My experience as a speaker dates back to my college days and my political activism. Some years after graduating I began to deliver presentations to community groups on the topics of astronomy, planetary science, and space exploration. This was done initially as a spokesperson for the Northern Illinois Space Advocacy, the Planetary Studies Foundation, and the Chicago Society for Space Studies. I have also had the good fortune to have been able to develop and teach a number of courses for Chicago's Adler Planetarium, including a course on astronomical image processing and astronomical art. In 2002 I was selected to be a Solar System Ambassador for the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and continue to provide presentations dealing with planetary science.
Jim Plaxco narrating the Blast Off concert performed by the Music Institute of Chicago Orchestra
Some of the venues for my past presentations include:
MuseumsAdler Planetarium, Chicago IL
Elmhurst Art Museum, Elmhurst IL
Cernan Space Center, Triton College, River Grove IL
Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago IL
PSF Henize Science Center, Crystal Lake IL
SchoolsCampanelli Public School, Schaumburg IL
Da Vinci Academy, Elgin IL
Eisenhower Junior High School, Hoffman Estates IL
Harper College, Palatine IL
Kennedy High School, Chicago IL
Prairie Ridge High School, Crystal Lake IL
LibrariesGale Borden Library, Elgin IL
Helen M. Plum Memorial Library, Lombard IL
Hinsdale Public Library, Hinsdale, IL
Morton Grove Public Library, Morton Grove, IL
Niles Public Library, Niles IL
Schaumburg Township District Library, Schaumburg IL
Wauconda Library, Wauconda IL
Conventions and ConferencesCapricon Science Fiction Convention
Duckon Science Fiction Convention
International Space Development Conference
Midwest Space Development Conference
To Be CONtinued Science Fiction Convention
Windycon Science Fiction Convention
Worldcon World Science Fiction Convention
OtherBoys Scout Troop 67, Northbrook IL
ED/CAS/SSC Societies of IEEE, Motorola, Schaumburg, IL
Fox Valley IEEE, IIT Rice Campus, Wheaton IL
Friendship Village Men's Club, Schaumburg IL
Hanover Township Senior Center, Bartlett, IL
Harper College Astronomy Day, Palatine IL
OtherLake County Astronomical Society, Deerfield IL
Music Institute of Chicago, Evanston IL
Naperville Astronomical Association, Naperville IL
Northwest Suburban Astronomers, Hoffman Estates IL
Pixel Camera Club, Schaumburg IL
Skokie Valley Astronomers, Riverwoods, IL
As my art became an increasingly integral part of my life, I began to give presentations that tied together my interests in art, space, astronomy, and computer graphics. Following is a list of my lectures that relate to art or which would be useful to other artists. The length of each lecture/presentation can be tailored to a group's particular needs. If you are a representative of a community organization, civic group, library, etc. and would like to book me for a presentation, please click the link below to send me an email.
For additional information about each presentation, click the presentation's title link. You can also download a PDF summary of the presentations: The Presentations, Lectures, and Classes of Jim Plaxco PDF (Note: if you are using the Firefox browser, it defaults to using its own internal PDF viewer, over-riding any Adobe Reader plugin you may have installed. The Firefox viewer has multiple issues and should not be used. Consult Firefox documentation to fix this issue.)
|Category||Description and Link to lecture / presentation detail.|
A review of the history of astronomical art. Category: astronomical art
A tutorial on astronomical and planetary image processing. Category: astronomical art, instructional
A look at the Hubble Space Telescope, its astronomical images, and discoveries. Category: astronomy, astronomical art
An overview of planetary image processing as it relates to NASA robotic missions to Mars. Category: astronomical art
A visual tour of algorithmic art. Category: digital art
A tutorial-oriented look at the creative design process used to create algorithmic art. Category: digital art
A look at algorithmic art and its history. Category: digital art
The exploding popularity of art created with the aid of digital devices and the continual invention of new means of creative use of computing technology means that this field of art is ever changing. This presentation provides an overview of the rapidly growing field of new media art, and the associated terminology.
A one session class on how to create digital spirographs and harmonographs using the Processing programming language. In addition to the lecture component, students are provided with model programs to explore and keep.
An introduction to the Processing platform for artists and photographers. Category: digital art, instructional
A first person account of the unique challenges and rewards of being a digital artist. Category: digital art
A presentation and live demonstration of audio-driven art creation. Category: digital art
A presentation that presents planet Earth as a work of art based on satellite imagery. Category: earth art, remote sensing
An inside look at the NSS Space Settlement Art Contest. Category: space art
A look at space art, its development and uses in the realm of space exploration. Category: space art
An instructional presentation for artists and photographers on how to create a presence on the Internet and how to market that presence.
A tutorial presentation for artists and photographers on how to use Instagram and Pinterest to promote your work.
A tutorial presentation for artists and photographers on using SEO (search engine optimization) to improve their search engine ranking.
A tutorial presentation for artists and photographers on using social media to network and promote your art and photography.