghan (Salmo nigripinnis)

This project was my first foray into extensive digital painting, and I feel that throughout the process I made notable improvements in technique and understanding of salmonid anatomy. 

Shortly after the six salmonids, another opportunity for me to scientifically illustrate fishes popped up, and this one required work of a significantly simplified style, which was in hindsight very good, as school was just about to begin.

I was commissioned to draw simplified illustrations of 10 Senegalese fish species that have a potential to control the disease schistosomiasis by eating the host snails which carry the disease at one of its life stages. 

The paper: 

Arostegui MC, Wood CL, Jones IJ, Chamberlin A, Jouanard N, Faye DS, Kuris AM, Riveau G, De Leo GA, Sokolow SH. In
         press. Potential biological control of schistosomiasis by fishes in the lower Senegal River basin. American Journal of
         Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.
Synodontis ocellifer                                        Synodontis schall

Synodontis nigrita                                        Clarias gariepinus

       Malapterurus electricus                              Chrysichthys nigrodigitatus
      Labeo senegalensis                                    Hemichromus bimaculatus

 Citharinus citharus                                         Protopterus annectens

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