Test Your Reflexes....

with these handy dandy reflex hammers! Look real? They're not! I actually modeled and rendered this little piece of equipment in 3Ds Max. When I finally got the hang of it (a couple times of starting over to get it just right), the modeling did not take long. I enjoyed this assignment for the most part, but my favorite was the texturing and playing with reflections, plus it made the most sense to me. I even added a fingerprint! I tidied up the situation a bit from the critique and created more of an appealing composition without overdoing it too much. All in all, I'm impressed by what Max can do... and this is just the beginning!

I'm pretty amazed by what my classmates have done as well. Some of them chose some really complex tools and I don't know how they were able to complete the assignment for some of them. I give them great respect for taking up the challenge. Check out 2 of my fellow classmate's blogs where they show their work: Josy and Annie.

Unfortunately, I was unable to see everyone's since I had to leave for my internship. It was good though, I have been learning so much from putting files on ours and other companies FTP sites by using FileZilla (so helpful!) for print as well as creating zip files and making sure that all the elements of a document are included. It may sound simple to you experts out there, but remember when you first were introduced to all that. I have to admit, this whole process is very humbling but I am blessed to having very patient and helpful people above me in the marketing department. I guess it is better to learn it now than later when I am actually in a full-time position.


Head Slime

Remember that green goop from watching Nickelodeon? That's what the green stuff here reminds me of, but in a more intriguing, mature and morbid way. This is actually the cover for Root's Manuva recently new (August 2008) Slime and Reason album. The design was from a modern conceptual design studio, Oscar and Ewan.

Simple design, yet incredibly dramatic. Beautiful and at the same time could be used as an interesting 'drugs-will-turn-your-brain-to-Gak-so-don't-do-it' public service announcement.

Other than some fun and interesting graphics, I finished by medical instrument in 3Ds Max, but I don't want to spoil it for critique so you will have to wait for it until Friday! Otherwise, very tired from no sleep and lots of work; you can tell when I'm busy (unfortunately) because my poor blog goes without a post for a few days.... oh well, all in a day of life, right?


3D Max Mania!

Everyone in our 3D Max (aka Computer Visualization) class is on the rush to get our instruments completed by critique on Friday. Seriously, everyone is scrambling to obtain their ray-traced reflections and realistic textures on their (hopefully) modeled tools. Our poor professor seemed very tired by the end of class today going from person to person to answer a plethora of questions. Thank goodness I am almost done with my instrument and I'm pretty proud of it. I can't believe how real you can get objects to look! Hope your excited to see the finished product, I know I am!

The syringe above is the one that I modeled previously and was a mini-project coaxing us into the shallow end of the huge pool of texturing. Texturing is all about making things shiny, realistic, have labels, bumpy, whatever you put your mind to. Modeling is the planning and frustrating part as of now and texturing is more experimental and well, more enjoyable to say the least. I know I will go back to it and improve more, but for now, it is suitable to post; it already took me 2 weeks to post this!

You know how it goes, busy, busy, busy but learning so many techniques and programs to benefit our career. It seems like a good deal to me, I still miss having the time/money to go out on the weekends regularily..... missing some of my undergrad experience, but UIC's BVIS program seems like it will be worth it!

"Syringe," Lindsey Pionek, 3D Studio Max.


My, What a Big Eye You Have....

I think this one is for the record books people. This is by far the biggest eye that I have ever seen and it is in the US! Eye by Tony Tasset is a 12-foot diameter, fiberglass painted well, eye that is exhibited in Laumeier Sculpture Park in Saint Louis, MO. The detail of the iris and the ocular conjunctival vasculature is what captured me when I first took a look at it monumental piece. After doing a little bit of research, I found something even more interesting.....

Tony Tasset is a local! Yes, Tony received his Master of Fine Arts degree from The School of the Art institute of Chicago and is currently a University Professor at UIC in the School of Art and Design. I guess UIC is the place to be! Though Tasset recently has been creating large-scale permanent sculptural pieces for the outdoors, he works in a variety of mediums.

Though not solely science and anatomy-based, he created the Capuchine Chandelier, which uses the skeleton as an art material. It reminds me of the Roman Catholic Church of Sedlec in the Czech Republic as well as the catacombs of Paris, though these places actually used the real thing. Finding out more more about Tony Tasset was a great experience and I may have to contact him to learn more! Well back to working on my own medical-based projects!

Photo courtesy of Laumeier.com "Eye", 2007, Tony Tasset and Blog.daytonc.com "Capuchine Chandelier" 2006, Tony Tasset.



Who would have thought to have done the tracheobronchial tree in glass? That person would be Anne Cattrell, a sculptor that lives in London. The piece, named "Capacity," is made from lamp worked glass as was inspired by interest in the sciences. Her particular focuses are in neuroscience, anatomy, and meteorology which inspire her in her creations. She also prefers to use glass because of its transparency and revealing properties.

'I choose the familiar, for example a cloud, so whatever language you speak there is a kind of universal understanding. It is the transformation and freezing into three-dimensions of this iconographic subject matter that interests me: what happens when you contemplate something you think you know but shouldn't really be seeing this way. This three-dimensional vantage point allows the viewer to examine the subtle shifts and rhythms which ceaselessly occur in the natural world and
within the body.'
- Anne Cattrell

I can't believe how intricate she was able to be with the brochiole system. Unfortunately, I was unable to find out much more about her process or her artwork online. Hopefully I will find something more since she does have such an interest in science and art.

Now to me. :D Today was LONG. I thought it would be great idea to have Friday off of my internship so I could work more on my 3D Max assignment since I have to leave a little early sometimes. However, that only leaves me with 2 days to get 20 hours in. I did it anyway. It will feel nice to not have to run around tomorrow, but these last 2 days have been quite exhausting with 10 hours of my internship as well as doing classwork on top of that. It has been a great experience though and I would rather be busy than bored, even though I tend to stress myself out at times. I just need to step back and focus on the big picture and diligently work on my classwork.

Tomorrow I have my critique on my sexy cecum in Illustration Techniques. Hopefully it goes well.

Photo courtesy of denzeen.com. Anne Cattrell, "Capacity", 2000, Lamp worked glass.


The Mac is Awesome

Even though we all may have argument on which computer system is superior, which I don't think there is just one computer that will be necessary for everyone, I do have to say Mac has it going on. Why do I bring this up you say? Being an aspiring graphic artist, of course you would expect me to say I'm a Mac person. However, I wasn't a year ago. The Mac is user-friendly and designed well. Sure, but you are probably thinking why would medicine be interested in Mac?

Well there is Osirix, a computerized medical imaging tool which can only be downloaded on Mac, that should say enough. If you need a little more convincing, you have to check out what the company Modality has been up to. I found a video on the Apple startpage with this company, which creates digital learning materials with a focus on the sciences at the time. I think having the potential to download learning materials on something that you carry around with you all the time (ie the Ipod) would be a great facet to the learning process. It is also more portable than a massive textbook, and when you have to travel via public transportation, it can give you extra time to learn that is otherwise wasted.

Who knows what the future will hold with the use of digital technology? I don't, but the whole world is ahead and I'm excited to see what I can do with my career in biomedical visualization.

Ok, off to do some 3D Modeling research before going to bed to go to my internship tomorrow!

Photo courtesy of iLounge.com. Modality Learning Tool (Frank Netter) on iPhone.

Sexy Cecum

Here is my finished digital pen & ink illustration for my Illustration Techniques class with John Daugherty. Our assignment was to create an anatomical illustration using the pen & ink technique of something cylindrical in shape. I wanted to do the tracheobronchial tree, but I got wind of plenty of fellow students doing the same thing and I wanted to do something different. When I was doing research for my graphic design class about Crohn's Disease, and this little area of the body showed up (aka ileocecal junction), so I thought I would correlate it, why not?

I have to tell you, THIS MAY LOOK SIMPLE, BUT YOU ARE OH SO WRONG! I spent quite some time on this little guy by just trying to figure out how to make constant lines using the Wacom stylus and then figuring out how to do what I wanted and make it look nice. I think I did that, I guess I will find out during critiques on Friday.

Otherwise, Valentine's weekend was great, but now he's gone for a bit, but I can't complain much because now I have to get stuff done! Plus, Business Practices was cancelled for tomorrow so no class, therefore I am planning on going to my internship all day tomorrow and Thursday and get my 20 hours in so I don't have to go in on Friday..... this should be an interesting feat.....

Ileocecal Juncion. Lindsey Pionek. Wacom Tablet and Adobe Illustrator.


Happy Valentine's Day!

My heart is only for you..... and some flowers. These heart-shaped vases are perfect for your Valentine's Day anatomy-loving sweetheart. Just add a flower and bring it to life! Both vases are from Esque Design, but are unique, just like the real ones!

Photo courtesy: Anatomical Heart Vases. Esque design. Top: www.unicahome.com. Bottom: www.supermarkethq.com

Bird Brain

Well, Street Anatomy, you got to it first, I have to credit you for that, but I still want to show it. I saw this shirt on Threadless.com during winter break, but I just didn't think it was the right time to show it..... I guess I learned a lesson from waiting too long!

Anyway, this shirt design "Bird Brain" was created by Erin Jessica King. She is an up-and-coming, soon-to-be certified medical illustrator that resides in Boulder, Colorado. She got the idea from an anatomy class analogy. I have to admit Erin, those analogies are great!

The design website, Deadwilder Design and Illustration, is a joint collaboration between Erin and Allison Werberg (She went to the University of WI; go Badgers!). They have various biological-based companies that they have done projects for and have a fantasticly fluid, beautiful style! Keep it up with the medical and biological illustration!

Oh, Friday couldn't have come any sooner let me tell you! It was a long day today and forgot my coffee.... GASP! I know! I was about to die at my class this morning, but I survived, went to the internship and have been working on stuff all night and will be doing the same thing all day tomorrow until my boyfriend comes down for Valentine's Day weekend! Don't worry though, I have something for tomorrow!


The Hemostat, as I see it....

Ok, well not really. But it is modeled as one usually sees a hemostat. This project was actually done like a week ago, but I had to tweek it here and there to actually get it so you can't see through its channel box..... it is the section where the two parts hinge together.... I didn't know what it was either at first, its ok. Anyway, there it is. I wanted to play with lighting and texture a little bit more before I showed it here, but being uneducated (or merely touched upon at the moment) in it at all, I felt like a monkey incesantly clicking on the mouse and keyboard with no results for like an hour and a half, so you will just have to wait and see it tranform over time. Plus I have to sleep and work on other things, so I thought it would be ok to let it slide for now. Please don't judge too much; it will get better.

Busy like usual, it was a work day. I learned about printing companies and talked to a rep and he showed me how to make sure all of my files were linked when sending them out. It was really helpful. So many little details, so many little details. I am learning though, that's the best part.

Hemostat models. Lindsey Pionek. 3D Studio Max.


3D Studio Max Updates

Here are my first few renditions of working with 3D Studio Max: RBCs and their SEM texture and the wrapping of a Prilosec box. Both of them will more than likely will be refined more as soon as I have more familiarity of the program. I like how they turned out though. The program is really simple if it works right!

I am working on a syringe, and a reflex hammer right now, and I also finished the modeling of a hemostat, but for some reason, I forgot to save it on my flash drive so I could show it to you! Something to look forward to!

Today was a long Monday with classes all day and I had work to worry about too since my timesheet wasn't received last Friday (you know, if I want to get paid), and I still want to work on my pen and ink assignment tonight.... I may need some chai tea to keep me awake, even though I would prefer chamomile and go to bed.

All in the day of the life of an aspiring medical-based illustrator/designer. :D

Red Blood Cells texured SEM-style and Prilosec 3D models. Lindsey Pionek. 3D Studio Max.

Logo Design

Since it was a pretty uneventful day of working on projects in 3D Studio Max, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe InDesign (yeah, I know, uneventful right?), and nothing is quite completed, I decided to show today a logo that I made a couple of weeks ago for a friend from undergrad. He's part of a group that does some pretty cool underground excursions in the Twin Cities. During the middle of Christmas break, when I was stir crazy from being in Wisconsin with all of the snow, he asked me if I wanted to create a logo for T-shirts and other memorabilia. I agreed and he gave me a bit of info and I had the idea right away, but because I didn't have anything to keep my mind stimulated, I forgot about it until he reminded me 2 weeks into my 2nd semester in the Biomedical Visualization program. I was already busy with school, but I felt incredibly bad (and a little stupid) for forgetting about it. So I finished it and thank goodness he loved it. I like it too and I got to play with some more tools in Illustrator and some more fun fonts.

I loved doing it even though I was busy....I want to improve more! :D

(Sorry everyone, for some reason, the logo jpeg didn't come up the first time when I did the actual post.... don't ask me why.)

TCCS Crawlers Syndicate Logo. Lindsey Pionek, 2009.


I Can't Keep Up!

Hello, hello, hello. I know I have said this before, but I have just been busy, busy, busy and need to keep up with this mostly because I want to. :D Maybe I just have write smaller blogs than just HUGE ones once a week. Well, my best friend from undergrad came this weekend. It was good, we didn't do much, but I don't mind relaxation. We did go to an AWESOME breakfast place and it's close. It's called Sweet Maple Cafe. It's this little hole-in-the-wall place on Taylor Street and it has the best breakfast food that I have had in a long time..... I can't even explain it.

I have been working a lot with 3D Studio Max and texturing and everything..... to be coming soon. My internship has been brutal as usual.... so many deadlines, but I survived. Unfortunately, I was late getting out of there and my friend had to wait a half hour for me to get out of there and then when we were out to eat and work was calling me because one of my important emails didn't send.... rar. I should just be full-time. No, no, no, no, I love what I am doing in grad school, there would be no way that I would leave this program.

Anyway, here is my anatomy for the day. One of my roomates showed me this one t-shirt site (www.shirt.woot.com) in which they sell one shirt a day with a different design on it and a couple days ago the one above popped up. I think it is really neat how there are little quirky details like the cartoon guy drinking in the liver. Plus, you have to read the descriptions of the shirt designs...classic!

So here is my February resolution, to write more often using little blurbs, you know, how blogs usually are!

Photo Courtesy: Guts! www.shirt.woot.com


My Excursion to Milwaukee

In continuation of my never-ending week of being so tired, it is Saturday. On this day I was on my way to go to Milwaukee to meet in the middle with my family for my birthday celebration and my Mom's (on February 3). Since I didn't go to bed until 3 because of upstairs, 9 AM came quickly and it felt like 6 AM. I rolled out of bed, finished packing, and was off to take the bus. I know I took out my U-Pass for the bus so I didn't have to fumble for it at the stop. When I got there, it was nowhere to be found. Seriously? It must have fell out of my jacket pocket so I left the bus stop to retrace my steps. As soon as I was up the the stairs to open my apartment door (with my very large and heavy bag, by the way) and realized where I put it..... in my back pocket. Needless to say, I was a little ticked at myself. I trudged back to the bus stop and thankfully didn't miss it.

I was off the bus and going to the Blue Line stop now. It came in a matter of a minute.... it was going to be a good ride and I was going to have plenty of time to catch the Amtrak to Milwaukee. Got on the train, sat down, and the doors do not shut..... here it comes..... "Beep beep" Attention passengers, this train is experiencing difficulties. Please stand by until we fix this situation." Awesome. What made it worse than standing there for 15 minutes, was that there were two individuals right in front of me sucking face on the El. Right in front of me facing my direction at 9:30 in the morning. While trying to avoid looking, the El finally started moving, but now I was worried about running late.

Though I made it, I was tired and sweaty. The Amtrak was nice though, I did get my own two large seats and I was able to sleep some. Eventually, it was time for the Milwaukee Airport stop and assuming since there is only one stop in Chicago, that there was only one stop in Milwaukee. I got off like I thought I was supposed to, but of course I was wrong. There are TWO in Milwaukee, but only ONE in Chicago..... it doesn't make sense to me. Anyway, my parents had to travel a bit more to get there and I waited. Eventually, they were there and we went back to the hotel, The Ambassador. It was a beautifully designed hotel with an Old World, Art Deco feel. We dropped off our stuff and we were off the Milwaukee Public Museum to see the Titanic Exhibit. Not only was is a beautifully-designed exhibit, but it was a different way of seeing it and it blew me out of the water, no pun intended. I was impressed. We went back to the hotel afterwards and had drinks and dinner at the hotel. Very good and classy food. It felt nice to be with my family this weekend in such a nice place and be away from everything. Plus I finally was able to catch up on my sleep! Back to school now. Keep posted for more medical-illustration based blogs in this week!