Tuesday, October 16, 2012

McCrone Group - Micrographia and Holiday Cards

This month (Oct 2012) I had the privilege of touring and speaking at the McCrone Group in Chicago (thanks to Chuck Zona and Kathy Cyr, Hooke College of Applied Sciences Dean and Director of Program Development respectively). Their educational/training branch is aptly named Hooke College in honor of Robert Hooke, the pioneer of mechanics (Hooke's Law) and the "Father of microscopy" (being the author of Micrographia, 1665) .

The visit was an exchange where I discussed "Microrheology of Formulated Consumer Products",  which shares a different perspective on microstructure since their expertise is largely focused on solid, dry particle analysis rather than wet mixtures (lotions, cosmetics, detergents).  Conversely, I was investigating how their services, training, and tools (i.e the McCrone Particle Atlas) could help P&G.

They are setting up a microscope museum and I was able to have a peak at a First Edition, 1665 printing of Micrographia (link is to the interactive online version) being stored in a vault until its case is ready. Don Brooks (CEO) graciously donned white gloves and opened it up for me...even unfolded the "flea" panel. Sweet. As a nerdy microscopist, this was exhilarating. Like looking into the lost ark :) ... but I didn't melt. 

The Group also shares a passion for creating Holiday Cards. Thanks to Christine Gorman (Admissions @ Hooke College) who tracked some of their historic cards down (see below).  I  will have to work microstructure / micrographs into my cards sometime, but not for 2012; this round I stuck to digital painting again.  Keep an eye our for it: this year's theme is faeries.    

All my cards can be found at S E Lindberg - Card Link.  I will again document the design process as I had for the 2011 cherub card.

Historic McCrone Group 

Season's Greetings Cards:

1973: Snowflakes?

Or... Polarized Light of Sodium Bicarbonate?

1988: Christmas Trees?

Or... Rheinburg Illumination of Ammonium Chloride in Water?

1993: Ornamented Pine Boughs?

Or... Fluorescein Crystals?

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Ancient Ohio Trail - Real and Virtual Visits of Earthworks

Seip mound Ohio - For scale, see children

Explore Ancient Ohio

Ancient, Native American Indian architecture, made of earth, saturates the Ohio Valley.  Much of it was obliterated by settlers (admittedly, many of the earth mounds were covered in trees and were overlooked; others were removed without respect unfortunately).  That said, much remains. My family visits these sites ~annually; I and wanted to share some of the resources we use to plan day trips for: hiking, exploration, appreciation of past cultures, and inspiration...at places like:

Ancient Ohio Trail - Online Travel Guide (click!) 

Interactive Tour Guides Link
Many sites have small museums associated with them (Sun Watch and Fort Ancient have very nice ones).  Many others have been incorporated into rest stops (i.e. Seip Mound), parks, or are hidden in plain site within our cities.

Planning a trip was once complex, but now online mapping and conservation efforts have provided interactive tools.  The Ancient Ohio trail tool works great.  Follow the link and select a city or road you want to travel and it will mark out the earthworks and museums. Not sure which ones to go to?  Then check out the below virtual tours enabled in part by the CERHAS (The Center for the Electronic Reconstruction of Historical and Archaeological Sites (CERHAS), part of the University of Cincinnati's Design and Archictecture program.  These are beautiful, realistic tours that have been integrated into the museums.  Check portions of them from their YouTube.com channel:

Youtube Channel Ancient Ohio Trail (click!)