The end of a long weekend. A time that was meant for rest, relaxation and family time. The latter I got, the first two, not so much. Finally a chance to sit down and reflect. A chance to escape. In August, we have moved into a building that has a Starbucks on the first floor. I walk in and feel a sense of relief. But I don’t drink coffee… or tea… I walk in and start looking for something worth buying. In truth, all I want to buy is a little bit of peace.
On Thursday, we spent the whole day at home, mostly cooking. Not my favorite thing to do, but I didn’t mind it so much this time. I think this was the first year that my older daughter actually provided more help than havoc. She made a simple soup and an apple pie that grandparents enjoyed. The day went well and we enjoyed the evening with my family.
As I went to bed on Thursday, my mind suddenly started racing. An idea was born. It came out of nowhere. It has been about a month since I have decided that NeuroBead needs an official logo and put it on my never ending to do list. The task has been eating away at me, but I did not really know how I would like it to look. With all the tryptophan hitting my brain after our Thanksgiving dinner, I had a clear vision. It was late though, and I made my best conscious effort not to forget it by morning.
On Friday morning, I woke up early, could not go back to sleep and decided to start working on the logo ASAP, before my daughters got up. You can see it at the top of this page. Let me explain. While the concept of phrenology – a belief that character traits can be assigned to certain areas of the brain – has become obsolete, some elements of it remain. Popular psychology often makes broad generalizations, where the left brain hemisphere is considered to be more rational, and the right hemisphere more creative. These are loosely based on the existence of areas of the brain, such as Broca’s area (responsible for language) which are localized in one hemisphere and not the other. Most functions though require involvement of both sides of the brain. So with caveats of scientific accuracy aside, I decided to portray a coronal section of the brain, with my daily scientific life (Neuro) in one hemisphere and my creative side (Bead) in the other. The key is that a structure called corpus callosum connects the two hemispheres, allowing the two sides of me to coexist. I have symbolically connected them with a single green neuron, stemming from the O in “Neuro” as its nucleus. The nucleus is colored blue , corresponding to a widely used DAPI stain that labels DNA and can be seen in the blue channel under a microscope. The cell body, simplified dendrites, that receive the signals, and the long, slender axon that sends the signal to the creative side, are colored green, which is arguably the color of choice for staining cells.
In an effort to dedicate some time to strengthen this connection in myself, I have continued to work on the red cell this weekend. You can see the blue (DAPI – stained) nucleus inside the cell labeled with a red marker to visualize its cell body and processes. This is the first cell I have made that is completely 3 dimensional and independent of the surface it will be attached to. A so called 3D reconstruction. Based on its shape and morphology I think it will be an astrocyte. It is almost ready for prime time!
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I would also love to hear what you think of the new logo. Please leave a comment or reach out to me directly.