Panama: T-Minus One Month!

I'm officially less than a month away from my trip to Panama. (Insert me screaming on the inside here!)

I'm busy getting my art supplies ready, packing sun screen, and figuring out my blog schedule while I'm away. 

One question my taxonomists had is what they needed to bring for me, and it got me thinking this would be a great blog post for you all!

First the don'ts: 

Don't ask me to copy an existing diagram. This is against copyright laws and is illegal (except in a very few special circumstances). I can take inspiration in the layout, the way the original artist rendered the subject, and how the data is presented, but I can't reproduce someone else's diagram in good conscience. 

And the do's:

I love when my scientist collaborators have though about and can answer the following three questions!

  1. What does the illustration need to convey? A specific character trait or the set up for your lab equipment? 
  2. What does your ideal illustration look like? Do you want something classic and stippled or a modern digital drawing?
  3. What materials do you find yourself referring to when you have to present on the subject? Do you use big sweeping diagrams of a life cycle or a specific photograph of your lab equipment? 

Keep this in mind when you're looking to have an artist illustrate something for your research!

What do you ask your illustrators when you're looking for scientific illustration work?