Wednesday, April 30, 2014

How to Illustrate a Physics Textbook

I am writing a book, ‘The Fine Art of Physics,’ about the historical importance of crossovers between the arts and sciences and the resulting knowledge breakthroughs that occur at the intersection of disciplines.  The following list summarizes the paintings in the book.

How to Illustrate a Physics Textbook

  1. The usual method, measuring angles and that sort of thing, 
§       Kenya  – inverted version emphasizing lines to vanishing point

  1. Impressionism
§       Giverny, après Monet – beyond the rules of geometry and perspective

  1. Cubism – multiple viewpoints

  1. Futurism and the Avant Garde – predictive, extrapolation of time, space-time continuum
§       Glacier on a staircase – abstract presentation of motion, or ‘explosion in a shingle factory’ technique

  1. Collage.
§       Illustration of Graphic novels – and other leaps of logic

  1. Allegory – art form representing or symbolizing ideas and concepts with immense power to illustrate complex ideas and concepts. It conveys its hidden message through symbolic figures, actions and imagery
§       The Ascent of the Mons Philosophorum
§       Intersections of diametrically opposed disciplines

  1. Computer manipulation of digital images
§       Carthage  – two photographs, Punic ruins and Phoenician alphabet. The main advantage of using a computer to create overlays is that by selectively brightening or sharpening sections of each layer, or altering the layer blending mode, unlimited possibilities are made available. This is of course its main disadvantage as well.
§       Temple of Serapis  – photographs and painting
§       Inuksuk in Victoria Harbour – to create distortion, mirror images, fractals   

  1. Geometry
§       Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia  – elliptic and hyperbolic paraboloids
§       4D object + its 3D shadow – a tesseract in which the required eight cubes are aligned along the four extended diagonals of the central cube, four on the diagonals projecting out the back four corners of the cube and four on those emerging out the front.
§       Projective, or shadow, model of four-dimensional geometry
§       The Feynman-Hundertwasser Solution – Feynman diagrams, which are pictorial representations of the mathematical expressions governing the behaviour of subatomic particles. explaining the behaviour of subatomic particles.
§       The Theory of Everything – Amplituhedrons, an almost miraculous simplification of virtually infinite series of algebraic expressions 
§       An Exaltation of Qubits – Bloch spheres,  geometrical representation visualizing a qubit – the basis for quantum computing
§       Fractal gravity leaks.  Fractal patterns with various degrees of self-similarity have been rendered or studied in images, structures and sounds, and found in nature, technology and art. One of the more easily understood definitions is ‘swirls upon swirls.’
§       HundertwasserHaus (4) Hundertwasser’s district heating plant – organic geometry, après Hundrtwasser

  1. Posters – Usually, a poster is designed to get attention and deliver a clear, concise message. It is easily readable, with a straightforward quickly understood message, and no extraneous words or illustrations. But sometimes posters are supposed to make you think… by starting with unsolved problems, or puzzles with no answers. They are intended as art. Art posters are not easily read, may be ambiguous, and may contain all sorts of apparently extraneous stuff. Four posters showing ‘Tangential process of creative ideation, industrial design and invention’

Updated 27 September 2014  

Friday, April 25, 2014

Creating Art with Impact: Poster 4

(click on image to enlarge)

Not really a new source of power
Posterized painting, computer collage, watercolour and crayon
©2011 Charlene Brown

The steps I followed in compiling these ‘sustainable technology’ posters, were described in my March 20 post.

As shown in this third example, these steps are:
1.     objective: find a new source of power
2.     secondary factors: collaged word pattern
3.     diagram: solar panels
4.     transform: combine with a rectenna and move to remote location...A rectenna is something I’d never heard of, but apparently it's a rectifying antenna, used to convert microwave energy into direct current electricity. 
5.     Space-based solar panels (Needless to say, I can’t claim to be the first to think up this combination)

Friday, April 18, 2014

Virtual Paintout in Liverpool UK

(click on image to enlarge)
Georges Pierhead
Watercolour, crayon and gouache
©2014 Charlene Brown

The Virtual Paintout is in Liverpool UK  this month.  I like to paint mountains, so this was a bit of a let-down after last month’s virtual expedition to the Julian Alps in Slovenia
Any friends I mentioned this problem to suggested I paint the Beatles’ houses, and I discovered to my surprise that there is actually a Google Streetview of all of them! (except Ringo Starr’s place which the Google car couldn’t quite get to).  They didn’t seem particularly paintable though, so I just started wandering and decided a (gracefully-aged) psychedelic version of Georges Pierhead might be a better representation of the Beatles’ hometown. Here is a link to the Streetview of it.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Creating Art with Impact: Poster 3

(click on image to enlarge)
Two wrongs making a right
Posterized painting, computer collage, watercolour and crayon
©2011 Charlene Brown

The steps I followed in compiling these ‘sustainable technology’ posters, were described in my March 20 post.

As shown in this third example these steps are:
1.     objective: solve ‘old technology’ problem – oil sands pollution.
2.     secondary factors: collaged word pattern
3.     diagram: microbes
4.     transform: take something out

5.     methanogenic bacteria

Friday, April 4, 2014

Leaving Afghanistan

(click on image to enlarge)
Mission Accomplished
Watercolour and crayon
©2014 Charlene Brown

This painting is based on a photograph by Kiana Hayeri in the March 2014 issue of the Globe & Mail Report on Business magazine.  

The photograph, showing the Kabul skyline now dominated by cellphone towers, illustrated an article, the theme of which was that the most successful aspect of the Western intervention in Afghanistan may turn out to be a Canadian-run cellphone company. Like most of what we are shown of Afghanistan, the photo was ‘not a pretty sight,’ but I liked its composition, so here’s my interpretation of it.