Program Thursday

Continental Breakfast (all attendees)
7 – 8am | Atrium A Foyer

7am – 5:15pm | Atrium A Foyer

Welcome & Announcements
8:00 – 8:30am | Atrium A

President’s Message
Mark Schornak, CMI, FAMI
8:30 – 9:00am |  Atrium A

Mark SchornakMark Schornak is a certified medical illustrator and the Manager of Neuroscience Publications at the Barrow Neurological Institute.  He is the current President of AMI, former Chair of the Artists Rights Committee, and is active on the Membership Committee. He received the Outstanding Service Award for efforts to educate the membership on copyright issues. He helped host the 50th Annual AMI Meeting in Phoenix in 1995 and prepared multimedia presentations for the celebration of event. He has helped judge and hang artwork for AMI Salons. He has presented neuroanatomy and copyrights at annual meetings.  Mark has also served as President on the Board of the Vesalius Trust.

Mark has co-authored papers on interactive and stereoscopic teaching media. His illustrations and animations have received AMI Salon Awards, including Member’s Choice. Previously Mark was the Art Director for the Arizona Heart Institute and worked for Visuals for Medicine in Charlottesville, VA. He holds an MS in Medical Illustration from the Medical College of Georgia and a BA in Zoology from UNC-Chapel Hill. He studied art at the Cleveland Institute of Art.

Outside the AMI, Mark enjoys cycling, backpacking, rock climbing, and coaching high school robotics. He has been married for over 25 years to Deborah Ravin, the talented medical and botanical illustrator, and plein air painter.

 Session 1: Keynote

Preparing for Emerging Infections – Lessons Learned at Emory from Ebola

Jay Basil Varkey, MD

9:00 – 10:00am | Atrium A

CEUs: 0.1 Biomedical

In 2014 Emory University Hospital accepted the first patient to be treated for Ebola virus disease in the United States. Dr. Jay Varkey was there. He will take us beyond the media frenzy to better understand preparation, treatment, and communication during a public health crisis, from Ebola to whatever comes next.

Jay Basil Varkey, MD is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases. He received his BA from Marquette University and is an Alpha Omega Alpha graduate of the Medical College of Wisconsin. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine and Fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Duke University Medical Center, where he was a member of the Antimicrobial Evaluation Team and the Infection Control and Epidemiology Committee.

Dr. Varkey was recruited to Emory University in 2009 to become the Director of the Antimicrobial Management Program and Associate Hospital Epidemiologist at Emory University Hospital (EUH). He also serves as the Co-Director of the Outpatient Parenteral Antimicrobial Treatment Clinic at Emory and as the Hospital Epidemiologist at the Wesley Woods Geriatric Hospital of Emory University.

Additionally, Dr. Varkey provides clinical service on the general Infectious Diseases Consult service and the Transplant Infectious Diseases Consult service at EUH. He currently serves on numerous institutional committees including the Department of Medicine Quality Council, the Department of Surgery Wound Infection Group, the Clinical Effectiveness Septicemia Design Team, and the Infectious Diseases Fellowship Program Admissions Committee.

Dr. Varkey’s research interests are focused on the appropriate use of antimicrobials, reducing drug toxicities, reducing antimicrobial resistance, and improving patient outcomes. He was the recipient of a NIH KL2 award to study trends in antibiotic resistance in intensive care units using unit-specific antibiograms.

He is a member of the Data Safety Monitoring Board for an influenza vaccine trial. He has published 9 peer-reviewed articles, four review articles, and one book chapter. He is the Co-Director of the Clinical Infectious Diseases Elective for 2nd year medical students. Dr. Varkey was the recipient of the Department of Medicine Quality Achievement Award in 2012. He is a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, and the American Society of Transplantation, Infectious Diseases Community of Practice.

Coffee Break
10:00 – 10:30am | Atrium A Foyer

Session 2: Brödel Memorial Lecture

10:30 – 11:30am | Atrium A

Risk Communications Illustrated: The Impact of Visuals in Public Health Communications

Issac S Evans, BS Visual Communications, Chief, Graphics Services Branch, Office of the Associate Director for Communication, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

CEUs: 0.05 Biomedical, 0.05 Art

Description coming soon

Bio coming soon!

Meet the speakers + Network
11:30 – 12:00pm | Atrium A

Annual Business Lunch
12:00 – 1:30pm |  Atrium A

1:30 – 2pm

Concurrent A: 2:00 – 3:00pm | Room A704

Minding Your Own Business
Jennifer E. Fairman, MA, CMI, FAMI
Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins University
Founder & Principle, Fairman Studios, LLC

CEUs: 0.1 Business

So much has changed in the 21st century within the professions of the arts, sciences, technology, communications and business. Small businesses have expanded into new areas of information dissemination, and have become more asynchronous, mobile and global. Social media plays an important role as a marketing tool across all disciplines. Start-ups and small innovative tech companies continue to enter the market, pitching and incubating new ideas daily, and where their communication needs open new opportunities for small businesses in the visual communication of health sciences. For the medical illustrator, getting started may seem daunting, but it’s a rewarding first step.

Jennifer Fairman will describe how to set up a small business from a freelance artist’s perspective. She will discuss and take questions from the audience on a variety of topics including: considerations for starting out, marketing and advertising, finances and bookkeeping, taxes, finding professional services, organizing, incorporating, understanding basic artists rights, attracting and educating new prospects about our specialty, turning clients into referrals, social media marketing strategy and much more.

Fairman-headshotJennifer Fairman, CMI, FAMI is the Founder and Principal of Fairman Studios, LLC. She also holds a faculty appointment as Assistant Professor in the Department of Art as Applied to Medicine where she previously received her MA in Medical and Biological Illustration from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She served as a Scientific Illustrator, Research Associate and James Smithson Fellow for the Smithsonian Institution (USDA Systematic Entomology Laboratory) located within the National Museum of Natural History. Her work at the Smithsonian also brought her to Costa Rica with the support of a Smithsonian Women’s Committee Grant, where at INBio she assisted in systematic entomological research and taught scientific illustration. After receiving her Master’s degree from Johns Hopkins, Jennifer relocated to Boston to work as a staff medical illustrator for the Lahey Clinic, a suburban hospital and community group practice. Shortly thereafter, she founded Fairman Studios. She is the 1999 Inez Demonet Scholar, an AMI Fellow and the recipient of the AMI’s Outstanding Achievement Award.


Concurrent B: 2:00 – 3:00pm | Room A706

Interacting with Science: Designing interactive multimedia experiences for the life sciences
Jodie Jenkinson, PhD, Gaël McGill, PhD

CEUs: 0.05 Art, 0.05 Biomedical

Emerging technologies offer exciting possibilities for embedding interactivity, adaptive learning, and “just in time“ assessments within the design of instructional visualizations.

Particularly in the life sciences, multimedia visualizations are being deployed in a variety of learning contexts, from K­12 and post­secondary classrooms to the medical and research communities. Providing viewers with a means of interacting with the learning material in a way that not only challenges but also addresses their misconceptions can provide a transformative learning experience. In this session we will explore the potential for interactive multimedia design to engage viewers and advance their understanding. Using numerous production examples, we will discuss design challenges and specific strategies used to overcome them, as informed by learning sciences research. We’ll explore how blurring the line between “instruction“ and “assessment“ in interactive visual multimedia could be a powerful design strategy for improving learning outcomes.

Jenkinson,jJodie Jenkinson, PhD is a full­time faculty member in Biomedical Communications at the University of Toronto and the founder and principal investigator of the Science Visualization Lab ( Her research focuses on the role that visual complexity plays in learning, particularly in life science education. This includes investigation along various lines of inquiry including the efficacy of visualization within different learning contexts, the design of visualizations for optimal impact, and the development of standards of visual communication in the scientific visualization community.

McGill, gGaël McGill, PhD is faculty and Director of Molecular Visualization at Harvard Medical School (HMS) where his teaching and research focuses on visualization design methods in science education. He is also the founder and CEO of Digizyme Inc., a firm dedicated to the visualization and communication of science to a variety of audiences. He recently co­authored and served as digital director for E.O. Wilson’s Life on Earth iBooks biology textbook. McGill is the creator of the scientific visualization portal, the Molecular Maya (mMaya) software toolkit and has contributed to leading Maya and ZBrush textbooks. Gaël is a board member of the Vesalius Trust and an advisor to several life sciences companies.

Coffee Break & VT Poster Presentations
3:00 – 3:30pm | Atrium A Foyer

Vesalius Trust Poster Symposium: Information for Participants

The Vesalius Trust, in association with Association of Medical Illustrators, will be holding its 6th Annual Poster Session at the upcoming Annual Conference.  All 2015 and 2016 applicants to the VT Scholarship program have an opportunity to present at this year’s Annual Vesalius Trust Poster Session. In other words, you do not have to have received a VT Scholarship or Grant to take part. Participation is voluntary for all applicants, and would be in addition to those who have been asked to present at The Vesalian Scholars Session. 

General Guidelines

Who can participate:  Presentation of research is open to all 2015 and 2016 Vesalius Trust Research Grant applicants. 

You MUST be present at the AMI conference session to participate.

Where: Atrium A Foyer, Atlanta Marriott Marquis

When:   Poster Submission Deadline: Friday July 1, 2016*

Poster Judging Online: Monday, July 4 – Friday July 15, 2016

Poster Presentation Session: Thursday, July 21 from 3:00pm-3:30pm

Best Poster Award Announced: Friday, July 22, 2016, 7:30pm at Awards Banquet

* Please RSVP if you would like to participate: 

Cost: FREE! The cost of printing is covered. All posters will be printed ahead of Atlanta.

Please create your poster from the supplied Adobe Illustrator digital template file (.ait file) which can be downloaded from the AMI meeting site at:

Instructions may be downloaded here:

A Best Poster Award and/or an Honorable Mention will be given.

Poster Presenters:

  • Sam Bond, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Jonathan Bowen, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Wai-Man Chan, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Erina He, University of Toronto
  • Wendy Gu, University of Toronto
  • Sam Holmes, University of Toronto
  • Susan Le, University of Toronto
  • Mao Miyamoto, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Caitlin Mock, Johns Hopkins University
  • Samantha Olsen, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Melissa Phachanhla, University of Toronto
  • Laura Roy, Johns Hopkins University
  • Carrie Shaw, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Kelly Speck, University of Toronto
  • Caitlin Swanberg, University of Toronto
  • Kai-ou Tang, Johns Hopkins University
  • Jill Tessler, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Amy Zhong, Johns Hopkins University

3:30 – 4:30pm | Atrium A


Attendees will be assigned a table number for this interactive session in order to network and make new connections with the remarkable seasoned professionals and ground breaking newcomers that comprise our exciting field!


Session 3: Technology of Change
4:30 – 5:30pm | Atrium A

CEUs: 0.1 Art

The Future of Design: Biology as an Emergent Design Space 
Merry Wang

Take a simple look at the built environment around us. Everything from the homes we live in, cars we drive, shoes we wear, and devices we use were carefully designed and fabricated using computer-aided design and manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software.

With the explosion of knowledge across branches of biology such as biotechnology, molecular biology, genetic engineering, and biophysics, biology has become an emergent design space, nurturing an exciting intersection of design, biology, and technology. This talk will explore how the Bio/Nano group at Autodesk Research leverage the experience and technology from CAD/CAM software in established industries such as manufacturing, engineering, and architecture and apply them to biological sciences. We will look at emerging technology, trends, and their application in tools for biological design. The audience will see projects from the Bio/Nano research group focused on our research, exploration, and design tools in biological domains such as DNA nanotechnology, synthetic biology and 3D bio-printing.

wangMerry Wang is a Senior Research Scientist at Autodesk Research within the Bio/Nano Research Group. Her current focus is on cloud-based tools for 3D visualization, exploration, and design of molecular and nanoscale biological structures. Within Autodesk Research, she previously worked on user experience for Project Cyborg, a cloud-based platform of design tools for programmable matter. Prior to that, she was involved in product management within the Media and Entertainment Division at Autodesk on an initiative towards automated, data- driven chemical and molecular pathway animation. Merry is a graduate of the MScBMC program at the University of Toronto.


YouTube Video Marketing: Does Length Matter?
Nobles Green

Using data gathered from nearly half a billion views on the Nucleus Medical Media YouTube channel, Nobles Green will explain what common factors successful medical animations share in gaining views, subscribers, and community activity on YouTube, the world’s second most popular search engine after Google. Among the measurements considered are animation length, view duration, inbound links, geographic and age demography, and how these are affected by factors such as animation topics, titles, descriptions, tags, and thumbnail images.

Nobles Green is a Senior Medical Animator for Nucleus Medical Media, publisher of the most popular medical animation channel on YouTube with nearly a quarter billion views and 400,000 subscribers. In 2005, Nobles earned his Masters of Science in Medical Illustration from Augusta University.  He has extensively contributed to the development of the Nucleus Animation Library (NAL) and the emerging Science Education library.  These animations are regularly licensed by healthcare and educational insitutions and can be seen on Nucleus’ own Youtube channel.


Great Animation is Actually Just Good Animation That Used These Cheap Tricks
Cameron Slayden

It’s easy to recognize great animation, but it’s another thing entirely to understand the cognitive basis for why a predictable set of sweetening effects used in our favorite scientific animations convinces the brain to invest interest and emotion. This presentation will identify and discuss several visual techniques in detail and their significance to viewer perception. It will be helpful for new animators looking for ways to improve their production value, and for expert animators to be able to say “I totally already knew that” even if they didn’t.

Cameron Slayden, MS began working in 3D while he was a scientific illustrator at Science Magazine.  In 2005, he received his Master’s degree in Medical Illustration from Augusta University, and founded Cosmocyte, an animation firm dedicated to producing high-end animated content for the medical device, pharmaceutical and biotech industries.  Cosmocyte has produced animations for large pharmaceutical companies, agencies, biotech startups, National Geographic, History Channel, and Food Network programming.  Cameron also founded the Sci-Med-C4D user group, and if you regularly use Cinema 4D for scientific visualization, you really should sign up for that.

Free Evening | Dinner On Your Own /