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Science-inspired art, (or “#sciart” as it’s been dubbed on Twitter) is a beautiful thing. Who better to illustrate the pages of The Field than artists with an eye for the curious. Our first artist, Natalie Maras, has gone a step further and turned her work into an educational tool.

We’re proud to share her series: “The Compendium of Living Enquiry” on the pages of The Field. We’re even more proud to partner with her in an effort to bring engaging science literacy resources to classrooms nationwide. The series has been turned into an “anti-coloring book” (i.e. a coloring book intended to engage the mind). Pre-order your copy here. For every copy ordered, a book is donated to a STEM classroom.

In her own words,

‘The Compendium of Living Enquiry’ presents more than 20 black and white pen drawings that encourage viewers to think about how scientists go about their investigative work.  Executed in a similar style to old-world etchings, the artist’s medium references the ‘visual thinkers’ of the Renaissance who maintained a foothold in scientific subjects to make art.

The Compendium of Living Enquiry’ spans physical sciences, earth sciences and life sciences, observing many different contexts in which scientists collect evidence. While some scenes depict scientists indoors in apparently private investigation, many depict exposure to natural elements and illustrate significant physical risk. Apparently whimsical and fantastical scenes prompt serious contemplation of the directions of certain scientific enquiry.

Why do scientists take personal risks to advance knowledge? What are the different strategies employed by scientists while undertaking their investigations? How do we know whether a scientist is freely exploring, or planning, collecting, analyzing or classifying a subject?

The artist hopes that her drawings will help to advance understanding that there are different types of science enquiry. Before we can engage with scientists on topics that matter to us, and perhaps even join them in their endeavours, we need to be taught how scientists think about the world around us.”

The book can be pre-ordered here.

About The Author

I run The People's Science, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that promotes practical and accessible STEM/STEAM engagement, diversity in STEM, information literacy, and self/bias education. In previous lives I was trained as a neuroscience and psychology researcher at Harvard University and OHSU, designed educational technology for universities and nonprofits, taught workshops and designed multimedia materials for Harvard Graduate School of Education, and sold delicious smelling good stuff at Lush Cosmetics. Fun facts: I color code my apps, am obsessed with subscription boxes, and have very strong feelings about typefaces.

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