After I graduated with my BA and MS in Biology, I hoped that I could find a career that would encompass all my passions in life, not just science but also art, cooking, design and creativity. Then one evening I was watching a reality TV show called “Work of Art” where artists compete by creating artwork based on themes thrown at them. This episode’s theme was art inspired by nature and ahah! The idea hit me that I could mix my passion for the creative arts with teaching science via cross integration of curriculum and my company Bloom was born! Bloom’s goal is to show kids that science is not a sterile, unchanging and difficult subject to learn but rather that science is creative, inspirational and can open your mind to how the world around you works!
Not only do I use art to teach science because I like art and science but I also believe that society is programmed to only see art as a hobby. A useless hobby that only if you are famously rich from your art was it worth it. I think this is one of the biggest lies society tells kids and unfortunately a lot of creative people have lost touch with their gifts or are leading unfulfilled lives because they were told that their art would be a fools choice to pursue. Just like there is science in everything we do, so also is art and in fact both bring meaning to life in different BUT equally important ways. Without creative, artistic minds in science many discoveries would not have occurred.Here are a few examples.
LEONARDO DA VINCI
Leonardo Da Vinci was an Italian Renaissance: painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist and writer whose genius, perhaps more than that of any other figure, epitomized the Renaissance humanist ideal. He is widely considered to be one of the greatest painters of all time and perhaps the most diversely talented person ever to have lived. Was this a coincidence that he was both a great artist and scientist? It was mostly through his artistic creations that he was able to make and explain his scientific discoveries.
Another great scientist that used art was Charles Darwin. When Darwin was exploring the Galapagos Islands and contemplating his Theory of Evolution, he spent most of his time drawing what he saw, most famously finches. There were no cameras invented to capture what he saw. Therefore being an artist was an extremely important characteristic of a scientist or as they referred to it at that time, a naturalist. Without accurate artistic depictions of the animals he observed, he would not have been able to fully contemplate or prove his hypothesis.
These are just two examples of well known scientists that used art to discover more about science and used science to be a better artist. I am sure there are many other examples from around the world that haven’t been widely discovered and discussed, many of whom would not be a scientist or artist if they hadn’t been encouraged by someone who believed in them. Mainstream society may not always show respect to art and the artist but I feel it’s so important to give these people the space, MONEY and time to fully express what they can in order for us to truly evolve and progress as people and in turn also progress in science, technology, engineering and math as well as many other important areas. This is why it’s important to encourage not dis-courage creative minds.