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If Picasso were a multimedia science blogger…

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Raymond Nakamura and Lisa Willemse, Multimedia co-editors
It’s no secret that scientist-types tend to be very creative people, or that artist-types often have an affinity for the sciences. Which is why we think that if Picasso were alive today, he might have been a science multimedia blogger, taking a Rubik’s cubistic approach to explain mathematics or architectural engineering.
If he were, we also like to think that he’d be a magnet for more scientist-types to explore multimedia as a form of science communications. Unfortunately, we no longer have Picasso with us, so we’ll never know if he’d be drawn to science blogging, but that’s not going to stop us from using him as inspiration.
Every three months or so, we Science Borealis multimedia editors take a look at the posts in our category and we notice two things: first, that we have some incredibly talented multimedia bloggers among us (check them out!); and, second, that we really need more of them. This, especially in light of the fact that one of our favourites has decided to hang up her pencils and take on the mantle of educator (congrats, Laura, we wish you well!).
With this in mind, we created a poster of Picasso doing the Mona Lisa as a multimedia science blogger, with a number key to help unweave the rainbow of multimedia blogging. The best part? No application required – just get a free blogging account and start flexing your science-inspired artwork!

Original cartoon by Raymond Nakamura

Multimedia science blogging by numbers:
  1. Right brain. Source of your creativity. Fueled by coffee and sometimes cigarettes (not always reasonable).
  2. Left brain. Source of your logic and scientific order (possibly biased toward dichotomies). Also fueled by coffee.
  3. Artist’s eye. Evolved on an angle to alter perspective appropriately.
  4. Normal eye. Because having two vertical eyes would be weird.
  5. Mona Lisa smile. Essential for public appearances, networking, and podcasting.
  6. Funky camera necklace. You made this yourself out of recycled wiring while commuting to work.
  7. Camera. Mandatory for the field scientist and for hiding your artist’s eye when mingling with “normals.” Shows you are more serious than taking selfies on your phone.
  8. Smart phone. Your portable studio/office for recording film and audio, taking photos, and managing your blog and social media accounts to keep up with all the latest scientific developments.
  9. Pencil or brush or stylus. For jotting ideas, doodling, sketching. You wish the end of each of your fingers was actually one of these. On a tablet they can be, with the help of an app.
  10. Land. Your home when doing field work. Overcome mountains and the tectonic plates of motivation.
  11. Sky. Where you look for new inspiration. Maybe the cosmos. Hey Pluto.
  12. Canada. Your home and native land. Look at how science and politics mix. Or don’t.
  13. Coffee. See numbers 1, 2, 16, and 17.
  14. The forces of nature. Pushing you to create a kinetic sculpture or music video.
  15. Subatomic particles. Probabilistically generating quantum jewelry, or the force of irrational artistic behaviour that cannot be ascribed to number 1.
  16. Computer. The master work space, site of your Adobe suite and data. Just don’t spill your coffee on it.
  17. Version A; literal: Fabric. Maybe you can explain science through fashion or the science of fashion. Version B; metaphorical: The heart. Source of mystery and life and that innate urge to do science and art and blogs. (Note: Version B can also be fueled by coffee.)
  18. Water. Like it, you are dynamic and flexible, connecting different elements and making change over time.

So with this handy guide, we challenge you to take the plunge and join our community of multimedia science bloggers – you won’t regret it!

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