Monthly Archive: December Natu
Science communication at the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto and the Natural History Museum, London: two experts compare notes
Guest blog by recent EVC grad Temira Bruce comparing opinions from science communicators at museums in Toronto and London, UK, on the how the way in which museums communicate science to their visitors is changing.
Guest blog by recent EVC grad Rhi More examining staff & student reactions to wildlife photography and the Environmental Visual Communication program.
Guest blog by Environmental Visual Communication graduate David Coulson
Deborah Samuel's latest book, “The Extraordinary Beauty of Birds” is a stunning exposé of the ROM ornithology collection; an attempt, in her words, to bring these birds and feathers back to life. Here, EVC graduate David Coulson interviews Deborah about her photography and experiences working in collaboration with the ROM's Natural History collections.
Guest blog by Environmental Visual Communication graduate Samantha Stephens
Art, Culture, Nature. They may be separate words, but if we consider them separate disciplines, we are doing a disservice to the potential of human wisdom. Without nature, there is no culture. Without culture, there is no art. EVC grad Samantha Stephens gives us some examples of how these themes intertwine in recent ROM research and exhibits, including the 2017 Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibit, open now!
Guest blog by Environmental Visual Communication student Samantha Stephens
The sign on the door seemed quite appropriate. “Abandon all hope ye who enter here.” I imagine that, as this quote from Dante’s Inferno indicates, this might be what hell feels like. As this last barrier swings open and the dim room is revealed, the swarm of hundreds of tiny creatures moving across the concrete floor completes that vision. However, for some of the ROM’s tireless workers, this environment is heaven. Here resides the dermestid beetle colony. These ravenous beetles are eagerly seeking their next meal. Manoeuvring themselves into the crevices of skeletons, they strip the flesh from delicate specimens with more precision and speed than the nimblest of human fingers.
Guest blog by Environmental Visual Communication student Sally McIntyre
When most people think about the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), they think of dinosaurs or mummies. However, it is the invertebrates that live on the ocean floor and crawl through the soil that make up the most diverse collection at the ROM. So who holds the daunting position of keeper of this vast museum collection? Meet Dr. Sebastian Kvist: Leech Hunter.
Guest blog by Environmental Visual Communication student Rhi More
Bringing more attention to trees is what the Royal Ontario Museum had in mind when its botanists and Creative Department partnered with the City of Toronto Urban Forester’s Office to create Trees for Toronto in 2004. EVC Student Rhi More decided to check out this ‘urban arboretum’ for herself, and share the findings with our readers.
Museum collections are often undervalued and misunderstood. Regular visitors to the ROM don’t get to see what lies behind the public galleries, and yet less than 1% of the ROM’s collections are on display. These collections do far more than gather dust: they are a reference point in time, and, from a natural history perspective, provide a baseline for our understanding of life. I have received a lot of data requests from inside and outside the ROM. Some I can answer, and some I automatically forward along to collections. A group of recent emails stood out in particular...
It’s been a hot summer, the sun is shining and the Scarborough Bluffs are standing tall above the Lake Ontario shoreline. But they might not be for long. The Scarborough Bluffs in Toronto’s east end are eroding at a rapid rate, increasing the likelihood of slope failure and damage to local species’ habitats. Although the cliffs have been eroding since the 1940s, the view from atop the Bluffs was too enticing to prevent people from further settling there. As houses were feverishly built along the Bluffs, the rate of erosion further accelerated.