—Jodie S. Holt
Plants are fundamental to our existence, yet most people only notice plants as a green backdrop to their daily lives. Without greater human awareness of plants and their importance, efforts to conserve plant biodiversity will be futile. Learn why we often don’t ‘see’ plants even though they are all around us. Using principles of plant form and function, Dr. Holt will explain why plants look like they do and enhance your ability to ‘see’ plants.
Jodi Holt, botanical science consultant on the film Avatar, informed the characterization of the biologist, Dr. Grace Augustine, played by Sigourney Weaver. Dr. Holt’s expertise in invasive species was used in other aspects of the film, especially in the development of content for books and game designs related to the release of the movie. Dr. Holt will share her experiences in working on the film, her perspectives on the development of the imaginary ecosystem and her thoughts on how that work connects to the work she does for her own research. Images from Dr. Holt’s work as a consultant to the movie Avatar, as well as from her many years studying and teaching botany, will be used to illustrate this talk.
Photo: Julian Duval, San Diego Botanic Garden, 2010
Jodie is a UCR Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of California, Riverside, where she has taught plant courses and conducted research on weedy and invasive plants for 30 years. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has won awards for her research and teaching. She regularly engages in botany outreach to a variety of audiences, young and old, and in 2010 the San Diego Botanical Garden awarded her the Paul Ecke, Jr. Award of Excellence for her work promoting plants and conservation.
Image © Chuck Carter
Never before in history has there been a better opportunity to reach such a large audience with our work. To compete with the overwhelming nature of the information age, where attention spans are as fleeting as shooting stars, and thrive in such a world by taking a fresh approach to your illustration.
The digital tools to thrive and succeed in this universe are easier to use and incorporate into personal workflows than ever before. I hope to shine a little light into what can be accomplished whether you're still working traditionally or digitally; and share some ideas with how to hold on to and engage the viewers attention in a world of over-stimulation.
Photo: © Chuck Carter
Chuck Carter has been working in the artistic end of the science and entertainment industries for more than 30 years. In the 1980s, Carter started a decade-long career in newspapers, working as an informational graphics artist, editorial illustrator and art director. While working as an art director for the Rocky Mountain News he was introduced to the Macintosh (Mac 512) and, once bitten by the computer graphics bug, he never looked back. Chuck is well know as a team member on the original ground breaking video game Myst. He has gone on to extensive work in the video game, entertainment, and publishing industries for clients as diverse as National Geographic, the U.S. Navy, universities, museums and governmental science institutions. His roles spanned a diverse set of skills including working as a digital artist, animator, writer, art director, and computer-graphics supervisor.
— Terryl Whitlach
Concept Artist Terryl Whitlatch presents how to combine the anatomies of both living and prehistoric species into biologically believable creatures for the Film and Animation Industries.
Terryl will present this process and sharing her concept art from her past and recent films.
Topics to be covered are:
-The Anatomies of living species and Zoological illustration
-Paleontological Reconstruction—the bones and muscles up
-Tying it all together: Combining Zoological and Paleontological Illustration to create believable Creatures Art, Science, and Natural History as they relate to Epic Story, Creature Design, and the Entertainment Industry
Terryl Whitlatch was born in Oakland, California, and started drawing at less than three years of age. Blessed with a mother who was, and still is, a talented artist-illustrator, and a father who taught biology, her fascination with animals started early.
After studying illustration at the California College of Arts and the Academy of Art University, Terryl began a career that has spanned over 25 years. She has worked with many major studios and effects houses as a highly sought after creature and concept designer. Clients include Industrial Light and Magic, Lucas Film Ltd., Pixar, Walt Disney Feature Animation, PDI, Entertainment Arts, LucasArts, Chronicle Books, and various zoos and natural history museums.
Terryl has acted as principal creature designer for Star Wars — the Phantom Menace. She designed most of the alien characters and creatures, from concept to fully realized anatomies and stylizations. Some of the significant characters include Jar-Jar Binx, Sebulba, the pod racers, the undersea monsters of Naboo, and the Naboo Swamp creatures. She also worked closely with George Lucas in the redesign of such pre-existing characters as Jabba the Hutt and the dewbacks.
Recent films to which she has contributed concept work include John Carter of Mars and Pixar’s Brave.
She also is the creator and illustrator of three books: The Wildlife of Star Wars: A Field Guide, The Katurran Odyssey, and the newly released Animals Real and Imagined.
Terryl is currently working on a new cutting edge industry project that involves both real animal and imaginary creature designs simultaneously.
Design: Oliver Uberti. Photo: Cory Richards
In The Art of Travel, Alain de Botton wrote that artists can "paint a portion of the world and in consequence open the eyes of others to it." That's pretty much been the mantra of National Geographic for 124 years and mine for the past 12. Whether I'm sketching elephants in Zambia, charting all the people who have ever lived, or curating blogs from Mount Everest, I try to distill stories into iconic images you'll remember. In Savannah, I'll share some favorite examples, reveal our process, and show why work made by hand is as relevant now as it was in 1888.
Portrait: Rebecca Hale, NGM Staff
Oliver Uberti is a design editor at National Geographic Magazine. He studied scientific illustration and graphic design at the University of Michigan (BFA, '03) and has traveled throughout the world with a sketchbook in hand. In 2010, he designed 826DC's Museum of Unnatural History—the only museum in America (he supposes based on absolutely zero research) with a cave, unicorn tears, and hundreds of volunteers teaching children to write. Lately, he has been designing blogs and iPad apps for you to travel along vicariously to some of the world's most exotic places with National Geographic's photographers and explorers–in real time.