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  1. Both labs use cover art to communicate with their audience and are looking for more artists to design cover art or paintings to hang around the lab. In addition, mainly the Skaar Lab, uses informative, and decorative, posters when presenting in conferences. They use bright colors to attract more people. During our visit, the Hasty Lab used stuffed animals and pictures to communicate their research with us, which I imagine they use when communicating their science with others. All these forms of communication relate back to their research and are based on the projects they are working on. For example, the Skaar Lab had a painting hanging on their wall of red blood cells they researched. The Hasty Lab had pictures and models of the fat they are studying in their obesity research. The most interesting thing I noticed during the lab visits was how collaborative the environment was. In the Skaar Lab especially, we were able to see them all interact while working on their projects. Along with this, a researcher herself was the one who painted the blood cell picture, so I think it is very interesting how they can take on various roles in the lab throughout their time there.

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    1. I agree with your point about drawing attention to the information presented. I think that for poster, visuals and bright colors are the most compelling. For artwork however, I believe that the aesthetic of the piece and the emotional or intellectual response it invokes is more important than anything else.

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    2. I also noticed the prevalence of bright colors in scientific work to attract people. I personally enjoy the fluorescence.

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  2. In the hasty lab, she passed around plush toys and a model of fat to show what fat is like in our body because of the research she does. I think the machines that shake things in the Skaar lab are pretty cool because it makes his research faster.

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    1. I liked Hasty’s plush and gel models as well, I think that they are the simplest form of conveying her research visually. Though a small child can’t always understand an infographic or diagram, they can see shapes and feel the material of her models and understand basic information about fat.

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    2. I also think that the machines in the Skaar lab were pretty cool. I think that it really demonstrates how some of the technology in a science lab looks and is used in an everyday setting.

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  3. In the Skaar Lab, a lot of visual devices were used. For example, one researcher painted a large canvas of red blood cells. More pictures were hung up on the walls of the lab space. Another researcher showed us a draft of her diagram–it looked almost like a visual flowchart. This related to their lab work because they were showing the most visually appealing aspects of their work.

    In the Hasty Lab, Dr. Hasty showed us stuffed animals of cells, a model of fat, and pictures that members of her lab had taken while doing research. This related to her work because she researches immune cells, fat cells, and obesity.

    The most interesting thing that I noticed during the lab visits was the different approaches to communication and how that correlated to how the interior of the lab spaces looked. Dr. Skaar hung up large images on the walls. Dr. Hasty didn’t have larger images on the walls; she explained her work while showing us smaller visual devices. Dr. Skaar’s lab was much busier, while Dr. Hasty’s lab was very neat. I wonder if the two are related?

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    1. I also really enjoyed the large paintings in the Skaar Lab, especially the one of the red blood cells. I find it interesting how the two labs both used visuals to communicate their research but in different ways.

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    2. I also wondered if there was a correlation between lab environments and artistic mediums! Do you think they would be open to each other’s forms of visuals and may have just not thought about utilizing them? I think both were very effective either way.

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  4. Almost all labs like the ones we visited use scientific posters and smaller diagrams in order to visually convey the purpose or findings of their research. When creating such visuals, it is of utmost importance to keep the illustration simple and visually appealing. The simpler and more compelling the work is to look at, the more people it will effect. Furthermore, Dr. Hasty used models such as plush toys and rubber models in order to provide a base level understanding of the topic of her research, fat. The most interesting thing I saw in the two labs were the different ways that the labs used their wall space. While the walls of the Hasty lab were filled with diagrams and illustrations of cells or mechanisms, the Skaar lab walls were filled with less strictly scientific decorations ranging from a painting of blood cells to a set of tournament brackets.

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    1. This is such an important point! To really communicate a message, it must be clear and concise. Making something that specific is a lot of work though repeatedly revisiting and clarifying your main objective (very similar to how one conducts a research project).

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    2. I liked your point about the decoration of the walls of the Skaar and Hasty labs. To me, it almost seems indicative of the culture of the lab.

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      1. I think it’s so important for scientists to be able to use artwork as a means of showing their own personalities in their workspaces. The labs we visited really took that into account and, as you have pointed out, I think we were all able to get a better feel for the lab’s culture purely based its decor.

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    3. I agree that simplicity is very important when creating visuals for your research. It is not easy to convey complex research accurately without getting too complicated.

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  5. I missed the lab tour but I have decided to work with the Hasty Laboratory and went to visit and meet with them on my own time. They are using diagrams and illustrations of cells/mechanisms. Specifically I am working on artwork for a paper summarizing the effects of immunometabolism on obesity. The most interesting thing was a program called BioRender which has a lot of biology-specific artwork at the ready for use.

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  6. The Skaar and Hasty labs utilized cover art and digital images in presenting their work. However, the Skaar lab used other visual mediums while the Hasty lab emphasized physical models. Skaar had a painting, small diagrams, and other science-related art and sketches around his lab. Hasty, on the other hand, utilized more hands-on materials to engage audiences. From plush models of the biological materials she studies to a realistic model of fat, Hasty provided a way to engage hands-on with her work. Both Skaar and Hasty were effective in their methods of communication of their work with art; they merely varied greatly in mediums used.

    The most interesting aspect of the tours was the very different environments. While both labs are clearly working on crucial topics, their methods of labor and organization varied greatly. While Hasty’s lab was more ordered and pristine, Skaar’s was more cluttered and personalized. These obvious visual differences seemed to contradict their art mediums as I anticipated crisp diagrams and images from Hasty and the more hands-on items with Skaar. The change was a pleasant surprise and gave a peek into the dynamic mediums art for science can take.

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  7. I noticed that the labs used a lot of color whether it was in their actual lab work or their diagrams. Color was used as a way to distinguish and classify the different elements of the work. The labs used colored diagrams with simplified drawings to make the processes they wish to show more understandable and relatable for their audience. I thought the first lab we went to where we could switch the colors under the microscope was very interesting and artistic as well. The lab where fat molecules and cells were being examined was interesting and it showed how powerful the visual impact of science was.

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    1. I hadn’t realized the drastic color changes between the two labs, so I appreciate you bringing this up! I know I would like my piece to utilize color, but I wonder if it is necessary to communicate or merely an additive thing?

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    2. I also think switching colors under the microscope is very interesting, but I’m still kind of confused about the purpose of this function, though colors can be super useful in artistic expression.

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      1. I would argue that highly contrasting colors make for a better poster. I think they are little more eye-catching and could probably best communicate the message you were trying to convey. I think in choosing colors from the same group you run into the problem of the different forms or figures in your work blending into each other.

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  8. Both the Skaar and Hasty labs used visuals to communicate what they do in their research. The Skaar lab had a painting of red blood cells that was used as cover art. Under the microscope, they showed us an attenuated form of Anthrax and H. Pylori under different colors of fluorescent lights.
    The Hasty lab also had pictures that showed a two-dimensional layer of adipose tissue and immune cells. However, in addition the lab also had three-dimensional visuals to better communicate the position, sizing, and interactions of the cells that they work with. The model of fat was effective in communicating the size and texture of adipose tissue. The Hasty lab even had small plushies shaped like the different cells that they work with. Although the structure was greatly simplified—it’s very cute and represents the general shape of the cell! The plushies were personally one of my favorite parts of the trip; they made me think about how scientists communicate science and a passion for science to children who lack in the basic knowledge to even remotely understand the concept of cells in adipose tissue and immune cells.

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    1. I also really enjoyed the Hasty Lab’s use of the plushies. I agree with your thoughts about how they can also communicate their research to an even broader audience like children.

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    2. I also really like the plushies in the Hasty Lab. They’re very cute and quickly attract viewers’ attention. Also, they make viewers without scientific background to think that science is not a very serious and elusive thing.

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    3. I always appreciate when scientists cater to the curiosity of children. The plushies are a great example and it is very much needed in almost all of science to try and get as many people passionate or at least intrigued about what it is you do.

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    4. The visuals in the Hasty lab were the most memorable for me from all of our lab visits. I thought the difference in scale was very interesting. There were representations of adipose tissue all the way from the plush representing a single adipose cell, to the microscopic images showing groups of cells, to the life size blob of fat.

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  9. I was unable to visit the Skaar Lab, but still I found my visit to the Hasty Lab very informative as to how to go about utilizing art as a form of science communication. For example, we were presented with interactive models that we could touch and explore that were replicas of some the findings made in the Hasty Lab. Also, in a more kid friendly fashion, there are also plushies as a way to interest children or a less informed public about the lab’s research. Finally, we were also shown different images that ranged from more simplistic to more complex as a means of conveying either more or less detail depending on the researchers’ audience. The Hasty Lab certainly has appealing to different audiences and age groups down to a science based upon the variety of ways it chooses to convey its information and research.

    I found the individuality of the lab itself very charming. I think that many people have preconceptions as to what a lab looks like and believes that all labs appear that way, but in actuality, researchers seem to put their own spin on their space and really try to embrace what they are studying. In that way, their excitement is easily conveyed in their presentations making them even more engaging to their audiences.

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  10. In both labs, we saw a variety of different mediums used to express ideas in different ways. In the Skaar lab, The visuals ranged from the highly informative diagram the researcher showed us near the beginning of the tour to the painting of the red blood cells hanging on the wall. Both pieces effectively communicated ideas by targeting their specific audiences. The Skaar lab pieces reflected the busy nature of the lab with their variety.
    The Hasty lab visuals that we saw were the plush toys, fat blob, and prints of different microscope images. I found it really interesting how we were able to see the really “zoomed out” level of the giant clump of fat but then we were shown a very small scale example of just a few of those cells in the cluster. The combination of the two scales helped to understand better what is going on with the individual cells while still having an appreciation of the larger perspective.

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    1. I totally agree with the fact how the 2 different visuals one being very zoomed in and the other more zoomed out helps in better understanding the overall concept.

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  11. In both labs, we got to see how much actual work was being done. The Skaar lab was like a living organism itself bustling with curiosity and scientific work. The hasty lab we got to experience in a more static environment. Nonetheless, both labs were keen on science communication, even encouraging us to help them with their cover art. Moreover, there was a lot of scientific posters outside of the Skaar lab that were very deep in knowledge yet still creative and artistic. On the other hand, I also loved looking at the fat model and stuffed toy cells from the hasty lab. All in all the visits to the lab were very helpful because I got to see a real lab and then some ways that they shared their findings to the greater public.

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  12. Both labs used many visual devices. The Skaar Lab hangs a lot of posters on the wall and the red cell painting on the canvas is really impressive. The painting is pretty clear and understandable. At the same time, it’s aesthetic and scientifically accurate. The Hasty Lab uses stuffed animals of all kinds of cells and fat. The fat convey visual images and its texture, while the cute stuffed animals reduce the distance between audience who don’t have a science background and the cutting-edges scientific research that seems difficult to understand. The most interesting thing is that I think the two labs are targeting different audience. Dr. Hasty gave detailed explanation about her research with the help of pictures and stuffed animals, so I think her communication is more understandable to people without science knowledge. Dr. Skaar assumed that we had some background knowledge and the posters he showed us were for research conference, therefore it’s not that understandable for me.

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    1. I love the point you make about the cell plush! Your interpretation is very deep, and I had not thought of the plush in that way, but I see now how a simple plush can reduce the distance between less educated audiences and scientific research.

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