I’m in the middle of participating in a short-course on science communication based at the University of Helsinki‘s Lammi Biological Station (about 1.5 hours north of Helsinki by car). Organised by two fantastic people, Mar Cabeza and Tomas Roslin, it’s an eclectic mix of instruction for (mainly) PhD students on how to promote yourself and your science in print, in media, in illustration, in citizen science and for policy makers.
While we aren’t yet finished, I wanted to report that I had the immense pleasure of finally meeting the immeasurably talented environmental cartoonist, Seppo Leinonen. Not only is he an extremely talented artist and a dedicated environmentalist, he’s just a top bloke.
If you haven’t checked out Seppo.net and his cartoons yet, you should.
Seppo was sitting behind me in the seminar room and just before he had to leave, he tapped me on the shoulder and asked “which animal” I wanted him to draw. I really didn’t know, but I thought perhaps the tri-species relationship we just modelled and published might be good. It took Seppo all of 10 minutes to bash together this cartoon of a dingo (left), devil (middle) and thylacine (right) having a nice game of cards, representing our main message that it wasn’t the dingo’s fault the other two went extinct on the Australian mainland.
I didn’t even suggest the scenario, but he got the paper’s message across with finesse and ease without any trouble at all. I am truly impressed, and even more grateful. Thank you, Seppo.