Wednesday 24 March 2010

Happy Ada Lovelace Day!

In honour of Ada Lovelace and the importance of women in science, here are two scientist portrait-sketches I posted last autumn. Eugenie Scott

Jane Goodall

Happy Ada Lovelace Day!

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Original artwork on The Flying Trilobite Copyright to Glendon Mellow
under Creative Commons Licence.

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Sarah Snell-Pym said...

They are fantastic!

Glendon Mellow said...

Thanks, Saffy!

I am very pleased with the Goodall, but I think the Scott needs work. I over-textured her hair, I think and it doesn't have that luminescent quality.

Jane Goodall's books did a lot to shape my thinking away from magic and mysticism when I was younger. I owe a lot to Through a Window.

Marco Meredith said...

lovely portraits, very poetic. i really like the gentle soft line quality you use, it has a subtle eauty that allows the viewer to look at it for a long time without visual conflicts.

on your comment concerning your influence through Jane Goodall's books do you not feel any connection between the nature of mysticism and the art of science?

I always thought the two depended on each other, science to path the way and mysticism to be the land that is paved.


Glendon Mellow said...

Thanks Marco. I may use your first paragraph in some quotes about my artwork! *beaming*

I'll try to explain, if I understand your metaphor.

I tend to believe now, now that mysticism is the land that is to be paved.

I spent a long part of my youth in love with ideals that knowledge of ancient folklore was the way to a deep understanding of the universe. (Wrote about it in three parts, starting here.)

I wasn't raised under a particular religion, and I tried to figure out spiritual and cosmic questions through themes running through folklore and fairy tales.

I always loved science, and thought the two could be reconciled. Then I read River Out of Eden by Richard Dawkins. Using thought experiments and logic as well as genetics, Dawkins explained things I had never considered could be explained with proof. I drew and painted a lot of those concepts.

Eventually, I realized most of my new artistic concepts were coming from scientific ideas. For that, and many other reasons, I started focusing on this.

I became fascinated with intelligent animals. Owned a parrot for 12+ years. Read lots of Jane Goodall. Now I am fascinated by our shared and converged intelligences with other animals in a lucid way.

I think that mysticism can be understood, not as a truth, but as a series of metaphors that can be useful. Provided we understand the metaphor isn't truth.

I'm not sure if I answered your question, Marco despite the long reply.

Marco Meredith said...

That was a great reply, quite a thought provoking answer aswell.

I find your view of the world interesting in a good way, many of the science type personalities that were my tutors in school were quite dry in the imagination area where as your splicing between the creativity of your work and the influence of the world around you is quite re-freshing.

Sort of reminds me of soemthing an old freind told me, think he quoted Da Vinci.

'notice the art in science, and notice the science in art'


Glendon Mellow said...

Thanks Marco.

And that's a great da Vinci quote.

I find that in this day and age, with all the wonders of science before us (just think of zoology and strange deep sea creatures...) it's a shame so much visual language is impoverished by retreading the same metaphors over and over.

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