ME:120.715 :: Biological Illustration

Course Description

Offered: 4th Quarter, First year
Instructors: Timothy H. Phelps, Professor, Lead Instructor
Brent Whitaker, Assistant Professor
Guest Faculty
Credits: 3 Credits: 2 Lecture hours and 8 Studio hours per week

Individual biological illustration projects developed, researched and visualized in two-dimensional format. The course will draw from all techniques and methods developed during the first year coursework. Projects are derived from contact with the resources at the National Aquarium in Baltimore. The student is encouraged to select projects that have publishable value and potential use by the content expert.

Course Objectives

Develop existing artistic and research skills as applied to biological subjects
Create an original illustration depicting an aspect of natural science
Coordinate information from specimens, content experts, on-site participation, textbooks, and journals.


Hodges, E. Ed. 1989. The Guild Handbook of Scientific Illustration. Van Nostrand Reinhold
The Museum of Natural History, Washington, D.C.
The National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland

Course Assignments

Research and illustrate a plate depicting some concept of natural science illustration in student’s choice of medium in consultation with client. Student will consult appropriate resources and content experts connected with the National Aquarium.

Course Evaluation

1:1 faculty-student interface
Interim class critiques
Review of sketches
Written critique on final project
Final grade


Two half days and one full day per week during Fourth Quarter. See departmental calendar for the First Year.

All students with disabilities who require accommodations for this course should contact Catherine L. Will, Disability Services Coordinator for Graduate Biomedical Education ( or 410-614-3781) at their earliest convenience to discuss their specific needs. Please note that accommodations are not retroactive.


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