Nitrogen and Oxygen are two of essential elements for life. Though Carbons role can’t not be ignored, it is simply a building block upon which these other elements become a part of in straightforward and complex life. Axolotl is very similar to Salamanders which we probably remember from Beryllium. Axelottles choice here as the animal that represents Nitrogen is of particular importance though. Nitrogen in a biological system is essential for a cycle of growth, though occasionally things need rapid change and Nitrogen can do this. Much like Axolotl who can reproduce without undergoing metamorphosis. Nitrogen is also an excellent indicator of the health of a system. Axolotl is also used as an indicator species. Being amphibious they take up toxins, get sick and are easily bred for scientific research into aquatic systems, hearts, neural tube defects and many other embryonic development problems. They much like nitrogen also can comply regenerate without scaring. The Nitrogen cycles are very similar in that the same nitrogen that goes into a system also comes out of it. The last connection is an awful bioscience pun. Which I will save you from unless you wish to guess in the comments.
Ravens are incredibly intelligent birds. I try my best to match the elements that are gases at room temperature with birds, but as you can tell for nitrogen Axolotl made a far better match than any bird I could think of, though the connections get a little less complicated and semi scientific over time. Some only have the connection by their country of discovery or are simply animals that felt right at the time! Raven does like to form groups of two (two ravens are relatively common) though often these are solitary birds who have barely any real connection to the element Oxygen. It just felt right somehow. Maybe you have a theory or a connection I missed? Let me know in the comments.
Again older art. Done with my old signatures.
I may do the art again at some stage.
Boron is rare and can become Boric Acid in which some Acidobacteria have learned to live. This artwork contains probably one of the few animals that are almost directly related to the element I’ve artistically assigned it as. Most Acidobacteria is either harmless to humans, but considering it often lives in very acidic areas it’s likely you would have other concerns.
Carbon is essential for life. It’s pretty much the element that helps create all life on our planet. It’s maybe possible that Silicon based life might exist, but this has never been adequately proven or disproven. Carbon makes better stronger long chains and creatures create chemicals readily from using its ability to be transformed. Scarab Beetles are one of the most important agricultural animals in the world. Transformating scats, into good soil often quickly and readily; using the scat as a place to lay their young as a good food source. They are one of the chief transformation agents of the insect world and we would be up to our necks is cow shit, and other shit without them!
Lithium and Beryllium are the next two elements on the periodic table. They are both very volatile and odd but also necessary. Hence both having strange creatures as their representatives in this series. The piece you see here is a very early work. I’m mostly displaying it as I often feel I should show how much I have grown as an artist over time. These sort of growths photos help me as an artist, and I am sure they will help others.
Earthworms are deceivingly simple creatures. They are quite complicated life for their size, and the same goes for Lithium. It is a far more difficult element than it seems at first. Even tricking some of the worlds best minds in nuclear fusion when they built the whole stuff up that was a Castle Bravo nuclear test.
Salamander are fascinating little creatures. Some are toxic, others not so. They should not be confused with axolotls and newts. The salamander lives in aquatic like environments mostly in the northern hemisphere. They are the only true vertebrates who can fully regenerate cut off limbs. Although some lizards can perform partial regeneration, it’s not nearly to the extent and ability that Salamanders can. Often they are associated with the alchemical element of fire. I’m not sure why. I blame Agrippa (Alchemy joke for all you Alchemy fans).
Beryllium almost always only occurs with other elements. As part of a crystal or simply just with the other elements. It is slightly toxic and requires specific handling. It’s also oddly invisible to X-rays and thus is often used in plastic and glass on X-ray equipment. It also is very flexible for a metalloid. It’s also sometimes used to date in radiocarbon dating due to its isotope B10s half life.
We start this series with the two most common elements in the universe. Although they are common, they are both gases. This has led me to decide to portray them as birds.
The Hydrogen is Wedge Tailed Eagle. The Eagles who spent many years of my youth amazing me with their supreme mastery of the thermals rising near my home in south Canberra. Helium is a light lifting element, so that led me to use this wonderful bird. Unlike most of the Animals as Elements series, their is no watercolor; the pencil is dry.
The Helium is Kiwi. Why? Well, Kiwis as very shy, very solitary animals. Their eggs are almost as big as they are. This is kind of like Helium. It likes to be by itself. The first Nobel gas. It sticks around by itself and in the cores of stars fuses to make new Helium and hydrogen or bigger elements and a lot of energy. It’s calm, solitary and very Kiwi like.
As some of you who follow this blog for a long time I intersect my poetry often with my artwork. This has led me to decide to start my first Virtual exhibition of my physical artwork. Although I also dabble in my virtual artwork a lot of that is concentrated on getting art done for my comic. Which also helps me in bringing my narrative skills to bear.
So to help bring the two together in a new way I will be creating a virtual exhibition of my Animals As Elements series of physical art. Each will come with a artists statement of how the art came into being, why that particular animal was chosen and sometimes a poem. This will of course take some time so I plan to realese them about weekly. Thankfully the art is well ahead of the other parts of this process.
Hope you enjoy.
Yours in creativity,
I am going to be posting a poem every second day in August. I hope. I’m doing this for two reasons, one to practice my poetry skills and try and up the differences between them. The other is to gain more attention to my blog. Yeah I’m a little vain, but I love it when people like my poems.
All these poems are free! For your eyes to see. If I’m feeling really generous I might even record me reading one or two.
I will be also be making poetry and art for sale section of the site in due course. Possibly before this post goes up.
Hope all is well,