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Envisioning Science: The Design and Craft of the Science Image Paperback – January 30, 2004

7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0262562058 ISBN-10: 0262562057

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Editorial Reviews

From Scientific American

Frankel, a science photographer and research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, presents "a guide to photographing science material." As that alone, it would be of limited interest. But two other attributes give the book a far broader appeal. One is her goal of encouraging science workers "to find a place in your research for a new way of seeing and presenting your work" so as to see "the potential of using your images to communicate to those outside the research community." The other is the pictures, a stunning array that will communicate with any reader. Open the book at random, and your eye will be dazzled: a three-centimeter drop of ferrofluid, gold on gold (one-centimeter patterned chips on a gold wafer), or a flowerlike yeast colony illuminated by daylight from a window.

Editors of Scientific American --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Felice Frankel has produced a remarkable book about marrying pictorial art with science and engineering. The figures are a delight to the eye and stimulation to the brain. What's more, she explains how you can create your own.

(Phillip A. Sharp, Institute Professor and Director of the McGovern Institute, MIT, Nobel Laureate in Medicine (1993))

Felice Frankel is a skilled photographer with the eye of an artist and the mind of a scientist. Envisioning Science is a splendid book, full of breathtaking images and instructions for how we mere mortals might produce similar ones.

(David Goodstein, Professor of Physics and Applied Physics and Frank J. Gilloon Distinguished Teaching and Service Professor, California Institute of Technology)

Books on scientific photography with such beauty, breadth, and insight are rare. Felice Frankel's Envisioning Science is chock full of mind-boggling images and valuable information -- not only for curious artists, students, and lay people, but also for seasoned researchers and photographers. The eclectic Frankel is both a scientist and photographer, and with the cold logic of the one and the inspired vision of the other, she covers an array of topics sure to stimulate your imagination and sense of wonder at the incredible vastness of the physical world.

(Clifford A. Pickover, author of A Passion for Mathematics and Sex, Drugs, Einstein, and Elves)

In the beginning were the image and the eye. Then man-the-scientist became enamored of the word and neglectful of the image. Now the small group of those who fight back welcomes Felice Frankel as a marvelous addition, both as skillful performer and as experienced and patient teacher. Her book is priceless.

(Benoit B. Mandelbrot, Sterling Professor of Mathematical Sciences, Yale University)

Most people think of science as abstract and numerical. In fact, science is a surprisingly visual endeavor: both data and theory are often driven by pictures and images. Felice Frankel's work conveys the tremendous beauty and excitement of science -- letting the layperson share in the wonder of studying the natural world.

(Eric S. Lander, Director, Whitehead Institute/MIT Center for Genome Research; Member, Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research; and Professor of Biology, MIT)

Part of my fun job is to seek out the very best pictures possible, the amazingly cool ones conveying information and promoting new understandings. These images get integrated into designs for new exhibitions that millions of people see every year. 'Honest' pictures are hard to come by and my fondest hope is that scientists will get a hold of Felice Frankel's outstanding book and will use it to make my professional life easier! This amazing guide empowers users by translating Frankel's intuitive art into clear pathways for producing great photos about science and technology.

(Barry Aprison, Director of Science and Technology, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago)

...a beautifully designed array of arresting images.

(Dee Breger Nature.com)

A valuable resource for researchers trying to get the best picture they can of their findings.

(Michael Felton Today's Chemist at Work)

...[a] truly remarkable book.

(G.I. Barenblatt Physics Today)

...an art object as well as a lab hand-book...as good a workbook as any you will find.

(J. Turney The Times Higher Education Supplement)

Envisioning Science can help you, your students and your trainees to produce engaging illustrations.

(Lee A. Meserve TRENDS in Endocrinology and Metabolism)

Frankel's is a practical handbook that combines stunning pictures with descriptive text.

(Wendy Winn Technical Communication)

Here's an important new guide to photographing scientific material and creating accurate yet dramatic photographic presentations.

(Angelynn Grant Design Annual)

The text is highlighted by hundreds of stunning examples and detailed instructions.

(Science News)

There's no way to describe this book other than as a true teacher's gift -- a master photographer of the art of science teaches her craft, with patience, graphic detail, and feeling to all of us who need to visualize and represent this world.

(Roald Hoffmann, Frank H. T. Rhodes Professor of Humane Letters, Cornell University, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry (1981))
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press (January 30, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262562057
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262562058
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.8 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #621,960 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Science photographer Felice Frankel is a research scientist in the Center for Materials Science and Engineering at MIT. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has received awards and grants from the National Science Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, among others. Felice was a Loeb Fellow at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design and was awarded the Distinguished Alumna Award at Brooklyn College, CUNY and the Lennart Nilsson Award for Scientific Photography.

For more information: www.felicefrankel.com

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By wiredweird HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on October 26, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This is at least two different books. The first is simply in the pictures themselves. Frankel's photography complements, even improves the quality of the science with which she works. The scientist's goal is to make new knowledge available, and Frankel has unique talent in doing this visually.
The second book lies in the text around these beautiful pictures. This is an introductory guide to scientific photography. The text will work for a novice as well as a photographer experienced in other kinds of images.
Above all, this is a book about communication - about visual presentation of knowledge. In a chapter of his own, the book's designer makes it clear that the book itself is an example of visual communication.
Perhaps some people think that art and science are somehow opposed to each other. I think such people just don't understand either. This book shows that art and science are complements, perhaps just different ways of finding and sharing new truths.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Bruce E. Wilson on January 7, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I had the opportunity to hear Ms. Frankel at the Materials Research Society meeting and bought the book as a consequence of her talk. Certainly, having heard some of the stories about some of the pictures helps make the book more alive, but I am convinced the book would still be a 5 star one without that advantage.
Ms. Frankel does a good job covering the basics of photography (mostly film, but some digital). She spends a lot of time talking about how to use the image and construct the image to tell the story. My observation is that scientists often don't do a good job getting the image and the story out in a terribly effective way. From the perspective of using images to tell a story (particularly a technical story), this book is by far the best resource I've seen on that subject. I strongly recommend the book to scientists working with images and to those interested in journalism about science.
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By Willie Coleman Jr. on January 31, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Outstanding ideas to me to explore with my camera, I added a micro lens to my birthday list and can hardly wait to try some of the suggested ideas for my next photo shoot.
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By A Customer on September 15, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I first read about this book in the New York Times, and I agree with Mandelbrot's observation that it's a "masterpiece." Frankel's work will have a tremendous impact, not just on science, but on art, design, architecture, aesthetics, and the way we view the world.
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