The Medical Illustrations Blog and News - 2010

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Interesting visualisation of Twitter Posts

8 October 2010

I found this interesting website that analyses Twitter posts and then creates a tag cloud of the results. It's quite cool

Twitter post cloud of JoannaCulley

Francis Crick archives to be digitised by Wellcome Library

23 August 2010

In 1953 James D Watson and Francis Crick described the structure of a chemical called deoxyribonucleic acid which they believed was fundamental to all living things reproducing themselves. We now almost take deoxyribonucleic acid for granted in medical science, but we know it by the acronym DNA.

Wellcome Library Logo

The Wellcome Library, as part of their project to digitise their library and make their extensive collection of papers and information available to all online, have digitised Francis Crick's private research papers. These are fascinating and include the first ever illustration of the double helix construction of DNA.

You can see all of the Wellcome Library's digital collection on their website I also really like the audio slide show done by the BBC on this subject. It gives a great overview whilst showing selected parts
of the collection. You can see the slide show on the BBC News website.

Scientific Photography

August 2010

This photograph was taken by my father-in-law Tony Butler with his macro lens. It is a Poplar Hawk-moth. Latin name Laothoe populi, it is found throughout the UK and the caterpillars feed on willow, aspen, sallow and poplars, hence the name. Its colourings can vary from grey to pinky brown. These facts aside, what do you think of the detail of the photo. Its certainly made me think twice about these creatures, apparantly there are over 800 regular UK species alone, and I generally take no notice of them. But looking at the way it has almost a downy fur and strange orange and segmented antenna, is certainly very interesting. A great photo.

Poplar Hawk-moth

Poplar Hawk-moth taken with a macro lens - by Tony Butler


Joseph Maclise - Access to his work

July 2010

Joseph Maclise spine illustration

Human anatomy by J Maclise

Joseph Maclise was an artist of morbid anatomy and a surgical artist, creating drawings of human anatomy from direct observation, from his own dissections of human tissue. He lived from 1815 to 1880 and his work is kept in archives all over the world. Some originals of his work are kept at the Institutes belonging to the Navy in the UK, and are some of the best originals I have ever seen. Here are some images of his work, part of the collection I was able to spend the day looking at. In pristine condition, the plates are all bound in very large leather books, each page covered in tissue paper, where the bright colour and detail is still all there.

What I find to be most incredible is the fact that this work started as engravings, from direct observation of his own dissected cadavars. The anatomy is beautifully hand drawn and every detail included. The engravings or plates were used to create copies of which formed educational books for academic and teaching purposes. An amazing artist.

Joseph Maclise

Joseph Maclise - dissection

lupus psoriasis.

Joseph Maclise - lupus psoriasis

Argentum medicine bottle

Joseph Maclise - heart removed


Historic Collections Library

June 2010

The most recent reference material for my studio is a selection of specimens donated to me, by the Historic Collections Library from the Institute of Navy Medical Training Centre. The specimens range from 100 to 200 yrs old. I was dontated two skulls with bullet holes very evident, an elephants tooth, an original mummified Chinese foot with felt shoes, showing how the toes were broken and folded under the foot to make the foot the desired small size. A hand that had been injected with mercury, quite spooky, and a collection of human bones and femur, all suffering with osteoporosis. An excellent way to view bone degeneraton.

These bottles are dated to be over 100 years old - and the first items in the collection.

Old Dentalone bottle.

Old Dentalone Medicine Bottle

Cream of tartar medicine.

The cream of tartar bottle from a pharmacy in South Shields

Argentum medicine bottle

Old Argentum Colloid bottle

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