From infographics to illustrations, images are an essential part of science communication. Pictures can explain concepts in a flash, illuminate a narrative or simply provide a quick visual thrill. But to many writers, the process of drawing, illustrating and telling stories without words can seem mysterious or even intimidating.

Members and guests joined us on March 21 at the School of Visual Concepts for an evening with three talented visual professionals, who explained how to work with illustrators and discussed the exciting possibilities when hard science and fine art collide.

Speakers included:

Tami Tolpa
Tami has over 20 years of experience in scientific illustration and animation for Scientific American, Science News, MIT’s Technology Review, Harvard University, the University of Washington, and numerous biotech companies. Her latest initiative is Picture as Portal, a course to empower anyone to create pictures that clearly communicate science, technology, or other subjects, no matter how complex.

Bénédicte Rossi
Bénédicte grew up in Paris, France, where she studied biology. After a PhD in Neurosciences she moved to California and pursued a certificate of science illustration at the California State University of Monterey. She works primarily for researchers and creates illustrations for articles, covers and books.

Miles Greb
Miles is a science communicator and skeptic, and the local creator of several comic series focused on demonstrating the value that peer-review and hard science can bring to narrative story telling. He is one of the organizers of the March for Science, and designed its logos and art. Miles loves Neil Young and Dune.

Many thanks to the School of Visual Concepts for hosting!