Andy Thomas

CREATORS – Andy Thomas

In ALL, CREATORS by Alex Pedersen

Name: Andy Thomas

Which came first in your life, the science or the art?

The art came first, I was always good at drawing from a young age and terrible at science. I struggled with science, but maybe it was the way it was taught to me.

Bird Sculpture 1

Bird Sculpture 1

Andy Thomas

Rainforest Sound Form

Andy Thomas

Organic Study 7

Which sciences relate to your art practice?

As I got older I started watching more and more documentaries and became fascinated with science, particularly biology. As my skills with computer software increased I began to see a direct correlation between my art practice and the science I am now obsessed with.

Well, obviously, biology directly relates to the nature side of my artwork, but I am also very interested in physics, especially fractal theories of self similarity. Repeated patterns found in nature at all levels of scale, from swirling galaxies to hurricane and the multitude of branching structures found in nature, such as trees and lungs. My art is sometimes very detailed, for example, I like to mix photos of moss and jungles together with forests and coral. The fact they blend together so seamlessly emphasizes this theory of self similarity, that natural forms of all different scales have similar properties. No matter how far you zoom in or out you will always find more detail.

Andy Thomas

Aquatic Structure

Andy Thomas

Bird Sculpture 2

What do you use to create your artworks?

I use computers mostly. 3D software such as 3DS Max, Zbrush and photoshop to create my still work. And 3DS Max with a range of particle effects software to create my animation work.

A few years ago I began to experiment with visualizing bird sounds by running WAV files I recorded in the field into my computer and using the audio to drive particle effects simulations. The idea being to create a semi abstract computer version of a natural sound that reflected the subject matter in a number of ways, be it colour of plummage or even the bird’s diet.

People seemed to have a real connection with hearing bird sounds and seeing them at the same time.

Andy Thomas

Process Documentation 1

Andy Thomas

Process Documentation 2

Artwork/Exhibition you are most proud of:

The work I am most proud of is what I am currently creating for the Nature centre in Haltia Finland (see video below). They have commissioned me to travel various locations around Finland and sample nature with my camera and sound recording equipment, it will be projected on their big curved screen and opening in August 2016.

Artist links: FacebookVimeo

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About the Author

Alex Pedersen

Alex is a critical scholar and social scientist. During her degrees, Alex recognized a dearth of knowledge transfer between the academy and the general public. To address this gap, she extends her empirical research through multiple mediums including: publications, formal lectures, public speaking events, radio, theatre and photography. In diversifying access to her research, Alex honed a unique set of skills to plan, design and produce events for a wide variety of audiences. To date, she was responsible for several successful lecture series, community events and fundraisers across diverse settings. Most notably, Alex organized and implemented the 2015 Chancellor Dunning Trust Lectureship and was an advisor for the “Free Queen’s” Steering Committee (an initiative encouraging graduates to bring their work to the wider public). In addition, she has written numerous successful grant applications. An activist at heart, Alex advocates for critical thinking in and beyond academic institutions.